February 2, 2015

Help in Diabetes Management Education – Part 5

Part 5 of 12

Self-examination of our legs and feet for sores and areas that are not healing has scared, finally, the newest members of our group. Our meeting with the podiatrists showed them how serious we were and how they were not taking care of their health as great as they thought. They now understand how important it is to see a podiatrist on a regular basis.

Brenda called me two days after our meeting and was wondering if we would be losing a member or two because of our meeting. I asked why and she responded that two members had approached her since the meeting and asked why we needed to know the doctor they were seeing and why we held the meeting and brought in the two podiatrists.

She said one of them was on insulin and the other was on metformin. The one was one with a minor cracked heel and the other was a good friend of her's. Brenda said that we felt that their health was important and we had always been this way even when we were a group of six. She said that the one on insulin had gone along with the call-in program, but was having second thoughts about this.

Then the following day, Tim was called by the same person, she said was out of the call-in program and would no longer be attending our meetings, and hung up. A few minutes later Tim said, he had a second call and the same message from another member.

With that, Tim called for a group of us to get together on Thursday and discuss this. When the ten, A.J, Jerry, Ben, Barry, Sue, Brenda, Allen, Jason, Tim, and I were together, Tim asked if we were pushing the members too hard. Only Allen thought so, but said if the free foot exam had led to this, then we could be better off without them. Brenda felt secrecy was behind some of this and the free foot exam was more than they wanted. Tim said that brings the membership to 30 members then.

Sue said that two others had called her and were very thankful for the foot examination and having discovered the problems early. Tim said he had received the same calls. Allen said this shows that we did the right thing and we should just ignore the two that want secrecy. I said that the two individuals were ones that did not want me to use their names in my meeting blogs. This would make secrecy consistent with their life.

Jerry said if anyone could have wanted secrecy, it would have been him, but he was glad that he had been helped and that everyone knew why. He said that the free foot examination was a plus as far as he was concerned and these people should be thankful that we cared enough. Sue said that the person she had been helping was asking her about the meeting after receiving the meeting email and wished she could have been caught earlier, but she had not been paying attention to her feet until she had blood in her slipper. Sue said she has ordered a mirror so she could see her feet better and is just glad that she had someone willing to help.

Brenda spoke then and said, with all the battles we face with diabetes every day, we should be thankful when others can help us and make life easier. She said at first she was just happy that there was a group that cared about each other, but when members are refusing this help, I don't like it and in a way, I am not sorry to see them leave the group. The call-in is no guarantee that you will not die, but can help get you to the hospital if needed. Hypoglycemia is not something to be laughed at, but if they are arrogant enough to think we are being nosy, then they don't belong.

That concluded our meeting about the members leaving.

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