Skip to main content

Diabetes Chicken and Egg(s)

Lately I've been in a groove with Diabetes. I do my things, he does his (not sure why I associate Diabetes as a male personality, but anyway), and we meet back together for blood checks and insulin dosing. In general, our groove has been working out fairly well - we are never too far apart from each other, yet he's been giving me space to live life a bit more free willed (for which I am eternally grateful). I've explored the topic before, but I think its worth revisiting, namely the idea of Diabetes and stress and how they work in relationship with one another. NPR has been doing a series on stress lately and some of their conclusions fit perfectly with the way I approach Diabetes and the consequences or contributing factors which determine how we both get along.

In one part of their series, NPR explored stress caused by major life events vs. "everyday stress". It's funny, because Diabetes fits in both categories: (1) a Type 1 Diabetes diagnosis is, in every sense of the phrase, a "major life event" and (2) the constant struggle and day-to-day operations to maintain tight control contribute to every diabetic's "everyday stress" levels. It's a one-two-punch of disease related stress that includes short term worries (I only have 10 units left in my pump, where did that 208 come from?), and long term ones (will my leg be amputated? or can I have a healthy pregnancy?). And when all these questions pop up at once it can be completely overwhelming. 

But lately I haven't been overwhelmed. Diabetes has given my stress levels a break - at least temporarily. And, as I think more and more about it, I can't figure out who's the chicken and who's the egg. Is stress the chicken that produces bad Diabetes "egg-speriences"? Or, is stress the egg born from the Diabetes chicken? Either way, it seems clear that spending exorbitant amounts of time stressing about Diabetes only works to decrease control, and decreased control leads to greater stress - a viscous circle. 


So, what can we do about all this stress, relentless worry, and constant disease management? Honestly, I don't have any magic cures for the constant disease management bit. But, NPR suggests exercise as the number one "prescription" for constant worriers...which is a novel idea, since I have recently added more exercise into my daily routine. So naturally, I now have more chickens and more eggs (exercise, diabetes, stress, etc.). The bottom line? The increased exercise makes me generally feel better and I'm not going to spend time worrying about chickens, eggs, or which came first ;-)

PS: for my D friends out there...why would we worry about chickens or eggs anyway? They're free foods right?

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The road to curing Type 1 Diabetes

From the moment of diagnosis, the road is rough, the learning curve is steep and the stakes are literally life or death. The map is less-than-helpful - paths originating from virtually every corner, coalescing at a center point (aka "diagnosis") and bursting back outwards - some paths cross and wrap around each other but others are isolated. And even with all of these roads, most of the territory is uncharted - how did we all get here and how will we all exit? Where are the obstacles we haven't found yet? Which passage holds the key to unlocking the solution? On any given day I feel pretty isolated with this disease - I'm the only T1D in my group at work, the only one in mission control, the only one in my family. I go through the logistics of calling insurance companies, ordering supplies, changing sites and troubleshooting malfunctions mostly on my own. Even those pesky carbs really only get counted in my brain, no group think for a meal bolus here. But there i

Hot OJT

Last week I had the chance to mentor a newly certified ADCO trainee - the NASA process is called "Hot On-The-Job-Training", or Hot OJT. What makes it "hot" you ask? Well, essentially I am hands off - he is sitting at the console, working all the plan reviews and updates, making calls to other flight controllers and to the flight director, reacting to anomalies and preparing material for the shift handover. My job is to act as the fault tolerance - a backup ADCO of sorts. Tuesday was his last official day and by Wednesday morning he was in the backroom sending commands to ISS in preparation for the docking of a three-person Soyuz. Controlling ISS during the 61S Soyuz docking! The beauty of this system is the gradual buildup in responsibility. There is a subtle shift from student, to subject matter expert, to fresh operations trainee to advanced trainee and finally to certification and real-time operations flight controller - the process takes two years

The Diabetes Transportation System DTS-T1

I was looking forward to the Space Shuttle launch on Monday, then it was pushed to Wednesday and now it is scheduled for Thursday due to several electrical issues from a main engine computer controller. Ironically, our little MH-47G (due to start testing on Monday originally) has been having it's own issues and it is still unclear exactly when we will start testing. And all of this uncertainty, schedule changes, and issue-working reminds me of my little friend Diabetes [come on, you knew that was coming :-)]. Even with hard work, super awesome bolusing skills [ check out Holly's blog today, the number crunching is very impressive] and constant blood sugar checks, Diabetes can still be unpredictable, necessitate schedule changes, and cause the carrier to work through the issues. I have been lucky today, even after a late-night cocktail last night, I woke up this morning at 112, and before lunch I was an amazing 113. I love being steady like that, cruising along with hardly an
01 09 10