For the past several years, I’ve been rather, um, vocal about my dislike for Omnipod. Frankly, I just didn’t get it. I know a lot of Omnipodders are anti-tubing, but I was anti “wearing the entire pump on your body.” I just didn’t see how that could be comfortable. Couldn’t you see the lumpy pump through all your clothing? I just wasn’t convinced. Pump tubing moves with you and you can get lengths long enough so that it doesn’t really get in your way when doing things like going to the bathroom. I never had an issue with sleeping with the pump. I’m a back/side sleeper so clipping it to the front of my PJ bottoms kept it firmly planted and out of the way. And sex? Well, I take it all off.
Like I said, I just didn’t get it.
Then I went off the pump, and I remembered how nice it was to be unencumbered by diabetes technology. As superficial as it might be, it felt freeing. I felt as close to non-diabetic as I could get. But the facts laid themselves out and it just wasn’t working anymore, and I knew that I needed to get back onto a pump or my health would start suffering my vanity.
As I described yesterday, most of the pumps have their pros and their cons. The Omnipod’s cons still exist for me. I don’t like that you can’t move it around. I don’t like that you have to change it every 3 days. I don’t like that you can’t bolus directly from it (which frankly seems like a safety hazard if you ask me).
So why did I choose the Omnipod? Well, as much as I believe that “tubing doesn’t bother me,” it turns out that tubing was the reason. Sort of. You see, if you have a tubed pump, that means that the pump has to be attached in two places. On one end of the tubing, you have to pick a spot for the set to go. Stomach. Arms. Legs. Whatever floats your boat (and absorption). But on the other end of the tubing is the actual pump. And that needs to go somewhere too. Pants pocket. Bra. Spanx. The only one I never tried was the waistband because that just looked uncomfortable.
The tubing wasn’t my issue. It was finding a place to attach my pump that convinced me to try the Omnipod, which only leaves you with the one side of the attachment equation. For years, I had given up wearing dresses. No can do, I thought. I have a pump. Skirts? Had to have pockets. Pants and shorts too. I planned my entire wardrobe around the pump. Then I started exploring dresses a little bit more, and found that many women wear the pump in their bra.
Now, if you met me or, heck, see a photo of me, you can probably tell that I’m not a tiny person. I have some room in there. But it turns out that I still don’t like it because hello! Have you ever put a hard plastic box between your boobs? It is not comfortable! I was convinced people could also see it, and it drove me nuts that the wire would start popping out of my top or that people would be staring at my cleavage trying to figure out if I had a third boob.
Later I discovered Spanx. Two-fold in purpose, it not only flattened me out a bit and eased the chub-rub, but it also gave me a place to stash the pump. I clipped it to the Spanx, with the pump between the Spanx and my skin, and the elastic held it all together quite well. Except it was also uncomfortable. And kind of sweaty. After a couple of summers wearing Spanx in NYC’s heat and humidity, I was starting to question the genius of this plan.
When I started looking at pumps, I initially thought that having a remote would be the kind of upgrade I could get behind. The Animas Ping, with its rave DOC reviews, was my initial plan.
About a month ago, I tried out a demo of the Omnipod (it’s free, btw). I received their newest model, which is smaller and thinner than the old beasts that initially turned me off. It was a little strange wearing something on my skin, but no stranger than having something pressed against my thigh or boob. I wore it on my lower back, and only felt it when driving my car, as it pressed against the seat.
It was during that demo that I realized that it wasn’t just the remote I wanted. It was the feeling of not being attached to anything. Now, like I said, I know that an Omnipod is still being attached to something. But it’s a one-sided attachment. All I need is to find where on my skin I want it. I don’t need to find a place in my clothing for it. That’s what sold me on the Omnipod.
What insulin pump do you use? What “sold” you on it?