Do you feel like you are paddling so hard under the water some days, but nobody can see all the energy you are expending just to stay afloat? Most people I have spoken to living with diabetes over the past 15 years say they do. And I know I do.
Take my current situation. I have been on an insulin pump for more than 14 years to try and deal with difficult morning highs and hypos after meals, where I was splitting injections and having up to 10 shots a day. I then discovered I have gastroparesis which I have lived with for more than 12 years. If you have not heard about that, it is one of the complications of diabetes that is less commonly known about than some of the others, but quite commonly experienced. The two are not happy bedfellows.
You can read more here about the facts of gastroparesis.
In a nutshell, gastroparesis is nerve damage in the gut which leads to delayed emptying of the stomach contents. For someone with type 1 diabetes in particular this can be a nightmare to manage, as the rules of insulin and food peaks and matching just don’t work out. I can often be seen sitting with my head in my hands, just wondering what the hell happened and what to do next!
If you live with this condition you will know all about it. It varies in its impact with some people experiencing very little discomfort or issues. I have severe delays but they vary from day to day as well. I take all sorts of potions designed to help shift the food from one end and out the other (may be TMI for some of you!)
All of this adds to the fun of the calculus of diabetes. The definition of calculus according to Dr Google is:
1. the branch of mathematics that deals with the finding and properties of derivatives and integrals of functions, by methods originally based on the summation of infinitesimal differences. The two main types are differential calculus and integral calculus.
2. a particular method or system of calculation or reasoning.
So number 1 sounds precisely like what you hear when your doctor tells you that you or your child has diabetes, or your educator talks about new therapies, or you try to nut out why you or your child had that series of high or low blood glucose – it is essentially “blah blah blah blah, nope not getting it”.
Number 2 is the whole basis of diabetes if you read a diabetes text book or listen to a (well meaning) doctor – but sorry guys but there is no particular method or system of calculation or reasoning when it comes to diabetes.
I have had it up to here lately with trying to predict trends in my levels and am looking at biting the (expensive) bullet and getting the Dexcom to work with my pump. Do any of you use a Continuous Glucose Monitor (CGMS)? And how do you find it?
Maybe with the two machines talking to each other they will work out properties of derivatives and integrals of functions, by methods originally based on the summation of infinitesimal differences of my blood glucose…because I sure as hell can’t.