Friday, May 27, 2011

The Diabetic Returns

Hi, I’m back!  Did you miss me?  I have to say that my vacation from diabetes was nice but it wasn’t fabulous.  You know how you look forward to something so much that you build up this dream of what it will be like, and then when it turns out to be not so great you’re disappointed? That pretty much describes my vacation from diabetes.

Did I eat things I shouldn’t have?  Yup.  Did I feel guilty about that?  Not in the least.  That was the best part of yesterday; I didn’t worry about what I ate.  The lack of guilt and concern made the day so nice.  In that respect the vacation was a huge success and I learned a few things about myself in the process.

First of all, I am definitely addicted to carbs.  When I want something to eat I always think of carbs first.  That’s not necessarily true when I’m planning a meal but it is very true when I think about snacking.  Given the choice between hummus with veggies and hummus with crackers, I’ll take the crackers every time.

Second, I feel much better when I don’t overeat.  Now that may seem like a no-brainer but actually experiencing that was helpful.  I didn’t pig out (I’m happy to say) but I did eat more than I normally would have eaten.  Feeling too full after a meal was a good reminder for me.  I have more energy and don’t gravitate toward the recliner nearly as much when my stomach is not so full.  That slightly hungry feeling is a good one!  I need to remember that.  No matter how yummy the dinner tastes, it’s better to stop before I’m stuffed.

Third, even though I was giving myself carte blanche to eat “whatever”, I still made healthier choices!  That makes me smile.  I’m finally getting to the point in my life where I am aware of what I’m eating.  It’s not just because of the diabetes but I’m trying to lose weight and live a healthier lifestyle.  I’m seeing what old age is like (not me!  I’m not old.  In fact, I wonder if I’ll ever grow up) and I want to slide into that part of my life as gracefully as possible.  I like the fact that I’m starting to “get it”.  There’s hope for me yet!

My last observation is that I’ve been way too obsessed with my diabetes.  I think about it too much and stress over the damn meter when it really isn’t necessary.  I don’t need to test multiple times a day.  In fact, I’m beginning to wonder if I have to test every morning!  Please remember that this is me we’re talking about here.  I’m not, in any way, advocating this idea for anyone else.  It’s important to listen to your doctor about how often to test etc.  My reality is that I’ve been at this for nearly 6 years now.  I know what I can and can’t eat.  I know, for the most part, how different foods affect my blood sugar.  Do I really need to keep reminding myself?  I don’t think so.  My doctor was right; let’s see what my A1c says.  It will tell us how I’m doing and if adjustments need to be made.  My next test is next week.  Testing my blood sugar multiple times between now and then isn’t going to make a bit of difference in the results.  So now I’m thinking that I will extend my vacation just a bit and I’m going to take a break from testing quite so much.  I will go back to eating smarter and watching my snacks.  The exercise is a must.  I’m just going to give my meter an extended vacation.  I’ll let it rest on the shelf and not bug it unless I’m feeling wonky or just curious.  This is going to be difficult.  I see it being akin to stopping smoking or kicking any other habit. I am addicted to testing but I can do this.  I can hear Ray now, “step away from the meter….” 

We have family coming to town this weekend and are planning a bbq.  My children will all be gathered and I’m looking forward to a good time.  I have a healthy menu planned and intend to relax and enjoy myself.  I hope the same for each of you.  Happy Memorial Day!

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