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March 14, 2014

I used to think that one day I’d have diabetes figured out. I’d slide into diabetic “adulthood.” My diabetes would be predictable, under control. These things would probably coincide with my first mortgage. I’d “settle down.”

I’m slowly figuring out that diabetes is a life-long shit-show.

Kerri’s recent video on Six Until Me touches on this – how the “minutia” of daily life with diabetes requires flexibility, and how this disease and the ways we manage it can keep changing on us. It hit home, because lately, I’ve been struggling with these changes.

The past two months I’ve been needing way more insulin. Like, way more than ever before. Is it my honeymoon ending? (didn’t that already happen?) Is it because I’m simply eating too much? (Read: winter. bread. butter. yum.) And what about all the running I’m doing? (training for a 30K! Working out like a ton!) Doesn’t that “normally” keep my numbers way down, and reduce my daily insulin intake by a lot?

I’m in a season where there’s no sense of “normal” in my d-management.

And my knee-jerk response: shame.

Those unpredictable numbers trigger in me feelings of being “bad” at diabetes. They smash my morale. Rather than think rationally about how I can tweak my basals, or say, book an appt with my team to talk about it, or attend a support group or something to address burnout, I just feel angry with myself. I yell at my pump. I start using a whole separate meter on “high” days just so I won’t be tempted to hate myself when my daily totals go way up on my primary meter.

Talking about the shame is a healthy step.

Today, out on a run – a glorious 12K in one of the first spring-like days of 2014 we’ve enjoyed here in Ontario – my BGs began to plummet. Totally uncharacteristic of my recent trends, I had to nurse myself with my whole stash of dry dates for the last five clicks (I still kicked ass btw – the run was awesome and I KEPT GOING despite stupid numbers). And as I ran through the melting snow, feeling that dizzy feeling of the sugar starting to rise my thirsting blood, I wanted to shout this out:

diabetes is a violent disease.

Sure, it’s full of fun support groups and inspiring people and opportunities for overcoming challenges and learning about life. But this chronic, ongoing, never-ending process of dealing with physically exhausting changes – that is violent.

I’m not gonna sugarcoat it. I really hate this shit right now. And I think that voicing it on this here blog helps.

This is a violent disease.

I still got my run though. And for that, I’m just thrilled to bits.

One Comment leave one →
  1. March 17, 2014 3:45 pm

    Hi Sarah, I hear you. Type 1 diabetes is a game where the rules change from one day to the next. If it comforts you, you are not alone. Keep running, keep writing and keep breathing… Are you doing the Ottawa Marathon? Warm regards, Sondra

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