Friday, May 14, 2010

What Shall I Pack ... or, I Love Bags

Now that T-Bear is on the OmniPod and all of his “basic” stuff will fit into two SPIBelts (yes, I got a nifty blue one for myself – woohoo!), I’ve been asking myself whether or not I need to carry “emergency” supplies with us when we go anywhere, what supplies to take, and under what circumstances. We’ve always got glucose tablets with us – in my purse and in T-Bear’s SPIBelt – and now we’ve always got enough insulin in his Pod to cover meals and snacks, and to correct highs. Do we really need to also carry around Ketone Test Strips, glucose gel, and The Dreaded Glucagon Impaler everywhere we go? Should we also carry an extra Pod and insulin? And, most important, which bag should we carry everything in? ‘Cause with me, it’s all about the bag.

Anyway, I had just about decided that for most close-to-home outings, we just need to take along the two SPIBelts and we’d be fine. We’d be close enough we could just bolt home if there was a pump failure other unforeseen circumstances. No need to carry around an emergency bag. Now, this does go against my Mama Bear “emergency preparedness” instinct, since I tend to always “prepare for the worst and hope for the best.” But, being a recovering control-a-holic as I am, I push myself to “let go” as much as seems reasonably possible. So, today I “let go” and decided that we’d leave the emergency CamiPack at home.

Our first outing, to the Orthodontist, was fine. We even stopped at CVS on the way there for an Emergency Chip Run because, by my calculations, T-Bear would be needing a carb load right about the time BroBear was getting fitted with whatever new gizmo he was being fitted with today. Bolusing in the car was fabulous. But, he was running pretty high. (Turns out, I forgot to bolus his breakfast, which, by the way was really easy to check and confirm with all that information being stored in the PDM, but that’s another story). So, I corrected and covered in the car, and after our appointment headed home for lunch. Then, off to the Y for some swimming.

T-Bear’s BG usually drops pretty quickly when he swims, and I usually feed him glucose tablets at the rate of 20 g carbs per hour to keep him steady. Of course, that was when he was on Lantus and I couldn’t control his basal insulin. Now, I can shut off his basal for a while if I need to, which I will probably do in the future. But, because he was running high, I left the basal on figuring the insulin plus the exercise would help bring his BG down. Peachy. No problem.

Except, after about an hour in the pool, on about the 500th cannon ball, T-Bear’s Pod came off. Entirely. Now, no insulin at all. And, 10 minutes before when I had him test, he was still high (190). And, because I know he can drop pretty quickly when swimming, and he had his basal going, I had opted not to give extra insulin to correct. Ooops.

I gave him and BooBoo Bear another 15 minutes in the pool, then dragged them out, had them get dressed (which took about 20 minutes because they were unsupervised), and headed home. Got home, slapped on a new Pod in record time (which T-Bear made a video of on his iPod), and tested his BG. All in all, probably about an hour Pod-less, after about 1 ½ hours of exercise, and he was over 300. Oops. Correct. Go on our merry way.

So, I guess I’ll be taking along the emergency CamiPack just about everywhere we go from now on, especially to the pool. And, maybe look for a water-proof sports wrap to try to keep the Pod in place when T-Bear is swimming. I wish they made a one-vial sized Poucho insulin cooler, now that we’re only carrying one vial at a time (woohoo!). Hmmm…what other cool bags and doo-dads could I buy as a result of this little debacle? There must be something else we need...

P.S. For all the pumpers out there, here's my shameless product plug. Have you seen these SPIBelts specially made to hold pumps? I holds the controller firmly against your body without bouncing around or slipping, and there's a little hole for the tubing to stick out. How cool is that?


  1. I just ordered one for my's worth a try!! Thanks!

  2. Thanks for sharing. I was reading hoping you found the magic solution to avoid bringing the extra case around. Oh well.
    Caleb uses a regular SPIbelt for his DexCom and my other kids wanted them for their "whatever". :)
    I bring the Pod case and the emergency kit pretty much wherever we go. I almost never use the emergency kit, but every once in a while we hit a bump in the road and I'm glad to have it.

  3. You know what I just realized - Caleb always has the Pod case wherever he is and I always have the emergency kit. For school days this is fine, but recently he's been going to baseball with his dad and the kit stays with me. We may have to rethink that plan - thanks for making me think about it.