Monday, January 30, 2012

State of the pump address

We are a few days shy of our 3 month-aversary of pumping, and I thought I'd share a few of my thoughts about the whole process.

The beginning was
hard. I think that's well documented on my blog. I think our difficulty was spawned by our very unique circumstances... moving from NPH and diluted insulin to a pump. I think I was very unprepared for it, which made it even more difficult.

Once we got her settings figured out (for the time being), it was like some sort of BG nirvana. Being able to
temp basal instead of feeding at night has been awesome. We love the freedom. We love that you can't even tell Elise is wearing a pump. We love being able to say yes to cake and pizza at 2:00 in the afternoon.

When we started experiencing the pump-change highs, I wrote
this post. Thankfully, my distress call was answered by the awesome DOC and we're pretty close to figuring out the pre-bolus/temp basal combo we need to combat those highs.

We've had our share of alarming pods. Sadly they always seem to happen mere hours after I've just changed her pump. Elise is amazing when it comes to pump changes, but two in the span of 4 hours is more than any little girl can bear. Otherwise we haven't had any bent cannulas or bleeders. Once we did have a pod fall off right after we changed it.

We miss our
dex. I think it would really help us out when it comes to tweaking... but Elise still says no, and I'm okay with it. What I don't miss are the buzzing and beeping! One noisy device is enough!

Then came the
lows. Wow were they bad. Looking back I'm pretty sure the culprit was a sneaky tummy bug. I say sneaky because there doesn't really appear to be anything wrong with you, except you feel kind of nauseous. Elise kept telling me her tummy hurt, which is something she says when she's low. So I totally missed that she was ill. Bad mom.

I have learned that
with pumping, you carry a bigger burden than when on MDI. You have the capability to tweak to your heart's content, but that can be overwhelming. How do you know what the trouble-maker is? Basal? I:C? Correction factor? Something that has nothing to do with settings (illness, growth spurt, stress, etc.)? I have a love/hate relationship with this aspect of pumping.

I've been asked if I wished we had started pumping a long time ago. My answer is no. We waited over three years after Elise was dx'd to start pumping, and it was the perfect time for us. I was able to learn so much from the DOC, and I felt like we chose the right pump for us.

Once upon a time, Omnipod was not even on our radar as a pump choice. We were all set to go with another company, when I started hearing some unpleasant things about their pump. So we contacted Omnipod, and as I met with the rep and CDE, I was blown away at how we were treated as customers. They truly care for Elise. I cannot say enough about how well we have been treated.

And that's our pumping story so far. We love it. Elise loves it. If you charted all of our ups and downs it would look a dexcom graph on a bad day, but we wouldn't change it for anything... Right Elise?


  1. You love it. Elise loves it. It's working, maybe not perfectly but no one else gets a perfect either. Happy daughter... that's all that matters!

  2. 3 months is actually a relatively short time to figure something like this out. So, kudos to you and Elise!
    Happy daughter = Happy Mom :)

  3. Cutie pie. :) Glad she is a happy girl!

  4. My feelings about the pump exactly. But there is no other device that offers the freedom it gives and let's a kid be a kid. And, since I feel even less sanguine about MDI, it's a better option. It IS hard to pinpoint what the culprit is... and I still can't figure it out sometimes.... for us, it's almost always basal but you still have to question. MDI narrows the choices down. I can see how happy Elise is with the pump in her cute Belle dress. You are such a good mother not to push the Dexcom on her and allow her the choice, even with all the issues you were having, and I know you must have longed use Dex to make it easier to troubleshoot. Wishing you an uneventful rest of the year... as much as is possible.

  5. Love the title of this post, love that things have gotten smoother over time and love, love love that little girl!

  6. I didn't realize that Elise and I started pumping with the Omnipod around the same time! It's exciting to have tnattransition but also frustrating and rewarding at the same time. I experienced the stubborn lows as well. I'm glad you two seem to be doing well so far and good luck!!

  7. the smile on Elise's face in the picture is happy for you all!

  8. We also love being podders and agree that the whole OmniPod team is great and make you feel like they actually care about you. While there are some minor challenges, as with any pump, we feel they far outweigh the numerous benefits, which we outlined in a recent post we made to provide prospective pumpers with a user review that covers both the pros and cons. We are confident that Emerson would not be nearly as happy on any other pump. You make a great point about how the increased ability to more precisely dose can cause you to immerse yourself in searching for the perfect settings and rates, only to find that they don’t work the next day. Pod failures, while causing us some angst early on, are minor inconveniences. Ours more often than not are not technical issues that trigger an alarm but are issues with the pod site that result in reduced effectiveness and suddenly high BGs. We feel as we gain more experience and Emerson get bigger this will become a non- or rare issue.

    Glad to hear your experience has been a positive one like ours so far.

  9. this post will be a fantastic resource to people looking for a first-person experience of switching to a pod, so props to you for rocking all that html.

    and that pic of elise is totes adorbs.


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