This Is How We Roll

Before we found out Kimmy Sue had Type 1 Diabetes going out and about was a cinch. We just loaded up in the car and went. Now it’s a not always like that. If we are just going down the street to the store it’s not a big deal. We get in the car and go. However, if we are going to be gone long we have to take Kimmy’s Diabetes into consideration, especially if we are going out to eat. Now we have the Diabetes Bag.

The Diabetes Bag contains all the supplies we need to take care of Kimmy Sue’s diabetes when we are traveling. We used to pack it according to where we are going and how long we are going to be gone for. For short trips we would put in our blood sugar monitor, alcohol swabs, fast acting sugar and the Glucagon pen. This is usually all we’d need if we are just going to be gone for a couple of hours and we won’t be eating anything.

For longer trips, overnight trips, vacations type trips and for when we are going out to eat, we included the above mentioned supplies and added syringes, a baggie for used syringes, insulin & an ice pack, any nutritional information booklets that we’ve collected from various restaurants, and our book of nutritional information that we got at the hospital. I highly recommend getting one of these. It comes in handy when you are cooking and giving insulin for home cooked meals as well as when you are out and about. This book contains nutrition information about various common foods including grams of carbohydrates. Plus, in the back, there is a section that includes nutritional information for various popular restaurants and their more popular meals and foods. If a restaurant doesn’t have a brochure with nutritional information that we can take with us, we look it up in our book. Some restaurants don’t have a brochure you can take with you – Steak n’ Shake is one of these. We LOVE Steak n’ Shake but their nutritional information is in a binder that they let you look at but not take with you. Bummer….we like to eat there a lot and would prefer to have something we could keep with us. The thought does cross my mind that with Smart Phones these days people do have the internet at their finger tips so finding nutritional information isn’t as hard as it could be. When Kimmy was first diagnosed we didn’t have a Smart Phone. Now we do. Life is much easier now. đŸ™‚ At any rate, we always put any brochures with nutritional information in our Diabetes Bag. We also have a handy little tool that lets us cut off the tips of our used syringes. I feel a lot better about cutting the needles off the used syringes when we have used them. This keeps us from getting confused if the syringes get mixed up by some chance.

Now that we’ve been working with this for a while we find it’s easier to just keep everything in it so we don’t have to constantly check to see if we have what we need. On more than one occasion we have forgotten something important and it’s easier to just keep a supply in the bag rather than try to remember what to put in. We also keep Ketone strips for testing Ketones, a small notebook for writing down any nutritional information and we used to carry a calculator to calculate insulin dosage but now we just use my phone. We also carry band aids, which incidentally I need to restock. We put all this in an insulated bag which Kimmy has written “Kimmy” on. I would like to try to find something a little prettier, maybe one of those “Thiry One” bags with ‘Kimmy Sue’s Diabetes Bag’ embroidered on it would be nice. That’s an investment for further down the road. Right now the bag we have works.

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Every so often we check the Diabetes Bag to make sure we have plenty of supplies. If we are on the road and run out of test strips or syringes or needles for the blood sugar monitor it can be a problem. Other supplies like bandages and alcohol swabs can be easily replaced at any drug store but you can’t just go into a store to get the stuff that needs a prescription so we have to stay on top of it. We usually keep about two packages of syringes and we try to keep a full bottle of test strips at all times, but then again, the blood sugar monitor is something that we take out and put back in the bag regularly since it is our main blood sugar monitor. In the summer time, when school is not in session and Nurse Amy sends home our school Diabetes supplies we put the school blood sugar monitor in the Diabetes Bag and leave it there until school is back in session.

The Diabetes Bag keeps us organized and prepared for anything when we go out and about in the community. We have to stay on top of it to make sure that we are well stocked though. Kimmy Sue is a social butterfly and she has lots of commitments and she likes to go places. We have to make sure that we are prepared to take care of her Diabetes while she is out and about.

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