A Flash of Anger

Not long ago I did a post called “What exactly is it“. This post talked a little bit about trying to figure out what exactly it is about living with diabetes that bothers me. There was some really great comments on that post. One of the most valuable group of comments I might have ever gotten.

I had an experience shortly after that post that really helped me to identify one of the things that bothers me.

Many of us find a routine. A set of actions that produce predictable results. We follow that routine, and for the most part are able to expect a certain outcome. Or at least feel pretty confident that the outcome will not be something outrageous.

My typical morning routine is to have an english muffin with butter and peanut butter for breakfast. Along with some Diet Coke. I bolus for 30 grams of carbs, and it usually works out pretty nicely.

I’d like to share my logbook sheet from Friday, January 26th:


I woke up at 163 mg/dl. A little high, but I’m not complaining. Took a correction bolus, changed my site (I was supposed to have changed it the day before) and got ready and went to work.

At work, before breakfast I tested at 107 mg/dl. Perfect!

I enjoyed my breakfast, and started to get busy working. An hour and a half later, I felt like shit. Sleepy, trouble concentrating, restless, just overall crappy. I tested my blood sugar, and it was 275 mg/dl.

There was a very identifiable flash of anger. I just wanted to smash my meter for that split second. I could feel the adrenaline spike, the rapid increase in heartbeat and all that. I was pissed. But just for a few seconds. What the hell happened?

Oh yeah – my site change. I’ve talked about that many times before. Where I spike up real high after the first meal on a new infusion site. I’m still trying to work through it – but sometimes the variables are overwhelming and I just pull back. It’s not consistent, and that makes it a real bear to figure out. But – that’s not the point of this post.

The point is – I felt like shit, and didn’t do anything wrong.

I did the same thing that I do most mornings, and most mornings it work just fine.

This was a very tangible feeling, that feeling like crap. It made me very angry for a few seconds. That too was a very tangible feeling.

Of course, it didn’t last long – the anger. It was a quick flash, then I was able to start figuring out what I needed to do. As you can see, my judgement was affected by my frustration – I piled the insulin on through the morning and for lunch and after lunch, and ended up low late in the day because of it.

I was so frickin’ frustrated!! I just wanted my blood sugar back down. Mostly I just wanted to stop feeling so crappy I guess. At the time I figured that I would happily deal with a low just to stop having to deal with the high.

A very clear, real life experience of what exactly it is…

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Scott K. Johnson

Patient voice, speaker, writer, advocate, and Senior Community Manager at Blue Circle Health. Living life with diabetes and telling my story. All opinions expressed are my own and do not necessarily represent my employer’s position. Read more…

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