I just didn't care anymore.

By MattyF Latest Reply 2011-12-07 17:42:28 -0600
Started 2011-11-29 07:15:12 -0600

I was diagnosed Type 2 in 2003. After a few years of oral medication, I was put on insulin 2006 (Levemir Flexpen). Things had been frustrating enough up until that point. I am terrified of needles, even the little ones that you screw on the to various "pens" that are available. For the next couple of years, it was hit or miss. Sometimes I would be able to actually take the injection after sitting there freaking out for like 1/2 an hour, and sometimes I just couldn't do it. The frustration was exquisite.

In 2008, the stock market crashed, and I was laid off from an 11-year job. I found myself 48-years-old and jobless in a dead job market that is still pretty much dead to this day. The frustration in my life became insurmountable. Sometime in the beginning of 2011, I simply broke down and stopped caring about my health. The diet was impossible, the injections unbearable, and don't get me started on the constant testing.

In May of 2011, I was at the Doctor's office for my Chronic Sinusitis. While he had me in the office (I try never to go there), he did my annual physical which of course includes some labs (blood, urine, etc). Since I really didn't care, I just never followed up on the results. My A1C was 12, my BG at the time I was tested was 385, and the urine came back with everything you'd expect from these kinds of numbers. I didn't know any of this until yesterday, when I spoke with my doctor about something unrelated … and boy did he have a cow.

In June of 2011 I busted a career move. No longer able to find employment in my industry (I was an I.T. professional), I decided to draw on my other talents, and this lead me to my current occupation which is physically demanding. I get loads of exercise on a daily basis, and lost nearly 30 pounds. I feel better, and look better, and I even perform better on the job. But since I didn't care, I started drinking more than I ever have, and I tend to just eat anything that's available. My doctor knows nothing about any of this. I have to go see him Saturday and I am certain hes gonna do blood work, and another A1C, which is going to suck.

I do not know if I feel guilty because I don't care, or if I now care. I'm a mental mess over this. Has anyone experienced anything like this?

14 replies

berrykins0 2011-12-07 17:42:28 -0600 Report

i would say you feel gulity because you care. i have never been through anything like this but gulit like i say means you care about your self . don't beat yourself up everybody has bad things that happen in different ways and amounts nobody has a perfect life. we are humans while we are on this crazy earth. lifes about challenges sometimes to many at once when this happens we to vent our issues one other. taske care don't give up on yourself vent the issues you will feel better about yourself

pixsidust 2011-11-29 20:39:57 -0600 Report

Today you have a chance to do even better than you have done before. Every day is a new beginning. Losing weight is good. It will help you to create a crisper appearance for job interviews should you want those again. You have a good singing voice. Very enjoyable. You gave up trying, but today is the day to grasp for what is good and right for you. Put away the alcohol. You are not doing yourself any favors. This medicating is all wrong for the big picture.
You know that anyway.

Just come back, come home to us and a healthy lifestyle.
The porch light is on!

Poppop1961 2011-11-29 20:00:25 -0600 Report

Hi Mattie, My name is Keith. I have been a diabetic since 1999. When I got hit with it my levels where 867 and went straight on insulin. The E.R. Dr. told me I was going to have to give myself injections every day. I told my wife i don't think i could do it. She walked out on me. She came back 15 minutes later and said if you don't do it you will die a slow painful death and her and my kids won't be there to watch it. I have had my problems over the years. The last 2 years have really been bad. I have been in the Hospital 22 times with DKA . Back in Jan. 2011 I was told my working days are over. I lost 80% of feeling in my left foot and now 40% in the right foot. Last time i was in the Hospital about 2 months ago, my levels where over a 1000. I spend 2 day's in a diabetic coma and awoke in the ccu unit. I was also in the Hospital for being depressed do to not being able to work. I also have neuropathy in both legs from the hip down. I fear loosing one of my legs or a foot. I know someone that don't take care of there diabetes and has lost all her toes and is loosing her eye site. Please take care of your diabetes and live a full life. My A1C's went from 12.6 to 10.6 and now 9.4. They are finally putting me back on a insulin pump and I can't wait. So please my friend take care of your self.

Keith S.

MattyF 2011-11-29 11:31:27 -0600 Report

Hi Again James,

The most staggeringly difficult thing is how to manage my diet and still live a normal life. I work in the NYC Subway System. I'm down under (slang term) by 11am, and not back home until 3pm or 4pm (I sing, and can only go so many hours with blowing my voice out). During that time, I have no access to a bathroom (that's within my reach), or any food that I should eat (unless I leave the subway system). About the only thing that's good for me that's available inside the system is bottled water, but then again, there's no bathroom so I don't drink much of anything. Sure, I could carry some food with me, but again what if I need a bathroom?

