Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Scene.

Scene: About 11 o’clock at night. Showcase Cinemas in MA.

There aren’t too many people in the movie theater. It’s not too hot or too cold. Comfortable seats. Handsome boyfriend as my date. Feeling a little tired but content.

The movie courses on. Guy with a mask, Natalie Portman cuts off all her hair, I’m barely interested … little bit of a headache.

Not one crying out for Excedrin, but nagging enough to make me rest my head against Chris’s shoulder as we watch the movie. Sleepy. I close my eyes. About 15 minutes pass.

Still have that headache.

Unzipper the black case and set up my testing kit. Using the backlighting on my pump like a miner, I prick my finger and align the blood with the strip by the faint blue Minimed light.

27 mg/dl.

No symptoms until that moment of realization that my bloodsugar and my age are in perfect synch. Did seeing the number trigger a physiological response? Why didn’t I feel anything sooner? A bead of sweat joins my hummingbird heartbeat as I realize how I don’t have much more than adrenaline keeping me coherent. The crackers in my purse aren’t going to work nearly fast enough.

I wish I had grabbed his arm and asked for help. A bloodsugar of 27 mg/dl, he should know.

Instead, I tossed my kit into my purse and stood up abruptly. Leaning in to Chris, “I’m low. I’m going to get juice. I’m fine.”

Thinking I’m in control, he squeezed my hand and said, “Okay, baby. I’ll be here.”

Scene: I walked as confidently as I could down the dark hallway, spilling out into the fluorescently lit atrium. The snack counter was just a few feet away. “You’re fine. You’re fine. Don’t worry. Just get there.” Motivational Speaker whispered softly into my ear.

The 16 year old girl turned her head to me, the Showcase Cinemas logo on her black visor momentarily distracting.

“I’m a diabetic. I’m having a very low bloodsugar reaction. I need juice immediately.” My fist hit the counter, a five dollar bill clutched in my hand.

“We’re closed? The machines are locked up?” Young Girl looked nervous.

“I need juice now. Right now. Please hurry.” I looked nervous, too. That numbness was settling into my mouth. Warm waves of exhaustion coupled with panic rolled over me.

Her hands fumbled with the keyring as she leaned over to unlock the juice machine. My mouth formed the words “Thank you.”

“I’m sorry, we’re closed.” Manager Woman came over, snapped her gum at me. Her hand came down on Young Girl’s wrist, stopping her from opening the juice machine.

“I’m diabetic. I am having a low bloodsugar reaction. I need juice right now.”

“We closed at 11. There is a convenience store across the street.”

“I am diabetic. I need juice. Now. Please just open the machine. I need you to help me.”

Precious seconds pass.

Her hand took the keys from Young Girl. “I’m sorry. We’re closed.”

Silently apologizing to my mother in my head, “Diabetic. I need sugar right now. Open the fucking machine and get me some juice. NOW.” My voice crescendos to an angry peak.

A dirty look crossed Manager Woman’s face as she throws the keys to Young Girl. “What size?”

“Small, please.”

She grabbed the largest cup from the stack. My mouth is completely numb, hands trembling. Young Girl fills the cup as fast as she can, opening a straw for me and sliding it into the enormous cup.

“A large. That will be $4.05.” Manager Woman extends her hand for my money.

I’m already halfway through the basin of red juice. I hand her the money. She takes it and hands me my change while she relocks the juice machine.

Scene: Back in the theater. Mumbling about 27 … huge thing of juice … Why didn’t you tell me? … I’m sorry … I’m glad you’re okay … 27 … Did you feel it at all? … I feel it now … Keep drinking …

Scene: In the car. Explained what happened. Chris is furious on my behalf. I am, too. Angry at Manager Woman. Angry at myself for leaving my juice in the car. Angry at my body for betraying me.

What is causing these? I’ve read that blood pressure medication can make people experience hypoglycemic episodes. I’ve also read that it can cause dulled symptoms. What do I choose?

Should I be writing a letter to Showcase Cinemas, advising them that their staff needs considerable training as to dealing with medical emergencies?

Will my appointment as Joslin in two weeks help me figure out what is going on?

Can I get a CGMS? Can I afford it?

Can I afford not to?

66 Comments:

At April 18, 2006 12:54 PM, Blogger Shannon said...

Goddamn that manager woman. If I were with you I would've been across that counter bitch slapping her!

Between you and Supermom, I'm fuming at people's complete stupidity (I won't dignify their actions by calling it ignorance).

And a 27 for an adult...I shudder at the thought.

Definitely do not let this go. When you're ready, write a letter for sure!

 
At April 18, 2006 12:55 PM, Blogger Shannon said...

I wasn't calling you and Supermom stupid, the people who you both interacted with are stupid.

 
At April 18, 2006 1:03 PM, Blogger Nicole P said...

I would absolutely be writing a letter to Showcase Cinemas. Kerri, this happened to me there - less than a year ago. Which theater was it -- the one near Target or the one further up the road? I bet it was the same bitchy woman.

I don't think you should have to choose. You need both the medication and to not have swooping lows like that. Are there any patterns you can detect? Or are the timing of the lows random? Can you do some intense monitoring and see if there are corrections in basals that might help?

