What do they pump into the air at Target? Is it Afrezza or something? Because that seems like the only logical explanation for the phenomenon that seems to occur to most other fellow T1Ds when we step into a Target store.
Low blood sugars tend to happen at Target. Also known as “Target lows”, they can occur at any Target, big or small, no matter how long or short the shopping trip.
I experienced one last week. And it was severely exacerbated by the fact that I was visiting one in my new city for the first time by myself.
As you can see from my CGM screenshot, my blood sugar was definitely not low – not even close to it. I was in the mid-250s by the time I headed to the store, which is absolutely NOT where I like to be. But I didn’t take a correction bolus or even raise my basal insulin temporarily, because I guess I just had that feeling about my Target trip. I didn’t bother checking my CGM again after I parked, figuring that I’d do my best to make it a quick trip with minimal purchases.
Forty minutes (I’d been aiming for 20) after I’d stepped into the store and one semi-full cart (oops) later, I started feeling panicky and gasp-y. I told myself no, no, no, I wasn’t going low, I was just maybe reacting strangely to the scent of all the cleansers in the aisle I was occupying. I could deny it all I want, but in the back of my mind, I knew that I needed to pull my cart over, dig through my backpack, and locate my CGM so I could at least be informed of what my blood sugar was doing.
So I did just that. Upon checking my Dexcom app and seeing that down arrow, I practically started hyperventilating. That’s when the following series of thoughts flew through my mind:
Okay, just get to the checkout…
Ugh, why is there only one open?! Guess you’ll have to self-checkout on low brain. Great…
OMG, Molly, you know you can only scan one item at a time…go faster!
You are NOT going to go down in this Target. Not today!!!
By some miracle, I successfully purchased my items and booked it to my car. Once I loaded everything inside, I suspended my insulin and shoved three glucose tablets into my mouth at once, chewing them so fast and furious that it probably deserved its own movie by the same name…(oh, but that’s taken *tee-hee*).
Normally, I would wait for my blood sugar to come back up before even thinking about driving home…but this wasn’t exactly a normal situation. I was on my one-hour lunch break from work, and I was rapidly approaching the 59-minute mark. The rational part of my brain (the way, way, super-far-back part) knew that I would be okay after about 15 minutes or so, but I was just so stressed about being alone in a strange city and wanted nothing more than to return to the safety of my apartment, pronto.
Of course, I had no idea how to actually get home – I needed my GPS to get to and from Target, and I’m sure I’ll need it to get basically anywhere for the foreseeable future – so I plugged my address into my phone’s GPS app.
And yet I STILL managed to take a wrong turn or three as I anxiously drove back to the apartment.
Less than 15 minutes later, I was parked and my shopping bags and I were inside my apartment. And that’s when I fell apart, feeling stupid for letting the low happen and getting lost on the way home…and feeling extra dumb for crying so hard about it.
Yeah, methinks that I’ll be running a temporary basal reduction the next time I plan a Target trip. I don’t want to be fearful and falling again any time soon.