After working for 38 years in Human Resources, Michael retired in 2011. Today, he works about 2 nights a week at the South Orange Performing Arts Center, and volunteers in a senior center, where he teaches computers and music, and at the airport for Travelers Aid, where he helps travelers find their way around. At age 68, he lives a rich and fulfilled life. This is his story.
Livongo: Tell us about the story of your diagnosis.
Michael: I was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in 2004. At that point, my doctor wanted me to start with diet (eliminating pasta, desserts, etc.) before trying medication. My A1c was 7.1%. When diet alone did not work, my doctor put me on Glipizide. While I was able to bring my A1c below 6.0%, I was miserable: For a year and a half, I was weak and hungry all the time.
With Glipizide, I had such drops in my blood glucose numbers that sometimes I thought I was going to pass out. Since 2007, I have been on Metformin and have been able to maintain good control on it. My last A1c was 6.4%.
Livongo: Can you share with us your experience with the Livongo program?
Michael: In early 2019, after being told I had to pay $65 for a new blood glucose meter at a local pharmacy, I received an envelope from Livongo in the mail. It was great to be able to get my meter and my testing supplies at no cost, so I signed up right away.
Before Livongo, I couldn’t check my blood glucose more than twice a day because I couldn’t get approval for more than 180 test strips for a 3-month period. Livongo allowed me to check more often, before and after meals. Because I can check many more times, and with direction from [Coach] Christina, I have learned the impact that foods have on my glucose and I’ve changed my eating habits. For example, now I don’t eat as much oatmeal as I used to, and I eat more protein. As a result, my numbers are better.
Livongo: How is life today? Any advice for others with diabetes?
Michael: I am happy. I have more confidence in what I am eating, and how it affects me. I am more in control of my numbers than I ever was. The fact that I can check before and after meals helps me feel like I am in more control, instead of wondering what my A1c will be.
Thanks to Livongo, in the future I hope to be able to continue doing everything I am doing now, because helping people out, whether at the Performing Arts Center, the airport, or the senior center, makes me feel fulfilled.
My only advice for others with diabetes is: Sign up for Livongo and find out what is impacting you!
The testimonials, statements, and opinions presented are applicable to the individuals depicted or quoted. Each member’s exact results and experience will be unique and individual to each member. The testimonials are voluntarily provided and are not paid.