I am on the move throughout my daily shift, with a guitar around my neck, and sometimes an amplifier strapped to my back. I have to maneuver about in crowded subway cars to collect my tips (that's how I make money … pays the rent and keeps the phone and Internet turned on), so I have to shed as much carrying weight as possible. I play about 30-40 moving subway cars a day. Sure, I'm only out of the house for 4 hours, but that's 4 hours of nutritional choices I could have made.

Frustrating indeed. My friend, and I have made a pact to try and start anew together with mutual support. The Mrs. just went out o do some food shopping and is bringing home some veggies, and some other snacks I can have without killing myself.

As an aside, if you would enjoy seeing me doing my job, it's on youtube. Someone took this a couple of months ago. The audio is terrible but there I am …



annesmith 2011-11-29 23:36:37 -0600 Report

I'm surprised you haven't gone into lows after lows by carrying the guitar and singing a lot, then not being able to eat…I wish you the very best…sincerely, ANNE

MattyF 2011-11-30 04:23:36 -0600 Report

Hi Anne,

This is a little unrelated, but you've given me an opportunity to pontificate on this a bit (never give a ham a chance to pontificate! LOL). In all of this, the music, the carrying the guitar and performing on a regular basis is my special slice of salvation and puts me on a high every time. I think its why I'm sane. Being a musician is not something that one just decides to do on a whim. It is something that is in one's soul. I am privileged to have an opportunity to share the music that is in my soul. On a slightly darker note (pun intended), I do sing the blues pretty well.

My day goes by in a flash so I'm not really walking around wishing for food. I just know I probably should eat something (or at least thats what I read). I get up, and take oral meds for the Diabetes, and High Blood Pressure, and go about a morning routine. My routine, aside from the obvious things includes a cup of Earl Grey, and a Slippery Elm lozenge that's supposed to be good for my voice. Then I do email, facebook, all that stuff. I then do a 30-minute battery of physical warm up exercises on whatever guitar is within reach (its more fun on an electric, but an acoustic can be quite challenging). Then 15-minutes of vocal warm-ups (Ave Maria, Do Re Mi Fa So La Di Do, Etc). Then a few minutes of playing and singing simultaneously. Out of the house, and back 4 hours later. Here's where the trouble starts. Right then and there, my appetite rears it ugly head, and I start eating. The difference now, as opposed to a few days ago is that I now make better choices.

Yesterday I had 6 baby carrots with some garlic dressing that has 1 carb per serving, and that got me to dinner time. Dinner was sensible chicken quarter with some zucchini. I haven't had any beer in two days (I'm not an alcoholic, I just enjoy a cold one). After taking my insulin, and some oral meds, I went to bed with a BG level of 125, and I awoke this morning with a BG level of 185. The dawn phenomenon is a hit and miss thing with me and always has been. If its under 200, I can go to war with it and win.

Next I have to tackle my needle-phobia because I will be switching to Levemir Vial since my insurance will no longer cover the FlexPen. I am severely needle-phobic, and in the past have been known to not take my insulin, sometimes for weeks. I working on changing this behavior, and may seek out professional help.


annesmith 2011-12-01 01:18:18 -0600 Report

I too was born a musician…I currently do not play any music for a living, but very well may down the road—-I work in retail and housekeeping right now…ANNE

MEGriff1950 2011-11-29 13:36:39 -0600 Report

Matty that sounds like a very difficult way to earn an income. I really recommend Glucerna shakes or nutrition bars. These are made by Abbott Laboratories and are designed as meal substitutes for diabetics. Though the shakes are 8 ozs I do not react to them as I do with other liquids, that is they do not seem to cause extra trips to the bathroom.
The average cost per bottle is about $1.50 but they are made to help keep your bg level and are full of good nutrition. I learned that you have to shake the shakes a lot or they taste like vitamins, yuk. You can go here to learn more http://glucerna.com/ and often you can get coupons to help with the cost.

MattyF 2011-11-29 14:32:02 -0600 Report

Thanks Mary. Its not as difficult as it seems. I have an audience all the time which is great since I'm a ham.

