Saturday, February 15, 2014

It's a Shame

I've never been really shy about my diabetes.  If someone has questions I am always willing to ask and often times I am O.K with speaking up if something happens to conflict with my diabetes - which isn't often.  However, there are times when speaking up about diabetes is awkward or for some reason   something that I don't want to do.

Often times if I need assistance I am around people that know my diabetes and it is really easy to ask for help. To be honest, there aren't a lot of times that that is needed. I am pretty on the ball with my diabetes and I try hard to pay close attention to what my body needs by basic tell-tale signs I give myself. For example, if I find myself feeling lost in thought, or 'blank' in thought I know that I need to check as I am likely heading into a low if not already there.

But there are times in my life when asking for help doesn't come with instinct, instead a process of whether or not I am being an inconvenience to someone or will it embarrass me.  I KNOW, I KNOW. This isn't right. Never should diabetes be considered an inconvenience nor embarrasing but when you're low, if you know the feeling, your not thinking straight. You're either going to do all you can, stand up, shout, dance, sing or you're going to slump into your chair, holding you hands on your forehead, focusing on whatever will get you through the next five minutes.

This was me, my class Friday was going fine. It was Valentine's Day and my prof. had brought chocolate for the class.  She passed them around, she did it twice. I grabbed a chocolate each time.  The second round they ended up on the desk infront of me. How taunting to the only diabetic student in the class.

I gave myself the needed insulin as I could clearly see the label and thought, I really should give insulin.  Big mistake. You know those times you bolus for something without really thinking about your life. I mean without thinking about when you ate last, when you're going to eat next? If you've done any physical activity? What your mood is like at the moment.  Well, I didn't think about all those things I just took a half unit of insulin and carried on with it.

But, as my prof. went on about  the novel, 'As I Lay Here Dying..'  now that I think about it, all sirens should have went off.   I realized I wasn't paying attention. I was staring at the chains holding the projector screen up.  I felt extremely warm.  I checked my blood sugar and a lovely 3 flashed before me.   I looked at the box of chocolates infront of me, funny enough the box read, "BIG BOX OF CHOCOLATES" my prof. had made a comment about it earlier.

So here I was,  slumped in my chair, holding my hands on my forehead and focusing on that BIG BOX OF CHOCOLATES.  But, I was in the second row from the front as the prof. lectured away, she had already called out a student for getting up and leaving, it would look like I was leaving. But I was low.  I thought about raising my hand, I thought about saying, "I know this is random but can you pass the chocolates..."    Now, I get that I should have had some low supplies in my bag but I had used them the day previous and forgot to replace them.   Sometimes it is hard to keep up with being a diabetic.

But then she said it. Class was over.  I grabbed my bag and headed for the caf. and bought a couple bulk candies.  My pump was suspended and I was starting to feel better.   I really thought about why I didn't speak up. Why I didn't lunge over the desk and grab the chocolates. I felt awkward for some reason and didn't speak up.

It's not embrassing to be diabetic. It isn't awkward to be diabetic. But sometimes diabetes can trick your mind, play games with your thoughts and twist the person that you are. It's a shame.


  1. Wait until all the signs you've grown used to, to tell you that you're low change or don't happen. Or they happen when you're so low that you really do need help and you're all alone. That has happened to me because of menopause. People always told me being a juvenile onset and being pregnant would be difficult. Both my pregnancies were okay. My second had more lows, but that was because I had a toddler to chase. I have to check my blood sugar more often because I can no longer tell when I'm low, or I get so low before I begin to sweat that I just sit and stare at either the TV or my computer monitor. I was always able to tell before menopause. I'll be so glad when this part of my life is over.

    And shame on you Kayla for not restocking your bag with candy. That is something you should automatically do.

  2. Hi Kayla, I have encountered very similar situations like you before. At the very urgent moment to treat hypoglycemia and yet was feeling awkward, embarrassed to speak up for help to the class. And after slowly regained back the consciousness, how I wish to dig a hole to hide myself. never failed in making me feeling im not myself. Take good care. Thanks for writing this post to share the similarities.