My purse start vibrating in a panic.
79 mg/dL and two arrows down – how the hell did that happen? I just dropped my daughter off at preschool. My blood sugar was 139 mg/dL before leaving the house with a steady, easterly arrow.
I pulled the car over and put on my hazard lights so I could bust out my glucose meter. (Oh hell yes I treat low blood sugars purely based on a Dexcom reading from a trusted sensor, but this sensor is on Day 14 and due to be changed this afternoon, so my trust was getting rusty. Trusty? Rustworthy. Bah.) Meter said 68 mg/dL.
The symptoms, which weren’t strong when I pulled over, were starting to edge in. Shaky hands and blurred vision (almost wrote “blurred bison,” which sounds like a band name) paved the way for clammy skin, which let the fog of hypoglycemia settle into my brain.
Fine then. I reached into the glove compartment for the ubiquitous jar of glucose tabs. Chomp, chomp on four of them only to realize they aren’t Glucolift but instead the generic chalkified glucose tabs from CVS and became grossed out. The low symptoms were intensifying as I sat on the side of the road, so being picky about my glucose sources wasn’t an option. Chomp, chomp on another tab, wishing I could somehow keep a soft-serve ice cream machine in the glove compartment instead.
Moments pass. I’m still buckled into my car, eating snacks, watching cars whiz by. The Dexcom finally shows an upward climbing arrow. My hairline feels less clammy. The shape of the steering wheel and the radio control knobs come back into sharp focus. Better.
“Did you check your GPS?” my mom asks me whenever we’re about to get into the car together.
“Mom, it’s a CGM. And yes, I did check it,” I reply, usually laughing because no matter how many times I tell her it’s a “CGM,” she still calls it a “GPS.”
But as I think about what may have happened if the low symptoms hit in full while I was driving instead of after I had pulled over, GPS might me just as accurate, giving me the location, in context, of what the hell my blood sugars are doing.