Are you having a laugh, diabetes?

I’ve just recovered from my first hypo in 2015. Hurrah, I hear you say! Well, hurrah and not so hurrah. I’ve been pretty out of range over the past few months, due to a ‘a momentary shift in priorities’ (a phrase recently explained by Vicki). My HbA1c has shot up from 44 to 62 (5.2% to 7.8% in old school terms).

So yes, that explains the lack of hypos, recently. Those of you who have read my previous posts, will remember that since being diagnosed with diabetes in 2011, I have struggled to feel my hypos. I very rarely get any symptoms. Every GP, nurse and consultant I’ve seen, has told me that it would return after a period of about 6 weeks with no hypos. Hmm. Not strictly true. For me, at least.

I was all set for my Friday night gluten free pepperoni pizza, with a dollop of ketchup (can you tell how excited I get about food…?!) and was just doing my usual sugar level check, to see how much insulin to give myself for the pizza. You’ll understand my frustration when the monster in the photo below appeared…3.1. Are you having a laugh, diabetes?! Just let me stuff my face, inject and chill for the night!

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I’m not saying I didn’t still stuff my face (it was a darn good pizza!), but extreme figures always get me thinking, and distract me from the beauty of my food. The good thing is, I know why I was low – I overestimated the carbs in my earlier snack. Fair enough, we all make mistakes, right?!

What annoyed me about this particular hypo was that I felt totally normal. No feeling agitated, no Incredible Hulk mood, no blurred vision, no shaky hands. Nothing. It worries me. If I don’t feel the first hypo I have in 4 months, what will it take to feel my hypos?!

I am sensible, in that I check my sugar levels constantly – before eating, before exercise, before driving, before bed etc. I know how eager diabetes is to catch me out. BUT YOU WILL NOT SUCCEED, DIABETES! I will beat you, every time! Sadly, this hypo may mean I have to pester my DSN, next week.





Yes, I know you’re still here, Ms Diabetes!

With a cup of tea and rich tea biscuit by my side, I sat down last night to finally get going with my IDF Congress application. It’s something that given me a big case of procrastination jitters, but last night, I was ready to hit it, face on, with determination. I was going to whizz out pages and pages of inspirational jargon, that would show how much motivation I have to take up the 2 year project with Diabetes UK.

Until I realised that my hands were shaking, my eyes were blurry and I couldn’t put pen to paper (yes, I really am that old fashioned, still!). I’d just my dinner half an hour prior. I couldn’t be low, surely? I’d had 100g gluten free pasta with a handful of kidney beans and herbs (which was an amazing combination, by the way). I’d split my dose – 2.5 units before eating and 2 units 15 minutes after eating. The same as I usually do. So why did I feel like this?

On the other hand, I couldn’t be high, could I? Pasta for dinner is a common thing for me, especially when I’m getting over an illness, as I am presently. I KNOW my body. I know I can’t be high. Besides, I don’t usually get shaky from high blood glucose levels. I’d rather be high than low, as I’m usually pretty good at remaining able to function properly. Hm.

I have to say I did sit staring at the wall for a good 10 minutes, before turning to my meter. I’m not sure if it’s just me, but I do like to try to estimate what my levels are, before checking. When it’s not just me talking to myself, I like to play ‘BG bingo’ with whoever’s around. However, as no one was at home (I’d sent the other half away, so that I could be ‘productive’), I concluded that my levels were going to be low. My estimate was around the 4 mark…

So, within the next 20 seconds, I had the conclusive answer. My sugar level was 11.8. Definitely not low, but not particularly high, either. Strange. As I’d eaten pasta and it usually takes longer for the carbohydrates in pasta to be broken down, I wasn’t particularly concerned. I was just concerned about why I was feeling how I felt.

It was a few minutes later, when I trying to focus on my work, that I realised why I felt the way I had (or at least, this is my theory). Because I was working on something diabetes related, my body was reminding me that yes, I do still have diabetes and it is my diabetes that has led me to so many great opportunities. I’ll admit, I had a good little chuckle to myself at this revelation. I will also admit to saying out aloud “yes, diabetes, I know you’re still here!”

And I couldn’t agree more (with myself), I know I have diabetes, a condition that could eventually start to cause complications. However, it is indeed my diabetes that has led to me meeting some wonderful people, being rewarded for the time I have put into my local diabetes community and allowed me to make the best of a bad situation.