I Can See Clearly Now

My visit yesterday to the eye doctor’s office went much better than expected.  It all started off with a ride to the office using Uber.  Crazy that Pensacola has Uber, but I’m glad it does.  I paid about five bucks less than what a cab would have cost, and I rode in a nice Lexus to the doctor’s office.

Once there they ran a whole bunch of tests.  I ended up waiting awhile after the tests for the eye doctor.  He had to perform an emergency surgery.  He was able to save someone’s eyesight,  so I didn’t mind waiting a few extra minutes.  He came in to see me in due time, and gave me the good news.  My eyes didn’t show any sign of diabetic damage, and even better, I don’t need glasses at all.

The doctor actually mentioned that as my blood sugar normalizes and stays low that my vision would improve a bit.  He said that basically with high blood sugar the inside of your eyes can coat with sugar causing your vision to become blurry at times and cause near-sightedness.  This made perfect sense as I noticed it was hard for me to view things at a distance for a bit, but I don’t have that issue anymore.

Once done I took another Uber ride home.  The driver was interesting to talk to.  He spoke a couple of languages and did translator work for the Department of Defense from time to time.  He dropped me off at home and I celebrated my good eye diagnosis with a slice of pizza.  (My eye doctor told me to live a little, so I had some pizza.)

Here is a picture of Sally trying to hide from me.  I could see her clearly!

Joseph Sollner finds Sally trying to hide

Sally Stains Corgi trying to hide.

Out With the Old

The past week or so I’ve been going through cupboards and my desk and getting rid of old items I no longer use.  I’ve also managed to package up a couple of bags of food I can no longer eat due to the high carb count in them.  I’ll be donating the food this Saturday to the national letter carriers food drive.  The mail man will pick up the food when he drops off my mail.

It will be nice to not have those foods staring me in the face every time I open the cupboard.  It is also nice to open up my desk drawers and not have them cluttered with old electronic gadgets I no longer use.  I’ll be refurbishing some items and donating them to a local thrift store I’ve done free web design work for in the past.  Other items will find their way to an e-recycler to become something else.

All in all making way for my new reality with diabetes.  So far I’ve learned that as long as I stay focused and take care of myself, I’m going to be just fine.

Here are a couple of pictures of an old Pontiac Station Wagon I saw last summer.  It was at the Pontiac-Oakland Museum, and was a boat of a vehicle.

Joseph Sollner Old Pontiac Station Wagon

Old Pontiac Station Wagon

Joseph Sollner Old Pontiac Station Wagon

Old Pontiac Station Wagon

 

Eye Appointment and Blood Tests

Tomorrow I go in to get my eyes checked out and to make sure there is no damage from my diabetes.  I would not be shocked at all if I end up with some glasses.  Not from the diabetes, but from staring at computer screens all day long.  I’ll be taking Uber for the first time in Pensacola.  Costs a bit less than a cab, and it’ll be interesting to see how it compares to Uber in bigger cities.

Yesterday I went in to get blood work done.  This is more extensive blood work compared to the daily tests I run at home.  It will be interesting to see what my A1C numbers look like.  They were off the charts while I was in the hospital.  I’m hoping to have them around 9 to start.  Eventually I would like to have them below 7 and close to 6.

Here is a picture from Chicago last summer.  This was taken before heading out to Cleveland, with a stop in Lansing along the way to visit family.

Joseph Sollner MTTS2014 Chicago

MTTS2014 Chicago Breakfast

Planting Flowers = Great Exercise

Today I planted a bunch of flowers outside.  I also created a wildflower bed along part of the driveway.  This should look really cool once the wild flowers start to sprout later on this summer.

Lugging around dirt, digging up weeds, raking leaves, and finally planting is a good workout for sure.  I have been averaging around 15,000 to 20,000 steps when I do yard work.  About 5 to 7 miles of walking around the yard.  Not much by some standards but not bad for me.

The good news is all the work has actually lowered my blood sugar reading about 10 points on average.  So adding flowers to the yard is helping me lower my blood sugar.  Not bad at all.

Here are some pics of the flowers added today.

Joseph Sollner - Early Summer Flowers

Driveway wildflower bed.

Joseph Sollner - Early Summer Flowers

Flowers in the front yard.

Joseph Sollner - Early Summer Flowers

These grow like crazy.

Joseph Sollner - Early Summer Flowers

Flowers in the front yard.

Joseph Sollner - Early Summer Flowers

Marigolds to protect the vegetable garden.

Joseph Sollner - Early Summer Flowers

Climbing plants for the shed.

Joseph Sollner - Early Summer Flowers

Climbing plants for the shed.

Diabetes Management Software

So I’ve spent awhile researching diabetes management software.  Primarily looking for something that I can just automatically populate with data from my blood glucose meter.  I was surprised that there really wasn’t anything out there that was an all around good product.  Most programs did one or two things great, but fell short in integrating an overall ease of use experience with good data management.

