Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Going Low: Welcome to the Mental Olympics

Even though winter has been fairly snowless and mild, my husband and I still feel like February is never ending.  So we booked 1 week all inclusive to Cuba! Yay!  To be quite honest, I was most excited by the idea of escaping daily routines like: emptying the dishwasher, battling traffic, pulling snow-gear onto my son before we leave the house, packing lunches...

Backstory: The Set-up
We were eagerly counting down the days until our Sunday departure..... and then, just 1 day before we were set to leave, on Saturday morning, my son woke up with the Chicken Pox!  Poor Baby!  He had a bad case too!  Even in his mouth, his ears, and in his eyes.
Thankfully I had cancellation insurance, so my week of sun and swim and sand and someone replenishing my towels, got replaced by half work days and oatmeal baths, and calamine lotion and watching Wiggles.  (I still have Rock-a-by your Bear on an endless loop running through my brain)

Backstory: The Unpredictable Blood Sugars
That being said, my routine was thrown out the window.  I didn't eat the same things I normally do.
Normally, my lunch is 25g of carbs:
* a big green salad with 1 can Rio Mare tuna plus 3Tbsp Kraft light Zesty Italian dressing 5g carbs

*1.5 cups of  sliced strawberries with 2 Tablespoons of reduced fat ricotta and 2 tsp of Splenda 20g carbs
*1 large peppermint tea with 2 packets Splenda 1.5g carbs (negligible)

Instead, I was offering my son Nutella and Wassa (Rye and Oat bran) crackers.  He said he wanted it, then changed his mind after 2 minuscule bites.
* 1 Wassa Rye and Oat bran crackers 8g of carbs
*2 Tbsp Nutella 22g carbs and 11g fat

Well, someone had to eat that cracker, and you know, the spoon was not going to lick itself!  And if the spoon accidentally slipped back into the Nutella jar, well, a mom's got to do  what a mom's got to do.  (I wonder if there's crack or something in that Nutella, because, damn is it addictive!)
So the blood sugars went up.....
But then, after his nap, I would take him out for some fresh air and he would climb into his big Baby Jogger stroller, and we would walk to the fire station to see the trucks, and then walk to one school and then another to see the school buses.
So the sugars went down......

Between the unusual food, exercise, and corrective doses, and insulin demands for my pregnancy it was a very poorly controlled week.

Backstory: Capturing my Imagination
On another note, I've been reading the Charlaine Harris Sookie Stackhouse book series.  The books are so good!  Unlike the HBO series True Blood which is totally Vampire Centric, this book series has inter-dimension beings, and Shape Shifters, and Witches, and yes Vampires.  But all in all, it's very entertaining escapism fun.
Normally I read before bed, though I can only stay awake for 3-4 pages.  But being home with my son,  I easily worked my way through several of the books over the course of a week's worth of nap times.  I'm enjoying them so much, I hope I don't finish the series too soon!

So that was my week.

The Incident
And then, in the middle of all of this, I woke up on a Wednesday morning at about 2AM.  I was covered in sweat and had soaked through my pajamas and the sheets.  So I knew I was low.  But, my brain would not allow me to get up and fix it.  My thought process was the following:
'If I get up and take some Dex4 to fix my low, I will block the signal that will keep me safe from the werewolves and no one will be able to track me down and save me.  So perhaps I should stay low.  
But wait, what if I find another means to make myself traceable?
Yes, perhaps I could draw 3 lines with calamine lotion on my belly and that would help them find me.
Brilliant, it's a plan!'
Mental discussion over, I got out of bed, and went to check my blood sugar.  1.7mmol/L
OK, then off to find calamnine lotion.
So I ate 4g of glucose, painted 3 lines with the calamine lotion I had on hand for my son's chicken pox, then proceeded to eat another 12g of glucose.  And then sanity restored I had a total 'What the hell am I doing?' moment.  Welcome to the Mental Olympics.

Then I changed my pajamas and got back into bed.

The next day, my liver finally decided to help out and send some sugar-looking hormones my way (too late, my friend!) so I spent 10AM to 2PM running in the 12mmol/L- 16mmol/L range.
Feeling like crap for being high, and totally nauseated from going from such a low to such a high.
And giving hourly corrective doses (because these highs are SOOOOO Insulin resistant!) and just drinking bottle after bottle of water to help get myself back in range.
I ate only proteins too.  Didn't need to add more glucose into the mix:
*1 hardboiled egg og carb, protein
*1 light baby bell cheese og carb, protein
* a handful of walnut for lunch Fat fat fat (but good fat)

Why my mind acted cuckoo
Fact is, your brain functions on glucose.  Glucose is the food of your brain.  When you have a hypoglycemic incident (a low), you are basically, starving your brain.
Plus, the more lows you have, the more your body adjusts and recalibrates to make sure that whatever glucose you still have in your blood when you are low, goes to your brain.
Consequently, you don't feel yourself going low until it's nearly too late.
Which is what appears to have been going on.  I mean 1.7mmol/L is really really bad.

Scary, ay?

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