I’d just been keeping track of everything in regular spiral notebooks, but I decided to make myself a diabetes management journal that would make it easier and more organized for me. They have easy to fill in charts and some encouragement along the way. They will last for six months if you do them daily, which I absolutely will! I like to think I can just manage it in my head, but that truly doesn’t work for me. I’d rather make the little extra effort to keep on keeping track rather than to go through this again. It’s so much easier to stay healthy than to have to try to fight to get back my health and energy!
I’ve mostly adjusted to my new way of eating. I don’t make perfect choices all day long every day by any means, but I’m definitely making better choices most of the time. Every once in a while, I’ll try eating the “old way” – and I’ll quickly be reminded, even in just one meal, that I can’t. There’s no going back, no matter how good I’m feeling.
Am I ever glad I kept a journal (pictured above) the first time I went down this path! I recorded everything: my morning sugar reading, my readings after various meals, everything I ate, supplements I took, my amount of exercise, many comments along the way of how I was feeling, both physically and emotionally. Perhaps the most helpful thing for me to be able to review this morning is the string of profanities laced throughout my notebook. See, even when I was staying on point, the journey wasn’t always smooth sailing. My sugar regularly spiked a little (sometimes a lot!) for no discernible reason. But I stayed the course … and over time, it kept trending in the right direction until it stayed in the good range almost all of the time. Until recently, when I had veered off course over many months during the pandemic.
When I was diagnosed with diabetes almost three years ago, I went into complete panic mode. My doctor just said it matter-of-factly, “you have diabetes” – and offered no further information other than I could start on medication to control it. No thank you! I didn’t receive any nutritional counseling (or for that matter, emotional counseling) from him regarding how to handle this diagnosis and my future health potentials. I was left to figure it out on my own.
One problem in a society used to instant results and instant gratification is that we expect everything to happen right away. Healing almost never happens in that fashion – and the other truth is that it doesn’t always go in a linear fashion either. Our bodies and minds are complex – and especially when dealing with a chronic condition like diabetes, we need to have a great deal of patience and compassion with ourselves and our bodies. This isn’t easy – mentally, emotionally, or physically. I’m going to be addressing the issues that are coming up for me as I go along. Perhaps you’ll be able to relate. Some days are better than others. We do what we can to keep on keeping on.
So, this dance with diabetes continues for me. It’s not all smooth and easy – and I am far from perfect at it. I’m still figuring out the balance, but I feel hopeful. I know that I have some leeway – I just need to be mindful of how far from the original program I stray. It took many months of being pretty careless before I really paid the price. It’s daily decisions that add up over time, not every single meal. I know this – now I just have to do it – in a way that supports my emotional and mental health as well as my physical health.
So, my plan here on this blog is to share some things that help me to keep my blood sugar under control – and just be open about my journey. Some of it is easy and some of it is more challenging.
My blood sugar was 145 this morning. That is horrible. I knew it was bad because I felt light-headed and nauseous. I’ve been sick to my stomach all day. When I was on program, my blood sugar ranged from about 80-105. Over these past few months, it’s been more like around 110-120. Not perfect, but I was prepared to live within that range. Then I started hitting into the 130’s here and there. I didn’t feel bad, so I wasn’t too alarmed. Until today. I finally feel bad enough to acknowledge that there is a problem and I need to do something about it.