The New Version of Normal

I may have told some of you that back in December I made an appointment with my old endocrinologist to break up with him. I went in with all this fury, but in the end I just felt sorry for him. I sat down with him, with a speech all prepared. I had the opportunity to be really happy with this new endocrinologist. And if he really cared about me and my diabetes, he would just let me go. We've had a good run. I've known him for 20 years. But I'm just not satisfied anymore. But when I got into his office, I just couldn't do it. I asked him how many insulin pump patients he has and he told me about 50. But when I asked about the continuing glucose monitoring option, he just looked at me blankly and called in his nurse to answer the question. I explained that it's used to better determine basal rates and make sure that my sugar is under good control. And he looked and me and said, "but if you're not seeing any problems, why would you want to do it and go through all that?". That's when it hit me. He just didn't get it anymore. He was old and tired and needed to retire.

The last straw was when he asked me when I was going to have children. I just looked at him. After an awkward pause, I said, "well, my boyfriend and I haven't really talked about it that much seeing as we don't live in the same city, but when we get to that topic, I'll be sure to let you know." Stammering, he said, "I thought you were married." "Yes, I was. Married, divorced and about to live in the same house with my boyfriend of two years. Hence all the name changes." It got weird after that.

He handed me a blood test form to take to LabCorp. He said I should call him in a few weeks and we could talk about my results. He always says that, but then when I call, some strange woman answers the phone and makes up things. We've just grown apart. I don't want to fight anymore. Not in front of the nurses. So I paid my copay and walked out and never looked back.

But then I went to see my new endocrinologist. He has an e-mail address on his business card. He looks at the printouts I bring from my insulin pump program. He checks my feet and feels my thyroid. We spend what seems like minutes in the exam room talking about carbohydrate counts and prescription plans. I finally feel like there's someone who listens to me and my diabetic feelings. We only met once, but I feel like we have a special bond.

The real surprise was this week when I got a letter in the mail from his office. It was printouts from my lab results - the actual carbon copies of what he gets, down to every last little number and detail. What bliss! No more calling the office to talk to a nurse who tells me my numbers are "normal" but can never give me a number or a range of what "normal" is. Apparently, my urine has a pH of 6.5 and a specific gravity of 1.005. Not only was it free of ketones, but also of nitrates and bile. My blood has a calcium level of 9.9 mg/dL and a potassium of 3.8 mmol/L. He even hand-wrote in that I have an excellent cholesterol profile! My laboratory cup runneth over (no pun intended).

So I'm overjoyed at my new doctor situation. His office is closer to mine than my old doctor. He has hundreds of insulin pump patients. And I'm finally excited about going to the doctor. With a relationship like this, I may actually go every three months like they suggest.