Six weeks after diagnosis, Caleb had his first endo appointment. We covered many bases at this meeting, including insulin pumps.
I labor over the smallest decisions. There is little that I take lightly. I research, ponder, marinate, research a little more, think, inquire and finally decide. When I decide, I am confident and committed. By that point, I know what I want.
Pumping for Caleb was no different.
The nurse pulled out pump options and explained their advantages:
Animas: it allows for the smallest basal rate which is particularly important for children
Cozmore: it, in her opinion, had the best software
MiniMed: it has an integrated CGM
I sat with Caleb and my husband. I listened to her describe the devices. I waited for her to finish and asked, “what about the OmniPod“.
The nurse responded, “Caleb can’t use that. He’s much too small. It’s too big for his body.”
Perhaps what was said was not quite as surprising as the way it was said. She implied that we were fools to consider it and further, we really had no clue what we were talking about. We were asked, “where did you hear about it”, as if it was important to know the source of our supposed misinformation. We were “pooh-poohed”.
If you know me, you know that I am not afraid to speak my mind. I am not afraid to go against the grain. I am stubborn and outspoken.
If you know me, your eyebrows likely raised when you read the nurse’s response and you may have chuckled thinking something along the lines of, “this nurse has no idea who she is dealing with.”
A civil discussion ensued. I explained that it was not too big. That I knew of a child who was two when he began using it with success (Caleb was then four). I had spoken to that child’s mother. I explained that although I agreed the portion adhered to the body is bigger, the overall device that was effectively attached to the body was smaller. She really tried to talk us out of it. But her basis was invalid based upon what we knew. We did not come to our conclusion without careful thought. We could be wrong, but we wanted to at least give this a try.
With a smirk, she conceded. I envisioned, “you’ll see”, going through her mind.
Shortly thereafter, Caleb began pumping with the OmniPod. We dealt with various people at the endo office as he got started. Everyone’s reaction included surprise that someone of Caleb’s age would use the OmniPod. Nevertheless, they supported it.
Caleb has been pumping with the OmniPod for over two years. We have never had any issues with the size of the Pod. At the time, there was no one else at his endo’s office under the age of twelve using it. For several of Caleb’s endo visits after he started pumping, the tables were turned. We were being asked more questions than we were asking. They could see that the OmniPod was a viable option for children Caleb’s age, and they wanted to learn from our experiences so they could advise other patients.
I believe Caleb’s endo felt they were providing reasonable guidance. Because the OmniPod was relatively new at the time, there was not a lot to draw upon and I believe they simply made some assumptions about its use. I am appreciative that they were willing to support our choice, even when they did not agree with it.
This experience solidified my understanding that I am my son’s greatest advocate. Even including doctors and nurses with the best intentions, only I truly have his best interests in mind.
I will continue to research, which includes consultation with Caleb’s doctors. However, I will continue to make decisions that I, and soon, that both Caleb and I have concluded are the best for him, either because of or despite his doctor’s advice.