Diabetes Diary

Kelsey's diary about living life with type 1 diabetes.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Wake me when the semester's over

Do you know that feeling when you have SO much to do, you just ignore it all?! Well, I'm reaping the benefits of that situation now.

I knew I was taking on too much this semester... I work full time at a CPA office, in the Litigation Department and I'm taking two courses for my MA in History. To put this in perspective, my first semester of grad school, I took two classes and that was it!! I didn't work.

This is insane! Why, you may ask would I put myself through this?! I've been in grad school for two years. However, last year I only took one class per semester, since I was planning my wedding and starting a new job. So, it's time to finish up this degree so I can get on with the rest of my life.

In the weeks preceeding Thanksgiving, I was in charge of leading one of the seminars, so that took up a solid week. I knew I had three papers to write, but (see first line of this blog...) I didn't get started on them. So, here I am three weeks before the semester ends and tons of work to do!

Meanwhile, my husband was feeling under the weather over Thanksgiving and I feel like my body is trying to fight off a bug, because again.. my blood sugars are running high. I'm combatting it with lots of insulin and trying to find time to work out. I just KNOW I'm going to come down with something as soon as the semester ends and the holidays begin. That always happens to me! My body (and mind) build up a defense while I'm busy and just cannot afford to be sick. So then it hits me as soon as I relax and let my guard down. Anyone else have that experience?!

So, Cuban Revolution paper first... then the biggie on race and class issues in the workplace and finally a short review of a Central American history book that I haven't even cracked open yet! Wish me luck!

Tuesday, November 22, 2005


Well, the object of my frustration has now passed, so I can write about it. As mentioned in my previous blog, the flu shot last week sent my blood sugars sky high! I felt reassured by reading comments that other diabetics, (i.e. Kerri and Joseph) had similar reactions to their flu shot. However, my highs lasted until yesterday. Not highs actually, but I was doing at least twice as much insulin per day for half as much food... frustrating!!

So, per my husband's sweet urgings, I called the endo yesterday just to let him know what was going on. I was greeted by the receptionist who quickly informed me "Oh, that's not from the flu shot!" Thank you lady with zero medical expertise, I think I'll talk to the doctor or nurse. (I didn't actually say that but really wanted to!) She went on to ask me what my numbers were running. I told her I'd had a few 300s over the last four days. She said "Okay, so you're running in the 300s?" I replied "No, I'm not running in the 300s, but I'm having to use an extraordinarily large about of insulin to keep my numbers down." I then just let a message for the nurse.

A few hours later a very nice nurse called and I explained the situation. She said, as I predicted, "you're doing the right thing, just keep at it, it'll get back to normal." She also reminded me not to overdo the doses, because it'll just pool up and send me crashing (as had happened a few times) I thanked her and explained that I just needed some reassurance.

This incident reminds me, I have been told by other doctors that I'm particularly sensitive to medications. I guess my system is just reacting more extremely to this darn flu shot!

It's funny, since I've been in such good control the last 3-4 months, these highs stood out a lot more than they might have in the past. Consequently, I'm frustrated, but that's good... it means I know how good my blood sugars should be!

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Patting myself on the back and humility

I'm incredibly proud of myself right now!

A little over three months ago I had my first A1C in a little while (yes, I've had diabetes for 12 years, but I don't know college, moving, trying to find a new doctor... I just hadn't had one done in a bit) Anyway, it was 7.3 which I actually didn't feel that badly about since I had been giving my diabetes just adequate attention for quite awhile. Thus began the redoubling of my efforts to get my blood sugars down. I've been writing down every bg, insulin dose, bite of food, excercise, even sex! in my journal for over 4 months now! I could tell that my blood sugars were down quite a bit and I had overcome some bad habits, for example having a good number and worrying that I'd get low (for no logical reason) thus eating and raising my blood sugar!

I saw the endocrinologist yesterday to get my report card. I was hoping to just be below 7.0. I didn't want to get my hopes up too much. Well, the magic number is: 6.4!! It feels amazing to know that my effort has paid off and I CAN achieve this level of control... yeah!!

Don't worry my ego has not been too inflated since I had a terrible day yesterday! I may have forgotten my injection at lunch or else I seriously miscalculated the carbs... I was 302 post lunch! What?! I corrected and was 181 pre dinner. Did 4 units of humalog, which was apparently too much because 3 hours later (after my bedtime snack), as I'm laying in bed I test and am at 70. Okay, some juice. Wow, I feel really low for a 70... hmm, let me test again. Oh good, 45 now! A fruit leather and granola bar to follow. I only let about 10 minutes pass, but I felt like crap and was all clammy, test again and I'm at 44. So, frustration led me to eat a small bowl of Frosted Mini Wheats, which certainly did the job. Woke up at 4:30 a.m., tested and was... you guessed it: HIGH! 365 to be exact! So, it's 9:30 a.m. and I'm still coming down and haven't eaten breakfast yet. Wait, yes I did... last night!

