When it comes to living with diabetes, I have all of the worries in the world. Like, whether I am doing enough to look after myself. How secure a position I am in to be able to continue to manage my diabetes well going forward. Whether I could be doing better. Whether there is a link between what I am going through right now and my diabetes.
I was sitting in the hallway of diabetes clinic yesterday afternoon, waiting to see my endo. I overhead conversations from behind closed doors, I watched two doctors consult on a course of treatment, and I saw a few people come in and out of appointment rooms. What I heard and saw isn’t really pertinent to this story, except to say that my mind wandered in about ten different directions over the half hour I was sitting there.
Right now, I’m feeling a little run down. It’s totally understandable, given uni and full time work that I’ve been juggling over the past few months. I’m pretty sure it’s nothing I can’t fix myself with a bit of TLC. But I brought it up with my endo, wanting to make sure that there wasn’t a link to diabetes.
She had a look through my notes, and asked me if I’d had bloodwork done recently (which I had). Then she made a timid suggestion.
“Is there any possibility that you might be able to relax your control a little bit?”
We had a nice laugh at the prospect of me only checking my blood sugar four times per day, but I think ultimately she was right. Although I haven’t really been ‘trying’ for any specific target, my micromanaging habits have definitely become worse the more I expect of myself.
There are times where I could definitely go without glancing at my pump screen. Or not prick my finger to detect a very insignificant movement in my blood sugar. Or counting the number of infusion sets and pump cartridges in my wardrobe and calculating a set-to-cartridge ratio.
The voice of my subconscious could definitely give me some acknowledgement for my efforts more often, which ironically is something I always value highly in my day job. I could definitely be kinder to my meter when I see a high or low blood sugar, because it really is just a number.
My endo also likened my blues to the miserable weather outside of late, and then joked that being a doctor doesn’t exempt her from being tired, either. “Everyone gets tired!”
That tiny little piece of empathy, whether it was true or not, really made all of the difference in the world.