i am officially diabetic. Or, as I pointed out to the somewhat officious nurse practitioner who broke the news to me, i am “a person with diabetes.” That is the more person-centered language that’s preferred in health care these days. This was after I heard her tell someone down the hall that she had “a raging diabetic” in her office. Not raging in the sense of angry, apparently she was trying to impress on the other person just HOW egregious it was that the pharmacy had FAILED to give me a glucometer.
I thought “raging?” Not really. But definitely in the “over the line” category.
You know, it’s not like i didn’t know this could happen. I’ve been “borderline” for a long time, and even inched over but was able to talk my way into deferring any action. Like, you know, medication. But they kept wanting me to cut sweets and carbs and exercise more and… you know. Here i am.
CW: I am about to talk about people with diabetes and it won’t always be very nice. Feel free to skip to the end.
I grew up with grandparents who had diabetes, late onset, type II. A minor refrain of “Ohhhh, I shouldn’t have any of that cake – – – – ok, just give me a tiny piece,” ran through my childhood. It didn’t stop them from eating a little pasta or enjoying their lives.
But for some reason, i hated it when they talked about their “sugar.” “You know, I got to watch my sugar.” “I think my sugar’s up.” “I think my sugar’s down.” I don’t know why that icked me out, but it did.
After my first divorce, i was in a relationship with someone who had “that blood sugar.” He was about 15 years older than me, thin and wiry, but he was always talking about “I better eat ,” “I better not eat,” “I gotta watch my blood sugar.” And pricking his finger to test his level about 12 times a day.
i mean, honestly, i didn’t mind when we were still having great sex, he could have talked about his blood sugar all day long. But once that was a faint memory, it grated on my nerves. It didn’t help that he blamed his lack of performance on his diabetes, when in reality he was burning out his aged libido fucking some little tootsie where he worked. (Ooooooh, still a bit bitter i see. Hmmm, and i thought i was truly over that. Sorry.)
The thing that irritated me the most was when he (ok, he had a name – we’ll call him Tom) would talk about how he better not do something because of his blood sugar. He’d prick his finger and carefully insert the slightly bloody strip into the machine and then annouce with due gravity, “No,” shaking his head woefully, “No, I better not go, my blood sugar’s up. I mean it’s not dangerous – yet – but I better stay here.”
“What is it?” I’d ask anxiously. “How high is it?”
“It’s 190,” he might say, “and even though I ate about an hour ago, still, it should be a lot lower than that.”
It got so bad that I’d google the level he told me, just to see if he was likely to die or not. I won’t make any harsh judgements here, right? But i assure you, he is still alive and well, married to his tootsie in another state. Living happily ever after, I mostly hope.
But – back to me – today, when the nurse showed me how to check myself. It was 178 and she tsked and frowned just enough to let me know this wasn’t good. But when I looked at her stupid chart? They want me to be under 180 an hour or two after meals. Which I WAS. So please do not act like i’ve just busted the bank for high blood sugar.
She assured me I could still go out to eat. Seriously. And I was very good, I just nodded and said, “Ok, good to know.”
i have to keep frigging records – every day – and i have to bring them back to her in two weeks so she can look at them and tell me if I have to test more often. You all. I’m at the doctor every damn week, sometimes 2 or 3 times a week. That’s ridiculous. i feel like my health is being held hostage.
Ok, i know it’s my own fault, for my own good, blah, blah, blah. I know i’m still pretty lucky in most ways, and I’m sure it will be worse before i actually die. I know it’s not too late to make a difference. If you are tempted to lecture or preach in your comment, please resist. Comments with the theme “poor baby” will be most appreciated.
And here, for your entertainment, are a couple of images from google – with the prompt “raging diabetic.”
Right – the A in Diabetic is a pizza, I’m pretty sure the E is candy. And the quote?
The three toughest fighters I ever fought were Sugar Ray Robinson, Sugar Ray Robinson, and Sugar Ray Robinson. I fought Sugar so many times, I’m surprised I’m not diabetic.
– Jake LaMotta
And yes. This means i have to do better at FFF. i already know, thanks. 🙂