MEGriff1950 2011-11-29 10:16:27 -0600 Report

Hello Matty, If you really did not care you would not have come here seeking support from other diabetics. Welcome and I am glad that you came. If you look through the archives you will find many stories similar to yours you are not in this boat alone.
I was first diagnosed with type 2 in 2003. At first I thought this is impossible and went into the denial stage. I took my prescribed meds when I could afford them. I like you ate what I wanted when I wanted. For years I thought that I needed sweets to keep my sugars down. When I ate cookies, pie, ice cream etc my bg dropped quickly. In July this year my dr sent me to a diabetes education class. I only went to make him happy because I knew everything about diabetes, I was still in denial. At the class I was given a meal plan designed for me by a dietican, crap I had to eat 3 meals a day and count carbs. Grudginly I did this for a week, then had hernia surgery. Even with the surgery and pain afterwards I followed the meal plan as best as I could. I started drinking Glucerna for lunch because my stomach hurt too bad from the surgery to eat 3 meals. My dr highly approves of the Glucerna. On August 2nd I was so in control of my diabetes that I was able to stop taking insulin, 40 units a day. This is when I finally stopped the denial. Since that time I have lost 40 pounds without trying and gotten off of 4 glyburide daily also.
Matty since gaining control of my diabetes I am feeling so much better and am mentally more alert then I have been in years. My chronic pain is more manageable also. My advice to you is ok stay in denial but please if possible attend a diabetes education class and get and follow a meal plan designed for you. I guarentee that if you do these things you too can get off of the insulin.
I was on insulin for nearly 3 years. I learned a couple of tricks, I used syringes not pens. First you cannot look at it as what you are doing to yourself. You have to put it into your heard that you are giving an injection to a body that needs it. You are acting like a nurse. Make it an objective act not a personal one. I learned that the stomach area is less painful the the legs. When getting ready to inject I would swab a large area with alcohol then would touch the needle to the skin. If I could feel the needle then I knew it would hurt. If I could not feel the needle then I would pinch up a small bit of skin and inject. OMG this made a huge difference. I seldom felt the needle.
Matty you can gain control. This will affect your whole life and can prevent some horrible complications.
Good luck and God bless,

Nick1962 2011-11-29 09:46:50 -0600 Report

Matty; Has anyone experienced anything like this? Oh heck yeah! Pretty much my story also, same general age, same food M.O. - eat anything in sight. I was actually forced to take a few vacation days from work because I was in such a foul mood for a while. Their way of saying “get your crap together or get out”. Denial is a cruel mistress, and my attitude wasn’t helping my marriage any either.
I’m not as doctor averse as you, but then my PCP was the type who basically just examined me and gave me the findings. Pretty much told me I have diabetes, had the nurse show me how to use the meter and then bye bye. Because I had high blood pressure as well, their practice for such chronic things as DB and high BP was to have me in quarterly. But again, no education whatsoever, never got on me about my life-long weight issue (I was 100 pounds overweight as well). I went so far as if I had an appointment, about 3 days prior I would drink gallons of water in an attempt to flush my system to get good numbers. Funny, that didn’t really change my A1C, and only flushed out all the stuff like vitamins I needed. Then one visit he just casually said “we need to start you on oral meds, possibly insulin” like it was no big deal. Between the BP meds, high cholesterol meds and now DB meds, I was sick constantly and couldn’t spend more than an hour in the sun. That lasted about a week. I went back and asked if there were options, he said I could try diet and he reluctantly agreed to hold off on the insulin another 3 months if he saw results.
My “recovery” came in several forms and in baby steps. I was such a wreck that I had to go see a chiropractor because I could barely walk across the parking lot to my office. Having seen chiropractors before, I knew they’d be able to give me some relief. What I got was a polite but forceful kick in the pants. She told me that she could treat me but it would only be temporary unless I brought my weight down, because parts of my pain were chemical and due to poor diet. Shortly after I started, she ran a mini “biggest loser” contest with her patients (which I was signed up for against my will by my wife). As our group dropped over the weeks from 14 people to 6, due to lack of willpower mostly, I said I am not the person who backs down from a challenge. My wife and I went on to win that challenge in a tie - she lost 18 pounds in 12 weeks, but I lost 17 and more body mass. Baby step #1 for me - rise to the challenge and keep it going.
I was at least able at this point to get some exercise, but due to previous injuries, I am limited to mainly walking. I see from your profile pic (if it’s yours) that you’re holding a guitar. Tells me you’re into some form of music. Most people stop listening actively to music once they leave college. I didn’t, I am a music lover in every sense. In my party days, I’d pick bars based on their juke box. Friday nights were a concert tour to me, and Saturday night I spent in front of my stereo with headphones until 2 or 3 in the morning. I knew I needed to exercise, and had a treadmill, but that just bored me to death. The MP3 player changed my life (bless you Steve Jobs, may you rest in blissful peace). I figured out that if I can sit in front of the stereo for a few hours, I should be able to walk at least one. It took a while, but I made that my new daily ritual. I caught a song on a commercial that was just so “feel good” I had to look into it (Ingrid Michaelson’s “The Way I Am” - hey, don’t judge me). That was my first download, and it’s snowballed from there. Right now I usually download the equivalent of one album per month, and because of the internet and MP3 music format, I am exposed to so much more new and good music than before, I’m happier than a pig in slop. Some days I actually end up walking 90 minutes without thinking. My rule; if I download anything, the first “real” listen has to be on the treadmill. Some days it’s all classical, some days a mix, some days it’s all ladies. Funny - now if you hear a song in a commercial - I usually already have it. Baby step #2 for me - find a motivator.
The above has really changed me personally, and it has shown in my work as well. I have been given more client contact, and most all tell my boss they enjoy working with me. Because of that we have gotten several jobs, and my coworkers no longer try to avoid me because of my temper. Baby step #3 for me - change the attitude.
This is going a bit long, but yeah, I’ve been there. And recovered. Currently, my health and BS/A1C numbers are all good, and good consistently. I don’t ever remember being this healthy. Even my doctor’s amazed (and he should be).

