Choose Your Own Poison

Tracy (front) and her sister riding Lightning,1972
An image flickers like an old home movie across the screen.  
A young girl stands by an open fridge door drinking thirstily from a large bottle of Passiona.  A woman, her mother, appears in the background and chastises her daughter for drinking too much soft drink.  Too much Passiona.  Always Passiona.

"Drink water," the child's mother says.
But the child doesn't stop. 

Images flicker alternately between the child vomiting violently, and drinking from the bottle of Passiona, before vomiting again.  The child becomes thinner and thinner.  
Images of the wasting child flicker faster until she is nothing but a wisp of fetid Passiona air,  translucent and ephemeral as she drifts in and out of consciousness.

When I was a small girl, I lived on a rural property on the outskirts of Sydney. Every week, the soft drink man would deliver a crate of syrupy, carbonated drinks to the property. They were supposed to be a treat, but I couldn’t get enough of them. My favourite was a passionfruit-flavoured fizzy called Passiona. In the 50 years since I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes, I have always craved carbonated fizzy drinks on those rare occasions when my blood glucose levels have been seriously high. It is worth noting that I became a Type 1 diabetic in the months after I recovered from a serious bout of the measles. Isn’t it fortunate that there are now vaccines to protect against many serious viruses that can trigger our immune systems to go into hyper drive and attack our own bodies?

The (optional) task for Day 14 of National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo) is to write a poem/piece that takes the form of the opening scene of the movie of your life.

There’s more to this movie, but this is a start.

Take care, everyone.
Kind Regards.
Tracy.

NaPoWriMo #14
Ragtag Daily Prompt – Changeling

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We Shall Decide When You Shall Return To The Office

Welcome to my regular Friday song/tune day, ladies and gentlemen, where I pick a piece of music that reflects my mood or the times, to share with you.

Unfortunately, I’ve had a really shit week. I accidentally got my Covid booster shot during the week. I had a doctor’s appointment late one afternoon and they had vaccine doses left over so they offered me one and I accepted. Gee, the fizzer shot raises your blood glucose level, doesn’t it? My BG has been all over the shop. The day after my shot, I was high all day so I decided to walk that blood sugar down. I felt really good when I started out. That should have been a warning sign. With the pump cannula in my leg (I know, stupid), the intramuscular insulin and exercise slammed me down pretty fast. I started to stagger when I reached my street on my way home. I don’t know why I didn’t stop to drink my Lucozade when I felt the hypo symptoms. Too far gone and too stupid, I guess. But I only had a few hundred metres to go, so I pushed on. I made it to our bin when my legs started to collapse under me. I then somehow made it to the front steps. I don’t know how long I was outside, clutching on to the railing, but by the time I was discovered, I was covered in mosquito bites. I remember whispering, “Help me. Help me.” Very pathetic. My True Love has a sixth sense about these things and he found me on the stairs.

Read more

Things That Go Bump In the Night

I know I’m a little late to the party, but that’s the story of my life.  The party I mean is World Diabetes Day 2019 on 14 November.  The theme this year is Diabetes and Family.  I haven’t written anything to celebrate but I thought I would share this old post.  It is kind of horrifying, and I confess that I most worry about criticism from my fellow Type 1 diabetic peers because they seem to have their diabetes s..t together so much better than I do.  But that is just an assumption on my part.  Anyway, this is not about me.  My family deserve a medal for putting up with me.  They are the unsung heroes.  The second theme of this post is about not jumping to conclusions.  I’ve tried to make it funny as well.  It is okay to laugh.  So, here goes (again). Read more

Horse Tales

A long time ago in a land far away, my True Love and I had a big adventure.  It was on our European backpacking tour of ’91.  While we were in Ireland, we decided we would lash out (spend up big) and take an organised day tour of Killarney National Park.  Our mode of transport was horse and cart, and then dinghy for the return across Loch Léin to Ross Castle (I hope I’ve got that right.  It was such a long time ago).  For the more intrepid traveler, there was the option of riding a horse.  Now I’m not that intrepid but I used to be a good rider, so I chose to ride.  My True Love wisely chose to travel by cart. Read more

On The Straight And Narrow

Last night, I thought I might write a very important post.  Then I chickened out.  But now …. oh well, here goes.

I don’t do drugs.  Never have.  I have had too many “hypos” (low blood glucose episodes), which are themselves quite trippy.  Some good.  Some bad.  So I stay well clear of them — drugs, not hypos, which is somewhat harder to “do”.  I don’t even drink alcohol anymore.  The most I’ve ever drunk was three glasses of wine.  You know, when in France … as you do. Read more

Election Priorities – Government Funding for Continuous Glucose Monitoring

Aussie Readers, given the escalating rate of new Government policy and funding announcements, it will come as no surprise to you that a Federal election is imminent and judging by the nature of the announcements to date, the result of the next election is expected to be a close one.  Am I the only Australian woman still menstruating that considers the recent announcement exempting sanitary products from the Goods and Service Tax a stunt?  Some estimates put the saving to each woman at less than $10 per year.  But I suppose the more you bleed, the more you save.  Let’s not forget that GST revenue goes to State Governments anyway, so it is not like they are giving anything away.  I am being facetious but you get my drift.  Never let it be said that the Coalition has a woman problem.

If I had my way, I would rather see the Government commit to further emission reductions.  I don’t think anyone outside of Government seriously believes Australia is going to meet its Paris emissions reduction target based on current policy settings.  If I can’t have that, and apparently I can’t, I would like to relieve some of the day to day stress of living with Type 1 diabetes. Read more

No Such Thing as Typical for a Type 1 Diabetic

WordPress Daily Word Prompt – Typical

I don’t like to write about my experience with Type 1 diabetes because it is all just s?/* really.  The point is no day is typical.  Let me explain just a little.

We do have a lot of new tech.  Little devices that can help with day-to-day management and identifying trends.  So that is great.  But then, life, hormones, illness, inaccuracy in product labels (for carb counts), exercise, the time of day, diet, insulin resistance, etc, affect results; so much so that I find it difficult to say what my blood glucose levels typically are when asked by some doctors.  My answer is always that it depends.  I often get the you-should-know-better look.

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During the first 20-30 years of my having this condition, doctors would often blame me for my unpredictable results.  There is greater understanding now among the medical profession that perfect control is unachievable for most.  There is less of the blame game.  Thank goodness.

I’m grateful for the new tech.  I really am.  But the device companies and insulin manufacturers (many of whom fund research efforts) have a vested interested in maintaining the status quo.  It’s business as usual.  I’m over it.

What do I want?  Real innovation – a cure.  When do I want it?  Now.

PS. For all those low-carbers out there that think that low-carb is the way to flat lines, sure it helps.  But it is not a panacea, certainly not for middle-aged women like me.

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