I like lists. I like them so much because I like to pretend to be an organized person who always has tasks to complete (the former is definitely false, while the latter is pretty much absolutely true). I also like lists because making one feels like an accomplishment in itself, and who doesn’t like feeling accomplished?
So I must admit that I felt pretty damn good about myself after making these two diabetes-related lists, because not only do they pull weight as blog post material, but they also help me understand something about me and my diabetes. So here they are:
List of things I should do on a daily basis for my diabetes:
- Check my blood sugar using my meter 6-8 times per day (upon waking up, before I go to sleep, before I eat a meal, and in-between meals to make sure I’m on track)
- Change my lancet (LOL)
- Look up carb counts for every meal using apps and/or nutritional facts
- Monitor my Dexcom carefully and do fingerstick checks when I disagree with it
- Take a correction bolus for every blood sugar that’s over 150 mg/dL
- Eat plenty of fruits and veggies AND drink plenty of water
List of things that I actually do on a daily basis for my diabetes:
- Check my blood sugar whenever the heck I feel like it; after all, my Dexcom is usually accurate
- Change my lancet only when I remember, which is like…once or twice a month
- Eyeball my plates of food and make “educated guesses” on carb counts
- Monitor my Dexcom OBSESSIVELY – sometimes even every 5 minutes, depending on the situation – and freak out when it doesn’t match my fingerstick checks
- Take a correction bolus for blood sugars that are 200+ only
- Eat what I’d like (which, in addition to fruits and veggies, is a wide variety of things) and drink probably not quite enough fluids
When I compare these two lists, I come to the same conclusion: I am lazily in control of my diabetes. I know exactly what my current routines are and just because they aren’t the “right” ones, it doesn’t necessarily mean I’m doing anything “wrong” in terms of my diabetes care and management. Sure, I’m not doing anything the textbook way, and I admit that I’ve gotten a little lazy with things like carb counting and correction bolusing, but so what? The important thing here is that I can recognize the areas where I need and want to improve.
For starters, I’d like to stop depending so much on my Dexcom. I want to learn to check it less – maybe take it out half as often as I do now – so I can strengthen my ability to recognize low and high symptoms. I’m also hoping to use measuring cups and nutritional information more often to make better informed decisions when it comes to how much insulin I give myself at mealtimes. It’ll add a few extra steps to my day, but these are habits that I followed for a long time and that are worth reintroducing to my routine.
As far as everything else goes, I’m not going to sweat them too much…of course, it will be nice if I remember to change my lancet more frequently and be more proactive about correcting high blood sugars, but really, these are matters of minor concern. I think I make my best diabetes progress when I take things one step at a time, so that’s just what I’m going to do.