While motherhood is going well and I'm completely in love with my daughter, I'm reminded, daily, that diabetes doesn't care if I've slept or if I have carefully counted carbs or if I've just changed my infusion set. Diabetes doesn't give a shit about my schedule.
It's The Suck.
Like last week, when at 4:30 am, my "alarm" went off - also known as BSparl starting to fuss and wail from her bassinet in our bedroom. Not a problem. I woke up, tested my blood sugar, and saw that I was 176 mg/dl. That number (albeit spiky) works just fine for feedings, so BSparl and I spent some quality time hanging out, having an early snack, and debating where exactly the sun hides behind the trees before it starts to poke out.
We both went back to bed around 5:45 and slept until the next alarm went off - the Dexcom BEEEEEEEP!ing wildly at me at 8 am.
"Do not wake up the baby, you." I grumbled while fumbling for the receiver on the bedside table. "LOW. Under 55 mg/dl" was the warning it was flashing up at me. While BEEEEEEEPing.
"Shhhhhh!!" I unzipped my meter case and deftly stuck a strip into the top of the machine. I wasn't sweaty, my brain was functioning fine (aside from shushing inanimate objects), and I felt physical capable. Maybe the Dexcom was just being finicky and throwing lower numbers?
Well shoot. Not a whisper of a symptom, either. I got up from the bed and wandered out to the kitchen, where Chris was making his protein shake.
"Can you keep an ear on the baby? I'm 36 and just want to grab some juice," I said, opening the fridge door.
"Of course." Pause. "What? You're 36??"
"Yeah. No symptoms, dude. Not even one." I chugged a few sips of grape juice and put the bottle back in the fridge. "I feel fine. The Dexcom woke me up."
A blood sugar of 36 mg/dl without a single symptom, other than a wailing Dexcom and a bit of a groggy feeling. But, in true diabetes form, once my blood sugar started to rise, I felt the symptoms acutely.
"I feel pretty bad right now." Shunk. "Fifty-six. Why do I feel worse at 56 than I did at 36?"
There's no rhyme or reason to diabetes. The symptoms of lows and highs change with the seasons, it seems. And they come without warning, these numbers. Sometimes it's a hormonal or emotional surge that sends numbers pinging. Other times, it's a little, teeny technical glitch that sends thing spinning.
Like two nights ago, when I bolused for a snack and felt a damp spot on the side of my shirt.
"What the ..." and I probed with my fingers and felt that telltale wetness around the gauze of my infusion set. I tugged up the side of my shirt and gave the spot a sniff - yup, that bandaid smell. Frigging infusion set was leaking some how. No symptoms, though. I wasn't thirsty, I wasn't lethargic, and I was actually just about to head off to the gym. I felt pretty okay. Problem was, I hadn't tested in about four hours, nor had I peeked at the Dexcom. So basically, I didn't have a clue what was going on in my body.
I tested my blood sugar and a 423 mg/dl grinned back at me.
New site, quick injection with an orange capped syringe from the fridge, a ketone test (negative), and an hour and a half later, I was down to 195 mg/dl. But I was pissed. Because during the course of my pregnancy, I maintained an A1C between 6.0% and 6.5% and I busted my butt to keep myself controlled. But now, with my body reacting to adjusting levels of hormones and a serious lack of concentration due to a truncated sleep schedule (read: no sleep 'til Brooklyn, with Brooklyn being college, I think), I'm all over the map.
I'm frustrated with my control, or lack thereof. Trying to figure out my post-pregnancy insulin needs and taking care of my little girl have become a full-time endeavor, and I'm not getting it completely done on either front. I have to buckle down. These epic lows and highs are not fun, and are wrecking havoc on my healing body.
Next week, I'm back at Joslin to see my endo. Diabetes needs to take center stage until I can get things under better control. It's my priority. I need to get back to logging, to testing every hour and a half or so during the day, to actually cooking meals instead of just snacking when time allows, to changing my infusion set when it's due, not when it's convenient.
... after diaper changes, of course. And breastfeeding. And BSparl laundry. And pediatrician appointments. And 3 am feedings. And that occasional moment when I lock the bathroom door and look at myself in the mirror with determination and say, "Get it together, Mommy."