D puts me in my place. But only for today

Today I read a blog on another site about a woman with T1 for 27 years, and her terrible experience with her endo. The issue was, in the middle of her appt, she felt drastically low, and tested. She was 177, and her endo rolled her eyes. She decided at that point her endo just didn’t “get it”. Stuff happens to us. Unexplainable stuff. Feeling low when you’re not. Being low and not feeling it. Highs from out of nowhere. And, sometimes, our D scares us. I had one of those days.

As a little background, I’ve had T1D for 48 years, diagnosed at 10 months old. I’ve seen it all, done it all, experienced it all. Several weeks ago I was put on a new med (that can be read about on another thread) and my BG’s have been the most behaved…probably ever. I’ve always been lucky in that I’ve never had any major D issues at least since my teens. Save some retinopathy, I’ve had no complications. I’ve written in another blog how I sometimes have felt guilty about that, given the problems others have had. But it’s the cards *I* was dealt. Now for today’s incident.

It was a normal type day off for me. Just got a lot of things done around the house. I had to make a run to Autozone to drop off a dead battery to get my $12 core refund, and afterwards decided to treat myself to some junk food: a cheeseburger, tater tots, and a vanilla shake at Sonic. I mean, sometimes you just gotta! So I did. Took my usual bolus for it (when carb counts aren’t available I’ve gotten pretty good at guesstimating). After eating I headed home, and finished up some cleanup from earlier.

About an hour later I was sitting watching TV and something didn’t feel right. So, like a good diabetic, I took a BG. 42. With 5 units still on board.


So I hit the juice. 3 full 12 oz glasses. I was starting to feel sick because after 36 ounces of juice on top of all that food, my stomach was FULL. And I waited.

Two hours and several BG’s later I tested, and was 72 with 1.4u on board. I’m now out of juice. I feel like I’m going to throw up. I feel like a train hit me. And the fear sets in. I am absolutely SCARED TO DEATH of lows. And here I am almost trembling…feeling like I want to cry…feeling so helpless. I decide to eat a bowl of cereal. In my mind I knew it was too many carbs. But my fear got the best of me. I didn’t care at this point. I JUST HAD TO GET MY DAMNED BG UP!

I made a couple trips to the bathroom, almost getting sick. But I didn’t. I held it down. And 90 minutes later, tested at 220. Of course. I knew this would happen. But hey! I didn’t have IOB!!! So, I hesitantly correct that, and go sit and think.

Looking purely at the numbers (like doctors often only do) one could come up with some conclusions:

>>You were doing chores all day of course you went low (even though I had temp basal all day and tested fine all day).

>>Why did you overcorrect your low therefore making yourself go high?

>>Why are you causing yourself to rollercoaster?

Conclusion? NON COMPLIANT. Maybe I need some diabetic training, eh?


There are times when D just….takes over and does its own thing. Unfortunately, it’s US that have to deal with that. Even after 48 years, I still don’t have all the answers. After 48 years when I *think* my diabetes is somewhat predictable, it scares the ■■■■ out of me and puts me in my place. After 48 years diabetes can instill a venerability unlike nothing else. Today was one of those days for me.

I just tested again, and I’m down to 164 with 1u on board. That should get me to where I’m used to being.

Yes, diabetes, you beat me today. But you won’t tomorrow. Tomorrow is a new day, and you will NOT get the best of me. One day is NOT a defeat. One day is simply that: one day in the marathon we call diabetes.

Yes, D, you got me today. You threw me a curveball. You even scared me. But you know what? Let me remind you that *I* manage *YOU*. *YOU* are MY disease, and I am NOT your test subject. Not the other way around.

Tomorrow will be better.

This is an amazing blog. I am so glad we have people like you on tud!

Sadly we live in a world where most doctors treat us, as patients, in a very patronizing way. We are labelled "non-compliant" when we don't take their "orders" and accomplish what they consider the required outcomes. I hate the term non-compliant, it implies a relationship that is just wrong. Then to have a doctor recommend a visit with a psychiatrist since non-compliance and a failure to follow orders is a mental illness. Well this is just a crazy world.

Sadly I have my own stories of such doctors as many of us no doubt also have. Over the years I've learned to screen out the majority of doctors who just don't get it. But it took me a while to realize that this was necessary if I was to have a healthy relationship with my doctor and survive.

The way I look at these incidents is the d monster is a devil really, it doesn't like the fact that you've been doing so well with the new med, it decided it was time to take a baseball bat to your knees, knock you down, and step its boot on your neck and slap you in the face repeatedly. I read that blog too and thought it was great. No one understands what it feels like unless they've been there. I almost think they should make endos experience a low by giving them some insulin.

I never capitalize the d. it doesn't deserve it.
BigHugs Dan.

big hugs from me too
you all said it so well
i'm lucky, i have a good & nice endo
dan i,ve been there done that & more, etc...

