Like most in the Diabetes Community, we carry around a lot of baggage, not only emotionally but physically — with all the supplies we need to have with us at all times. And so the we love the Diabetes Social Media Advocacy (DSMA) Blog Carnival topic this month: all about your diabetes bag or gear!
We were asked to post photos of what we schlep, and expand on the picture(s) by answering any or all of the following questions:
- What do you carry with you each day?
- How do you carry your gear differently during the week versus the weekend?
- How do you keep track of the gear that's not attached to you?
- How do you re-purpose non-diabetes gear (bags, cases, etc) to carry your D-stuff?
So, here's how our team at the 'Mine carries off the topic this month!
Actually, mine is a two-part answer...
1. In my plain black and undecorated Man Purse, I carry with me each day: my OneTouch UltraLink meter, a vial of 25 test strips, a thumb-sized lancet device, two extra lancets, an alcohol swab, a syringe, and a bottle of insulin with the reservoir pieces for a quick refill.
There's really no difference whether it's Monday or Saturday, and I don't re-purpose my non-D gear to carry diabetes stuff. My case has a belt clip, so if needed I can wear it on my waist so that I'm not forced to tote it around by hand.
2. As I said, though... my Man Purse is only part of the story. We also utilize my wife Suzi's handbag, which I refer to as the "suitcase purse."
I happen to be blessed with a wife who doesn't mine toting my meter case around with her when we're out and about together. Unless of course I'm wearing cargo pants (or shorts) with several pockets, and then it's no big deal to toss my stuff into one of those!
Aside from this simple black case, I also carry glucose tabs or candy in my briefcase, car, jacket or suit coat along with some extra infusion set supplies that I might need in case of an emergency.
Not to bore the pants off you (Mike - cargo pants guy!), but I'm pretty straightforward and practical too. No re-purposing going on here. This is the Sugar Medical Supply case I currently carry my OmniPod in. The blue paisley matches nicely with my two favorite purses — yes, that matters, Gentlemen!
I have to open it backwards to be able to just pop in a test strip and use my Omnipod without taking it out of the case each time. But I've gotten used to flipping the zipper to the right before opening. Inside I carry extra lancets, PDM batteries, one or two syringes and a vial of insulin, which I've only had to use once.
The thing below is my larger "travel pack," which I keep in my car (I've got one in each of our two cars, actually) and also take with me whenever I fly anywhere. It contains way more stuff than you can see in the photo: a container of 50 FreeStyle test strips, Dex4 glucose tabs, extra lancets, extra lancing device, extra batteries, one OmniPod pod, sterile alcohol wipes, medical adhesive wipes, medical adhesive remover wipes (you need 'em, I tell you!), syringes, a medical emergency card, and in the back — a big Frio packed with 2 Apidra vials, and a Lantus vial and Apidra pen, just in case.
This may sound like overkill, but each time an emergency arises, you vow never to make the same mistake again. So you carry it all!
You know what this thing actually is? It's the supplies insert from an aDorn diabetes messenger bag. I don't use the messenger bag much anymore because the heavy single strap hurt my shoulder. But I do love the compact insert! I stick it in my Ogio laptop backpack when I'm heading out on the road, no matter what day of the week.
I sure hope some nurses and doctors are stopping by to read this today; I'm betting most don't really have a clue about how much the schlepping aspect of diabetes affects our lives.
This post is our September 2012 entry in the DSMA Blog Carnival. Click here to learn more if you'd like to participate, too.