« Uncle Traveling Matt ... and Kerri. | Main | The Year in Review: Part One. »

Sounds.

I was reading through the November issue of Men's Health at the gym a few weeks ago and came Sounds from my childhood with diabetes.across an article written by Jeremy Katz, the father of a child recently diagnosed with diabetes.  There were parts of this article that really resonated with me, but this sentence caught in my throat.

"The clink of the insulin bottles against my wedding ring was hauntingly familiar: I'd heard my father make the same sound a hundred times."  - Jeremy Katz

I immediately thought back to my own childhood, with the sound of the bottle of NPH as she rolled it against her wedding rings.  Every morning, she would wake up at 5 am to get ready for work, stopping by my bedroom to test my blood sugar.  Even though I was still asleep, the sound of her approaching slippers made my finger automatically stick out from underneath the mountain of blankets.  She would then roll the NPH to mix it up in preparation for my morning injection.

Clink ... clack ... clink ... clack.  

The glass bottle rolling against her rings in the early hours of my school days.  The stale and hollow beep of my old Accu-Chek meter after it had counted for 120 seconds in efforts to offer up a result.  The scratchy sounds of the cellophane wrapper on my Nabs crackers, or the shunk of the straw easing into my Capri Sun.  The hot fizzing of the urinalysis tablets as they cackled from their glass test tubes on the bathroom counter. 

These are the sounds of my childhood with diabetes.

Now, after 21 years and easing ever-faster into a new phase of my own life, there are new sounds that define my diabetes life.  The boop beep boop of my insulin pump as it boluses for lunch.  The whirring of the pump as it primes itself.  The quick thwap of the lancing device as I prick my fingertip.  The chalky scrape of glucose tabs rustling against one another in the jar.  The gentle click of the beads on my medic alert bracelet. 

These sounds have replaced those of my childhood.  I wonder what twenty years from now will bring.

Even though I now use Humalog insulin that doesn't need to be mixed, I'll roll the bottle against my rings and make myself feel like a child again. 

Comments

Wow. Those sounds are so familiar. And the 120 second meters. The sounds have changed. And maybe they will change even more in the next 10 years. Maybe there will be no sounds at all. Maybe there will be a cure.

I heard the exact sound in my head when I read that sentence just now. Although I think of it a lot quicker...clickclackclickclackclick

That makes two of us drifting back to age 8 today...

I remember the sound of mixing NPH, too...and I can totally hear the boop beep boop of my pump. That's how I met a new friend, recently. I was in the locker room of my gym, and I heard the sound. All of a sudden, I knew, "There's another one of us in the room!" I turned around and scanned, and there she was! Over in the corner, with her tubing sticking out of her waistband... I'm grateful for the sounds of diabetes, because they're another way I don't feel so alone.

Kerri, once you get your CGM, there will be new sounds to add to your soundbank. There's one for when your BG goes too high. It's the first 4 notes of a major scale, I think. Boo boo boo boo. And there's one for when you're going low. Again, 4 notes, but this time, going down. And there are others too...I'll leave them to you to discover. With regard to the current diabetes soundtrack offered by my pump, I decided I didn't want the world knowing when my BG was low or high, so now my pump lives in vibrate mode. I go through batteries more often, but at least it affords me a little more privacy (and a little less of the awkward diabetes-alarm intrusion factor).

Wow, the NPH and the wedding ring... I was always able to tell if it was my mother or father rolling the bottle.
As I thought of the bottle, my hands can actually feel/remember exactly how the bottle felt to roll it, even though I didn't and don't have a wedding band.
I didn't like having those identifying sounds when I tried the CGM, it should either be a voice yelling"Watch out, he's high and rising!" or nothing at all. The sound as it is, is also the last four notes of a major scale!!(Sorry, I'm a total music nerd)
Long story short, add me to the list of people reminiscing because of your post, thanks!

Kerri,
I remember that clinking sound of rings hitting the insulin bottle & the fizz of the urine tablets in the test tube, too. Wow!

I'm with Cara. Maybe in ten years, there will be no sounds because there has been a cure.

Oh, I love this. I love it. It's so...beautiful and resonating.

WOW, I absolutely remember the clicking of Moms ring on the NPH bottle…I also remember being disappointed when I got to roll the NPH bottle and I didn’t get to hear that noise.

Strangely, I didn't mind taking the insulin but I wanted a ring so I could make that same noise when I rolled the bottle! LOL

Emma's pump stays nestled in her pump pouches when she sleeps at night. I imagine that the sounds of her childhood will be velcro tearing apart followed by a series of beeps.

And velcro is REALLY loud in the middle of the night.

Definitely brings back memories of my late childhood, early teenage years when my baby brother (he's not quite a baby anymore at the age of 18, but) was diagnosed with diabetes.
That really was the coolest sound: my brother preferred that either my mom or I roll the insulin between our hands, because we both wore rings and could make that awesome clicking noise.
Nothing like waking up to that in the morning.

Wow--that really brings back memories! Way to be positive--thanks!

Post a comment

(All comments are moderated. Thanks for your patience!)