I have missed my CGM.
Over the last few weeks, I've pulled back considerably on my Dexcom use, solely because of the crazy rash that was cropping up underneath the sensor sites. (And a quick Google search confirmed that I was not the only one who has gone through this issue - Lorraine at This is Caleb had a very informative post about Caleb's similar reaction, and also had some tips on mitigating the issue.) This rash has been an issue since I was in San Diego at the end of August, and after trying different skin locations, application methods, etc. to the max (to the max, yo), I ended up taking the sensors off completely a week and a half ago.
I did a removal/long break because my skin needed a "full heal" first. My preferred sensor spots, on my outer thigh, were red and scaly from repeated pockets of itchy rash, and they needed to mend entirely before I felt comfortable slapping another sensor on there. (And yes, I have tried other locations for my sensors, but have had the same reaction.) But, thanks to time off from the adhesive/transmitter and the rapid-healing baby lotion that we use for Birdy's sensitive skin, my sites were soon back to normal.
The first few days of the Dexcom "forced vacation" were particularly crummy, because I have been so used to the steady stream of data over the last five years. I didn't like not being able to check the receiver before I did certain things, like after breakfast or getting behind the wheel. Even though I could always check my blood sugar using my glucose meter, it wasn't the same kind of reassurance as when I could see the number plotted within the graph of "where the hell it's been and where it's going."
But there are two moments when the Dexcom means most to me: during exercise, and before bedtime.
The Dexcom during workouts helps me figure out how to best stay active as safely as possible. I feel confident jumping onto the treadmill for a run if I'm 119 mg/dL with an upward-sloping arrow, but I'll drink some Gartorade if I'm 119 mg/dL with a downward-pointing arrow. And if I have a 119 mg/dL with two double-down arrows, I'll delay the workout and hit some glucose tabs. It's not about the number, for me, but the context.
And before bedtime has been dodgy, for the same reason. I hate not seeing the mg/dL "breadcrumb trail" before going to sleep. I didn't realize how reliant I was on the graph until I didn't have access to it. This is uncomfortable for me in my own home, but when I'm traveling, it's reason enough for a 3 am wake up call to test my blood sugar. The past few weeks, with excessive amounts of travel and a variance of time zones, have made me miss, and appreciate, the Dexcom even more.
Today, I'm giving it another go. I'm hoping that the sensor, applied to healed skin, will not cause the itchy, hive-like rash I've been experiencing since late August. (Because nothing says "hey, I'm healthy!" quite like aggressive, weeping rashes.) I'm hoping I can return to regular Dexcom use, without this weird reaction. I'm hoping to return to normal, with the sensor hanging on for as long as it can, instead of me ripping it off so I can rake my nails across the skin in relief. As you might be able to guess, I'm wicked hopeful.
I have missed my CGM.
Let's hope it missed me. :)