I am Riveted

August 15th, 2012 by Amy Gonsalves Leave a reply »

There is nothing else, really, that I can say for myself at this moment.

I am riveted to the image my mom emailed.

It’s the hospital bill from March, 1988.Fascinating stuff, here, about the first four days of my new diabetic life in 1988.

It’s my diagnosis bill!!!

First: a four day stay cost $2,468.66.  (Are you JOKING?!)  What a steal of a deal.

Second: that includes TWO of those nasty potassium drinks, omg.  Blech.  I can’t believe that cost only $1.48.  I’d pay a hundred times that to NOT drink it.  Blech. Shudder.

Third: awww, my first blood checks!!!  Each one cost $35.

Fourth: they charged for a diabetic start kit.  What is that.

Fifth: awww, my first insulin shot!!!  Regular.  Aww. 

Ooh: the diagnosis code they used?  Diabetes, juvenile, uncontrolled.  Yeah; I’ll say it was uncontrolled!!!  I hadn’t been properly making insulin for months and months…

(This is the one and only time I will permit this “uncontrolled” diagnosis without a fight.  For the record.)

Awww… and then my mom sent me a copy of a note my dad wrote to his coworkers after I got home.  It’s sort of cute!  And it sort of in hindsight tells me just how little he realized, a week after I was diagnosed, and how hands-off everyone foolishly used to be when it came to a type one diabetes diagnosis:


Amy (age 10) was diagnosed as diabetic and spent last week in the hospital until they stabilized her blood glucose level with insulin.  She is back to a normal lifestyle now, except she has to analyze 4 blood samples and give herself 2 insulin injections every day. 

We all have appreciated the concern and support of [his coworkers].

It’s just so, so, I don’t know, cute and captures a lot.  A lot of how little we knew, I guess. 

And, also, maybe just how much my parents were unable to see was going on with their little girl.  I don’t think it took four days to get my blood glucose level “stable” (and, btw, what is that? I still search for that every day!)… I think it took that long and probably longer to get my blood chemistry back in line after months of living in ketosis.  (That’s what the Astra-8 and SMA panel lab charges are…you can see they took that multiple times over the four days.)

I was a very sick little girl.  This bill shows me just how sick, and is a great little reminder of how far I’ve come (and how much I heart insulin).

Oh, and they didn’t charge me for the diabetic folder.  Wonder what that was.  Bedside supplies were $5.23! (Was that the pillow? Kleenex box? Water jug?)

Aw, I just think it’s fun to see.

AND, it’s helping me get that medal. 


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