Today’s prompt: “Often our health care team only sees us for about 15 minutes several times a year, and they might not have a sense of what our lives are really like. Today, let’s pretend our medical team is reading our blogs. What do you wish they could see about your and/or your loved one’s daily life with diabetes? On the other hand, what do you hope they don’t see?”
You asked me how things are going.
I said pretty good.
I didn’t know what else to say.
Things aren’t going “bad”. I generally feel healthy. I don’t have any complications. I have had some disturbing lows and some uncomfortable highs. I felt nauseous, and dizzy, and disoriented, shaky, light headed, and weak, but I don’t feel that way now. I treated those highs and lows and I moved on with my life.
Things aren’t going “great”. I’m frustrated. I’m confused. I’ve had enough. Sometimes I see my blood sugar go high and I don’t know why. I thought I did everything right, but yet there it goes, rising above 250, 300, 350. Ugh. Other times I kick myself because I forgot. I honestly got caught up in life and forgot to bolus until much later. That’s not an excuse, I know. But doc, it happens. I’m not perfect, but I’m trying! I know sometimes it doesn’t look that way from my numbers, but every day I try.
You asked me about trends. Am I usually high around this time? Am I usually low?
Umm? Maybe?? You’re asking me to remember over 90 days of blood sugars, when I can barely remember yesterday’s. Yes. Sometimes I run high after dinner and before bed, but not always. Yes. I’ve been waking up low in the morning, but not always. It makes me sound like I don’t pay attention to my numbers, like I don’t care. That I don’t think about them. It’s not like that. My numbers are always on my mind.
I see my A1c. I know what you must be thinking. It is higher than you want, it’s higher than I want. But I do care. I care more than you’ll probably ever know.
I’m not sure if you believe me, I think you want to. Yet, appointment after appointment we find ourselves in this same situation. Last appointment was great, a .8 drop in my A1c. Finally made it to the low 7’s. I’m not sure the next one will be so great. Don’t give up on me.
I don’t think my A1c is representative of how I view my diabetes. I don’t think it shows how much I do try and how much I do care. And all I hope is that you realize that too. Don’t use that number to label me in your mind. Yes, you can make generalizations about my self-management based on that number. But while my A1c may say a lot, it doesn’t say everything.
I love this!!! That “How are things going” is such a hard question to answer. I wish your endo could read everything you just wrote her, because it sums things up perfectly!
Nice post! You touched on a topic I struggle with almost every day, 'How's it going?'. It feels inappropriate to say bad for 'only' those items you listed. It feels inappropriate to say great BECAUSE of those things you listed. Accepting that 'pretty good' accommodates that can be tough to do. Accepting that 'good' might even accommodate those things can be even harder.
(and great job on the A1C change)
I too struggle with that question. Most of the time I say something like “each day is its own day, right?” and hope they understand. At least a little.