My First Insulin Pump

I don’t remember the first time I ever injected myself with an insulin pen after diagnosis. Really it has never stuck in my mind that I did all of that at the age of 14, by myself. One thing that I do remember though, is the day my pump officially became my sidekick.

It feels like yesterday that I got my pink Medtronic pump in the mail. I even slept with it clipped to my PJs a few times before I set it up, so that I could “get used to it”. I don’t remember if that helped, but it was an exciting experience! In reality, it probably sucked. Who wants to share their bed with a brick?

My sidekick officially entered my life in the beginning of August 2012. I remember it so well because I was up early for my appointment and afterward needed to drive to Mankato, Minnesota, for the annual Trappers Convention. I’m not a trapper, but my dad is. As a kid I always went with him. Nostalgia. 

The appointment went great and by the end I didn’t remember how to do anything when my next site change came up three days later! ha. But really, the appointment went well, and I chose my stomach for my first infusion set. In actuality, I DID have to YouTube how to get my pump all ready to go for the next time because I was so nervous to skip a step or forget something and mess it all up. Thanks, YouTube diabetic person that I watched!

What really surprised me is how much I could “feel” the infusion set on my stomach. And as I mentioned above, directly after my appointment I had to drive from the Twin Cities to Mankato, which is about an hour and a half drive. I swear, the entire drive I could feel the infusion set in me, maybe it was from the bumpy road. It didn’t hurt, but it just felt….weird. I can’t even explain it. Looking back, it was almost like a phantom feeling. Anyone else experience that?

Probably it was not a great idea to have a jam packed weekend directly after I got hooked up to my first pump. But in life, you should just dive in, right?

Here were some of my thoughts ALL weekend long:

  • Did I push the right buttons?
  • Did I accidentally butt bolus? (you know, like butt dial, but butt bolus)

Compulsively checked pump every 10 minutes

  • Is the insulin going to go bad if the tubing is sticking a bit out of my pants? (It was a HOT Minnesota August day) …now I know that the answer is more than likely NO.

Compulsively tucked tubing away…

  • Is the infusion set going to slide off? Crap! I didn’t know how sticky they really are!

Compulsively rubbed adhesive to ensure stickiness

Interestingly enough, here’s what I didn’t do:

  • think or worry about what other people thought

Because let’s be honest, the only opinion that matters is our own. I remember proudly telling a few people what “that pink thing” was. And it felt wonderful.

I don’t remember ever telling myself to be confident or to not worry about what others might think of “that pink thing” attached to me. And that is great! My 26 year old self is really proud of my 20 year old self for being PUMP CONFIDENT. 

pumping confident
PUMPING Confident since 2012

This was the turning point where I stopped hating diabetes and learned to live with it instead of it living for me.

So, that’s long enough on memory lane! Do you remember the day you first gave an injection or got hooked up to your pump? 



1 Comment

  1. Great post! I wish that I had a pump, but it’s too pricey for me right now. I remember after diagnosis, I had to do a shot (just with saline) in the hospital before they’d let me go home and I was TERRIFIED. It took me probably ten minutes to actually do it, and then I was surprised by how little it hurt.

    My dad is T1 as well, and watching him insert his infusion site gives me the creeps. He swears that he can’t feel it, but I’m not convinced.


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