I have to thank my pump for this one. It's the most action to or from a vacation/business destination that one could get just because you have a little beeper-like contraption attached to your side.
When I was en route to San Diego, my friends and I went through O'Hare. There, my pump wasn't a problem. They did what I was used to: having my hands wiped down and sampled for any residue from a potential bomb in my pocket. Rock on. Super quick, no hassle, yet, I still had to get pulled over. It's fine, I say to myself. They're doing what they need to do.
It was coming back from Los Angeles that my friends pointed out the invasive situation of having a pump. I walked through the metal detector and it beeped. I might have had something in my pockets, but they didn't ask. They automatically pulled me over and asked for an agent to come and pat me down. And pat me down she did. My friends looked on with slanted, cock-eyed looks while I had a blatantly annoyed look on my face.
"Dude, that was so invasive," said Wendy. I thought about it. At O'Hare, they didn't do that. I was used to having my hands and pump checked and this might have been the second time that I was pat down.
I know I'm not the first person to write about this. I mean, I'm probably the 2,000th person to put out a blog about it but this is an issue that should be addressed. I know it was a big commotion when pumps became more common, but you would think the TSA would somehow get over it or figure out an easier way of dealing with people of our kind. I shouldn't necessarily have to be stopped every time I travel because I am taking care of myself. The insulin pump is a necessity for people like me; people with diabetes.
Regardless, the TSA agents are usually very nice about pat downs. They explain what they're doing and ask whether or not you want to be put in a private room. No privacy for me. Why? If people want to wonder what I did wrong, I'm going to be the first to say, "Nothing. I just have diabetes."
I had a conversation on Twitter with a fellow PWD (person with diabetes) who wrote about the same situation and we both agree that dealing with things like this is really no big deal. Not really, at least, when you get used to it. And why should I have to get used to it? It's not my fault I have this disease. Oh the mental conflict!
We can become upset over it or brush it off, right? In the end, we brush it off because we have to. If you went through life thinking about how everything was unfair because you had diabetes and the majority of the population didn't, well then, we'd be in a real bind, now wouldn't we? There are particular things you can't get upset over anymore. But there are simple things that people can attend to and pay attention to in order to make life a little easier.
So the next time you're in a rush to get through security and something like this happens in front of you, be a little more understanding. We get it all the time. Feel lucky you don't have to.