Yesterday I went out to dinner with some new coworkers, and when I arrived at the restaurant, my blood sugar was low and I knew it. This meant I got to drink Coke, which is really amazing because I do not get to do that very often. So there I am, drinking my Coke and “chatting”, but really, I am not chatting because my blood sugar is low and I cannot really follow any conversation that is happening, and quite frankly, I am not even positive there IS a conversation happening because there is a weird delay in my head and I am clenching my teeth for no reason and my face feels like it is not there anymore. So…”chatting”. Someone asked about my tattoos – or maybe I shouted something about my tattoos because that is entirely possible. I pointed to one and said “This is my Green Day tattoo”, I pointed to another and said “This one means ‘fighting spirit'” and then to another and said “I don’t know what this one means.” Everyone looked at me and said variations of “how can you not know what it means?” and I kept saying “I don’t know, I just don’t know what it means, isn’t that weird?”
I know damn well what my tattoo means and ironically, it means resilient. I was not resilient in that moment.
Tonight I went out to dinner with my friend Karyn and her husband Nick, and once again, my face felt like it was not attached, I was clenching my teeth and starting sentences without finishing them – but this time I was not self aware enough to say “Dip shit, your blood sugar is low, STFU.” So I kept talking. One of the things I said was “Alex is Australian….wait, no he’s not.” He is. Alex absolutely is 100% Australian. And that was my entire “story” about Alex – that he is Australian. Somehow I decided I was wrong, and I corrected myself and just stopped.
Many years ago in high school my blood sugar went super low while I was the Chief of Police for the day. I was doing this cool ass ride along with a police officer, and there was a lunch with the other city employees (i.e. my classmates who were elected as Mayor, etc) and their actual real life counterparts. My blood sugar went low when we pulled a guy over for speeding. I knew it was low, and I started eating Lifesavers, but they were not helping. I ate an entire roll, and nothing. My blood sugar kept plummeting. I said some nonsense when the officer got back in the car, and then we went to the lunch where I ordered…iced tea. A beverage with no sugar in it. Because here is the thing about being Diabetic and having your blood sugar go low – you will NEVER admit that it is. I do not know why. “Darcy, I think your blood sugar is off” “NO IT IS NOT I KNOW EXACTLY WHAT I AM DOING.” So iced tea does NOT help low blood sugar, Coke or juice does. But denial. So lower and lower it goes until I have no idea where I am, what is happening, I cannot feel my face, my eyes are so blurry I cannot see, I hear voices but cannot understand what they are saying, I am sweating profusely….and I decide now is the time to leave the lunch by myself and call my mom. The thought to order Coke still did not come into my brain. I felt my way along the wall until I got to the front desk (the lunch was a hotel restaurant) and I asked where a pay phone was. Yeah – this was in like, 1993. I go to the pay phone and call my mom, panicking and crying, saying I do not know where I am and she has to come get me and something is wrong. We later apologized to the Chief of Police who thought I had a stroke or was in the active throes of death or something.
Often my blood sugar goes low in the middle of the night – 3 or 4am. I wake up sweating profusely (I am talking pajamas SOAKED), and here is the extra weird thing – my left thigh goes numb. I lie in bed for a good half hour trying to convince myself my blood sugar is NOT low, and finally I go downstairs and drink a glass of orange juice. Here is another thing you may not know about low blood sugar – it makes you think you have not eaten in years, and that you are not only capable of eating, but you MUST eat every single thing in sight. It is not uncommon for a Diabetic to eat 3 bowls of cereal, cookies, orange juice and a banana in a low blood sugar stupor. I am 99% sure I posted about this before, and I am 99.5% positive I posted these memes before, but I cannot find that post, so here it is again.
And it is not just me, obviously. THERE ARE MEMES. That means it is true.
All this is to say, if we are ever together and you look at me and I have the appearance of someone who is not sure if they are actually there or not, or I say that Alex is not Australian, or you see me eating multiple bowls of cereal, just gently say “Hey Darcy, why don’t you check your blood sugar?” Chances are I will just yell at you and tell you I know for my damn self if my blood sugar is low, and you know nothing. But then also I will drink glorious Coke and become normal again.
Thank you. Happy Diabetes-ing.