jayabee52 2011-11-29 07:50:48 -0600 Report

Howdy Mattie! WELCOME to DiabeticConnect, sorry you qualify to belong to this "club" or this online family. I also want to say welcome to the human race!

I have been where you are. In diabetes burnout. I really didn't care. I haven't had trouble "shooting" myself with the insulin syringes, but I have been in denial, I have been burned out and bummed out (depressed).

I suspect that you and I are not alone in that.

But I guess that you DO CARE, or you wouldn't have come here and posted this rather lengthy explanation.

Your profile doesn't tell us much.

Do you have anyone in your life for whom you can motivate yourself to live?

Me? I have 3 sons, 2 of whom are married, and I am looking forward to getting some grandchildren.

Yes your Blood Glucose (BG) may be quite high, but with some work it can be brought down closer to normal. You are NOT hopeless nor are you helpless.

Blessings on you and yours


MattyF 2011-11-29 08:24:11 -0600 Report

Thanks James. I should put more info in my profile. The "tell us something about yourself" box is kind of limited.

I have my wife, my mom, and a friend of mine who is also T2, and is in the same boat as I am mentally. The call from my Doctor yesterday scared the bejeezus out of me pretty good.

I actually think I might be in better shape now than I was when I had those labs back in May. I started testing again recently, and my morning numbers are elevated but not end-of-the-world bad. This morning it was 182 on one finger and 167 on another. I think its controllable. I think though at this point that the doc is gonna take whatever I say with a grain of salt based on my past behavior.


jayabee52 2011-11-29 10:22:03 -0600 Report

Of course Matty it IS CONTROLLABLE! Just think how good you might be doing if you put some thought and effort into managing your condition.

I want to let you know what MIGHT happen if you let things go uncontrolled, as I did.

My most painful complication is diabetic Neuropathy. My legs from the knees down to the toes have a burning sensation. It is painful to stand and walk. My arms from elbow to fingertips tingle constantly — kinda like my whole arm has gone to sleep. I have had 3 or 4 ministrokes ("TIAs") (that they have counted so far). Those TIAs have affected my sensation of hot & cold, and also have affected my ability to walk and balance properly.

My kidneys have been affected too. I had to go on dialysis for a while (10 mos beginning Nov 2006) and now I am almost at the point where I may find it necessary to return to dialysis.

I also have a neurogentic bladder (doesn't empty completely) so I have to wear diapers 24/7. What is more, I also may have the beginnings of gastroparesis. Sometimes what I eat won't get digested properly and makes my bowel movements irregular, sometimes it is uncontrollable. (good thing I wear diapers).

There are several other minor complications but that gives you an idea of what I got because I didn't manage my diabetes well enough as a younger man.

I am old before my time. I will be 60 in Feb 2011 and should not have all of this wrong with me.

Diabetes rarely kills people with it outright. It kills you a piece at a time. So those who hope that diabetes will kill them quickly are probably in for a disappointment.

I am heartened to hear that you are in better shape than you had been.
I believe that once you are in better shape, your mood will improve too.

The only way to get your Dr to believe you is to walk the walk.

Please come back again here to DC and we can suggest ways for you to improve your control.

I had been on oral medications at first, and then on insulin. Now I manage my condition with what I eat (and avoid eating) I am eating a low carbohydrate, high protein meal plan. and I manage to keep my Blood glucose (BG) numbers close to normal range. (70 -130) So it is possible to manage your BGs — with or without help from diabetes meds. One just needs to diligently control one's intake of carbohydrates.

Blessings to you Matty