Monday, April 21, 2014

Grief and Diabetes Management . . .

It’s been one piece of bad news after another around here over the past couple of weeks.  And I’m beginning to understand that grief sends my diabetes management in two completely different directions.

ComfortFoodThe first is the “eff it all” mentality.  And there is nothing like bad news to make me crave curling up with a big bowl of carby indulgence.  Hello Macaroni and Cheese.  Bring on all the warm, gooey, creamy treats.  Hey, it’s called Comfort Food for a reason, right?  Grief makes it hard to care about what all those carbs do to my blood sugar.  That whole “life is too short, enjoy while you can” thinking sets in, along with the urge to take as many diabetes shortcuts as possible.  Because, you know, it can be hard to care when your hurting inside.

But then thinking about “life is too short” brings the realization that “life IS too short so we had better not waste a minute”.  And that actually inspires me to work harder at diabetes.  Times of grief  make it easy to see how much family members and loved ones need one another.  I am reminded of how important it is to do all we can to stay around for as long as possible.  Diabetes is tough and takes a lot of work and doesn’t always respond in a way that reflects the effort put in, but I’ve been managing pretty well for 34 years.  And I owe it to my family and friends to keep trying my best, because they need me.

So yes, a good cry is fine.  A bit of an indiscretion with some comfort food is okay once in a while.  But for the most part, I’m reminded that I owe it to my loved ones to do all I can.  And so, I will.


  1. I'm sorry you're having grief.

  2. That second-to-last sentence is exactly what pulls me back when I run out of motivation. "I owe it to my loved ones....". Sometimes I feel I may be on a sinking ship, but I can't have my family sinking with me.

    I tend to lose sight of that a lot (especially with some struggles as of late) - and this post, and that reminder, came just in time. I mean it -- so thank you for that. And let's help motivate ourselves to do better - together.

    1. You've got it, Scott - I'll cheer you on when you feel too tired to care.

  3. Oh Karen, I'm so sorry for you loss(es) and struggles!.. and for all those 'comfort food' temptations that seems to have our names written all over them at times like this.
    I send you my love. We are all in this boat, together!

  4. It's an interesting dichotomy, isn't it? Sometimes we have too much to think and worry about. But no doubt, people need you, and people look up to you. Partly because, you know, you're human and not a robot. Sorry you have to go through this at all. Hope everything gets better very soon.

  5. I am so sorry for your losses & I agree, grief does a number on our diabetes & I we owe it to our loved ones to do all we can - And it times of grief - we don't need to have be perfect or have perfect numbers, we just need to test and correct and know that we are not alone.
    Kelly K

  6. WOW do I get this... Having been in grief counseling (sounds fancy right?) for the past 6 months, I find I don't crave comfort food but instead have a hard time eating which also brings on it's own diabetes related challenges. Dehydration and not enough food makes my BGs absolutely wacky (and certainly too high). Just trying to figure out sudden changes in ratios is enough to make my head spin. Having a good cry can be so therapeutic and yet the BG madness that ensues sometimes seems hardly worth it. Amazing how whether emotions lead us to craving comfort food or having a hard time stomaching food... the BG takes a beating. It's not easy, that's for sure, but I find accepting what's going on and why is the springboard for getting back on top of things and makes it a little easier to become one's own cheerleader again. Hang in there Karen. xo

  7. Thank you for writing this and sharing it, Karen. I relate to it a lot more than I want to. A dear friend past away two weeks ago and I couldn't share it online for some reason. I just didn't feel like a healing space for me. Reading your post helped me heal in the diabetes part of my grief and I sincerely thank you for giving me that. Beautiful writing, as always. <3 Hugs. I hope your heart mends when it is supposed to and within the period of time you feel is right.

  8. Last year was the year of grief for our family. Three deaths in the family in one year. It was hard. It is still hard. The urge to eat comfort food and blow everything off... Well, it happens. Healing takes time. I'm glad we don't have to face our grief alone. We have each other and that matters. If I can lift you up, let me know.


Thanks for your comment!