10 Things You Couldn’t Live Without. At some point you have at least heard this situation posed to someone (if not to you): if you were stranded on an island, what are the 10 items you would need/want to have with you? Have you given that circumstance serious thought? You can approach this from various viewpoints – that of a Health Activist, patient, caregiver, parent, sports enthusiast, healthcare provider, etc.
That is the prompt for today. And coincidentally it came up earlier this week after I’d read another blog from a fellow DOC member (my hyperlink isn’t working – http://rollinginthed.wordpress.com/). This is something that I actually think about pretty often. When I hear stories of someone being trapped somewhere for hours, or days. I always think “I’d never have survived because I would have run out of insulin.” It’s sad, but true. Some can survive in a snowstorm for days … but chances are, I wouldn’t.
So I’m supposed to name the 10 things I couldn’t live without.
1. The most obvious one is insulin. Without it … well, I literally couldn’t live. My pancreas decided many years ago to go on a permanent hiatus so this is not something I can produce on my own any more. I could stretch out my supply for as long as I could, but it’ll only last so long. And the repercussions of not taking what my body needs … would cause all kinds of other problems.
2. A method of giving myself the insulin. I currently wear an insulin pump, which delivers the insulin into me.. but I am supposed to always have syringes on hand as well (I’ll admit I am not always good about keeping these on hand — I will be better. ) Sometimes a pump will malfunction (I have had this happen) and you have go back to shots for a day or two. Or sometimes you need a quick fix (boost) to bring down a high blood sugar ..and injecting with a syringe can sometimes do the trick.
3. Fast acting carbs. I usually use glucose tablets to fix a low pretty quickly. But I have been out and realized that I didn’t have any. Not good. I definitely need to have something handy at all times – juice, sugar, soda, something with carbs/sugar to fix my lows.
4. A meter to check my blood sugar. I am pretty good about having some sort of an idea of what range I’m in .. but I have been way off before. And it’s never a good idea to take insulin, or eat food, based on a “hunch”. It can be very dangerous, actually. I could be way off and shoot a high or a low even higher/lower.
5. My family. I want to put this one first… but without the other 4 things, I wouldn’t be here for my family. So my family is at the top of the list in my mind. 🙂
6. Food. This is probably another one that should be higher on the list. I would need food of some sort to stay alive. I could never fast for an extended period of time and not have repercussions.
7. Water. I am not great about drinking as much water as I should. I recently learned (thanks, Suzanne!) that it’s even more important for diabetics to drink lots of water because it not only keeps you hydrated, but it flushes out the bad stuff (ketones, etc.) and helps the insulin flow. In a nutshell. 😉
8. My friends. Who doesn’t need their friends? I have always been someone who has a difficult time making friends. And if you know me, you may be thinking that sounds weird coming from me. But it’s true. I am pretty introverted so I don’t stand out very much. I have a small circle of really great friends (you know who you all are 😉 ), and then a large circle of pretty close friends. I have been meeting a new friends, thanks to the DOC, and I am so thankful for that. 🙂
9. Insurance. This should probably be higher on the list. But I realize somehow some diabetics manage to make it work without having insurance. I don’t see how .. but I know it can be done. But it’s something that I personally hope to never find out how to manage. Diabetes is an incredibly expensive disease even with insurance.
10. My phone and charger. I use my phone for everything — phone, camera, calculator, Internet, games, to stay connected in general with the world. Technically I suppose I could live without it, but I wouldn’t like it very much. 😉