Our Meeting With Gary Scheiner
We met with Gary Scheiner yesterday afternoon in his office just east of Villanova University.
Charlie, who is quite shy with adults, warmed up after Gary took him on in a game of tic-tac-toe. Still, I served as interpreter.
"Tell him if he likes Star Wars," Charlie whispered hot and steamy in my ear.
"You mean ask him?" I whispered hot and steamy back in his.
Gary and his staff were great. He got right down to the business of making things better and we felt immediately confident that he could do so. He downloaded the data on our meter and printed out the problem areas in what looked like a constellation of high BGs. We rejiggered bolus levels slightly, talked about the importance of basal testing/fasting and discussed Charlie's diet.
"Tell him I like bananas cut up in a sandwich," Charlie whispered hot and steamy in Susanne's ear.
Gary explained things clearly and used simple diagrams to illustrate, for example, why Charlie has very high BGs on site change days. It's something that has stumped and frustrated us for a while. We had thought it was the stress of the site change. Gary pointed out that we weren't changing his site in conjunction with a meal bolus. A timing issue. He illustrated how it was taking a long time for the basal drip to make its way through his fatty tissue. Changing the site just prior to a meal bolus could likely get that insulin stream flowing.
Yes! That makes sense! Something makes sense! I got slightly teary.
He also mapped out an effective way to move sites around the landscape of Charlie's butt. Charlie liked Gary's illustration: ( i )
Though I listened intently, I did find myself looking around like a tourist. I spotted signed posters of professional athletes and one of Nicole Johnson Baker that said "Gary, God Bless You." On his "Wall of Fame" in the waiting room area, there was a clipping of Allison and I spied with my little eye something else in Gary's office - Scott's WTF Did You Eat? meter picture. Gary mentioned that he was going to pass that around at the next support group meeting.
Near the end of our session, Gary showed us clippings of many professional athletes, pointing out to Charlie that they all had type 1 diabetes.
"What do you want to be when you grow up, Charlie?" Gary asked.
"A fireman ..."
"But without a mustache."
In just our first visit, I feel our diabetes doldrums lifted. I feel hopeful that we can do more, we can do better.