Two things:

I've found that since I've started eating lower carb, I'm having more asymptomatic reactions. They're as scary as can be. I've been working in the last week on gathering tons of data -- testing up to 18-20 times in a day. I've found a couple of pattern-like occurences and made some adjustments.

I go through spurts of really feeling my lows (like at 65 or so, I start the symptoms) or not feeling them at all (at 25 and just starting to lose my coherency...) Do you have spurts?

Finally, maybe your symptoms are changing. Maybe the headache -- even just on the edges -- is the primary symptom for you at this point. Do you feel the headache coming long before you test -- or are you testing as soon as you feel it?

I'm so sorry this happened. This is just total bullshit and it sucks.

 
At April 18, 2006 1:24 PM, Blogger Tekakwitha said...

Oh Kerri, that's so scary and so frustrating and so enraging.

Write a letter.

Talk to your doctor about the CGMS.

Hang in there.

tek

 
At April 18, 2006 1:43 PM, Blogger Sarah said...

{hugs} Write that letter!!!

 
At April 18, 2006 2:07 PM, Blogger Jamie said...

Kerri! Write that letter .... PLEASE! People NEED to know about this - they NEED to be aware about it .... please, please, please write to them.

These lows you're experiencing are frightening. I would definately talk to Joslin about it, and inquire about a CGMS ..... not saying you have to take it (even though it would help soooo much), but inquire about it - maybe, just maybe there is some way they can help you acquire one.

Thinking of you lots.

 
At April 18, 2006 2:47 PM, Blogger Allison said...

Ditto on letter to the Manager Woman.

Ditto on the headaches as New Symptom (it seems like you're getting them a lot before you have a Scary Low).

Ditto on the CGMS.

Ditto on diabetes sucking ass. Ok, no one actually wrote it, but I know someone was thinking it.

 
At April 18, 2006 2:48 PM, Anonymous DianeKelly said...

Write the letter. The manager's behavior was inexcusable. Her job isn't just to enforce the company's rules, it's to decide when it's OK to break them. And a medical emergency calls for breaking rules. I wonder what she would have done if you passed out?

A 27 without symptoms is definitely scary. Do you carry candy? I never go anywhere anymore without a couple of tootsie pops in my bag.

 
At April 18, 2006 2:49 PM, Blogger julia said...

Write the letter. Copy her manager and send a copy to the corportate headquarters of Showcase One Too Many. The lack of compassion is staggering, the level of ignorance is unbelievable. Write the letter. Please. So that no one, including you, has to go thru this bullshit again.

Unfuckingbelievable.

 
At April 18, 2006 2:52 PM, Blogger julia said...

Oh, and the DexCom is out on the market and AFAIK, the MM 522/722 is as well. I would be on the phone with Joslin today about it. Dr. Ricker was quite impressed with the DexCom. At this point, you need something. These lows you're having are frightening me - I can't imagine what they're doing for you and Chris and everyone else around you.



Ok, my WVW is turdnsr. Turd noser? A good description of your stupid ASSistant Manager, I believe.

 
At April 18, 2006 3:04 PM, Blogger Lyrehca said...

Yes. Write the letter. Immediately. To the manager of Showcase and to anyone higher up you can find. Maybe send a letter to the editor of your local paper, too. (Or the paper that the theater people would read).

And Kerri, I carry LifeSavers in my meter with me. They're cheap, portable, and after Christmas or Valentine's day, my mother goes to CVS or a store like that and cleans out the holiday packaging. They have eight packs of LifeSavers in a package and I have hundreds of them. Consider carrying LifeSavers or some other kind of portable fast acting candy (Smarties didn't work fast enough for me).

And yes, definitely, ask your Joslin doc WTF is going on. 27 is an age, not a blood sugar.

 
At April 18, 2006 3:15 PM, Anonymous Darrell said...

Which Showcase in MA?

 
At April 18, 2006 3:59 PM, Anonymous allisonmcd said...

I carry jelly beans in a ziploc. I used to carry skittles or starburst or the like, but when too low I had too much trouble (and lost precious time) trying to unwrap them. And they were hard on the jaw too. ;) I often need alot of carbs to get me out of a low, and things like lifesavers or glucose tabs aren't enough for me. A ziploc bag is easy to unzip even when extremely low, and it carries alot of jellies, in the case you need alot. Kerri please do something similar. You said you left your juice in the car ... next time please don't do that! Personally, I don't feel I can lose the time by not having something with me at all times ... you could have barely afforded to wait even if Chris had gone to get your juice for you. I agree with the other comments. And good for you for using the F word with that awful manager. ;) In all seriousness, she should be ashamed of herself and I do hope you'll write to her supervisor.

 
At April 18, 2006 4:24 PM, Blogger Maura said...

Kerri, That happened to me when I was watching the epic Philadelphia. I was with 5 friends. I left and the candy counter was closed. I actually staggered across the parking lot to ths supermarket and got one of those bakery muffins and i don't remember what source of sugar. I always think of it when I watch that movie that I missed a lot of it because I had to take care of myself. aGggghh. I find a pattern of going low in movie theaters and have heard other folks too. Now I just eat popcorn and steal my husband's staple of sour patch kids. I keep sugar packets as a backup for the glucose tabs I usually have with me. Take care.
Oh and how crazy that she responded to an expletive but wouldn't respond to the fact that you are diabetic!!!!!!!!!!!!
Unbelievable!!!!!!!!!!!! People have no common sense. It's important to write that letter especially since I think many of us have gone low at the theater. Especially if there is a lot of action in the movie!

