It’s the Highs that Worry Me

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It’s 12:48am and I’m 243.  I’m waiting for my high to come down.  I never go to sleep high because I don’t want a low in the middle of the night and I don’t want to sleep through a high that continues longer than it needs to.  Normally I’d set an alarm but it wakes my husband, who gets up at 5am each morning in the summer so I try to spare him the interrupted sleep.

I’m thinking about how so many people’s fear about having diabetes is centered on low blood sugars.  I understand but for me…I don’t fear low blood sugars very much and they only cause me anxiety when I’m in the midst of a bad one.

I fear the highs.

For me, the thought of a slow descent into diabetes complications is scarier than a sudden death in the middle of the night from a low.  I’m afraid of suffering.  I feel like I’ve already suffered enough.  I’m afraid of becoming a burden to others.  Alex has tried to help me through this.  We used to know an older couple.  The lady had rheumatoid arthritis and was bound to a wheelchair for decades.  Her husband was loyal, loving, and attentive.  I was always moved by that.  And in a way, I felt sorry for her.  Because I felt that in her position, I’d feel as if I was a burden.  Not my proudest thought…but it’s just a fear of mine.  In fact, I’ve been afraid of getting old  since I was 5.  One day I watched the couple and Alex caught me gazing at them.  He said, “If you ever need me to be that way with you, I will, ya know.”  This was a few months before we got married and I felt assured that I was marrying someone who truly believed in the “in sickness and in health” idea.

But I’m still afraid.

Few things bring me more joy and pleasure than feeling my body be healthy, energetic, and pain free.  It’s something I have always put a lot of value on.  Though some of the preoccupation may be vanity, mostly I just feel happy when my body doesn’t complain when I use it.

Maybe I feel this way because I’ve dealt with plenty of body aches and pains and medical issues.  I wear glasses, I’ve had knee pain since age 13, I’ve had carpel tunnel syndrome and tendonitis, tons of severe headaches, chronic sinusitis for years, major cramps from PMS and PCOS, killer kidney stone pain on numerous occasions, and an easily unsettled stomach since forever.

Honestly, a day with no body pain and great blood sugars is like heaven and doesn’t come around often.  I don’t need anything but that.  I think this aspect of me has lead me to want this for others, too.  It’s like a healthy body is a gateway for so many other wonderful things in life.  Possibilities are easier to grasp.  One’s mood is so much easier to keep up.

I fear complications with diabetes robbing me of my relatively healthy body.  I am doing all I can to prevent them but I wish I could put the fear on hold.  To be honest, I don’t linger on these feelings often.  Usually they’re a fleeting thought.  And I think they’re a residue of all the years I spent misinformed about my chances for the risks of complications.  I wasn’t aware that good control would reduce my risks.  I was told this but I didn’t believe it because I didn’t think good control was possible.  Now I have pretty good control and some of those old feelings have stuck around.  It’s time to let them go isn’t it?

Goodnight all, though I’ll be up for a little while longer.

3 Comments

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I am just talking about my experience, but for me the lows are quickly corrected. I have often stayed up much later than planned because my BG is high. I don’t like to take a bolus and just go to sleep, in case it doesn’t go as expected.

I’m with you. My short term worries are always about highish trends and not the number of mild hypos during the week. For me it’s always easier to go up than down…

One thing that is really encouraging for me is how much better I am doing than in years past. It’s huge and it’s hopeful, and it takes discipline.

I have the same sort of thoughts and wonder what the highs are doing to me. Have yet to gain control. Interestingly enough I’ve suffered from allergies and chronic sinusitis for a long time too. Wonder if there is a Diabetes connection?

Thanks for your comment, Susan. I actually had a lot of luck with my allergies and sinusitis when I got my blood sugars to a more stable place and my A1c in my target zone. I also take allergy shots. Have you ever looked into those?

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