There have been a lot of interesting 2nd anniversaries for me this week. On this date two years ago I was embarking on my first ever day managing my own diabetes, doing my blood checks and administering my own injections. I had been discharged on 3rd June, in the late afternoon, with instruction but no practice (on any kind of fruit) on how to use my two insulin pens. And so, on the evening of June 3rd, at exactly 19:22, I gave myself my first ever injection of novorapid - 16 units, before my evening meal. My pre-meal blood glucose was 10.0 mmol/l, a little on the high side I realise now, but back then it hadn't really sunk in what was 'good' and what was 'bad'. I had, after all, been 37 mmol/l at diagnosis and remembered several readings in the high 20s, so 10 didn't look that scary. Also less scary was the lancet I used for the BG reading - far less painful than the multi-purpose, discardable ones the nurses had used, but a little shock nonetheless.
How do I remember all this? Well, I don't need to because I recorded everything in my BG diary, something I have maintained to the current day. As a fan of history, it's interesting to look back through these diaries, to see how my levels became better tuned over time, and also to see how my insulin requirements changed over time. I started out on a regime of 16, 14, 16 novorapid before meals, and 20 lantus at night. The breakfast one and the lantus have changed most - yesterday I had 8 novorapid before breakfast and 10 lantus at bedtime. I'm glad that I received early instruction in how to adjust my insulin, as it has made life a whole lot easier. I can't imagine how people manage on mixed insulins or fixed doses. My early days on fixed doses are shown in the diary to have resulted in many more highs and lows than I experience now.
Diabetes is a difficult disease to manage. There are so many variables involved, chiefly due to the fact that blood glucose affects every single part of the body, including the brain. On the outside, people with diabetes often look very healthy, but it's hard to explain to someone who hasn't experienced it just how all-encompassing and overwhelming it can be at times - the panic of a low, or the disappointment, fear and confusion that can result from an unexpected high. I've done pretty well over the past couple of years, so I'm grateful for that, and part of knowing how you are doing is keeping those records - not only so you can spot trends or remember how things were, but also so you don't become complacent!