Life in LADA land

Living Philippians 1:6 with type 1.5 diabetes


on May 31, 2014

36 can be a good number.  I’m happy when there are only 36 miles left in a trip to take Jeffrey to college, or on the way to my parent’s home.  It’s a nice even number for the inches in a yard.  But I don’t like it when I see it on my glucose meter.  Then, it is paralyzing.

It happened last night, and as bad lows so often go, it was right at bedtime.  I had been lying on the couch watching Monk, so it snuck up on me.  I glanced at my CGM as I sat up and saw 49 with an arrow pointing southeast. Huh. That’s not good.  Then it really hit me.  Sweaty, shaky, tingling lips… I fumbled for my meter and tested.  That’s when the dreaded number lit up the screen. 36.  I’ve never been that low. I was surprised, unprepared, terrified.  I really could not move for about a minute, but then, fortunately, the part of my brain that was still working said “DO SOMETHING. NOW!”. I stumbled (literally, I couldn’t walk well…) to the kitchen and got out a carton of orange juice, the only thing I could think that would work as quickly as possible.  It was a new carton and I couldn’t get it open. Dennis had followed me, and opened and poured me a glass.  I guzzled.  He poured more. I guzzled more.  I just wanted to not move and for it to be over as soon as possible, but my head was SO heavy and I just could not stay upright, so I wandered to bed, where I chomped down two (or maybe three, I really have no idea) gingersnaps and waited for the fear to subside and the sweating shakes to stop.  I did not want to fall asleep for fear that perhaps there was still insulin actively working in my body that might come back to haunt me and send me even lower.  Jiminy (my CGM) had bottomed out and just said LOW. The red dotted line was flat along the bottom of the graph.  I would have taken a picture, but….  That flat line was ominous to me. I cannot remember ever being as frightened as I was right then.

After the longest 15 minutes of my life, I could tell I was safe.  Jiminy still said something like 50 or so, but the sweating had stopped and my brain was making more sense of the world.  I was so tired, and fell immediately to sleep.  I slept well until Jiminy’s buzzing woke me around 2:00. High. Of course.  I had to pay for the oj and cookies.  But for the first time I can remember I did not mind at all being at 300. I knew I wasn’t going to die from a 300. I was in control again.

Today I am tired and sluggish, and I have had a hard time keeping my blood glucose from going low. I want to be free of this disease.  I want to stop having to think about the scary parts of it, like 36.  But, I know. It’s not going away.  Step by step I’ll work on coping with it, whether I’m at 36, 308, or 110.  I’m very thankful for a husband who didn’t ask questions but just watched out for me. And I’m thankful to have woken up this morning.


One response to “36

  1. Colleen says:

    Not fun!
    I always wonder how people get those “low” photos… Me, no chance I could get a photo-
    Glad you made it through the night safely.

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