December 10, 2009

Feeling the pinch

Parenting a child who has type 1 comes with all kinds of challenges. A tough one is identifying with how a high or a low must feel to Noah, because neither me or my husband have diabetes. Noah experiences some symptoms of a low blood sugar that I can see readily : shaky hands and pale, sweaty face. How he feels on the inside is a bit of a mystery to me,and although he's tried to describe the "cruddy feeling" that washes over him, it's not something I can really relate to.

Today, I got to experience a small taste of that cruddy feeling for myself. Since July, I've been seeing a nutritionist to get my weight under control. I've been doing pretty good, too. I've lost 30 lbs. so far, and have about 20 more to go before I reach my goal. Because of the weight loss, my body is a little out of whack- I used to always be hungry and I was told that it was because I constantly snacked and grazed during the day, keeping my blood glucose on the higher end of the scpectrum.

Now that I eat normally, my body no longer craves the constant flow of food, and I'm no longer always feeling hungry to keep up with that demand.
The problem is, even though I'm eating my calories for the day, I don't feel hungry enough to snack between meals at all. That caused a problem for me early this afternoon, right before lunch. I felt shaky and pretty cruddy. I couldn't think straight and became panicky. I wondered out loud; "If this is only half of what a low feels like, it SO sucks".

I grabbed a clementine off the counter, scarfed it and sat- staring at the clock on the microwave a full ten minutes.

And then I did something out of curiosity. I went to the D-Drawer and grabbed Noah's spare test kit and used it. 82 mg/dl.

I guess it's not bad for an adult, right? But all I can think of is that reading came after I ate the clementine, so I wonder what it was before?
I also can't get that feeling of confusion and anxiety out of my head. It was unpleasant and uncomfortable. I imagine my blood sugar wasn't all that low to begin with, but now I see a tiny bit how Noah (or anyone else with diabetes, for that matter) feels when a low starts. I'm amazed at how anyone going through a low can even function enough to go through the motions of a blood glucose test, let alone rummage around for something to treat the low afterward.

I'm also amazed at the fact that most type 1's test 10 times a day, because my pinky finger still hurts from the lancet. (yep, I'm a baby) I don't know how you guys all do it...all day...every day. Yeah, I got a small taste of what it's like, and it made a big impact.


Shamae (Ghost written by Loren her hubby) said...

That's one of the things I always wonder...what does syd feel like? Thanks for sharing your experience.

meanderings said...

What did Noah think of your experience?

Kelly said...

For years before I was dx'd with
T1 I would feel low like you explain. 82 probably was low in comparision of what we were used to! Yep! Our kids are amazing for pushing through these lows, over and over again. I hope you get back on track soon!

Sharon said...


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Leighann of D-Mom Blog said...

I wonder too how my daughter feels. I know that when she's acting out, sometimes her blood sugar is to blame. Recently she had a horrible day at school--turns out she was in the 300's all day.

I just launched a new blog called D-Mom Blog, which I hope is a resource to other parents of diabetic children. I hope to develop relationships with more parents.

D-Mom Blog


Pam said...

This is a tough one even for an adult to go through and explain as well. I am type 2, not on insulin but when i get low I get woosy, shakey and get out of my way. I find I don't care what it reads just give me food, it takes about 20 minutes to calm down to explain, Thank you for taking the time to try to understand.