Imagine this. You’re told that you are cute, pretty, beautiful, sexy. Nice adjectives about your physical appearance. You put on a revealing dress, form fitting, short in length. You step into your 6 inch heels and stand in front of the mirror. You smile at your reflection. This is where those broccoli smoothies and hours in the gym come in handy.
You turn to the left to make sure the dress is laying as it should and that’s when the 1986 fax machine that is attached to your arm comes into view. Alongside that, a pay phone from 1979 also sits attached to your arm. Both are painted a sparkly pink to dress them up a bit. Both make beeping sounds and have white stickers holding them in place. The stickers are frayed at the edges and a little dirty looking. The blue color on the hoodie you wore earlier has left behind a pigment on the tape.
You turn to face the mirror again thinking you should wear the fax machine and pay phone on your belly. But then the dress protrudes out and it looks like you have hernias. Perhaps your inner thigh above your knee where they can’t be seen in the dress. But then you can’t cross your legs. Plus, when you sit the dress will rise and they will be visible anyhow.
I absolutely hate wearing an Omnipod and Dexcom. I have to be aware of them at all times. Taking my purse off of my shoulder swiftly can pull them out of my skin. Taking my tops off has to be done one arm at a time and slowly. Be careful rounding corners cause they stick out of your arm a good inch. You can knock them completely out if you aren’t careful. In my mind, both of these objects are flashing lights to warn people to stay away. They do feel like a pay phone and a fax machine. They are large, boxy, and don’t seem very modern.
I stick them to my skin, allow a catheter from each device to shoot into my flesh, wear them 24/7, changing them every 3-7 days. They are not the elephants in the room. They are the disease in the room.
My boyfriend tells me all the time that he doesn’t mind them.
But I don’t believe him. I mean, why would he TELL me that he hates them. That I would look even better in a string bikini if I wasn’t a cyborg with a chronic disease. I would never say that to him if the roles were reversed. This falls under the subject matter, “Things That Are Permissive to Lie About In a Relationship”. So, I am thankful for his sweet lies to spare my feelings. I would also love to see his ass in a string bikini now that I’m talking about it.
The thing is, all I see when I get naked, when I shower, when I dress, when I am in bed with my boyfriend, when I take my coat off and my machines bleep out “Look at her! Look at her! What are these things on her arm? It’s me. Her disease!”….all I see are Omnipods and Dexcoms. I don’t see anything else on myself. I feel like they are distracting everyone. The waiter can’t concentrate, the bartender is confused, the man checking me out stops checking me out when I turn and he sees my arms, my co-workers are surprised when I’m not covered up with a blazer. 95% of my waking hours, I feel the presence of these damn machines.
The benefits of the Pod and Dex are significant. I can control my insulin levels at all times and know my BG at all times. I’m healthier than I have ever been.
I guess looking like a cyborg is a small price to pay for controlled blood sugars and living a long, healthy life. I’ll take the fax machine and pay phone along with my string bikini….and totally kick ass.