Tonight’s post is a bit of departure. It’s not so much about physical activity. More so, it’s a story about a terrible night, a chance to have a teachable moment, and also a chance to share with others that we all struggle with control whether we have tight or loose targets.
Tonight was a frustrating, exhausting night. I had my second hypoglycaemia induced seizure. When I got home for supper I felt really terrible. It was coming on fast. I sat down, ate a couple sugar pills, and my wife was very proactive and mixed up glucagon and called 911. We had one fresh vial, and one “expired vial”. Thank goodness – the fresh batch had the needle bend when she stabbed my quad, so she mixed up the second vial that worked. Unlike my first hypo back a few years ago, I did not hallucinate. I did seize up for a few minutes and bit my tongue quite viciously. I was blood soaked.
Paramedics were great and got me to the hospital quickly (it’s only two blocks down the road). The nurse staff were great. However, I had a most frustrating doctor attending me, and this is one of the reasons I wrote this post. She said to me “You need to ease up on your control, studies show that tight control is no longer the holy grail, and you need to do better”. I snapped.
I told her that her advice is completely counter to every piece of literature I’ve read, that it’s easy for her to say this when she is not currently experiencing some of the complications (for me, non-proliferative retinopathy and some irregular blood counts), and that she doesn’t understand that insulin isn’t always the most predictable hormone. I told her that her negativity is a stereotype that diabetics deal with 24/7, and that she could give me some damn credit for how well I control it the other 99.9% of the time instead of focusing on one stupid mistake. She gave me a knowing smirk, it felt good to use that as a teachable moment to add some positivity to diabetes care.
Anyways, right now I am exhausted. No hyperbole or exageration – the use of glucagon to dump my liver’s glucose is more exhausting than the marathon I ran this weekend, the two centuries I’ve cycled, climbing the Grand Teton or backpacking the grand canyon for 4 days. It’s that tiring, and I’ll still be awake for a few more hours (it’s 11:40 PM now) nursing a high blood sugar (obviously I don’t want to be aggressive).
So a picture is worth a thousand words – this picture of me with about 10 electrodes (only a few visible) says it all. Blood soaked shirt and all. 🙂
So next time you get a negative comment, feel empowered to use it as a teachable moment. It’s the only way we can conquer stereotypes and negativity.