Stability Rocks

Swinging blood sugars are almost the hallmark of type 1 diabetes. I’ve spent twenty-eight years on a rollercoaster that has as many daily peaks and dips as flat bits. The truth is, it’s hard to stay level. I don’t have the energy at this stage to defend that extensively, but it isn’t because “I eat too much sugar” or “don’t do enough exercise” or because I’m “non-compliant”. It’s because the tools and methods we have to control diabetes, as advanced as they are, are crude in comparison to the body’s own system. It’s because juggling the millions of factors that affect blood sugars is really, really hard. And once you start swinging from one extreme to another, it can be difficult to stop the cycle – it’s easy to over-bolus for a stubborn high, which leads to a crashing low, which is easily over-treated in the panic and fog that descends. Before you know it you’re looping the loop and sick to the stomach.

Pregnancy and diabetes is hard work too. I’ve made that pretty clear I think. So imagine my delight over the past few weeks to have discovered that someone seems to have pressed pause on the rollercoaster. I can’t believe how steady, stable and even my numbers have become, without any sort of specific effort. If I wasn’t still taking so much insulin, I’d think I had some sort of cure. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still seeing variations, but they seem to creep on slowly. The DexCom shows gentle upwards crests that I have plenty of time to intervene on. And they float just as gently back down, instead of crashing like a rock.

I think in part it’s the amount of insulin I’m now taking which helps. My meal boluses are so much larger than before, that even if I haven’t taken quite enough, there is enough insulin floating around to prevent a sudden spike. And the insulin resistance that’s causing these big doses seems to be doing a good job of preventing the rapid falls too. Those are the only explanations I can come up with for this sudden smooth ride.

I don’t like taking this much insulin. It still seems precarious and uncomfortable, despite the fact that it is obviously working. And I absolutely hate the frequency with which I now need to fill my pump. (I hate filling pump reservoirs more than any other little diabetes task.) But man, this stability rocks. When I glance at my DexCom graph and see a nice smooth line instead of a series of peaks and troughs, I can’t help but smile.

I hope that Flangelina is enjoying the steady ground too!

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