We all know that diabetes can become difficult sometimes. I thought I would start this discussion so that way we could all share what we do to stay positive when that does happen. :)
When diabetes gets difficult, I like to return to the basics. I focus on food, exercise and sleep.
Difficulty with diabetes almost always means out-of-control blood glucose levels. I concentrate on eating only those foods that I know do not drive my BGs crazy. I know that pizza and Chineese food at a restaurant are a BG disaster for me. I choose to avoid those foods. I know that eggs, meat, cheese, most vegetables, cream, and berries are safe.
I try to eat as much as I can at home, since I can control the ingredients. I like to weigh my food and calculate the carbs, protein and fat of the portion I eat. I write things down, like the nutritional content of my meal, the insulin I use for that meal, and the mealtime plus 2 hour post-meal BGs.
Start to exercise on a regular basis. My exercise is walking and most people can do that. It doesn't take a gym or any special equipment. I like to wear a pedometer to measure the number of steps I take and the miles I complete. I write these numbers down, too. Move every day, it's good for you.
Make enough time to get a good night's sleep. Most people like to sleep about 8 hours but you know your number. Climb into bed a half hour before you really need to and do some reading or listen to an audio recording. A good night's sleep will often turn a big problem the night before into something more manageable once you wake up.
If you pay attention to eating, exercising, and sleeping well, the difficulty of managing diabetes is cut down to a more reasonably-sized problem. Those three basics can turn things around. Be kind to yourself, look for something fun to do everyday, and try to help someone else. It's not that complicated but we all feel overwhelmed with diabetes from time to time.
Get started and don't languish in feelings of self pity. That won't get you anywhere better!
For me, when I get frustrated I follow the steps and principals Terry describes. But the difficulties if Type 1 to me are more emotional/psychological than practical. When I feel frustration with D it is often because I feel like my life has become nothing but D. Managing D is just what I do and it doesn't affect me emotionally. When I am affected emotionally it is usually because I have been triggered to feel like my life is nothing but struggle and a downhill slope of age. When that happens I know I need to focus on my LIFE apart from D! I need to focus on the joy I get from my students. I need to really look around to the incredibly beautiful place I live. I need to be grateful for all I have. I have to connect more to the people who matter to me. I need to remember the joy of living. The work of Type 1 diabetes is 24/7. And I'm committed to it. But it is not life. It is only part of life. Managing my Type 1 allows me to enjoy my life...my real life...the reason I'm here. Whatever that means to me and to you.
There have been days that I have wanted to throw in the towel. Throw BG meter in the trash after a sky high reading. Thankfully, my wife helps me through some of those bad days when the numbers go through the roof. I also find that exercise helps me stay positive about my situation. During the summer time I enjoy taking the mountain bike out on some nearby trials. The ride tends flush my mind. Diabetes is an everyday fight, win to live!
I agree that exercise is what I do but I've done other things in the past. When I have any sort of hobby it becomes something more interesting than diabetes, I "do" diabetes in order to work out or play guitar or read or whatever. I guess I throw myself into stuff as that makes it easier for me to do this. I also agree with Terry that sleep helps and, once I started exercising constantly, sleep fell into place.
Law of Attraction videos on You Tube by Esther Hicks, you can't lose with these. They are oozing positive ideas.
Exercise. Have a hobby. See managing T1D as a challenge, not a barrier. Find ways to help others.
Throw in the towel. At least for a bit. Maybe an hour or two. But hey take a break. I normally test around 10 times a day. Last week I picked a day I tested 3 times and did not write a single one down. Yeah I went all rebel for one day. I just said to heck with it, I am taking a break.
Of course the key is getting back on the horse. Lets face it we all ride the diabetes horse, and we cannot stay off too long lest we decide to stay off forever. So it it has to be in short duration if one does take a break.
I usually discuss whatever is difficult with my d-team. They help.
whenever things get all out of whack bg wise i log everything: time, bg, food, carb count, insulin, exercise. I weigh whatever i can. i try not to snack at all between meals. this usually helps and makes me feel hella virtuous.
I usually did this all in anger, cursing diabetes every five minutes, remembering the way it was when i was normal. sometimes i still do it in anger but after watching this tuD interview with joe sobliewski(??last name) that emily coles hosted, something changed for the better. they were talking about how they deal with D when they get feeling sorry for themselves or when things are going wrong for them. emily said she tries not to think about how unfair it is, but tries to hthink about how HARD it is, the challenge of it, so as not to feel too sorry for herself. i have found that this puts me in a much better mood than feeling sorry for myself, rising to the challenge, etc. it soesnt ALWAYS work but it has really made me think about D differently. so im muttering "i f*cking hate diabetes" much less often. which is nice.
Visit Tudiabetes--hang out in the chatroom, read the forums, do searches on specific terms, watch interviews and videos.
I step back, take a deep breath and remember these words of wisdom: IT IS WHAT IT IS.
I certainly have my "diabetes days from hell" when I say, "I hate this f***ing disease." I try to get back to basics--lower carb eating, lots of exercise, and yoga/meditation. I definitely am helped by TuDiabetes, where I get support and encouragement.
I think it's important to admit to ourselves that no matter what we do, sometimes this "D" is going to get us down and we're going to be tired of being a diabetic and want to be anything but a diabetic. After that, I do a lot of journaling about how I feel, but I am only allowing myself so many words about feeling bad. Then I think of the good things in my life. And I journal about those. OR I love to swim, and swimming is something that makes me feel free and even just sitting in the water reminds me I can move and being able to do that is good for me. I know that had I not been diagnosed with diabetes, I would be about 300 lbs, sick with something else. I am much healthier than I've ever been with diabetes, I eat better, I try to remember that I am not the disease, I am me with a disease....I could have worse things. This I control.....not anyone else. I decide how healthy or unhealthy I am going to be
As you can guess, I talk to myself a lot.....and if nothing else, I totally understand what it's like to be me, rather than depending on my spouse (who is also diabetic) or friends to bring me up.
Firstly, I kick something, then swear at the something for hurting my toe.
Secondly, I eliminate all the reasons that I may have a low or longer than 3 hour high. Sometimes, it's just the food I ate.
Thirdly, I try to correct the reason, if I discover it, for future use.
Fourthly, I start humming or whistling, catch a comedy or continue talking to People on the puter or play with my new Bunny(good therapy for us both), call a Friend or Family Member to see how they are doing or go out on the swing for a nap or to listen to the bubbling of our small fountain. If my RA hasn't beaten me up or immobilized me, I'll continue my work which needs to get done and maybe go for a walk in the sunshine.