When everything feels like it’s falling apart

October 2013 – We trash the car and decide to rely on public transportation and the kindness of coworkers to get around while we save for a new car – avoid debt and earn environmentalist brownie points at the same time.  I also get seated on a 6 month long jury duty which takes me away from work 2 days a week.

New Year’s Eve – M’s immigration paperwork has problems – looks like we’ll have to move to Germany where Insulin pumps are not considered necessary, CSMs are nearly never prescribed, and I barely have an elementary grasp of the language.

January 2 – Dex transmitter battery is out of juice (I should be glad it lasted this long – it’s only supposed to last 6 mo and I’ve had it over a year).  And now no Dex (!)  I’ve ordered a new one, and my insurance will pay, but I’m still waiting on a signature from my Endo.

January 4 – We’ve been noticing that the Hedgehog isn’t using his hind legs as well as usual and one of his eyes is looking red and bulgy. We take him to the vet (goodbye $150 and the cost of a Zipcar rental) and receive a prognosis akin to “there’s nothing we can do that doesn’t cost a fortune and cause him more pain that he’s in now.”  We bring him home with some eye drops and a phone number to call if he takes a turn for the worse.

January 6 – While at jury duty, I receive a goodbye email from my favorite coworker.  Then I receive 2 more.  By the end of the day a third of Company X has been laid off.  Not me, thankfully, but I have to take a 20% pay cut until things turn around (and, frankly, that doesn’t look likely).  To top it off, my carpool was part of the lay-off and now my commute to work is now 1.5 hr each way rather than 25 min (because of the lovely decision we made regarding the car back in October).  We went through something similar about 6 mo ago but it felt less dire that time. Oh, the joys of working for a start-up company.

January 8 – We notice that the apartment is a bit cold and start to question when the last time we felt the radiators kick on.

January 9 – There’s a letter taped to the door of the apartment saying that the boiler is broken and they don’t anticipate heat being restored before Wed – Fri of next week.  Our options are to be cold as we attempt to heat the apartment by oven or fork out money we don’t have to stay in a hotel (see Jan 6, above).  Our lovely landlord isn’t helping at all (and we’ve neglected to buy renters insurance to cover these sorts of costs).

If the last two weeks were intended to set the tone for the coming year, I vote we skip 2014 altogether and embark on 2015 instead.  Who’s in?

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Chatty Cathy

When my BG dips below a certain threshold, and someone asks me a question, I begin spewing fourth every bit of knowledge, gossip, and opinion that I have on the subject.  Typically this happens at home; M brings up a friend from grad school or the current Republican primary and I can’t shut up.  I’m told that this can be rather entertaining.  It’s also a huge cue for M and I that I may be low and we treat it accordingly.

But now take this situation into the lab where I work.  I wear a lab coat and purple nitrile gloves for most of the day to protect me from the many hazardous things in lab.  They also stop me from easily accessing my pump and Dex (all it takes is a quick glove change but I still find this rather annoying) and prevent me from being able to do a finger stick or eat a quick 15g at a moment’s notice.

Scene: I am in lab wearing my labcoat and gloves with Dex yelling loudly at me every 5 minutes.  I fumble at my pocket in an attempt to quiet the obnoxious wailing (although no one can hear it but me through the constant hum of our spectroscopic equipment) and eventually manage to press the button without having to de-glove.  I look at the clock. 4:45pm.  Almost time to go home! I look at the computer screen at the 5 open spots om my excel sheet and calculate that I have about 20 minutes left of work before I cal fill in those blanks and go home.  I make a decision.  The low can wait.

In walks BossMan, my supervisor.

BossMan: “Hey Melanie, how’s the experiment going?”

Me: “Very well, I should be done in a few minutes and I think I’m seeing a pretty interesting trend in the data.”

BossMan: “Excellent, let’s take a look…”

20 minutes later (and no cloer to being done). Me: Well, I’ll just finish this up, and head out.”

BossMan: “Great!  So, tell me what you think about WonderBoy.”

Side note: WonderBoy is the new hire whom I have strong feelings about.  He is ironically named.

Me: “Well. ..” and I proceed to tell BossMan about every little thing the guy does wrong that has annoyed me over the last 2 months. BossMan has noticed many of these things too but I can see he is beginning to see WB in a new light.  As I’m talking, I will myself to stop.  WonderBoy will likely be fine in time, although he is certainly not meeting anyone’s expectations up to this point and I am not doing him any favors right now.

While we talk, I can feel my hands shaking as I try to clean my glassware and scrape a label off of a jar with a blade.  Dex begins to wail again.  This time I stop myself, deglove, and look at Dex. “Low.”

Me: “I shouldn’t be doing this.”

BossMan: “huh?”

Me: “Sorry.  I mean scraping off this label – I’m a but unfocused from having sat in the analytical room all day and playing with a blade is probably not a good idea.” I lie.  I set down the blade and tell BossMan that I’ll finish cleaning in the morning.

I walk out of lab and head straight to my cube to chug a couple juiceboxes.  As my BG slowly returns to normal-person levels, I feel terrible about throwing Wonderboy under the bus.  Now, I wonder if I owe BossMan, and possible WonderBoy an explanation. After all, I do have to work with him for the indefinite future (although possibly less definite after I ran my mouth yesterday).

UPDATE:  I explained to BossMan in the morning that I felt I had crossed a line the previous evening, apologized, and asked that he please disregard the things I said about WB.  I explained about the low BG and now we have glucose stored in all of the first aide kits. I suppose that means all is good?