 
At April 18, 2006 5:00 PM, Anonymous Cin said...

Write that letter Kerri once you are feeling better. There is no excuse for such IGNORANCE !!!!!
BTW, I probably would have said a lot more foul words to her and slapped her silly !!!!!

 
At April 18, 2006 5:37 PM, Anonymous Elizabeth said...

Just like everyone else said... write that letter! That lady is not only a fu*king moron, but she has no compassion for the well being of others. Although its no BIG accomplishment, I wonder how she got to be a manager?

Also, I would look into the new Minimed 522/722. It might be what you're looking for.

 
At April 18, 2006 5:37 PM, Blogger Rachel said...

UGH. What an idiot that manager woman...

I'm in agreement with headache = start of scary low. I've noticed the "worst lows" I've seen my husband with have always started with a nagging headache.

 
At April 18, 2006 5:38 PM, Blogger Scott K. Johnson said...

Oh man, I'm sorry for you having to go through that. Very scary indeed.

I once tested 24 with no symptoms. Thought about getting up and walking upstairs to the vending machines at work. Then the realization of the "24" hit me, and I sat right there and had some glucose tablets. I didn't feel a thing.

I think it is possible to have symptoms sometimes and not have them other times.

Scary, either way.

I think that we will see more of the CGMS systems hitting the streets later this year, and they will have to become more affordable. It will be a bit frustrating though, because it will probably be a while.

There are though, lots of companies working on CGMS systems of one kind or another. It's the next wave of life changing diabetic therapy. Before too long they will be covered just like BG meters & strips.

 
At April 18, 2006 7:48 PM, Blogger Penny said...

Kerri, Write the letter. Also, I'm not a fan of cursing, but I think your use of the f word was needed. My blood is boiling just thinking of the manager doing that. What was she on some power trip or something?

 
At April 18, 2006 8:43 PM, Blogger type1emt said...

Kerri,
So sorry that happened to you- that is totally horrible.(If you need any more letters,the OC will take up the cause!)
Probably alot more movie theaters need education/training in this regard. (I wonder how many of them would like to have a lawsuit on their hands)
Stay safe.

 
At April 18, 2006 11:40 PM, Anonymous Theresa said...

I have a different view on all of this and I disagree with almost everything that has been said here. Kerri, just exactly where is your responsibility in all of this. This is not the first time you have made somebody else responsible for taking care of your low blood sugar. It is your responsibility to ALWAYS and I mean ALWAYS have some source of glucose with you. Do I really have to say that to you? I guess I do considering what happened. It is even more critical when you have hypoglycemia unawareness. All of this is your own fault. It is not the theater’s responsibility to train their staff in diabetes. May be they should also be trained in heart disease, stroke or may be they should go to medical school. This is your own responsibility. If a letter should be written, it should be to the manager and the young girl behind the counter apologizing for how irresponsible you were for not having a source of glucose with you. You need to take a long hard look at yourself before you try to get somebody else in trouble for your irresponsible behavior.

 
At April 19, 2006 12:43 AM, Anonymous Sugar Ray said...

What?!! Do you work for Showcase? That would be the only reason I can possibly think of why you would be blaming all of this on Kerri. Who cares if it was her responsibility to have juice on her? The point is that she didn't!! Would it have been better if she punished herself for not having it by staying seated in the theater? Until she passed out? Until the paramedics came? Until???

Just as many of the other diabetics on this site, I do my best to make sure that I am prepared. But, shit happens. You forget bottles of glucose tabs in the car. You think you have Jolly Ranchers in your pocket, only to then remember that you gave them to your little cousin earlier that day. You think you bought cranberry juice, but after dowing half the bottle and wondering why your bloodsugar is barely climbing you discover that the vending machine spit out the newest low-carb version. No one is perfect at this. We do our best to be, but still mistakes are made. We are human. We are fallable. So are you.

That all being said, and now that you have hopefully dismounted from your high horse, picture yourself in her situation. Place yourself there. Or your kid, if that is what applies. You know you fucked-up, but that doesn't really matter at that point, now does it? Getting your bloodsugar up is what matters, and if two people working at a movie theater are the only people in the world who can do that at the moment, then it is their God damn responsibility to do it, and no one else's!! It's not a matter of training or anything even remotely similar. You relating asking for juice to needing help with a stroke, heart disease or whatever else you mentioned is probably one of the most asinine things I've heard all week. It's juice. It's not a defribulator. It's not CPR. It's not even a fucking cough drop. It's juice! It comes in big vats at movie theaters, so it wasn't exactly hard to come by at that moment, was it? I'm guessing not. So, for those people working at the movie theater (who were, again, the two people in the world who at that moment were responsible for helping another human being through a trying situation) to give Kerri a hard time simply because -- let's face it, because they didn't want to clean the juice machines for the night again -- is absolutely disgusting. Recognize that.

