Monday, December 11, 2006

A Long Weekend...

The idea that your life can change in an instant is a globally accepted one. It is rooted in truth but also in the intellectually abstract. Everyone knows this is true but it never really makes sense until it happens. This past week has been a crazy one for me. Full of blood tests, doctors appointments and since my family doctor is in another city, a lot of driving. And the end result? Diabetes.

Now, don't ask me to explain this. It's not type 2, the kind people usually get in adulthood. It's type 1. As far as we know. Long story short: Brian and I applied for life insurance which involved a urine sample from each of us. They came back for blood from me and then sent me an email the Wednesday before last saying that my results were abnormal and I couldn't get life insurance. Abnormal? What a horrible vague word to send, attached to a person's blood sample no less, over email! Of course I freaked, even though I tried not to and had to fight with the insurance company to fax my results to my Doc rather than send them by mail. When the doctor finally got them and saw that my blood sugar was slightly raised (8.1 mmol/L - cut off is 8.0 mmol/L) she assumed they had screwed up the test and actually referred to the insurance people as "dumbasses". She referred me for a series of tests for this past Friday.

The test she sent me for is supposed to take 2 hours. First they get your fasting blood sugar level and from there they give you a cup of glucose drink and then measure how you react to it over the following two hours. Only problem was, my fasting blood sugar was 16.6 mmol/L. Anything higher than 7.0 means Diabetes - mine was so high it wasn't even close to the line. I couldn't take the glucose tolerance test because putting more glucose in my system would have put me in a coma. The nurse was a freaked out and that made me freak out. She called my doctor right away and suddenly I was taking another day off work. I left the office in tears and felt totally overwhelmed and sideswiped. It was a very long day.

So that's that. The doc got me a blood glucose meter and I'm testing myself 4 times a day. I have an ultrasound, more tests and all kinds of doctor's visits looming throughout the Christmas holidays. And no sugar. Did I mention this is through Christmas!?! Who's ever heard of a Christmas without sugar. Ugh.

This past weekend has been a long one. I've felt sad, angry, confused, scared and tired. I feel a sense of loss greater than the individual losses I will face. I am mourning a way of life I didn't really even appreciate until now. I'm trying to figure out how at 28, in the best shape I've been in for a very long time, I could just one day, wake up with a disease like this. I don't even have any symptoms. It doesn't make sense. That's probably the hardest part is learning to accept something that doesn't make sense. I have very little control over this and it has made me feel betrayed by my own body. I have tried very hard to see the silver lining in all of this, and it is there, shimmering however faintly. I already have a very healthy lifestyle and have been eating very healthy anyway so this won't be as big a change as it might be for some people. I'm educated and informed and will have all the resources I will need to change my life. I'm not afraid of needles. I caught it early before I got too sick. It could always be worse.

So that's that. I felt horrible all day Saturday and my levels were really high. Yesterday they went down slightly and I'm feeling better. A little less vulnerable and a little stronger. Not as pissed off and more willing to approach this with patience and a positive attitude. And armed with proof positive that true to my Dad's opinion, I am definitely a Sweetie.


Bobbi said...

I heard Santa sometimes brings sugar-free snacks! Although maybe while he is leaving them you could test his blood glucose too since he is looking a little plump and jolly these days.

Just want you to know that I was thinking of you all weekend, love you and good luck!

Eileen said...

I'm thinking of you trooper! Hope you soldier on through it with your head up high. You can now shop in trendy health food stores and discuss the merits of sugar free everything.

H said...

Oh pumpkin what a whirlwind you have been on. I was sad to read this and sad to know you have been so sad. I agree whole-heartedly with your Dad that you are one of the sweetest people around. Maybe you had to be diabetic because your being could just not handle any more sweetness. The world is filled with sweetness that does not fill our tummies but our souls ... I guess we will have to get looking for more of that.
But maybe all that silver lining shtuff should come later ... maybe for now we just all agree that this sucks. IT SUCKS!