Well, January has already [almost] come to an end. I can’t believe how quickly this past month went by. Anyway, remember the term “when it rains, it pours”?.. that’s been proven true this past month. HOWEVER, I’m starting to see the sunshine and that pretty light at the end of the tunnel that I’ve been waiting for! As I’ve had a lot on my plate this month, it’s given me a lot of time to think.. about everything. The truth is, I haven’t written a lot lately because amongst life happening, I just haven’t been feeling positive about where I’m at with my diabetes, or my health in general. Then it occurred to me.. I promised to blog with integrity. I promised to write about the good, the bad, AND the honest truth.. right? So why was I feeling like I “had” to write the HAPPIEST post ever to share with you guys, or that if I didn’t.. I shouldn’t write at all? This.. this was wrong of me, and for that, I sincerely apologize to you guys. So now, don’t get me wrong.. this will not be a sad, or depressing post, but rather honest talk.
As I previously blogged about, my a1c before I got omnipod and dexcom together was a whopping 12.2 (I KNOW, don’t be like me!!!!!-please). From there, it quickly came down to a 9, and in less than 4 months, it was down to a 6.6 (my best a1c EVER, excluding the 5.8 I had ONE time when I was always sick and couldn’t eat due to gastroparesis- before I got the pacemaker put in my stomach). To get to a 6.6 A1C was amazing for me, knowing it was MY hard work, my efforts, me watching dexcom on my phone like a crazy person trying to “beat” my blood sugars and make every day better than the previous day. I know a 6.6 isn’t perfect. For me though, that was the first time I ever felt proud of myself in my whole journey with diabetes. So proud that my father got that a1c framed for me, and now sits on my desk at work. If I could pick my a1c, I’d probably chose to sit at a 5.8.. but unfortunately, we won’t ever get to pick that pesky little number (that means oh so much to us).
Well, that 6.6 was back in August. I went back later in December, knowing my a1c was going to be higher (based on dexcom). Gastroparesis and diabetes together can be a REAL piece of work. One can make the other worse, and vise versa.. and when they decide not to cooperate with each other, that leads to a tired, high blood sugared, grumpy Chelsea. That’s okay though! Because I have way more good days than I do bad, and even on my worst days, I’m HAPPY. For some reason, when my doctor came back in with the results, my eyes watered up before he could even tell me that number…. “So how bad is it?”, I asked. “7.1… it’s not bad at all, you’re still doing great!”. My heart sank, I didn’t feel like I was doing great. I had worked so hard for it to come down, only for it to go BACK up .5 points!? No! This crushed me. But why!?! An a1c of 7.1 might not be the best it could be, but it’s DEFINITELY not a number to be ashamed of. My parents would have been thrilled to see me with an a1c of 7 when I was back in high school. So why was I so upset?
Diabetes can be so overwhelming, so frustrating, but it’s not going anywhere. Our a1cs are going to vary, and we have to accept that and not be angry at ourselves. It’s great to work hard for a good results, but you can’t beat yourself if you tried your hardest. Just keep trying, and keep fighting! I let myself be upset about this for too long, instead of moving on and trying harder. If you’re doing your best, you’re already doing great. I wasted too much time and energy being upset over something that I CAN change. Maybe not that last number, but I can change the next one. It’s important to have goals with your diabetes, but it’s also important not to drive yourself crazy with those goals. Don’t drive yourself to diabetes burnout – make small changes at a time and be proud of yourself for what you accomplish. You’ve got to take care of yourself, your happiness, and your emotions AS WELL AS your diabetes; but you can’t forget about you! That’s where I went wrong, I focused so much on my diabetes that it was all I was focusing on anymore. Take care of ALL of you, and you’ll be much happier, I promise.
“It’s not selfish to love yourself, take care of yourself, & to make your HAPPINESS a priority. It is necessary.”
This is also when I realized how important having a GOOD endocrinologist is. It’s not a want, it’s a necessity. I went years with doctors telling me I wouldn’t make it to my 21st birthday (I’m almost 25 now, so HA to them!) , telling my parents I was slowly committing “voluntary suicide” … what these doctors didn’t know what that I was struggling with diabulimia. How could they know if I didn’t tell them, right? I was a teenager, though, and in my early 20s.. I was scared. I just needed a doctor to show me a little compassion, and that they cared – for ME as their patient. I’ve now referred 2 people to the doctor I’m seeing now- and they both love him as much as I do. He’s kind, and caring, and he WANTS to help. He understands we experience burnout, and he reminds me to NOT always focus on my number if I want to keep my sanity. If you’re in the DFW area and are looking for a great doctor, contact me and I’d love to give you his info. The dietitians there are so great and supportive as well. It’s just a great office & staff and I actually look forward to my appointments now- instead of dreading them with extreme anxiety.
As I wrap up this post, I just wanted to share something for any of you who may be in the market for a new meter. I’m going to be dedicating a post to this company and meter soon (because I want to, and really think what this company is doing is awesome. It’s not sponsored and will be 100% my honest thoughts and opinions). This company is about making strips affordable for all, and for every 12 kits sold, they donate to a diabetic in need. Did I mention the founder is also a Type 1? They’re called good glucos, click here to go to their website and read more. If you DO decide to order, use my Instagram name, “chelsthebetic” for $10 off your purchase! Just apply it in the coupon section at checkout. You can’t beat the price. You can choose the amount of strips you want- but if you choose 100, I know that with the code above, you get a meter, strips, lancet, all for $25.. yes, you’re reading that right! Like I said a full post is coming soon- but I couldn’t wait to share. Mine just came in yesterday and the accuracy is right on point with my dexcom and my omnipod PDM! This company recently launched if you’re wondering why you may not have heard of them yet- I highly recommend checking them out!
I hope you guys have all had a great week so far, halfway to the weekend!
Stay hopeful my fellow diabuddies,
Chelsea- The Hopeful Diabetic ❤