Do you remember that bad low I wrote about last week? Although it’s in the past, I find it has left me with an unexpected “side effect”. Fear.
I’m not used to being afraid of going low. Well, okay, I supposed I’m always a little bit afraid because lows can be serious and deserve a smidgen of healthy caution. But for the most part I tend to worry more about highs than lows. That has all changed. I find myself getting panicky when my CGM low alarm rings. I get scared when I feel the familiar fuzzy and shaky feeling. Worse yet, my Fitbit stats tell me I’m averaging around 3,000 steps a day - no where near my 10,000 a day goal. And I know my lack of steps is solely due to my fear of going low.
I think the reason this one is different from the rest is because it seemingly came out of nowhere. In my 35+ years with diabetes there have been very few lows when I can’t remember what happened. And they’ve occurred either in the middle of the night (when I likely slept through the low symptoms) or when I was already treating but it didn’t work fast enough. This time was different. This time, I was fine one minute and definitely not fine the next.
There is, of course, a silver lining. I’m paying more attention. I’m wearing my CGM continuously. I’m testing more and not ignoring my Low Predicted alarms. That break I felt I needed is long gone. I even find I'm rarely swagging boluses, instead actually counting my carbs as precisely as I can in the hopes of avoiding a (now dreaded) over-bolus.
Sure, this sounds good - this reawakened attention to diabetes details. And it is good, if it didn’t come with a huge dose of fear. Because I don’t want to - I can’t - let myself live in the shadow of diabetes fear. I’m hopeful the fear will just fade as that low moves farther and farther into my past. But if you have any tips for overcoming it faster, I’d sure love to hear them.