Love + Diabetes: Through the Highs & Lows
Jaime Cline is a Sr. Customer Service Supervisor on our 24-Hour Technical Support Team. She uses her unique perspective as someone living with type 1 diabetes and using the MiniMed 670G system to motivate her work and connect with others who call in for support with their diabetes technologies.
James, Jaime’s husband, wanted to take a moment to share his perspective on living with and loving someone with diabetes. Jaime and James have been married for 12 years and Jaime says he is “the first man who did not make me feel like less of a person or a burden to him for my type 1 diabetes.” They both embody what it means to love someone through the highs and lows of life.
When I first met Jaime, she tried to hide the fact that she has diabetes. I guess she didn’t realize that being a detective made me pretty observant. Besides, it was 2007 and no one wore pagers anymore — that thing had to be an insulin pump! She wasn’t very good at hiding it, but I figured she would tell me when she was ready. When she finally told me, I could tell she was so nervous and was mentally preparing herself for the worst.
At that point, it was game over for me. It didn’t matter to me that she had diabetes. I was more amazed by her tenacity than the fact that she had to wear a little device all the time. I was more impressed with the fact that despite having diabetes, she didn’t let that limit her from doing anything she wanted to. If anything, it made her push herself harder and do more. The callouses on her fingers, the spots where she used to do shots all the time, and a pump alarming in the middle of the night didn’t bother me. So, she had to check her blood sugar and count carbs? So, she had to wear a pump that most of the time I didn’t even notice?
She could also hold her own at the shooting range and makes an awesome tortilla soup. I liked the sound of her laugh, the size of her heart, and how her face gives away every emotion she’s feeling. Diabetes didn’t matter to me — at that point she did.
Jaime is a ridiculously stubborn person by nature and it’s an adorable trait. I know she’s managed her diabetes by herself for a long time and sometimes it’s hard for her to let me “help.” I know that part of it is she wants to shield me from the drudgery of diabetes and so she very rarely talks about her basal rates, site changes, and other day-to-day things she needs to think about with me. I know that she wears the sensor for her continuous glucose monitor for my peace of mind. It’s a sacrifice she makes for me, so I know she’s safe when I am not there to protect her.
Recently she had a low glucose level — which thankfully is rare for her. She wasn’t very coherent and so I rushed to give her four of her liquid glucose packets to help raise her blood sugars. The easiest way I can describe those five to seven minutes where she was physically there but not really “there” is terrifying. I held my breath until I could see the light come back to her eyes and I could see her come out of it. I wondered if she was going to be sick for the rest of the day. I wondered if I gave her too much glucose or not enough? I ran through the million “what-ifs” in my head. What if I wasn’t there that morning? What if this had happened in the car on her way to work? What if this had happened and it was just our daughter, Callie, there to help? What if she didn’t wake up?
It’s almost as if a light switch flipped when she came out of the low. The first coherent words out of her mouth were, “Babe, don’t call EMS. I’m fine.” It was at that moment that I could exhale and she could take her diabetes back over from me. These are the moments when she radiates strength, a fierce perseverance and sometimes, a quiet resignation. It’s at those moments I am thankful for the advancements in technology that help keep Jaime safe, and give us both a bit more peace of mind.
Sometimes though, I can see the brave mask she wears slip. And I can see how much she hates it. How much it takes out of her. How much it scares her. Then I see her spine stiffen and she pushes through it. And in those moments, I hate diabetes.
After that low, Jaime got up and got ready for work. She was moving slowly, and I could tell that the low had taken a toll on her. But she had a meeting she couldn’t miss that morning and she asked me as she left the house, “I’ll be OK. Did you pick up my dry cleaning yesterday?”
Well, dang it.
The testimonial above relates an account of an individual’s experience using a Medtronic device. The account is genuine, typical and documented. However, this individual’s experience does not provide any indication, guide, warranty or guarantee as to the response or experience other people may have using the device. The experience other individuals have with the device could be different. Experiences can and do vary. Please talk to your doctor about your condition and the risks and benefits of Medtronic devices.
Important Safety Information
MINIMED 670G SYSTEM
The Medtronic MiniMed™ 670G system is intended for continuous delivery of basal insulin (at user selectable rates) and administration of insulin boluses (in user selectable amounts) for the management of type 1 diabetes mellitus in persons, seven years of age and older, requiring insulin as well as for the continuous monitoring and trending of glucose levels in the fluid under the skin. The MiniMed™ 670G system includes SmartGuard™ technology, which can be programmed to automatically adjust delivery of basal insulin based on Continuous Glucose Monitor sensor glucose values and can suspend delivery of insulin when the sensor glucose value falls below or is predicted to fall below predefined threshold values. The system requires a prescription. The Guardian™ Sensor (3) glucose values are not intended to be used directly for making therapy adjustments, but rather to provide an indication of when a fingerstick may be required. A confirmatory finger stick test via the CONTOUR®NEXT LINK 2.4 blood glucose meter is required prior to making adjustments to diabetes therapy. All therapy adjustments should be based on measurements obtained using the CONTOUR®NEXT LINK 2.4 blood glucose meter and not on values provided by the Guardian™ Sensor (3). Always check the pump display to ensure the glucose result shown agrees with the glucose results shown on the CONTOUR®NEXT LINK 2.4 blood glucose meter. Do not calibrate your CGM device or calculate a bolus using a blood glucose meter result taken from an Alternative Site (palm) or from a control solution test. It is not recommended to calibrate your CGM device when sensor or blood glucose values are changing rapidly, e.g., following a meal or physical exercise. If a control solution test is out of range, please note that the result may be transmitted to your pump when in the “Always” send mode.
Pump therapy is not recommended for people whose vision or hearing does not allow recognition of pump signals and alarms. Pump therapy is not recommended for people who are unwilling or unable to maintain contact with their healthcare professional. The safety of the MiniMed™ 670G system has not been studied in pregnant women. For complete details of the system, including product and important safety information such as indications, contraindications, warnings and precautions associated with system and its components, please consult http://www.medtronicdiabetes.com/important-safety-information#minimed-670g and the appropriate user guide at http://www.medtronicdiabetes.com/download-library
Wow. I read this to my husband of 15 years. He said “yep, that’s exactly how it feels for me” It is tough on our spouses/family, and I am so grateful for them all!! It felt really good to hear from a husband who “get’s it”