I had my monthly appointment with my CDE the other day. I told her I felt like a complete mess. Yes, I am a perfectionist about a disease that the word perfection has no ability to even sit in the same room with, but still. I'm trying to keep my a1C under control (it's creeping up) and after my seizure this summer, I need to be extra careful not to let low blood sugar sneak up on me so…well, scarily, again. But it's creeping up partly due to that paranoia and also all these breastfeeding hormones and well...life as a new mum.
I sometimes feel like I'm taking care of two babies, to be thoroughly honest.
It can be hard to eat normal meals when I feel so on the run lately. My boy (aka, Littlebird) is literally on the run now, since he started crawling. I'm just trying to keep him out of the potted norfolk pine we have in our living room. He sticks his chubby little hands in the soil and then proceeds to pull on Norf's branches until he rips off a sample to test. Yum.
So I've found myself tending towards the good old "3 Meals a Day" habit. Not a good one. For anyone, diabetes or not. 4-6 small meals really is the way to go as far as regulating blood sugar and only giving your body a bit to process at one time. But there I am, day after day for the last 3 months, eating 60 grams of carbohydrate in one sitting. Which to most people is not a lot, but that's really hard for your body to metabolize all at once.
At my appointment, we talked about 'starting from scratch'. I'm trying to take it easy on my body again, especially because a woman's body is never the same after having a baby. Especially a type 1 diabetic's, ah! The irony of the situation is that I really, truly need to eat more carbohydrate in order not to lose too much weight since my boy is exclusively breastfeeding still (here we are, nearly 9 months in; more on my take on all of that later) and I'm already my pre-pregnancy weight. Controlling my blood sugar before I had my son was a challenge but it didn't feel as impossible as it does sometimes now. Let's just call it what it is: Hormone Hell. I feel like as I attempt to maintain my weight (it's always been hard for me to keep weight on) and do so by eating more carbohydrate) I end up in this high/low to low/rebound high battle with my BG---as you can imagine: a vicious cycle ensues...
Oh, what a situation to be faced with! But I know this isn't really a situation...it's a condition of my life and I just need to learn to make it work for me as much as possible as hard as that might be. I know some type 1 mamas I've talked to have said it gets easier and I think that's because children get more independent as they get older---a good thing! But for now, I'm literally dealing with what feels like the same thing over and over and over again: Littlebird gets into the Norfolk Pine pot, Littlebird gets into the unable-to-be-moved office computer cords, Littlebird is having a major meltdown right when I'm having low blood sugar. Oy. And as you know, I can't let that go. No discussion.
So I end up dealing with a lot of "diabetes guilt" for so many other reasons than the common ones discussed in the DOC (diabetes online community). The kind of guilt that stems from the fact that I deal with a disease that has very little leeway in certain situations when my son is overwhelmed and needing me---feeling like there is very little leeway for that, haha! As I look down at him sitting on the floor, red-faced and screaming while I chug a juice box, his eyes demanding WHY ARE YOU IGNORING ME?! I find myself looking forward to the day I can explain it to him and he can actually, truly understand. But for now, we struggle in our communications at times; it's all a learning process I know. And yes, yes: I know he doesn't 'hold it against me', but well, it doesn't change my feelings of frustration and anger and guilt surrounding this godawful disease.
So I'll end this post with things I am thankful for because there is always a 'real' reason to look up:
-I am thankful he is so strong and healthy and happy---oh my gosh is my son HAPPY!
-I am thankful for my own health. I have access to everything I need and more and considering my frustration, I'm doing just fine. There's always room for improvement, but hey: that's just life.
-I am thankful for the amazing support system I have in my family and "friend-family". My partner, Matthew, has really done nothing short of amazing in learning my disease-process right along side me, and my close friends are like my family in that they've reached out and been compassionate and understanding without being pitying or condescending. They trust me to know myself, but know I trust them to be there for me in case I need them in a pinch with this beast of a burden!
All in all, it's a wonder, really, isn't it? All of us doing as well as we do, making positive little changes each and every day, whenever we can. Knowledge is power. And we do have a lot of power.