Marveling at Marvel

This has nothing to do with diabetes. It has everything to do with how well Marvel has executed their digital strategy over the past week, even with unexpected hazards along the way.

(which was debuted early because a low-res version leaked a week ahead of schedule.)

And then today…

9 new movies announced.

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Low Transmitter Battery

The battery on my Dexcom’s transmitter went from low battery to no battery in what felt like record time this weekend. Now I’m flying blind for the next few days while I wait for a new one to arrive on my doorstep. Thankfully, my experience with customer service lasted all of three emails. To briefly summarize the exchange: “Help”. “Okay”. “Thank you”.

Aside from the usual comfort of knowing there’s a safety net underneath my diabetes management, as mentioned above, the Dexcom CGM has been invaluable in my understanding of how to properly operate this insulin pump. While CGM data isn’t FDA approved for insulin dosing, it’s Christopher-approved for insulin-comprehending.

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Hashtag Vote4DM

The fine folks at StripSafely have created #Vote4DM, “a targeted awareness campaign that lets you ask Congress to support three bills related to diabetes already on the Hill.” The bills we’re talking about aim to coordinate federal diabetes policy, provide quality diabetes education and cover CGM for T1Ds over 65.

I recognize the importance of diabetes Advocacy – capital A, for government related stuff. If the types of change we want to see in the lives of people with diabetes is actually going to happen, we need help. Big time. That’s where Congress comes in – they control the purse that funds that major diabetes efforts and legislation.

But, I don’t know the first thing about how to approach interpreting these bills. I don’t know how to effectively communicate the importance of these bills to our elected officials. The skeptic in me doubts one voice can make a difference in all of this, especially if I’m not representing a multi-million dollar special interest group. Part of me is doubtful that a simple hashtag is enough to influence, or inform a potential vote. The cynic in me wonders if anyone in Congress actually pays attention to their Twitter feed, of if that task is outsourced to an intern and their account is just another sounding board instead of serving as a method of communication and interaction with constituents.

But doing nothing is not an option. Surely someone is paying attention to mentions and notifications – there must be a tipping point that will compel an elected official to at least become informed on what these Twitter avatars are talking about. Again, doing nothing is not an option. If we’re going to make a difference, we have to try.

StripSafely has a full walkthrough on how to participate in the #Vote4DM campaign. Once you’re logged into Twitter, you can send all of the pre-formatted tweets that they have carefully crafted. There’s a lot to parse on the page, but it will essentially boil down to clicking a link, and then sending the tweet. The entire process, informing leadership and representatives in your Congressional district about each of the bills, will take 2 minutes. That’s it.

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Just Talking with Julie Cerrone

Julie Cerrone joins me this week to talk about things like avascular necrosis, psoriatic arthritis, complex regional pain syndrome, finding (and focusing on) positive thoughts when they are needed most, and how patient communities have made a significant difference in her life. We also sneak in some hockey trash talk, as one does. Enjoy.

Follow Julie on Twitter at @justagoodlife and check out her blog at itsjustabadday.com.

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Open Browser Tabs

Today is my final “you just started wearing an insulin pump for the first time” class/appointment/whatever. Based on past experiences, taking anything the CDE at this education center has to say to heart will not be sufficient for my diabetes management needs. This person, while objectively qualified, has not instilled any confidence in their ability to assess my data, or make recommendations on improving my insulin pump settings. I’ve learned that hearing the phrase “maybe we’ll try this” one-two many times can have that effect on me. Am I being unreasonable? Between the two face-to-face appointments and the daily follow up calls after I started pumping insulin, I feel like I’ve given them enough of an opportunity to prove themselves.

After today, the plan of action is to monitor my data on my own, consult supplementary literature, and make incremental adjustments over the next weeks and months until my scheduled appointment with my proper-CDE. I know fine tuning the settings on my pump will take time, lucky for all of us, I’ve got plenty of that to give.

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