--Sugar Ray

 
At April 19, 2006 1:16 AM, Blogger Allison said...

Can I get an AY-MEN!?!

 
At April 19, 2006 7:52 AM, Blogger Kieran said...

People are quite ignorant about diabetes, and in the case of some people who work at cinemas, quite stupid too. It's good that I visit here not least to learn more, so that in the future if I ever partake in such a situation I'll understand the urgency.

And yes, write to Showcase, because they need to know, and you'll also get free tickets.

 
At April 19, 2006 7:59 AM, Blogger Shannon said...

If you work in the public arena, then you should have some training in basic health care like CPR, how to deal with someone who chokes, allowing someone to treat a low blood sugar, etc.

Like Sugar Ray said, shit happens and we all forget to bring things with us.

It wasn't much for the manager to insert key, unlock whatever she needed to unlock and give Kerri some juice.

Give me a break.

 
At April 19, 2006 8:17 AM, Blogger Val said...

Arrgghh! G-D morons. Write the letter. Yesterday my monitor beeped 2 hours after my usual breakfast, saying "Hey, you're 96" (I set it to alarm below 100 in an attempt to catch lows). Did a fingerstick with the good meter and it said, "Hey, you're 39!" No symptoms. *&$#%^! Thinking of tossing the trial monitor even tho it's free for 2 more months and getting a DexCom instead....Before you rush out and get one, see if you can compare what's out there.

Also, can your dr's write a letter that you have hypoglycemia unawareness and desparately need the insurance to pay for a monitor or they'll be paying for hospital trips? It can't hurt to try.

 
At April 19, 2006 8:19 AM, Anonymous Theresa said...

I fully expected people to be angry about what I said and I am sure as the day goes on there will be more angry messages. However, I stand by what I said. I can guarantee you that I never leave home without enough sugar cubes and graham crackers in my purse to cover any lows I may have. I have had type 1 diabetes for 40 years and I have learned a lot of hard lessons. Rather than being angry at other people for mistakes I have made when it comes to my diabetes, I learn a lesson from my mistakes.

 
At April 19, 2006 8:44 AM, Anonymous The Mother said...

Well...seems to me that people look at this incident through different eyes. I think everyone on the OC - except for Theresa - realizes that this wasn't about responsibility but compassion for another human begin. Perhaps the manager should have watched her lapse into a coma right in front of her eyes. Then said manager and Theresa could have said..."there..serves you right. You should have had something on you to treat that reaction". Kerri knows that she should have had something on her. Every diabetic knows that and so do the parents of diabetics. But since none of us is perfect, we don't always do what we should. The issue was another human being not helping a fellow human being. Doesn't matter what the issue was..we are supposed to help each other. It's common decency. Perphaps ignorance played a part in this. The manager may not have known the dire consequences but ignorance does not excuse her actions. She was a cold, unfeeling person with no compassion for another person. Some day that woman will need someone to help her and hopefully someone will. Then perhaps she will realize that everyone needs help sometimes. Theresa...shame on you for excusing that managers behavior. While you do make a valid point of being more responsible the point of this is that the manager was watching someone in distress and not helping immediately.

 
At April 19, 2006 9:37 AM, Blogger Jen said...

Theresa,
Do you always have enough sugar cubes to treat a 27?? What if one day you have a resistant low, and the supplies you had with you are gone. What will you do then? How would you feel if Kerri had first had some juice of her own, but STILL needed more? How would you feel if that manager stood over YOU telling you that you had to pass out, just because they were supposed to be closed, and you didn't take enough supplies. You can not honestly say you have NEVER been in a situation where you have needed another person's help. You have never gone out, expecting to be gone for half an hour, and ended up being gone for much longer? Never thought the food you bolused was one carb ratio, when it turned out to be a much lower one? These things have never happened to you? If you say they haven't, I have a hard time believing you. It doesn't matter what Kerri SHOULD have been done, what happened, happened and the manager does have a large role in this.
PS Kerri, write the letter. You have the whole OC (I don't think the above mentioned person counts) behind you. I hope you are able to find out what is causing the unawareness very soon. Very frightening.

 
At April 19, 2006 9:51 AM, Blogger Laura said...

People just do NOT understand. I would have given her a frickin' ultimatum, either give me the juice or call a damn ambulance. Which would be easier? Although I do not know how coherently I would have been in those circumstances to have even been able to say that either, but that just makes me so angry. I have a big purse and I always carry a can of sugared soda with me everywhere just so I don't have to deal with those kind of people. I would also write a letter to the cinema manager.

 
At April 19, 2006 10:05 AM, Anonymous Brooke said...

Kerri-

Write the letter- post it here, and then post the response when you get it back from the theater. I am certain you will write the letter with eloquence.

Also, thank you for posting your experiences. I believe you would have done a disservice to the diabetes community if you had not taken the time to educate everyone on what happened.

- Brooke

 
At April 19, 2006 10:33 AM, Anonymous Theresa said...

