Diabetes is just enough of an a$$hole sometimes that it makes it impossible to have faith in the system.
Even when those devilish diabetes gods behave themselves and do the same thing 15 times in a row I I have trouble believing they will do the same thing on the 16th time. Why? Because, in the past, when they have lulled me into a state of compliance and I lowered my guard a tiny bit, that's when they like to throw a curveball (or a hand grenade) my way to shake things up.
Which is why it made it very difficult for me to have faith last Friday when we headed out to the golf course.
It was my first 18-hole game of the season. Eighteen holes means four hours of walking. We cover about 10k at a fairly leisurely but non-stop pace. We walk up hills and down valleys and back up again.
I learned a lot last summer during our rounds of golf and one key lesson I learned was that the only way to survive 18 holes was to play with my basal rates. Trying to do it by eating a few extra carbs was a recipe for disaster and I ended up eating way more than I wanted to.
Last summer I learned to lower my basal rates down to 40-50% for four hours, starting an hour before the game. At some point during the front 9 I would eat a Clif bar without bolusing any insulin for it. Seems pretty simple but it worked fairly well.
So on Friday, I lowered by basal insulin as planned. My blood sugar started dropping around the 4th hole so I ate my Clif bar. By the 6th hole, Rose is vibrating to say that my blood sugar was climbing quickly. By the 7th hole, I was above 10.0 and by the 8th hole, I was over 12 and still climbing.
I bolused 2 units to stop the climb.
By the 9th hole, I had stopped climbing and by the 10th hole, I was beginning to drop.
The insulin I had just taken kicked in and, combined with the 2+ hours of walking, I started dropping...fast.
By the 13th hole I was below four, despite having eaten two packages of fruit chews.
The fruit chews finally kicked in and by the 15th hole I was climbing again. Rose alarmed - two arrows up. By 18, I'm over 10.0 again.
A bit of a roller-coaster ride that left me slightly nauseated and feeling sheepish for not trusting my system.
Sunday, I decided to have faith in the system that I developed last year.
I lowered my basal rate. At the 4th hole I ate my Clif bar. By the 7th hole I was climbing. I reached 12.0 by the 9th hole. Despite desperately wanting to, I refused to bolus.
By the 10th hole I was 11. By the 13th hole I was 10. I slowly drifted downward and, by the time we shook hands at the 18th hole, I was 8.5.
Four hours of golf are much more pleasant when I'm walking up and down hills and valleys but my blood sugar is holding steady. One Clif bar and a bit of faith is all it takes.