Tuesday, 18 April 2017

What did I used to know?

Before the world began to teeter on the edge of nuclear annihilation and every media outlet imaginable turned into Politics 24/7, I was thinking... "what did I used to know?"

I used to know a lot of stuff.  I've studied, been to places, met people, cooked food, heard music, and many other things besides.

Credit: Anchorman and Google and whoever made this pic
But I'm fairly sure there's stuff I did know that's kind of... seeped away.  Not important stuff obviously - I still know the words to every Arctic Monkeys song, most of the dialogue to Terminator 2 and my daughter's name.



Well I couldn't, but....


But I genuinely think my brain has given up on some stuff.  I found my Master's dissertation the other day and whilst the general topic was vaguely familiar, I don't remember a word of it.  I agonised over that, read papers, had meetings... I even went to the library!  (This was before the internet was really a thing...)

So what has all this fantastic(!) knowledge been replaced with?  Carb values - that's what.

Slice of medium bread?  15g - 18g of carbs.

Decent biscuit (like a chocolate digestive)?  10g of carbs

Rice Krispies?  85% carbs mate.

It's like living in the Matrix for all intents and purposes - you see the numbers floating in front of you everywhere:


Banana? 25g - 30g 

I mean of course this is slightly dramatised for effect, but I think we're so accustomed to seeing food as numbers (and recalling those numbers on a daily basis) that it certainly feels like the stuff we used to know has simply disappeared.

I'd ask you what you've all forgotten since you started being able to recall carb values on command, but I bet you can't remember...

Until next time, hasta la vista baby.

Saturday, 25 March 2017

Sometimes it doesn't quite go to plan

Last night I had a hypo.

Nothing overly unusual there really. Whilst thankfully not a daily occurrence, low blood glucose does play a frustratingly regular part of my life. This time it was different.

Since gate-crashing the last day of the Diabetes UK Conference a few weeks ago, I've been trying (with a modicum of success) to get back into some better habits with my diabetes. As with anything, it can be easier to slip out of a routine than stick to it.

So Friday night rolled around and in some vague celebration of us both being at home on the same evening, my wife and I settled on a Chinese takeaway (hurrah!) "It'll be 45 minutes" they said. I figured this was another good opportunity to get back into the habit of pre-bolusing for my meals. Takeaway is a bugger to get right at the best of times but I figured I'd give myself a fighting chance and get out in front of it.

To cut a potentially tedious story short, the food arrived late, I didn't check my levels before I took my insulin and I had an utterly rotten hypo. I've had a few bad ones before. I've sat on the bathroom floor at 2am for an hour chomping on Glucotabs like there was no tomorrow. I've eaten jelly babies and watched my levels go down instead of up. But I've always remembered those experiences - cautionary tales are often the best right?

This one was different. I remember eating a couple of marshmallows that my wife brought me (but I don't remember eating the others she gave me from the bag). I remember accusing her of stealing my glass of water (which I had in my hand) and I remember picking my dinner back up (but don't ever remember putting it down). It was almost like an out of body experience in a way. I knew I was hypo the entire time, I remember going through the motions of fixing it all, but at the same time I feel like I can't remember any of it. The best I can liken it to was like waking up from a dream.

This isn't a sob story by any means. Just another cautionary tale to add to the list. Taking my insulin without checking my blood glucose was, at best, misguided; more likely downright idiotic. Not checking my glucose until the food arrived was equally foolish. Trying to fix a hypo with chicken chow mein is simply an experiment that need never be repeated.

Image boosted from the Wikipedia article in the link below


It's a reminder to me, at least, how fragile the equilibrium with diabetes can be. It's the saddle point we're all subconsciously trying to ride as much as possible.  It doesn't take much to knock us from that point of safety.  As is often the case, my idiocy was my downfall this time.


I'm not blogging as frequently on here.  I maintain it's only worth writing when I've got something to say.  My Diabetes UK blogs still get published roughly once a month and if you're interested, you can find them on their blog site