Jen - yes, I always have enough sugar cubes to treat an extreme low. I also have hypoglycemia unawareness so I know what it is like to have a bg of 27. My lowest has been 10. Having hypoglycemia unawareness gives me no other choice but to always have enough sugar cubes and food with me when I am away from home. Of course I have taken too much insulin to cover a meal and end up with a low while out in public. I have had some very severe lows, but no -- nobody has to get sugar or food for me, because it is in my purse. You don't have to believe me, but it is a rule I have for myself to always check the supplies in my purse before I leave home. Hypoglycemia unawareness is too scary not to do this.

 
At April 19, 2006 10:53 AM, Blogger julia said...

You're a very cold, unfeeling person, Theresa. It's wonderful that you're so perfect all the time, but the rest of us are human and forget things once in a while.

If someone had a heart attack or seizure in front of you, would you also tell them "Sucks to be you," berate them and step over them? Or would you help them?

Kerri seems perfectly aware that she screwed up here. What she wanted was some help from the manager. This is called human kindness and compassion. If the whole world thought like you did, this would be a terrible place to live. It's bad enough as it is, but at least there are some people (you excluded, apparently) who are willing to come to the assistance of others.

 
At April 19, 2006 10:57 AM, Blogger Kerri. said...

Theresa,

Thank you for your comments. I appreciate your perspective, honesty, and I thank you for reading the blog.

To answer, I did as you suggested. I took a long, hard look at myself. I assessed the following:

I write this blog with complete candor. I write about daily living with type one diabetes with humility and without fear of what people will say. This is how my life happens, with great achievements and grave mistakes.

It’s Life.

As I stated in my post, I regret not having juice on me. I admitted that it was a mistake. I make a lot of mistakes. Perfection is a state I will never achieve. I recognize that diabetes is my responsibility and I take the best care of myself that I can. Your opinion, though respected, it just that: an opinion.

However, to say “All of this is your own fault,” is what I find offensive from your comment. You are a fellow diabetic. You are also a human being. I assume that you have made mistakes and will continue to make mistakes. Such is life. To assign “fault” is cruel. I did not blame the manager at Showcase for my not having juice. I pointed out the fact that she failed to respond to a critical need of a fellow human being.

It is her calloused response, and yours, that I find most disappointing. My lack of juice at that moment was a mistake I made. Her lack of compassion towards a person in need was a mistake that she made. And your comments about assigning fault mark you with the same lack of compassion.

Theresa, I suggest that you take a long hard look at yourself in the reflection of your Glass House and gently put that stone back in your pocket.

 
At April 19, 2006 10:58 AM, Blogger Kerri. said...

Shit, I missed being the 33rd comment by one.

Julia, L. Bird will most likely be calling you this afternoon. :)

 
At April 19, 2006 11:01 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Teresa, how did you know your bloodsugar was ten? What kind of magical blood glucose meter do you have that registers numbers that low? And I'd like to know how you treated that without asking for the help of someone. GOod thing there was someone with more compassion that who Kerri ran into to help you.

 
At April 19, 2006 1:36 PM, Blogger Ellen said...

Is there a person who read this post without tears in their eyes, a lump in their stomachs and smoke coming out of their ears?

YES write to them and be sure to address it to the CEO and the local media. Hell, you can get this story ON TV.

Can you imagine the witch saying "sorry we locked up the defribllitator for the night, but there's one at 7/11 across the street."?

BTW when you're on bp meds, you need to drink a lot of water.

(((((((((HUGS)))))))))))))))))

 
At April 19, 2006 2:21 PM, Anonymous carol said...

I read your blog account with such a feeling of panic and anger. What a nighmarish situation. You absolutely have the right to be angry.

But after the emotional dust settles from a situation like this, I think it's best to ask, "What good can come of this?", rather than who is to blame. Kerri, you are doing a great job on that front. You are owning her part in the experience and will no doubt learn from it. Be perfect forevermore?, "no" (if so, let me know, I'd like to see what God looks like), but learn from it? "yes"

As for the manager who refused to help, she has a "character issue" that may be more difficult to solve. But her company needs to know of her behavior so that she's not allowed to jeopardize people's lives because of it. I wonder how she treats her employees? Write the letter!

I find it ironic that this happened to someone like you, Kerri, with such a gift for words. Your letter is likely to be so much more effective than that of the average person. Hmmm...perhaps some more good coming from this??

I believe that God, through people, often orchestrates wonderful things to happen using the fallout of horrible situations. Hopefully this is one of those!

 
At April 19, 2006 2:38 PM, Blogger Nicole P said...

Theresa,

I'm not as nice as Kerri, who handled you with grace that makes you look like what you are.

You are a c--t. Not a coot or a cart or colt or a clot. You are a c--t. Perfect as you may be in terms of diabetes control, you are still a c--t, and I feel very sorry for you.

My apologies to those in the OC who'll take offense to my candor. I'm off to wash the bad taste out of my mouth.

Nicole

 
At April 19, 2006 5:14 PM, Anonymous Cin said...

Kerri,
I admire you for the wonderful way you handled Theresa's comment. You are a true lady. Your mom should definitely be very proud of you. Yeah, we all make mistakes. That's why we are human. Obviously, we can't all be perfect. If we were then we wouldn't have this awful big D !!!
My respect for you grows more each day. Bravo Kerri !!!!

 
At April 19, 2006 6:32 PM, Blogger Jane said...

