Lemonade Life

Thursday, February 08, 2007

So Close

I'm trying to figure out how to be clever and witty, but it's 12:20 in the morning so I'm just going to talk instead of write.

My blood sugars haven't been that great the past few weeks. In fact, they've been pretty shitty.

My 14-day averages look like this:
Wake-up: 158
Lunch: 240
Dinner: 211
Nighttime: 216.

Not exactly the stuff of an OC New Me Challenge winner.

I finally got it into my head that perhaps my "rinse and repeat" method of testing, correcting, testing, correcting was probably not my best effort to get my blood sugars into a respectable range. I wasn't even trying. I was just reacting.

I felt like a ping-pong ball. Bo-ING!

I raised my basal rate in the late afternoon and evening, hoping that it would kick those averages down. I also thought that by not underbolusing before exercising it would prevent my post-gym adrenaline spikes (which are categorically evil).

Moderate success. A morning of highs, a drop to 53, and a bounce up to 236. Managed a 98 at half-time, and a 121 post-game. Then I started crawling back up.... 162...233... Well, that went swimmingly. At least I avoided my usual 300 bounces.

My meter's battery crapped out on me at bedtime (though my last test was just two hours before I went to sleep), so I didn't test again until 9:45 this morning. 266. Well that's to be expected, I didn't know what I was when I went to sleep. It took a couple hours to climb down, but then I hit a winning streak:


I felt like I had never had so many 100s consecutively. I felt like I had figured it out. I was planning on going to the gym tonight, but decided it would be a better use of my time to actually study for my two midterms tomorrow (which I will most likely not be awake for if I don't finish this blog post...). Even though I had probably fudged my carbs for dinner a bit, I knew I wasn't that far off from the real number. At 7:30, my one hour post-dinner reading was 171 mg/dl, and I still had a lot of insulin on board. I thought it would come down by the time I next tested.

I even sent Gary an gloating email saying how I had "figured it all out" and how "changing basals" and "test frequently" were obviously the answer and that everything was all better.

At 9:45, I was 221. I need to keep my mouth shut and not jinx myself. Correction bolus, please.

11:00. 231. Sigh. Okay. I mean, seriously. I even took more insulin. Wouldn't that have been enough to cover whatever carbs I left out and bring me down? Even just a little?

I feel like an idiot for thinking for even a minute I had this figured out. I should have known the minute I thought things were making sense that they really weren't making sense at all, and this was just some sort of cosmic joke on me.

When it comes to managing diabetes, sometimes I feel so small.

Sometimes I just want to ask my body, "What does it take to make you happy?"


At February 08, 2007 8:38 AM , Blogger Kelsey said...

I hear you Allison!

My numbers have been pretty good lately, but that's because I'm working with the docs at the Diabetes and Pregnancy Group and logging everything for them! Having the oversight of other people sure is motivating! Anyway, yesterday I had a streak of high-ish numbers for no apparent reason. My target is 90 mg/dl, so even consistent numbers in the high 100s are bothersome.

This disease sure has a mind of its own! Even when you've figured out some pattern, the diabetes throws things off a bit, just to remind us of who's in charge!

Good luck, it sounds like you have a good plan with the postprandials.

Also, cut yourself a little slack... I remember college being the hardest time to control blood sugars. The weird hours and irregular eating schedules (and types of food popular around campus) make diabetes control especially tricky!

At February 08, 2007 9:06 PM , Blogger cassandra said...


i am sorry you are having a crappy few weeks of blood sugars. me too actually. about a week of hell numbers in the 200 or 300s! and then running low now...


At February 09, 2007 12:21 AM , Blogger Sasha said...

I was reading your post and thought: "That's exactly my thoughts and feelings just worded differently." And I think every diabetic can say that. I can so relate to what you are going through at the moment and sympathize. I hit a rough diabetes spot myself for the last week after what seemed a perfect two weeks of bg results. And have no clue or even a clue for a clue why I'm fighting 200-300 range every day this week.

Similar to your question to the diabetes "what makes you happy?” I ask mine all the time, kind of similar when I ask my cat what he wants when he just sits in front of me and meows - "Just tell me what you want and I'll give it to you." If only diabetes could talk.

At February 09, 2007 12:27 AM , Blogger Allison said...


I know I need to cut myself some slack, but the truth is, I live in an apartment with access to a kitchen and I have plenty of money to go grocery shopping and I'm no busier than anyone else so that's not an excuse not to cook. I'm about to graduate (6 more weeks!), so I'm nto going to be able to use the College Card much longer!

Cassie and Sasha,

Thank you so much for your comments. It really does help to know that I'm not the only with WTF numbers.

Sasha, your little comment about "what if diabetes could talk" is inspiring me to write a response letter to the "Dear Pancreas" letter circulating... Oooh, let's see if I can actually do something with this!

At February 09, 2007 12:53 PM , Blogger Penny said...

Ah yes, I've been there. I've thought, "OK I can handle this. This isn't so bad."

And, every single time, diabetes reminds me how wrong I am.

At February 09, 2007 8:38 PM , Blogger Scott K. Johnson said...

Hang in there Allison - it will all shake out soon.

Sometimes the changes we make take a little while to "settle in".

Stick with it.

We're pulling for you!

At February 22, 2007 12:07 PM , Blogger Deborah said...

Hi Allison,

I just discovered your blog while looking for some information on Symlin and wanted to give you a heads up on my experience with stubbornly high numbers.

I'm not on a pump, but I had numbers that stuck in the 200s for a couple of years, punctuated by lots of 30s and 40s, and like you I remember asking my body all the time, "WHAT DO YOU WANT?"

It actually wanted less insulin. A LOT less. So I cut my Lantus WAY back, and ended up back to my happy days of stable carb to insulin ratios, and flat numbers.

The way my doctor explained it, I just had TOO much insulin floating around in there, and I was ALWAYS rebounding, then shooting up to correct, then rebounding more, etc etc. Getting off that rollercoaster by just letting the rebound happen, and NOT correcting it for several hours calmed my liver down, and often the number would "turn" on its own and even drop about 30 points. THEN I would know I was ready for corrective humalog.

Good luck! I know how frustrating this can be. I took a few months off from drinking while my liver calmed down, but I've noticed now that if I'm starting to rebound a quick shot of whiskey shuts it right up. It was actually my doctor's idea! But he claims he was only kidding.


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