Now I guess forgeting my lunch shot and having to correct late in the day started me on a roller coaster of highs and lows... but I can't help wondering if the flu shot I got yesterday had anything to do with this instablity? Thoughts?!

So, in the end I still feel good about my A1C... this is a marathon, not a sprint right? :)

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

A cure

You know what's weird? I don't ever think about a cure for diabetes.

Since I've been purusing the diabetes blogs online, I've noticed that a cure for the disease is a frequent topic of conversation, which made me realize that I never consider that diabetes will be cured in my lifetime! Now, I consider myself an optimist, a "glass half full" kind of person, but that's a pretty pessimestic attitude. This epiphany made me wonder: when along the line did I give up the hope for a cure? Was it when the year 2000 passed, which was when my pediatrician said there would be a cure? Was it when my doctor, a type 1 himself, explained to me the power of the diabetes care industry, that has a vested interest in keeping people living with the disease? Afterall, a cure isn't as profitable as supplying people with insulin! Or did I just stop allowing myself to hope, feeling that the disappointment had become too much? I don't really know, I suspect it was a combination of factors.

However, as I have started taking better care of my diabetes, visiting fellow diabetic's blogs and participating in my first (of many!) Walks for Diabetes, I've seemed to have caught the hope for a cure! It would be simply wonderful to not have to calculate carbs, test my blood or do injections!

I'm starting to let myself hope for a cure...not tomorrow, or next month, or even by the year 2010... but sometime in my lifetime. What a blessing that day will be!

Friday, November 11, 2005

Lows and A1C

I have a complaint this morning... So, I tend to get low in the early morning from my Lantus, unless I eat just the right snack the night before. Usually this doesn't bother me too much, I just have breakfast at 5 a.m.! However, I was planning to get my blood drawn for my A1C this mornig before work, which as we all know means... fasting! I had great blood glucoses all day yesterday and had a light dinner. My bg was 160 about an hour and a half after dinner, so I had a little snack of a brown rice cake with PB&J and milk. Silly me, didn't really factor the exercise I'd done yesterday morning... so yep, woke up at 5:00 a.m. with a 44 :) Fun! No blood test for me today. The reason this is annoying is that I already have my endo appointment for next Wednesday, thus I have to get the test run by then. Luckily the lab is open on Saturdays, so I'll just run in tomorrow morning... If I can keep the morning low away!

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

My First Blog!

Welcome to my blog!

For the last several months I have been frequenting what Kerri of "Six Until Me" coined, the "O.C." that is the online community of diabetic blogs. I have found such strength and inspiration in the words of wisdom from fellow diabetics, and I thought "why not add my voice to the mix?"

I have titled my blog "Diabetes Diary" though diabetes will only be one of many topics covered... others will likely be my sister's upcoming wedding, my history courses and thesis, and of course, my favorite topic... my husband Dennis! We've been married one year and 3 days now, and happily the magic is well intact :)

The older I get, yes I'm approaching 26 which I know isn't very old... but anyway, I'm beginning to realize how deeply being diabetic has influenced me. Next year I will have had this disease for over half my life! For those of us who've had type 1 for most of our lives, there's no way to know how our personality or attitude about life would have been different if we were "normal." Being diabetic helps put life in perspective. It puts us in touch with our bodies in a profound way. It gives us a focus, a mission, if you will. Type 1's have to learn to be selfish at times, which for a "pleaser" like me is actually a great lesson.

This will sound odd, but diabetes and all of it's routines are like a security blanket for me. I can't even wind down for bed until I've done my injection of Lantus. Waking up in the morning begins with testing my blood. Office snacks? No way, unless I get low and then I can eat them without guilt! It would be wonderfully freeing to no longer have to worry about injections, highs, lows or carbs anymore, but I bet we'd all experience quite a transition as our daily health concerns didn't demand so much attention.

I think this is a big reason that the "O.C." is so vital to our health... remembering that we're not the only ones obsessed with the day to day struggles of managing diabetes. Being focused on ourselves is crucial to our control, but it can also make us feel all alone.

Thanks for letting me add my voice to this incredible group!