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Sunday, 10 November 2013

My Diabetes - Riding my hypoglycemia 'hypo' bicycle

I view learning to become an Insulin Dependent Diabetic is like learning to ride my first bicycle. When I got my bike I thought I just get on and ride like everybody else, but this is not what happened.  I remember being frustrated that I couldn't ride a bike like my brothers and everybody was giving me advice and telling me how to do it:

sit on the seat and peddle you'll be fine (oops crash)
just peddle and move forward and you'll be fine (oops crash)
try sitting up straight (oops crash)
keep you hands tight on the handle bar grips (oops sideways crash)
going down hill will help you get your balance (oops crash)

Eventually my mother held the back of the seat just enough to stop me leaning too far on one side or the other.  Suddenly I had balance and was peddling and moving forward safe in the knowledge that she was holding me.

Then she shouted out I looked round realise she was no longer holding me (oops crash).  Then over time it became second nature, I can even ride without your hands, then get really cocky.. oops crash.

Controlling my diabetes was like this.  The professionals were very matter of fact.  They said if I:

1) Test my urine for sugars and write it in the diary
2) Inject the prescribed amount of insulin at the set time
3) Ate the right quantity of food
4) Exercise

Then everything would be okay and fine.

I did exactly what I was told to do and some days it worked and my blood sugars were low, and other days my blood sugars were high.  If I took the bus up the long hill to home I would be fine, but if I walked up the hill I'd be shaking like a leaf.

The real question for me was how to square this diabetic circle.  Like all medical instructions they seemed to be very rigid and inflexible.  It may sound incredibly straight forward to a dietician, or a specialist nurse or and doctor but real life is not that straight forward and simple.


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