Monday, 13 May 2013

Diabetes Blog Week 2013: Share and Don't Share

*blows dust off blog* I know I haven't updated this poor neglected blog in a while, but this week is 4th annual Dblog week, and I had such fun doing it last year I thought it would be a good way to get back into the swing of things. :)

Often our health care team only sees us for about 15 minutes several times a year, and they might not have a sense of what our lives are really like. Today, let’s pretend our medical team is reading our blogs. What do you wish they could see about your and/or your loved one's daily life with diabetes? On the other hand, what do you hope they don't see?  (Thanks to Melissa Lee of Sweetly Voiced for this topic suggestion.)

 I generally have a pretty good medical team - the DSN's are fantastic, and when I actually get to see my endo he's awesome.  However, I've had some issues with other doctors, and there's a couple of things I'd like them to see. Firstly, that diabetes is not just about numbers - there's a person, who's trying to live a normal life, and deal with all sorts of other issues, and juggle a chronic condition on top of it. Secondly, that diabetes doesn't always play by the rules. I might not fit into your little tick boxes and textbook definitions - that doesn't mean I'm doing things wrong or that I'm a "bad" diabetic.

When you look at my logs and you pounce on out of range numbers and demand an explanation, it makes me feel like I've failed, that somehow by not keeping all of my numbers in range, I must be doing something wrong. It's like being a child hauled in front of the head teacher. Instead, I would like some support, and encouragement.  An acknowledgement of the work and effort I put in to get these results.  Diabetes management isn't perfect. Life isn't perfect.  I would like you to see that, to ask how things are in general, if anything in my life has changed, if I'm having any issues with my diabetes management that I'd like to discuss.  There are so many things that affect my numbers, and insulin and food are only two of those.  When you focus on my logs and those numbers and don't see anything else, you miss all those other factors, and you can't help me.  You can't help me figure out that the reason I sometimes have highs on a Friday evening is because I get stressed out sometimes at lab meeting. You can 't help me decipher those patterns if you're not willing to look beyond the numbers to the person behind them.

In terms of things I don't want them to see? Well... there are many! The times when I wake up in the middle of the night and I'm low, and I don't even bother testing, I just grab some fruit pastilles from the jar beside my bed and go back to sleep (I don't do this all the time)... the times where I get so overwhelmed with carb counting something new or complex that I just take an instinctive stab in the dark...the weird things I do like add 35% extra insulin when I have a large amount of carbs (hey, it works for me).  So many things! Though I guess, if there was some forgiveness of out of range numbers and acknowledgement of life influences, I may feel less guilty about some of those things.


  1. Thank you for linking up with the Diabetes Blog week. I appreciated reading your first-person thoughts, as I am writing as the mother of child with diabetes. We are also fortunate to have a good medical team and haven't had to change doctors at this point, 8 + years into the journey.
    Blessings from the U.S.!

    1. Thank you for reading! I've written before about how amazing parents of children with diabetes are, and I only hope I can give a little something back by blogging about my experiences :)

  2. I've actually heard that taking more insulin when you eat a lot of carbs works well for a lot of people. I think that fat and protein really affect BGs a lot too especially in high quantities so that might have something to do with it too. Or perhaps the body sees a large amount of digest sugar and thinks you're starving, so it starts to produce more of it's own glucose from the liver. Hmmmmm. Things to think about!

    1. I'm not sure exactly why it works, but I know a few other people who do it and it works for them.. I think I first read about it in Think Like a Pancreas or Using Insulin - there was a rough formula where it said to take half your weight in pounds, and that would be roughly how many grams of carbs you could eat in one go and your normal ratio would work. Above that, and you have to take extra insulin, and I gotta say, it works out pretty damn accurately for me!

      I actually think my normal endo would be ok with it, but I've dealt with a couple of doctors who would have gone off their head at the idea (so I just don't tell them!)