This is going to be a long one.. So I’m going to go a little off track here with the happy, excited, makeup posts and talk about more serious things. I’m a type one diabetic, which means my pancreas pretty much does not work. My body does not produce insulin to stabilize my blood sugars, so I have to give myself insulin injections a few times a day. My diabetes is honestly poorly managed and I’ve struggled with it my entire life. I’ve been hospitalized for weeks at a time, on several occasions, for going into DKA (diabetic ketoacidosis), which is basically when my blood becomes acidic, due to my blood sugars running way too high. This can be caused from missing multiple doses of insulin. Thankfully, I haven’t been hospitalized in over a year and a half (knock on wood).
I’m going to get real with you guys for a minute and let you know that being a diabetic really sucks. I have to watch what I’m eating to properly adjust my insulin doses, poke my fingers constantly to draw blood, and give myself multiple shots a day. If I’m giving myself insulin in public after a meal, I get stares (which I’ve thankfully learned to ignore). I get asked TOO many times ‘can you eat that?’, ‘can’t you not eat sugar?’. Let me tell you, it’s ANNOYING. Yes, I can eat that. I can eat cake, I can eat pizza, I can eat whatever I want, as long as I give the proper amount of insulin.
The crazy thing is, the shots and finger pricks aren’t even the worse part of being a diabetic (in my opinion). The cost for me to live, is the worst part. I currently take two different types of insulin, that both require a new pen needle to screw on each time I have to inject myself. On top of those prescriptions I also have to buy testing strips to use with my glucose meter. There are plenty of other prescriptions I need along the way, but I’ve only just listed the most important ones. Want to take a guess at how much those four prescriptions would cost me? Those alone are already reaching around $400. IT’S A NIGHTMARE!!! I don’t understand why medications that I actually NEED to keep myself alive cost that much. I’m literally paying to live, as if I asked to be handed the diabetic token and live my life without a working organ.
Now, I mentioned I haven’t been hospitalized for over a year for high blood sugars, right? Well, let’s not forget the low blood sugars either! Giving myself insulin injections is supposed to help balance out my blood sugars, doing the work my pancreas does not do. As long as I give the right amount of insulin, I can eat the way I can, whenever I want… at least that’s what the point of giving myself all these damn shots is. However, my most recent problem seems to be that my insulin is causing my blood sugars to plummet randomly, regardless of what I am eating.
A normal blood sugar should be between 70-100. Lately, mine will randomly be anywhere between 30-60. Now, for those of you who don’t know what a low blood sugar feels like, it is absolute shit. Imagine feeling drunk, while shaking, sweating, losing vision and sometimes losing consciousness. Oh, and let’s not forget the undying love for every food that you have ever had, while still having to be conscious of what’s going into your body to avoid a high blood sugar later (if you haven’t sensed my many sarcastic smiling emojis by now, you’re missing something here).
It’s like if I eat and don’t do my insulin my blood sugars will be too high, but if I eat and give the appropriate insulin my blood sugars are too low. For the diabetics out there who will understand all of this, I obviously have to adjust my target, my sensitivity, and my insulin-to-carb ratios with my doctor soon.
As you can see, there’s a lot that goes into being a diabetic, and this is only the surface of the issues I face daily. It’s frustrating, because I’d love to be able to eat as much or as little as I want and not have to worry about whipping out a glucose monitor and syringes and poking myself all the time.
If you or someone you know is a diabetic, please feel free to reach out with any of the issues you also face in the comments. Let me know what works for you to avoid low blood sugars and how you stay on track everyday!