Made to Crave Ch 6, Diabetes Burnout Ch 7

It took me a while to read chapter 7 of Diabetes Burnout. The chapter is about checking blood sugar levels on a regular basis. This is the one area I struggle with the most. I know everything else would fall into place if I could just do this one thing…

And yet, I refuse. I forget. I get too busy. And every other excuse in the book comes to the surface. This is the one thing that physically proves I have diabetes.

Then as I was reading Made To Crave, I found myself reading the word “food” as “diabetes.”  Lysa wrote about how we are defined by God, and not by food.  I realized that I am defined by God, and I am not defined by this disease!  It is NOT who I am.  I am Kara, daughter of the King.  I am a wife, a mother, a daughter, a sister, who happens to also be diabetic.

And because I am diabetic, I need to take extra steps in caring for this body, this temple of the Lord.  I know I am not alone in the struggle to monitor blood sugars closely.  Polonsky writes that 21% of Type 1 diabetics NEVER check their levels, 47% of Type 2 insulin-dependent never check, and 76% of Type 2 non-insulin dependent diabetics never check their levels.  Those are staggering numbers!  That doesn’t even count the close to 70% who don’t check as frequently as their endocrinologists recommend.  I’d say I am not a “never” checker, but I am checking far less than I should be.  I’ve been better this week, and getting sick did knock some sense into me.  But, I have a lot of barriers to break down and overcome.

Polonsky writes about 10 specific barriers to checking our blood sugars on page 74 of his book:

  1. Your meter makes you feel bad about yourself.
  2. Monitoring seems pointless
  3. Checking your blood glucose reminds you that you have diabetes, which is something you’d probably rather not think about too much.
  4. Your meter seems to control your life, telling you what you can and cannot do.
  5. Monitoring serves as an opportunity for your friends and family to bother you.
  6. None of your healthcare providers ever do anything with the results anyway.
  7. Checking blood glucose sometimes hurts.
  8. Monitoring can be inconvenient.
  9. Monitoring can be expensive.
  10. Life is too busy and demanding to take the time for regular monitoring.

I have been blessed with great doctors up to this point.  They all want to see the numbers!  So, we’ll see how the endocrinologist here measures up when I go in next month.  Yeah, they all want to see the numbers, but…Yeah, I don’t have them.  Now, when I was on my insulin pump with the continuous glucose monitoring system, I had crazy amounts of data!  I loved it!  Seriously, I would study the line graph all day, and as a math teacher, I would show it to my students as real life math application stuff!  Score!  But I can’t afford all that right now.  So, I have to check 6 times a day with no fancy bar graph unless I enter my data manually into the app and create the file.  I wish my numbers would wirelessly enter the app.  That would be amazing!

So I guess my biggest barriers are #1, 3, 4, 8, 9, and 10.

Man, if testing were free…I’d still not do it.  Yeah, scratch #10.  Its the inconvenience of it.  I can’t tell you how many times I have forgotten my machine…or extra strips…Or how many times I have been in the bathroom balancing everything on my knee, praying nothing falls on the floor.  Or while driving.  My husband learned how to prick my finger for me so that he can check my levels while I keep my eyes on the road and one hand on the wheel.  He’s amazing.  While we were courting, he wanted to learn everything he could about this disease, and even learned how to give me injections, set up my insulin pump, and change my infusion set sites.  He rocks!

But that still doesn’t make monitoring easier.  I get angry when I can’t explain why my sugars are too high or too low.  I get frustrated when hormones interfere.  I get scared when I realize something is wrong and I am home alone with my son.  I dislike being diabetic.

I am working on new routines to bring monitoring back into reality.  When Zander wakes up in the morning, I try to check before I go get him out of his crib.  I have set alarms on my cell phone to remind me to take my Lantus doses, and I am trying to check before each injection of those.  I just started taking Skinny Fiber 30 minutes before lunch and 30 minutes before dinner.  So, I check when I take my pills.  So that puts me at 4-5 times a day if I keep up with those routines.  I just have to remember to check before bed, and when I get up in the middle of the night.   That last one is the hardest!

I also need to remember that the number on that machine’s screen is just a number.  It is DATA.  It is not who I am.  That data gives me the ability to react and look for trends.  I am a math person!  I should live for stuff like this!  I need to look at the daily trends, time-of-day trends, monthly cycle trends.  This is good stuff!

The hardest part about monitoring is recording the data.  I wish I had the equipment to just download it from the machine to the computer, but I don’t have the technology available to me yet.  With the insulin pump I did…I honestly miss that thing…someday, I will pay Medtronic what I owe them and can start the whole financial cycle once again…but that is for another blog post.

While I am seriously blending the two books I am currently reading, Lysa is definitely writing about food and our response to it.  In this chapter from Made to Crave, she points out that food in some ways becomes an idol for us.  Satan uses it as a temptation, just like he does through sex outside of marriage, alcohol or drug abuse, the thrill of shop lifting, etc.  He likes to create traps for us, and put us down, making us let go of that oh-so-precious fruit of the Spirit called “Self Control.”  The beautiful thing about Self-Control is that it is a FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT!  God’s Spirit plants it in us, and Christ the Gardener waters it through our life experiences.  Satan is trying to plant weeds around it, to choke it out.  Pick up the Armor of God and claim victory over those weeds!  Self-Control is not our own strength!  It is God’s Strength through our weakness!  It is the embodiment of what Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 12.  Yes, I am quoting that passage again!  It speaks volumes to my soul in days like today.

Lysa makes some comments about the book of Philippians, and the joy through trial that is found there.  I encourage you to read the few chapters that is Philippians, and take time to reflect on how God is speaking to you through His Word.

Until next time…

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