I love love love Disney World! Sadly, Disney World did not return the sentiment. I typically have pretty tight control of my blood sugar and know exactly how certain foods will affect me. All that was thrown out the window last week as my family and I vacationed in sunny Orlando! This is not at all saying that Disney World itself was to blame. Disney employees as well as all the park resources were incredibly accommodating for all medical issues, and at one point I said to one of the girls at the Seven Dwarves Mine Train, “every company should model their customer service after Disney World.” There are thousands and thousands of employees, and not once did I run into a crabby one. I hear people saying all the time when I talk about calling a company and having the rudest person answer the phone, “well maybe they were just having a bad day”. Their bad day is not my problem. We all have bad days, but we all have jobs too, and our job is not to take our problems out on customers. That is where Disney World shines. You feel like they are truly there to make your vacation spectacular, and they are very good at their jobs! But I digress.
Before our trip, I thought I was taking all the right precautions. I bought an insulin pump cooler to keep my pump in because of the extreme heat. That was mistake number one. Most insulin pumps are designed to withstand a certain amount of heat, as long as it is kept out of the direct sun. Because we would be standing in the sun all day every day, I thought a cooler would be helpful, it wasn’t. The first day in the parks, my sugar dropped so low that the paramedics had to come over to the ride where we were in line. Assuming that the sun was going to drive my sugars way low all week, I pulled back on my doses. That was mistake number two. The very next day, and each day following, I could not get my sugar to come below 500 for hours on end. I just couldn’t get enough insulin in me. I didn’t realize until I got back that perhaps my insulin was getting a little too cold, and I probably should have just switched to shots during that week. Lesson learned.
I am a planner. I always have been. At one point during the planning phase, we were all sitting around the table going over plans and my mom looked around at everyone and said “should we get her a whistle?” Not going to lie and say I wasn’t offended, but it only took me a little while to realize how hilarious that really was because, if I was being honest with myself, I kinda wanted a whistle. Disney World is not a place you want to go without doing your homework. I can’t even begin to list the things I would have been completely unprepared for had I not done my research. And, to be honest, it’s exciting to research Disney World. Perhaps not for everyone, but I am a pretty giant nerd, so I enjoy that part of it. I researched almost as much about how to manage diabetes in Disney World as I researched the actual vacation part. None of it mattered. My sugars were still as out of control as they’ve ever been. I guess for something like that, everyone is so different that you have to just experience it yourself and know how your body reacts to the many factors that contribute to blood sugar control. Between the foods that I normally don’t eat, the heat, the stress, and all the walking, it just affected me very differently than I imagined or prepared for.
Diabetes aside, it was truly a magical vacation! It’s one of those places that you absolutely love or you overwhelmingly despise. I read one woman’s article titled 10 reasons why I hate Disney World. It was pretty amusing, considering everything she hated about it was everything I loved about it! There’s that perspective thing again that I always talk about. I will say again that I was very surprised about how much she got slammed for posting her article. It was simply her opinion, but a lot of people did not like it. I guess I will just never understand why it’s not OK to have your very own opinion and not be lambasted for it. She didn’t like it, and that should be OK. It’s just the way the world goes I guess but I will stand by my opinion that Disney World is my happy place. It was the place I got to see the biggest smiles and hear the loudest squeals from my girls. It was a place I got to see my baby girl dance with Princess Belle. It was the place I got to spend my anniversary with the best husband in the world, and it was the place that will always hold the most awesome memories with my parents. Diabetes and all the havoc it wreaked could never take that week away from me. Nice try though diabetes, you really gave it your best!
Have a great week everyone, and don’t let anything steal your joy!