January 19, 2013

Out of Line or On Point?

I was reading the article High Blood Glucose What's Behind the Symptoms? on Diabetes Self Management and I, once again, began blogging in my head.  (I'm going to try to get it out here this time though, because my brain is kind of crowded these days.) 

It took me back to shortly after Ally's diagnosis.  Our lives had been turned upside down and we were on information overload.  We were learning the difference in high blood glucose and low blood glucose.  Heck, we even had to learn what blood glucose meant - for real!

We were at a follow up appointment at the endocrinologist's office.  The nurse educator stopped in to continue our diabetes education.  After all, the 8 hour crash course we received in the hospital at diagnosis couldn't possibly cover all things diabetes.  She asked me if I knew about neuropathy.  I did not appreciate her concern on that day.  I was five months pregnant, brand new to diabetes, tired, overwhelmed, sad...I responded, "Yes, I have read about it, but honestly I have blocked it out.  That's the way I'm coping for now, blocking out all the bad things."  She did not like my response.  In fact, she responded in a downright rude way.

Maybe I deserved it.  Maybe she just wanted to make sure that I understood that there are serious complications of diabetes.  Maybe she didn't like my attitude.  Who knows!  But what I do know is that she was not wrong for trying to educate us about the long term complications of diabetes.  I think that, in the moment, I thought that I did not need to worry about these complications.  I think that I was sure those things would never happen to us, or at least I didn't need to think about them for many years.  I was wrong.

You see, high blood glucose causes permanent damage to your body.  It doesn't happen when you are a certain age.  It happens slowly over time.  But each and every high blood glucose contributes to these complications.  The nurse educator was not out of line for "putting me in my place".  She was giving us the knowledge and tools to keep those complications at bay for as long as possible.  She was making sure that we understood the importance of keeping blood sugars in control.  She was on point, and for that, I am grateful.


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