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Posts tagged ‘frustration’

Slackertown Jones.

In just over a week’s time, I let everything go to shit.

Meter average is up 40 points.  (Note:  Do you call the mg/dL units “points,” too?)  I haven’t exercised since before the IDF Congress.  For much of the last two weeks, I’ve spent way too much time in the car, on a plane, on a train, or sitting in meetings.  I had a pump-meets-dress conundrum that resulted in a frustration-induced pump vacation.  I haven’t achieved nearly the amount of sleep I need to remain human.  Food choices/offerings have been crap, as a result of traveling and laziness and poor planning.

And is there a tutorial on the web for Star Wars snowflakes or am I having uncomfortably specific dreams again?  (Answer:  oh MY.)

The cumulative effect of this lack of attention to my health is that I feel like I’m rolled in Play-Doh.  Just a few days without exercise and decent food or sleep has taken me down several pegs in my health-o-meter, and I’m itching with anticipation to de-slothify.  For me, so many aspects of my health are tied together, which means when one goes, they all go.  Like in Backdraft.  (“You go … we go.“  Such a good scene.)

Which means that I have to make a conscious and immediate effort to rein things in before it escalates.  I have zero desire to take steps backwards in my healthcare.  It’s been less than two weeks of slacking off, and that’s not long enough for a habit to form.  Now that I’m home for several weeks, it’s time to get things back to form.

… yes, this is the pep talk I’ve been giving myself on the train ride home from New Jersey this afternoon.   But now I’ve written it down, which means I will hold myself accountable.  Damn it.

Despite Insulin …

The Sparling household has reached a frenzied pitch of stress this week, with a big project for me reaching the finish line simultaneously as a big project for my husband begins.  Overall, we manage our family circus (… could Billy ever get anywhere without leaving a trail of dashes in his wake?  Gross.) without stepping into the ‘unhealthy’ zone, but the last few days have been an exception.

For me, stress usually leads to higher-than-normal blood sugars, even despite insulin.  (Or “to spite insulin.”)  And not in that, “Oh, I didn’t bolus enough, so I’ll just correct this high,” sort of way, but in the “What the EFF – I just rage bolused the hell out of that blood sugar and it still won’t budge.”  This week has been all sorts of that, with fasting blood sugars as the only ones I’m comfortable keeping.  For the last few days, it’s taking 150% basal to keep me even close to range, and my insulin:carb ratio has been tweaked to accommodate the exceptionally busy week.

That 233 mg/dL?  All emotional, no other influence.  Insulin is good, food wasn’t introduced yet, basal rate was solid, and no I’m not pregnant.  I was 108 mg/dL an hour earlier.  This high was the product of stress.  It always amazes me to see how tightly woven my blood sugars are to my emotions.

The bad news is that my meter average, with which I was very comfortable last week, has gone to absolute shit.  I feel more tired and the highs are making me feel grumpier and shorter-tempered than normal.  (Which, if you’ve met me, is sadly saying a lot, because my average fuse is the length of a whisper.)  I’m not able to parent the way I’d like, because these highs are sapping me of my funergy (energy for fun).  I hate when diabetes derails time with my daughter.

The good news is that I know the cause of these diabetes radar blips, and I know things will be much more manageable in a few days.  Until then, I need to do whatever it takes to coast.  Testing more and correcting while taking the insulin-resistent instigation of stress into account?  Trying hard not to consume coffee as though it’s a necessary and actual basal rate?  Moments like these make me thankful for the CGM, because I can respond to trends, and I get a head’s up when I’m over- or under-compensating for stress.

For now, I’m in “just keep swimming” mode, hopeful that the highs will abate and leave me the hell alone in a couple of days.

Over It.

It was sitting in traffic on the way to Boston for an endocrinologist appointment, spending more time in the car than in the actual care of my medical team.  The appointment was fine, and my A1c still holds steady in a range I’m comfortable with, and I even brought print outs of my meter results and a list of questions I had, but it felt like a wasted day.  A whole day.  I’m over it.

While I was printing out the meter data, I ended up a little pissed off because I couldn’t find the charger for my ancient PC, which meant I couldn’t boot up that computer, which meant I couldn’t download my Dexcom data.

A pump site completely gave up on me without any warning what so ever, with the tubing disconnecting from the housing cleanly and neatly and quietly, leaving me without insulin for an undetermined amount of time and bringing 6 am crashing in with ketones and the kind of thirst that you find yourself drinking gulps of water from the bathroom faucet without pausing for breath or to consider your canine behavior.

Another pump site came off too early (not even through day two) due to going to the beach and getting sandy and soggy.  A third pump site left one of those scaly rings that aren’t uncomfortable but are a visual reminder of where the device was once resting.

A CGM sensor came fresh out of the unopened packet with the adhesive edging all gaffed up, making the brand-new sensor completely unsticky and essentially unusable.  Yet I still tried to use it out of defiance and conservation, but it wouldn’t stick and was useless within a few minutes.  Waste of a perfectly good sensor.

I pulled another CGM sensor off my body while I was traveling last week, during a low I had while I was sleeping.  I remember reaching down to rub my leg (when I should have been reaching for glucose tabs) and gripped the side of the sensor and pulled it off.  I guess I wanted to stop the beeping, which had been going on for over twenty minutes.  After the low was over and I woke up to start my day, I grabbed a new sensor from my suitcase and stuck it on.  Thankfully, I had a spare with me. I always have a spare something on me.  I prepare for this stuff, and I’m doing all the necessary tasks to properly attempt management of my type 1 diabetes.  My blood sugars are good.  My averages are good.  I should be feeling good.

But at the same time, I’m over it.

And it’s not just the diabetes tech bits that are fueling my fire of frustration.  During the course of the ADA conference, all of the walking contributed to several lows that were nagging and stubborn.  Same for when I was traveling earlier in the month – lows that just cling and make my mouth go numb and my jaw feel unhinged, fogging up the lenses of my synapses.  Not fun, and made for an especially heavy purse, since I needed to carry so many extra glucose tabs while I was on the move.  (That, and I think I brushed my teeth seven times one day to keep from becoming a clearing house for cavities.)

That’s how I’ve been feeling lately:  so over it.  Aside from good lab work results at the doctor’s office, diabetes has been a pain in the ass lately, and I’m tired of its antics.  All the news I’ve received lately isn’t awesome, and I’m dealing with that as best I can.  I’m frustrated by technology.  Tired of the devices.  Enough with the toting around all the nonsense.  Enough with the lows.  Enough with the highs, too.  Eff preparedness.  I just want to leave the house with my car keys, not the contents of my medicine cabinet.  I want to go for a run without bringing tabs or caring what direction the arrows are pointing.  See also:  a momentary “waaaaaah.”

Reading about the bionic pancreas put words to my “meh.”  My brain is never quiet, never still, because of the work that goes into achieving the baseline that people without diabetes take for granted.

It’s not diabetes burnout.  It’s not depression.  It’s not a period of rebellion or particular frustration.  I’m sure I’ll shake off this funk in a few days (a proper night’s sleep wouldn’t hurt).  But I’ve hit a wall in the last few weeks, and it’s everything to do with diabetes.  I’m ready for a day off.  I’d like to wake up in the morning and take care of my family and my work without giving blood sugars and all their assorted bullshit a second thought.

I’m over it.

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