Anger In Place of a Working Pancreas

I’m angry, pissed off, and discouraged.  My counselor says I’m entitled to that and all the other emotions I told her I’m feeling.  Right now, anger has taken up residence in my mind and makes forays down to my heart.

I walk around in a constant state of irritation.  It isn’t all without merit.  Yesterday I called my pharmacy and asked about what could be refilled.

“OK, I want all but insulin,” I said, convinced that was clear.  Later when I got there, I was told, “Oh, I didn’t know you wanted them refilled.”  HUH??

My pharmacy is in a grocery store so I shopped for groceries and when I returned to the pharmacy it still wasn’t ready.

“Then you’ll have to deliver it, “I said.  I take a Para transit van to and from the grocery store, which is scheduled a day in advance.  I only have a certain amount of time and I have to dash out like Cinderella at the stroke of midnight.

I went to an unfamiliar lab to have routine tests done due to the fact my doctor has left the clinic where I once had appointments and lab work done.  I was told my orders would be in their computer.  After I’d been waiting almost a full hour the girl at the window told me they were still waiting for the doc’s office to send the orders.

I was on my cell phone in a flash and I really chewed some ass.  I’m really not one to look for excuses to do that, but the van was schedule to pick me up in a few minutes and I didn’t want to make a trip back—especially if it was due to someone else’s careless mistake.  It got done at the last minute.

I’m tired of having patience with people who refuse to stop and think about how these blunders can be much more of an inconvenience for someone like me.  When I feel that gentle reminders aren’t getting through, I have to turn up the pressure and sometimes the volume too.

I hope that this is only the anger stage of the normal grieving process.  Losing the pancreas and being told I have to wait year longer before I can even list for another has been a huge loss.  Now that it’s been a year, I look back on those fourteen years with longing and nostalgia.  I had so much more confidence back then, knowing that whatever went wrong, my blood sugar wasn’t going to jump up and down on a trampoline and try to shake me off.

Today, I was leaving a meeting and hypoglycemia came on.  I sucked all the cake icing from the small tube I carry in my pocket and told a friend I needed to get a soda—fast.  We found a vending machine but I didn’t have the right change.  No one in the building would break a $5 for me.

Major confusion set in after that.  By the time he was able to drive his car from the parking deck to where I waited I was incoherent.  Later he told me it took several minutes to get me loaded into the passenger seat.  Lack of eyesight and low blood sugar made it all extremely confusing.  Even after he brought me home, I was still disoriented.  IN MY OWN HOME.

It was a potent blend of fear and embrfarassment.

For hours I felt wrung-out and lifeless.  Unlike most episodes like this, I was still dizzy whenever I stood up hours after my sugar was in positive territory.

Angry Man

All of this just makes me very angry.  Yes, there are people in the world worse off than I am, but the vast majority of people I encounter in any given week have it much easier than I do.  They travel, they drive, they have relationships, they have an active social life, they don’t have to worry if their body will betray them at the worst possible moment and because of that, they have more self-confidence than I am allowed to have.

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Posted in Anger, Hypoglycemia, Pancreas Transplant
2 comments on “Anger In Place of a Working Pancreas
  1. Ah Jim, why wouldn’t you be pissed as hell? Scream and rant and rave if it helps. Just leave this blog post at home if you ever decide to apply for a concealed carry permit.

    I know it doesn’t help, but you are an inspiration to many people.

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I was a Type I from the age of 12 until I had a pancreas transplant when I was 33. It came with a new kidney. Diabetes took a toll on me. Being diagnosed at that age, I wasn’t always a model patient. It caused me to have kidney failure, lose part of my vision and parts of my feet are numb.
I loved being a “former diabetic” after the transplant. Or is the proper term “ex-diabetic”? It doesn’t matter. I felt the way a parolee from prison must feel. No more shots. No more blood tests. No more diet. No more strict sschedules. Well, I had to start taking anti-rejection meds—lots of ‘em—twice a day. Compared to the life I lived before, that was nothing.

After 14 years the pancreas stopped working, which means I'm back to being a Type 1 diabetic. This blog is about what it's like to go back to that world.

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My book about growing up diabetic and how I became a "former diabetic"

My book about growing up diabetic and how I became a "former diabetic"

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