OK I'm pretty mad now. It's bad enough that the manager from Showcase cinema hadn't had enough first aid training to know she should get you some juice. I'm also really surprised she took your money. When I almost fainted at a theatre in NY they hade juice and glucose ready within seconds and when I offered to pay they refused.
But I'm even madder at the insensitive comments of Theresa.
You bet your life they should be trained in CPR, the Heimlich manouever and basic first aid. They should also be trained in customer realtions and common decency. Theresa, I wish I were so perfect I always had the right amount of fast acting carbs to cover every eventuality. And if my BG was 10 I don't think I'd be capable of opening the tube of glucose tablets.
Kerri,you make sure that letter is good and strong. And don't beat yourself up over this.

 
At April 19, 2006 8:02 PM, Blogger Kelsey said...

WOW, miss a day, miss a lot huh? I see that 41 people have probably already said what I'm thinking... that sucks! I cannot believe people are so ignorant and uncaring. I'm glad the young girl finally was able to help you.

I think all of us fellow diabetics were reading your post with a deep familiarity. I hate having to rely on other people for my well being.

I'm glad everything worked out in the end :)

 
At April 20, 2006 12:31 AM, Blogger Alex said...

Excuse me when I say this but holy siht! I work at a movie theater and if you would have said their name I would have been even more enraged. We are trained to assist in any way we can as far as emergencies are concerned. We know we can't do everything but what we can do we are supposed to. This really makes me mad. You should call thier district manager. They are the link between the theater and corperate. Do what you can, don't let 'manager women' win. She is obviously ignorent to diabetes and the seriousness of it. You better believe that if you came to my theater and said 'diab...I would have been on it before you finished the word. Not defending her but I honestly think it is that she just has no F'n idea about how serious this is. Fight for this...for diabetics. Take a stand, make a stand.

 
At April 20, 2006 12:40 AM, Blogger Alex said...

THERESA...WHAT THE HELL! I LIKE TO THINK I'M A RESPOSIBLE DIABETIC BUT SHIT, LIFE HAPPENS. YOU FORGET ONCE IN A WHILE AND YOU NEE TO GET OFF THAT F'N HIGH HORSE YOU ARE RIDING. YOU'RE TELLING ME THAT THERE HAS NEVER BEEN A LOW YOU WEREN'T PREPARED FOR? I DOUBT THAT. IT HAS HAPPENED. I KNOW IT HAS. IS THAT WHY YOU ARE NOW PREPARED? DIABETES IS SCARY; WE ALL KNOW THAT. WE ALSO KNOW THAT IN A MATTER OF 5 MIN YOU CAN GO FROM 300 TO 30. LIFE HAPPENS MISTAKES ARE MADE AND WE LEARN FROM IT. KERRI LEAVING HER EMERGANCY KIT IN THE CAR IS LIFE THERE IS ABSOLUTLY NO REASON THAT BITCH OF A MANAGER SHOULD HAVE SENT A DIABETIC GOING LOW OUTSIDE...THAT WOULD HAVE REALLY HELPED THE SITUATION!

"LET THOSE AMONG US WITHOUT SIN BE THE FIRST TO CONDEM."
OR BETTER YET, LET THOSE AMONG US WHO NEVER FORGET BLAME THE ONES WHO DO.

PUT THAT IN YOUR METER AND TEST IT!

 
At April 20, 2006 1:40 AM, Blogger Bear said...

I don't have diabetes (yet), but it does run in the family.
I do have multiple forms of arthritis and a rare dystrophy. I have "pain flares" that can last a day or two. One disease flare triggers the next, and so on.....and I can shut down, quite literally.
Sometimes, when I'm paying attention, I will feel a multiple attack building. I can get my butt home, take appropriate meds, and rest to slow down the severity.
Other times, I am left hanging off a shopping cart in the grocery store wondering how I am going to get myself out of this one and how am I going to get myself home.
Sometimes, I feel they take me by surprise. But, I truly feel it isn't a "surprise" - so much as my brain becomes so slugglish and foggy as the pain over takes me - that I fail to comprehend what is happening.
I know from watching friends and relatives the same can happen for you.
A reading of 27??? - you are NOT responsible for your actions.
I now work retail. Had you collapsed and struck the counter or floor, the company would've have been liable for your injuries.
If you don't want to write a letter, I'm sure many an attorney would like to do it for you. It would be worth the cost just to educate the establishment of their negligence.

 
At April 20, 2006 3:10 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would suggest not writing the letter, but calling head office of the movie theater. Those guys were profound arseholes and need to know it.

Having said that, movie theates are bad places if the blood gets low -- 'is the plot just incomprehensible, or is it just me?' The problem is that they lack many of the normal pionts of reference. Having had an 'interesting' Harry Potter moment, I now make a point of carrying extra before a film.

When you call the movieland head office, do not forget to say 'liability' a lot, they seem to notice that phrase.

 
At April 20, 2006 8:42 AM, Anonymous Beanie Baby said...

I've almost completely lost the ability to detect lows. It is scary. I used to get hungry/shaky/sweaty/hot/dizzy without fail; now, hardly ever.