I did finally find Glooko, and their MeterSync Blue product.  They really have created what I feel is the best solution out there.  I can’t wait for my MeterSync Blue to arrive so I can start using it along with the full suite of data management tools.  I’ve already loaded the app onto my phone, and plan to use an iPad to track all my medicine and insulin doses.

I really want to get down to a few as possible medicines, and would love to get off of insulin.  The cost adds up, and plus, who likes giving themselves shots every day?

Here is a picture of an ‘art car’ that was in town awhile back, the Chewbaru.

Joseph Sollner Art Car at Art Fair

The Chewbaru

Good Numbers

I had my first follow up with my primary care physician at the end of last week.  He was pleased with my numbers.  Out of over 200 blood glucose readings I only had 5 instances over 200.  This was a big victory.  I’ll be getting my A1C test done next week to see if that number has come down from the staggering 13.1 to something better.  I’m feeling confident it will be lower.

Next week I go in to get my eyes checked out.  I’ll be taking a cab over since they will be dilating my eyes and doing a full compliment of testing.  I wouldn’t be surprised if I end up with glasses once all is said and done.  Should be interesting to see how that all goes.

All in all numbers are looking good,  my diet is under control, and with all the yard work and walking the dogs every morning things are going well.

Here is a picture of a beach I surfed from in Maui.  This was taken before the tide was brought in with waves.

Joseph Sollner Surfing Beach in Maui

Beach in Maui

 

Week of Appointments

The past week I’ve been to the dentist a total of 3 times.  I decided to pick a new dentist so one visit was the initial consultation, one was a cleaning, and the last was to fix a cavity I had.  I shouldn’t have to go back to the dentist until October.

This week I’ve got an eye doctor’s appointment as well as my next follow up with my primary care physician regarding my diabetes.  Yesterday I actually had my first low blood sugar reading.  It was an odd feeling for sure, but I was able to manage it with a glucose tablet.

All in all things are getting back to a normal balance as each day passes.  Here are a couple of pictures from the Steelstacks in Bethlehem, PA.

joseph sollner Steelstacks, Bethlehem, PA

Steelstacks, Bethlehem, PA

Joseph Sollner Steelstacks, Bethlehem, PA

Steelstacks, Bethlehem, PA

Checking Fluids

Today I took Elroy, our MINI Cooper Coupe, in for his oil change and basic maintenance check up.  He’ll basically be on the same schedule as me now in terms of health checkups.  Elroy was our first MINI, and depending on how things play out we will be taking him on MTTS2016.  It’s more likely we will be in London, England however next summer.  We will be able to drive a right hand drive MINI.

Here is a picture of Elroy and a couple of pictures of vinyl wrap concepts we would do to him if taking him on MTTS2016.

Joseph Sollner MINI Cooper Coupe Elroy

Elroy

Joseph Sollner Vinyl Car Wrap Concept

Wrap concept 1

Joseph Sollner Vinyl Car Wrap Concept

Wrap concept 2

2 Weeks Away from Next Assessment

In two weeks I go in for my next medical assessment.  Should be interesting to go over the results of 60 days of medication, insulin shots, improved diet, and evolving exercise.  I really do like my primary care physician, and it helps that he specializes in diabetic care.  After this assessment I go in every 3 months to adjust medication and insulin shots as needed.

Things at this point are starting to become habit.  I’ll hopefully be able to get off the Humalog shots entirely, and just have a once a day Levemir shot.  It is my goal to also get off of the Levemir shots, but I know that realistically insulin shots are going to be a part of my future long term.

My next semester of school starts as well in two weeks.  Only 2 industry certifications in the new semester, and a bunch of papers to write.  The two following semesters are packed with MSCE certification classes.  Then just a capstone project and I’m done with school and recertification.

In honor of SpaceX’s almost successful landing of the Falcon 9 primary stage, here is a T-Shirt I got from them.

Joseph Sollner Falcon Heavy SpaceX T-Shirt

Falcon heavy T-Shirt

Symphony No. 5

As I sit here listing to some Beethoven I can’t get over how much my life felt like symphony No. 5 while in the hospital last month.  The ups and downs, all tense moments, and the final conversation with my attending physician that I was going home after spending 3 days in the hospital.  Most fitting was the moments in which the emergency room staff talked about stopping and restarting my heart to try to get the pulse rate down.

I’ve always liked classical music.  I normally would listen to classical music while flying.  Nothing like watching the world pass underneath you to a good symphony.  Perhaps I’ll integrate some into my workouts as I start to ramp them up intensity wise.

Some pictures from a trip to Germany are fitting for this post.

Joseph Sollner in Germany

Germany Trip, Tubingen

Joseph Sollner in Germany

Germany Trip, Triberg

Joseph Sollner in Germany

Hollenzen Castle

Joseph Sollner in Germany

Germany Trip, Triberg

Joseph Sollner in Germany

Germany Trip, Tubingen

Joseph Sollner in Germany

Germany Trip, Tubingen