Monday, October 17, 2011

A New Wrinkle and New Toys

Last weeks was NUTS!

Mike began his new chemo regime so we wrote off weirdnesses to 'side effects.' First, he was exhausted. Then, he climbed out of bed hungry and thirsty. Again, we assumed he was making up for the day before.

He worked on his new boat while I was at school. Then, in the evenings, things really got crazy. Twice, middle of the night, he nudged me and asked if McDonald's was open. Well, yes, our local is 24/7. Is America great or what?

"I want some hot cakes," he said.

"I can make some, you know." I used to cook.

"No, that's too much work. Can you go and get me some from Mickey D's?"

Well, sure. On with the sweats, out to the car, down the street to the Golden Arches. He devoured them (the hotcakes).

We had a repeat on Wednesday night. You might question the choice of errand boy. But, right now, I like to do for him when I can. (I get the coffee)

Also, during the day, he was thirsty. Really thirsty. We purchase some of those 2 liter juice bottles and he was chugging them; we ran out of our supply of white grape and cran-apple. (Gourmets here)

Then, when I came up the drive on Thursday, he greeted me by standing in front of my car. He had a strange look in his eyes. I rolled down the window.

"Do you know what I weigh?"

Well, no, not today.

"I'm not getting enough food."

"I have a steak for supper."

"That's too far away. Take me to Fazoli's, right now!"

Oh. Ok.

We drove about a mile before I raised the question. "You can drive, right?"

"Yes, I guess."

"And we have, what? 4 friends nearby who will come over anytime, right?"



By then, we were turning into the parking lot of pasta paradise. Into the shop. He ordered fettuccine Alfredo and sucked it down.

Feeling a bit better, it was time to talk.

"Are you ok?" I asked.

"I think I'm really dehydrated. I'm thirsty all the time."

"Do you think you should call your doctor?"

Mike said that he would go out to the hospital in the morning. His thought was that they could give him some IV fluids and he'd be fine.

The next day, I received some messages. From Zach: Dad wants you to know that he's at the hospital. Hmmmmm. I assumed as much.

Then, Tom called the school and they put him through to my classroom. His message was that Mike said I should not leave early (SUCH a Bolinger!) but I should come out to the hospital as soon as school was over.

Hmmmmmmm. This is NOT IV fluids. It would have been easy to leave early, as my department head suggested, but I'm still the good wifey so I waited until 2;30.

Mike was lazing in the chemo treatment room. Then the news.

He has developed 'full blown' diabetes. His glucose was 'off the charts.' (As a non-scientist, all those numbers mean very little...except I know MY numbers are good...around 90.. and his were over 1000) They wanted to admit him to get his 'numbers under control."

He was NOT happy. He was adamant that he would NOT stay in the hospital after Saturday. He was scheduled to speak at our church and he was not going to miss it.

First came the Diabetes Educator. As she talked, the patient was NOT happy. He asked no questions (I did). Then came the Diabetes Specialist with more information. Then, Angel Oncologist. NOW the hub had plenty to say.

"I'm not doing this."

"Of course you are."

"What if I don't?"

"Then you'll slip into a coma, fairly soon."

"So what?"

She's developed a relationship with THIS incarnation of the hub. She convinced him that spending the night in the hospital would help him clear his head.

He sent me home. He was NOT happy.

And me? Here's the good Christian girl: God? WHAT ELSE??? NO, I DON'T WANT TO READ James 1.

I sent out a quick note to family and pastors and asked for prayer for us in this special challenge. God showed up, as He always does.

We both needed a good night's sleep. With another beautiful autumn day dawning, I knew that we would attack this challenge like we have everything else. Mike's rest helped him, too.

I went to the grocery store with my notes. He had a quick lunch with Tom. And so begins our new adventure...planning, poking, reading, medicating...

Mike has the icky part. Mike often speaks of TOYS. He has a whole new set of toys.

I get to renew some dusty skills on meal planning and nutrition. We will both be healthier so this is all good.

Thanks for your continued prayers as we tackle this new challenge.


  1. Half way through your post, right around the white grape juice part and the sudden unexplained weight loss, I figured it out. Type 2 diabetes. Mike's going to get to know sugar-free Jell-O, sugar-free diet Arizona green tea, cheese sticks, hard boiled eggs and realize they are going to be his best friends. Oh, and don't forget the sugar-free popsicles. Only thing I miss is fruit juice. Haven't had it in 7 years. You might consider picking up some Glucose tablets and keeping them on the nightstand, the glove compartment, your purse, the kitchen, garage, basically everywhere. They are similar to a giant Sweet-Tart and only 4 grams of carbohydrate. I don't go anywhere without them because I'm tired of passing out and landing on the floor face down.

    Hang in there - you'll both get the hang of it soon. And pretty soon he'll figure out which fingers are good little bleeders and to dial back on the puncture needle thingy so as not to poke himself too deeply.

    So is he on Metformin or Janumet?

    P.S. My husband cooks for me from the "Mr. Food's Quick & Easy Diabetic Cooking" and "Mr. Food's Every Day's a Holiday Diabetic Cooking" cookbooks.

  2. Once again, Gaby, you are a great friend.

  3. I forgot to mention that pork rinds (as awful as that sounds) is a great substitute for chips. They're crunchy and savory with zero carbs. And they even make great little scoops for things like salsa or dip, even cottage cheese.