Thursday, March 12, 2009

Life as a Perfectionist

Like last night...I was up almost all night because I had high blood sugars. I was so upset. Why? I had my normal dinner, did my normal things, and when I got into bed I had a steady number with no arrows on my CGM. I got the nice notice from my pump for the first time at 1:30 - high Blood Sugar (my alarm is set to 200). I check and am at 260 and felt pretty awful. In my head I was going through what it could be - I changed my set before I went to bed, maybe that was it?

I got out of my bed and did a site change. When I took out the old set that I inserted before bed, it was fine. I made a correction bolus and laid in my bed for a while, still not feeling the best. Then I started to see some up arrows. By 2:30 my pump alarmed me again and said I was up to 250. Really, I tested and was at 290 and felt sick. I got paranoid and did another correction, the entire time trying to figure out what was wrong. Frustration had set in.

By 3:30 I was in the 260s still. I was starting to wonder if my insulin had gone bad. I did not open up a new bottle and the expiration date was months away, so I did not thinkthat was it. At 6:00 I decided to do another set change, throw away the insulin in my reservoir and hope for the best. In the end, my blood sugar did not come down until 7:00, when it was in the 150s, although I still did not feel good because my body was recovering from being high all night.

Sometimes I feel like diabetes laughs at me. Last night I wanted to get a really good nights sleep so I could be well rested for today, and have a good run. In reality, I got barely any sleep and was tired all day.

I am a perfectionist. It kills me seeing any number in the 200s or above on my meter or CGM. Mentally, I have a hard time dealing with it. Even if the number is above 140 I start to wonder what is up. Last night I got so frustrated because I did not understand why my body was not accepting the insulin I was giving it. At night I have a sensitivity factor of 1:71. I had to give myself many units for corrections. Giving myself that much insulin for corrections is something that I do not like. It kills me.

Being a perfectionist is not something that I would recommend to anyone. I expect a lot from myself in all areas of my life, from training and sports to academics to teaching. I have high expectations for the kids in my class. Are my expectations too high? Possibly, but it always gives me a goal to accomplish. I was not always as much of a perfectionist as I currently am. I think I always had that trait when caring for my diabetes, but it really spilled over into all other areas of my life in my ladder high school years (maybe you'll hear about it another time).

One time when I was having a phone interview for a program I was considering doing after college, they asked me what my best and worst trait were. For me, it is the same: perfectionism. It is good because i have high goals and work incredibly hard to attain them; it is my worst because all I do is work and worry. It is kind of like diabetes: I hate that I was diagnosed with it, but I know that it has been good for me.

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