I find I have to concentrate on the cues I do get, and not let them pass because they don't 'feel like lows'. For me, sometimes my lips tingle or feel a little numb, or my tongue feels numb, or I feel crabby or nauseous. (I think it is horribly unfair that when I am low and need to eat I feel nauseous and can't stomach the thought of food!) Sometimes just weak. And I have to be ready to jump on those because if it gets to the point of hungry/shaky/sweaty/hot/dizzy nowadays, I'm within tripping distance of a coma.

If this is new for you--the lack of awareness--it will take some time but I bet you will learn what your own cues of an impending serious low are. It's a new learning curve, but you can do it.

I'm sorry you had to deal with such ignorance in the movie theatre, and then more of it here in your comments section. Humans!

 
At April 20, 2006 8:56 AM, Blogger Laura said...

Kerri - your response to Theresa was AWESOME. Well said. And so, so true. No fault, just compassion for other human beings. If I saw anyone in the state your were in, I would have NO problem handing over some FREE juice or anything I had on me for that matter. I would still write the letter, and state it just as you stated in your resonse to Theresa.

 
At April 20, 2006 10:59 AM, Blogger Kelsey said...

Wow Kerri, I didn't read all the comments last night when I read your post... very interesting.

I feel like a broken record here... but really, Theresa, do you have a heart? This is totally a question of compassion, not responsibility. I didn't even consider whose "fault" this situation was when I read Kerri's post.

I agree with Laura's comment, a truly caring person would just give Kerri a juice, instead of profiting $4.05 for her emergency and then having to take more time to open the cash register!

I never cease to be amazed by the coldness in our society today, it's very sad.

 
At April 20, 2006 11:33 AM, Blogger Shannon said...

I just want to be #50. It's a nice round number.

 
At April 20, 2006 1:14 PM, Blogger cHoCoMiLkRoCkS said...

That's terrible.
I'm on BP tablets. I never knew they could dull the sensations of a low. I generally feel mine if they get around 36.

I wish I could get a Continuous gluscose monitor but being in the uk it's hard enough to even get a pump!!!!

really really want one...

 
At April 20, 2006 1:25 PM, Blogger Violet said...

K,

I'm so sorry you had this experience. But thank you for sharing it. As always, you've provoked much thought for many people. I, for one, am realizing that I need to redouble my glucose-toting efforts, which have gotten sort of lax recently because I've been lucky with lows, mostly, for a while now. That's not the kind of luck that lasts, as we all know.

Take care,
V

 
At April 20, 2006 1:28 PM, Blogger mytime79 said...

WOW... I'm not even going to comment on the comments by Theresa. I read this last night and reading it again starts to get me fired up.

That's def. really scary. It's weird a few weeks ago I had a few lows that I didn't feel, now that I think back one of them I did feel, but didn't recognize (oh yea, drove home from work 40 minutes from house). Before bed, I was just watching TV ready for bed and tested, I was 30 something. Huh? What?? I was so confused, walked downstairs, feeling fine, got an apple, feeling fine, only when I started eating did I start to feel it.

It's really scary, if you don't feel it, how can you prevent it or make it go up quicker. Those numbers in the 20s are so scary, I always think, "27 is so close to 0"

I'm glad you have all this support, opinions are opinions, some are good opinions and some are bad :)

 
At April 20, 2006 3:53 PM, Blogger Megan said...

I almost always have fast acting sugar on me. Almost always. But I'm not always thinking straight when I am low. And, I don't always have enough sugar. I had a low at school a few weeks ago. I ate my glucose tabs. All of them. And I just dropped more. Someone had to buy juice for me. Yet I had my fast acting sugar. And I responded appropriately. It's diabetes. Shit happens.

 
At April 20, 2006 7:01 PM, Anonymous Elizabeth said...

I guess that I missed a lot since yesterday! I don't think that I can say anything more that has not already been said.

But, Theresa- I really find it hard to believe that at 10 (if your meter even goes that low) you would be able to treat yourself. You know, it must be so hard being so perfect.

Kerri- I applaud your gracious manner. I wouldn't have been so nice :)

 
At April 20, 2006 7:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kerri,

Very sorry to hear of this. I was almost overwhelmed with tears while reading this. I hate this disease and those that assign fault to us while we fight the battle everyday. My mother was and brother is type 1 too. I feel that hypo unawareness is due to the insulin itself - this never occurred while I was on porcine insulin. Now, on Lantus and Humalog I am testing all day in fear of a low bloodsugar. Granted, my a1c and control is much better, but now that I am confronting the big D everyday instaed of ignoring it - it really takes a toll psychologically and spiritually...
I wish pork insulin was still an option... I was featured in Amy T.s blog as "Amazing Story #3"
Anyway. Thank you for your blog - I get a lot of inspiration out of reading it. Given my history I too may get a CGMS at some point. I agree - write the letter...

take care... Jim

 
At April 20, 2006 11:07 PM, Blogger SUPERMOM said...

Carylanne and I send BIG HUGS from Florida. definately write a letter. The management there NEEDS to know how to better handle medical emergencies. Its horrible how diabetics all over are treated. Stop on by Butterfly Kisses as I have an update to my episode. I pray you are doing better and you will get tot he bottom of these lows.

 
At April 21, 2006 1:28 AM, Blogger d double e said...

