I’m writing this post because I think there is a strong link between T1D and obsession with numbers. I often see or hear people talking about blood sugar numbers or pounds in weight they have lost in relation to their mood in a very obsessive way. Share photographs of their perfect blood glucose level, captioning it with “look at this number, it’s going to be an amazing day”. Or even worse, and unrelated to diabetes, I see posts like “another 2lb off, I’m finally getting somewhere”.
Whilst it’s great to stay positive and celebrate small victories it makes me wonder if we are too obsessed with numbers? What do these people think about their day if they wake up with a bad number, either on the scale or on the meter. Does a bad number (out of range or not what they were expecting) mean that they are going to have a bad day? If the number on the scale hasn’t moved do they feel stuck like they are getting nowhere?
Before I was diabetic I was very driven by numbers with regards to weight management. I would be happy if I was lighter or thinner and therefore a smaller size in clothing. But, of course, if those numbers went the opposite way I was very unhappy. It was very obsessive, exhausting behavior and one I knew I could not continue and link to diabetes management.
Although I sometimes go back to that place with my weight I try my best to not let my blood sugar dictate the level of my mood or how my day goes. Some days my blood sugar is great all day, some days it isn’t. If I wake up with a good blood sugar, great. If I don’t, I fix it and then move on. That’s it.
If I were to let any of those numbers dictate the direction of my day I would probably end up very miserable all the time. Sure, I aim for tight control on everything, but perfection is unattainable, especially in diabetes management. For instance, this morning, I woke up and my blood sugar was 10mmols. I have rehearsals, research, work and loads of other things to do. Do I really want to start my day in a shitty mood because my blood sugar is out of range? Or do I want to move on from it as quickly as possible?
I have the choice and I choose to move on. What do you think? Is there a link between T1D and obsession with numbers?
Let’s not let anything control our happiness apart from us. Everyone has a choice.