Day Two With The Pump

(I kinda imagined that title read in the Big Brother narrator’s voice)

Apologies if you don’t find these ‘update’ posts as interesting as my unrehearsed attempts to undermine the notions of fortune or sock pairing that I call ‘posts’, but this is the result of a series of days in which nothing much has happened: I’ve read Paradise Lost, watched Naruto: Shippuden, and got a pump, so those are my available topics, and I’ve finished neither of the first two.

I’ve noticed the pump makes a series of noises; it ticks while working, it beeps when it starts and completes an action, and I’ve been told it’ll alarm if there’s a problem, creating an interesting hierarchy of sounds: the common, ‘all’s good’ ticking, the infrequent ‘I did a thing!’ beeping, and the as-of-yet unheard ‘PLUG ME BACK IN YOU BASTARD’ that I believe it will attempt to convey through an alarm.

But that’s the problem, I don’t actually know what the pump is telling me; considering its functions are limited to either giving me insulin or not giving me insulin, I doubt that its attempts to communicate will generate any words of philosophical wisdom, or insight into seventeenth-Century narrative poetry, but I can never be too sure – what I take for a contented tick might be a cry for help now that it is free from its purpose-defining masters, The Pump Therapy Team At St Bartholomew’s Hospital.

In a way, the pump is vocally similar to a baby, then; infants might have complex ideas, but those ideas come across in one of two ways – unconscious drooling, or air-raid warnings. This dichotomy is kinda justified for babies and insulin pumps, considering that they only fulfil a small role within a family group or healthcare plan – it would be much more inconvenient if your doctor could only talk to you in ticks, beeps and whistles.

And that’s really what’s kept my feet on the ground during this pump malarkey; it’s certainly an upgrade in terms of practicality and medical accuracy over injections, but it won’t single-handedly save my life – I need to do independent blood tests, and I have to set the pump up, making it more like a servant who patiently waits for orders, rather than a butler who knows when you wake you up and that you like three sugars in your tea, as opposed to two.

The pump’s management of my diabetes has also been remarkably similar to that of the injections for most of the day, in that for the five minutes I’m not doing a blood test, I’m completely oblivious to their existence; this is perhaps the best review of the pump I could give, that it does not ‘normalise’ my chronic condition, meaning that it would dull its impacts on my day-to-day life, but it reduces it to be of little concern for most of the day. Some may disagree, but I consider the best treatment for a long-term condition to be safe ignorance, rather than be continually aware of it and just how bloody well managed it is.

But that safe ignorance will have to stop for a bit tomorrow; the pump only lasts three days, so I plan to practice replacing it with a new one a day early to get into the habit; if I die from a bizarre pump removal-related incident, I leave this blog to the American Football player who shares my first and last names.

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