This morning, in the shower, I heard the Dexcom start to wail. Actually, I heard Birdy mimicking the Dexcom low alarm from the bathroom floor, where she was hanging out and coloring with crayons while I took a shower (Chris was away and in a meeting all day, so I was solo-parenting).
“Beeeep, beeeeeep,” she sang in a tuneless sort of way, sticking out her tongue while she worked her blue crayon in Mickey Mouse’s shoes. “Hey mawm, your Dexcom is saying you need glupose tabs.”
I knew she, and the Dexcom, were right because, at that moment, I was wondering if I had already put conditioner in my hair. I couldn’t remember. I also wasn’t sure how long I had been in the shower, but judging by the fact that Birdy hadn’t colored much of her picture yet, I guess I hadn’t been in there too long.
I rinsed off quickly and turned off the shower, grabbing my towel and wrapping it around myself in a hurry. Just a few feet away, in my medicine cabinet, were two jars of Glucolift, and I grabbed one and popped it open in a hurry.
“You okay, mawm?”
I ate three glucose tabs as quickly as I could – barely chewed them – as I felt the shakes and the confusion of hypoglycemia setting in. “I’m good, kiddo. Nothing to worry about.”
“Yes. But I’ll eat lots of glucose tabs and then I’ll feel better.”
It wasn’t working fast enough, though. Even though the house was nice and cool – a brisk 64 degrees and raining outside, making for comfortable indoor temperatures – sweat was beading up on my forehead and my face was the color of a cotton ball. Even though I knew I had glucose tabs in my mouth, I had to remind my jaw to chew them, as the lower half of my face had gone numb, as though I had just experienced the teeth-pulling of a lifetime.
Somehow, I managed to get dressed and corral my daughter and I into my bedroom, where I shut the door and sat on the floor her, trying to mitigate damage. I didn’t want her walking anywhere near our staircase (for fear of tumbling down the stairs), and I couldn’t risk not being able to chase her if she ended up getting into something. This was my low blood sugar, but I needed to make sure it wasn’t a problem for her, too.
“Let’s sit here and write notes to one another, with these crayons, while mommy’s blood sugar comes up, okay?” I sat with my phone next to one hand, the jar of glucose tabs next to the other, and the room tilting gently on its axis.
“That sounds like a good idea. Do you feel better soon, mawm?”
“I will. Just a few minutes and I’ll be all set.”
It took a really long time for this blood sugar to net out to the point where I felt comfortable checking (30 minutes into the experience, I was only up to 109 mg/dL) and now, five hours later, the low hangover is intense. I’ve never had one like this before, where I’m happier asking Birdy to watch a movie with me and lay down on the couch instead of the dance party I had promised her. (What – you don’t have toddler dance parties to George Michaels’s songs from the early 90s?) I don’t know how low my blood sugar actually was (made more sense to cut to the chase and treat the obvious low), but I do know that it has left a day of lethargy and hollow eyes in its wake.
Diabetes, after I take a nap, I am totally going to resume (yawn) kicking your ass.