I’m with you Dan. The doctors have all the education but not the experience of living with this 24/7/365. We all get to know our own bodies and how,they react better than they do.

Thank you all for the kind comments :)

Dan, thanks for sharing this. I've had T1 since age 7 (53 years) and have days that are going so well like this and then very similar happenings to yours. It can be so unpredictable. Never quite know how my stomach/BG will do. You are doing great. One thing is -- i find 1/2 - 1 cup regular sugared sprite or mist soda works faster than juice (for me). Other than that I try and put sugar cubes one at a time under my tongue for lows. Peace and love.

I totally understand. I too live in fear of going to low. Maybe it was from that incident when I was alone in Atlanta on a business trip and went face down on a table in a restaurant due to hypoglycemia.

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Totally with you on this, those days when out of nowhere the IOB is sky high (after a sky high carb-laden meal with roughly appropriate bolus) and plummeting BGs only 30 mins or an hour later and PANIC PANIC…stuff as much in as your stomach can hold. Oh god the accompanying fear says ‘forget the possibility of overcompensation, just keep yourself conscious, keep yourself alive!!’ as over the next 3-4 hours that’s gotta be the priority?! So so scary at the time. And no rhyme or reason can explain why it happened on this random day. I have great consultants (UK) for now but I know not everyone here does. Thanks for an excellently written blog post…I feel connected in my d struggles (today was not good for me, you’ve helped ease that).

Unfortunately, yes, sometimes the D confronts us when we least expect it. I don’t live in fear of going low or high, rather fear thinking about the few incidents in the 33 years of managing T1D that a low comes out of the blue and I was not able to respond to treat it. Am fortunate that this has only happened once when friends and family were not around, but I can say that I have only been hospitalized once in the 33 years and that was when I passed out from hypoglycemia during pregnancy.

Having one endocrinologist who is also a T1D has been very helpful to me with my management protocols even though the provider is more research oriented and academically focused. The other endo does not have T1D, but focuses more on the day-to-day management and facilitation. Neither physician has ever made me feel that I am not compliant or doing something incorrectly, rather they both tend to say I am too hard on myself. To that end, I am very fortunate.

So yes, the curve ball will always appear out of the blue when it is least expected, which serves as a reminder for me to be more vigilant and introspective, but I am thankful for the advances that we have seen in research and the devices and tools that help us do the best we can with managing and living with this 24/7/365 complication in our lives and certainly hope that the cure comes sooner rather than later. And now, signing off to putting the sensor on:).

I can appreciate what everyone is saying about the ups and downs and how they make you feel. I am now 66 yrs old and have had Type 1 for over 51 years. Last year I was diagnosed with breast cancer and had to undergo chemotherapy, double mastectomy, and then radiation therapies. During the chemo therapies, I tried desperately to get a response from my endo about how to deal with the highs & lows in my BS. I left messages, stayed on hold for his office for 45 minutes just to set up an appointment, and then got no response to my phone calls. I left that office and went to an endo who is also a Type 1. He has been invaluable in helping me set the levels for my insulin pump, what to do during and after surgery when I was not in control of my pump, and then how to handle steroids given during chemotherapy which, of course, made my BS levels go out of control. Yes, D does challenge me. I no longer have the ability to know when I am high or low so I am always testing (especially when I leave home in the car) and then always before and after meals and always in between.....it has become a way of life for me.

If you are unhappy with the response from your endo for any reason, leave and find another one whom you will be able to communicate with when needed and who will understand your difficulties! Sometimes life is just not easy....but we can overcome whatever it throws at us. Keep thinking positively - we CAN DO IT...

I was glad to read your article on "D put me in my place, but only for today." Every once in a while it's nice to know that I'm not alone. Others don't understand when things go wrong. They just don't understand that I can't be in total control every second of every day.

By the way, I'm considering changing my Endocrinologist. I moved 3 years ago, and have not found an Endo yet that I feel does a decent job. I just don't know where to find anyone better.

Thank you for this post. It resonates with me.

Just one question . . . what IS your place, according to D?

@Hunya...my place is not one of arrogance. D is to managed, yes. but also respected. Right when you think "Hey! Im getting pretty good at this!" it'll show you differently ;)

@Cheryl: I cant imagine what a journey you've been on. My thoughts and prayers are with you. And that's AWESOME you had a good endo to help you through it!

GREAT blog… Been getting me for last couple weeks ago, stress?? Hard to temp basal when not sure cause of the dreaded l o w !!!

I'm a firm believer in the fact that one of the best way to overcome or succeed with diabetes is to have a great endocrinologist. I've had 3 out 6 which were incredible, fortunately I'm still being followed but the best one yet. Admittedly it must be quite a chore for these doctors due to the fact that our moods are in constant flux more so then others. Empathy is key, my approach over the many, many years is to always treat everyone the way I would want to be treated. Keep your chin up and maintain a positive approach, wishing all the very best Dan and everyone else who's living with the beloved diabetes. Cheers.........