Coop-

I have made it through these comments and its 1:23 in the morning.

You are officially the comment queen.

My only two cents: People who work in theaters are not allowed to think on their own. Its kind of like the President of the United States. I'm sure she was just worried about losing her job and she probably does get people begging her all the time to make exceptions.

But hell, even Rad made an exception for Demone from time to time while he was ripping tickets.

See you in a few weeks.

-Cohen

 
At April 21, 2006 6:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

it's a shame the cinema reacted that way ... its unfortunate that god fearing Americans can still be so mean towards fellow humans ... dam them ...

note in passing: i was looking at the blog links you have listed and found an error that I wanted to point out to you the link "Sweet Blood" is wrong it should be "sweetblood" one word

 
At April 21, 2006 8:13 AM, Blogger diane said...

first by way of introduction i am chris' mom. my experience and knowledge about diabetes is nil. however, teresa your reaction to kerri's situation at the theater was inhuman-even more so than the manager's reaction. yes, kerri should have had this, and this , etc. but at that moment she did not-so please explain to me, and anyone else on this site-exactly what should she have done.

kerri, most importantly this incident needs to be made public-if for no other reason then that it hopefully will prevent it from happining again.
kerri, because you are an assertive and self confident young woman you were able to demand what you needed-not everyone has your self confidence and ability to assert themselves-you need to make this public- to make sure that those individuals who do not possess your strengths are not subjected to the same treatment. hopefully, by going public they will not have to.

 
At April 21, 2006 9:13 AM, Blogger Nicole P said...

Diane,

Just so you know, we all think Chris is awesome.

Sincerely,
Nicole

 
At April 21, 2006 12:42 PM, Blogger Kassie said...

I keep waiting for comments to die down so I can have the last word :)

Don't think that'll happpen...

Kerri what a sucky sucky night. You made mistakes that I make all the time. Thank you for sharing the story so that we can all benefit - most of us don't shift into uber diabetic preparedness until after something scary happens. Your willingness to put your experience out here helps us all reconsider our routines.

If I have to beg someone for juice some day, I'd actually prefer the manager over Theresa. The manager is just clueless. I wonder if Theresa would berate me for being unprepared before or after giving me juice (would she even give me juice? hard to tell!)

One thing to consider, IMHO, is the fact that you were being very collected and probably didn't look all that ill/in danger to the staff. I know when I ask for help, it's very purposeful and matter-of-fact and it doesn't convey the inner chaos of the low I'm experiencing. She still should have just been willing to help but it wasn't until you got nasty that she realized she had no choice but to act.

So, next time you're low, muss your hair up, slur your words, maybe drool :) Help the poor evil manager out a little.

I hope you get to the bottom of all of this soon.

 
At April 21, 2006 2:01 PM, Blogger julia said...

Hey! There's your next Halloween costume, Kerri! Wild hair, drooling, shirt half-untucked, stumbling, with a ribbon across your chest and a cock-eyed tiara perched precariously on your head: Miss Hypoglycemic Reaction, 2006.


Oh yeah, and Chris rocks, Diane. Seriously. He sounds like a great guy.

 
At April 21, 2006 7:56 PM, Anonymous Tiffany said...

Well, what a minefield this is.

Kerri, I am sorry that this happened to you. Unfortunately, compassion isn't always a readily available commodity, nor can it be expected. However, professionalism in any job is demanded. And though expecting compassion from this lady was naive, you were deserving of her professionalism. And that is why you should notify upper management of her behaviour. But I suggest making a phone call or an appointment in person, rather than writing a letter. A letter can be too easily ignored.

I've watched these comments denegrate into mud-slinging and I have to tell you all that I am absolutely disgusted. Not with Teresa, but with each and every one of you who attacked her because of her comment. This post is a public forum, and people are entitled to come here and give there opinion whether you like what they say or not. Kerri knows this, I'm sure, and is quite able to defend herself gracefully, as we've seen. But I am, at this moment, ashamed to be a part of an online community that would treat someone with such disrespect and call that person a c*nt. Jeezus nicole. That is not candor, it's stooping. As is each and every derogatory comment that was made. Can you seriously debate compassion and then hypocritically slam the opinion of a stranger?? The behaviour shown here is no worse than Kerri's cinema lady. What's that old saying..."look first to thine own self..."

Now, I have to go and wash my eyes out after reading all of this, but before I go...

Kerri, a fool-proof way of getting rid of asymptomatic hypo's is to get your blood sugars UP. Run them higher - and by higher, I mean an 8.0mmol/145mg - for about two weeks. Do everything you can to avoid a hypo episode (without erring too far on the other side, of course). You may regain your hypo symptoms sooner or you may need to go longer. Trial and error. Worth a try though, right?

 
At April 21, 2006 8:13 PM, Blogger Carolyn said...

I wish you all the best in getting on top of the hypo-unawareness and working out the best way for you to deal with the way you were treated at the Cinema.

Thank you for sharing such a personal experience that everyone can learn something from...

 
At April 22, 2006 12:17 AM, Blogger Kerri. said...

The time is now 12:15. Post No. 110 is offically closed.

Thank you for shopping at Six Until Me.

 

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