Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Day 264 - Self Awareness in Care for Diabetes


*note of forewarning - I am not an expert in the functions of the body within diabetes, nor am I qualified as a medical professional - I am only sharing what I've gone through in my life in care and management of myself in diabetes and what I've seen within myself, and how I've worked with myself, and understood within myself in regards to management and care for myself in diabetes, and any information about the body and hormones, emotions, feelings, that I've learnt along the way

I've been reading a book called "Think Like a Pancreas" by Gary Scheiner which details, quite well, effective strategies to manage the blood glucose levels for diabetics throughout their lifetimes. As the title entails, it suggests that diabetics must consider and live within/how an healthy pancreas would function to give ourselves the best possible outcome of managing blood glucose levels. There are many strategies, programs, tools, devices, methods of monitoring, checking, correcting, and regulating blood glucose levels, but the one thing that is said time and time again throughout the book, that no matter how technologically advanced the tools have become/are and no matter how well the synthetic insulin mimics normal pancreas producing insulin, self care, self awareness, or the skills of the user are by far the largest factor that comes into managing blood glucose levels, and in this blog I am going to write about why self awareness, in a lot, if not all, dimensions of ourselves is pertinent to effective blood glucose management.

What is Self Awareness when it comes down to diabetes? For me self awareness within diabetes is being here with the body and the mind and stepping back for a second from all thoughts, emotions, ideas, beliefs - essentially anything that is going to `clog` insight into ourselves and in stepping back from the mind and it's workings, be here with the body and check/communicate with the body about what it is that I will be eating, if stress, exercise, hormones, emotions, feelings, are going to be playing a part on the acceptance of the insulin being injected and the insulin sensitivity.

Why is this important to do, and why can't simple mathematical equations and formulas work if I follow them to the `T` - Being Self aware when injecting insulin, checking blood sugar, correcting blood sugar, and overall care of self within diabetes is important because, as I've experiences as a type 1 diabetic, everyday there has been something different in how the body will react to the insulin injected, and how well the insulin will be received in the body and how well that insulin will work when acting as it does, and if I were to follow a mathematical pattern only based on carbs, correction ratio, carb to insulin ratio, then more often than not the management of the sugar levels would be far out of control (that is not to say that I am in the best control, but in applying myself in self awareness I've seen a dramatic change) because it is not only those few patterns (carbs, ratios, and corrections) that go into the overall usage and function of insulin and usage of sugars within the body - there are an abundance of factors that will affect the usage and function of insulin and sugars within the body. So to reiterate what self awareness is in context of managing diabetes, it is the checking the status of self, within the state of mind and the state of body, within all of the factors that will influence insulin absorption rate and sensitivity to insulin, and this takes time to get to be aware of and know ourselves within. For example, laziness has been a large factor in my care of myself within diabetes, it affects the digestion rate, it affects the insulin absorption rate, it effects how much insulin I need, it affects how much basal rate insulin I will need to inject, and it affects my overall care for myself, and as I am aware of myself in when/where/how I will be lazy I can either do one of two things to support the body in control and care of the sugar levels, I can either work with myself and push myself out of the laziness that I feel if I've injected too little insulin and /or ate too much/anticipated that I would not be lazy at that moment and understand what factors, what thoughts, what emotions I am going through that are contributing and have stimulated/activated the feeling of laziness within me and stop myself from participating in those factors/stimulants, or if I've not injected insulin yet, and find myself physically tired and not wanting to push the body too much and allow myself to rest or be `lazy` if you will, be aware of myself in what I will be accepting and allowing myself to participate within in regards to laziness and support the body by, in knowing what/how laziness affects the sugars, the absorption rate of insulin, the digestion of food, and accordingly eat what will not cause a large spike in sugar levels and eat food that digests easily and does not contain a large amount of carbohydrates to best support the body in/as a state of laziness - within this it is also important to be aware of who you are within laziness, for example I, when being lazy, will tend to get hungrier due to boredom, and I, in awareness of myself in/as that hunger, must act within what is best for the body in/as that hunger, which would be not eating, or eating food that contain little to no carbohydrate and in this as well work with myself to move myself out of that feeling of boredom to make sure that I do not compromise the health of the body by giving into the experience of hunger when feeling bored.

It is really important to understand ourselves in/as how we live and who we are within each dimension of ourselves when considering the health of the body and, in the case of diabetes, how to effectively support ourselves within the body and the body itself to not cause long term consequences which cannot be corrected later on in life, like needing an amputation of a limb due to poor management of ourselves within diabetes.

By the way, it has become quite clear to me within walking with myself in diabetes how important emotional management, understanding emotions/feelings and who I am within the emotions/feelings, how the emotions/feelings come up, what triggers the emotions/feelings is to being effective in taking care of myself in diabetes - I mean during the first few years of having diabetes I was absolutely reluctant, angry, frustrated, sad, depressed about taking care of and having diabetes and as I would allow the emotions to run me and exist within me, my care and support of myself was terrible, and thus it has become pertinent to manage, understand, correct my emotions/feelings/thoughts from the self destructive behaviours that I allow when existing in the thoughts/emotions/feelings to give myself the best care and understanding of myself within diabetes, and these are things that even the world of psychology has failed to understand to the absolute inner workings/functions of the mind and I suggest for those who are as well struggling with their emotions and management and care of self within diabetes, or even without diabetes to start with the free course, with buddy support, of self investigation at http://lite.desteniiprocess.com as the course is set up in a manner, and functions, to best give ourselves the chance to investigate and understand ourselves in our inner workings of the mind and how we've become who we are within the mind

For the next few blogs I am going to walk an emotion/feeling/state of mind each day and share my experience within the emotions and feelings and thought patterns/habits and how it has affected my care and management of myself within diabetes - tomorrow I will continue on with laziness as I've touched only a part of laziness and how it affects me, and who I am within laziness, and I will accordingly write out self forgiveness statements

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