Thursday, November 3, 2011

It's A Scary Place.

I'm writing this at a time when I've usually been asleep for a couple of hours, so bear with me.

I read this post from Jeff, and it got me thinking about the choices and trade-offs we make as people with diabetes. It got me thinking about the way that everyone's pathology is a little different, and how we all have different capabilities, resources, and preferences when it comes to how we maintain our health.

It got me thinking about how no matter what we choose - whether it's food, medication, delivery of that medication, timing of injections, amount (or lack) of exercise - we never really know if what we chose was right.

The unknown is a scary place to be pedaling toward, especially when it comes to your health.

For instance, I've been known to enjoy a Splenda packet or nine with my morning coffee allotment. I do that to avoid bolusing, to avoid excess sugar intake, and frankly I do it because artificial sweeteners were what I grew up using. (Real sugar didn't fit into that "exchange diet" too well. And by that, I mean not at all.) Those advantages are great, until I read an article on MSN about how I'm polluting the earth's water supply with my post-coffee pee. What if sucralose ends up being what does me in? (And how ironic would that be?)

It happens with every decision we make. Do I go low-carb, or eat how I want to eat and just dose for it? Do I aim for a smaller standard deviation of blood sugar, which may run higher, or aim lower and risk the hypoglycemic excursions? Do I exercise, even when I know I'm going to have to inhale all of those calories right back? Is it worth it?

How do we know that any of these decisions we make will ensure good health, and even if they do, for how long?

We'll spend our whole lives not knowing, until the one moment that we finally do.

It's a scary place.



11 comments:

  1. So true Kim! I feel the same way. Everything is a guess. Nothing is for certain. And that's for anyone, let alone those of us dealing with diabetes, who have to deal with so many life or death decisions every day.

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  2. I so totally appreciate posts like this. It's the kind I can really truly relate to.
    Jeff's post hit me in a dark special place too.

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  3. Makes me think that people who mindlessly say 'live life to the fullest' have NO idea what they are talking about. Add a few (possible) consequences to the mix and life is suddenly not as easy.

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  4. Wow, what an excellent post! I could not agree more. T1D involves so much self-management that it's hard not to constantly wonder if you're making the right decision each time you have to make one. I personally just try to do what "feels" right. The one thing diabetes has given me is an excellent understanding of my own body, and a gut feeling sometimes of what's working and what isn't. This sometimes means that I have to ignore what a doctor tells me and go with my gut, which can be really hard to do! But I've proven myself right enough times to know that I know my body best!

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  5. Have been recently contemplating the above myself, and it seems you have put my thoughts into this post! It is so difficult to try and maintain "healthy" BG levels. There is always a risk of being too high or too low, each with their own consequences to our health. It's a catch 22, but all we can do is take one day at a time and never take today for granted.

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  6. That is the scariest thing about this disease. Your Diabetes may vary. What works for one, may not work for another...no wonder the doctors are all over the place with their advice. Great post, and for sure food for thought!

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  7. It's hard to live in the present when we are constantly told to analyze the data (of the past) and make choices based on what may or may not happen in the future (short and long term). Is this why I am so not zen?

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  8. I hate this statement "We'll spend our whole lives not knowing, until the one moment that we finally do."

    Why does diabetes have to be so dark and twisty sometimes?

    P.S. That's a Grey's Anatomy line if you don't watch TV either.

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  9. Excellent, thought-provoking post, Kim. Sorry my "drunk dialing" of the DOC deprived you of sleep. Oops.

    Life is choices, and I think most of us make pretty good ones... the best that we can make with the information and bodies we have, that is.

    A commenter on my post said, we could die in a horrible car accident tomorrow, so why worry so much about the possible but unknowable long-term consequences? And I thought I was dark. :^)

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  10. thanks for sharing, kim. a dark post now and then is a healthy thing. we can't pretend everything is always fine when that's not true.

    also, i use sweet n low every morning in my coffee. it's what i like. and i hope it doesn't do me in, either!

    seriously though, there are so many questions that we cannot answer. but whatever happens, at least we have each other to lean on. love you!

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  11. yeahhh man. word. all i can say is word.

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