Saturday, May 15, 2010

When Swimming Isnt Planned

Yesterday we had just returned home after volunteering when Maddison felt low. 80. Not really low, but time to eat lunch. No plans the rest of the afternoon. Fed lunch as Maddison eyeballed the left over cookies from Paradise Bakery. A good time to add a cookie to the mix, so I bolus 50c for the GIANT Snickerdoodle. Then someone is knocking at the door. My heart stops. I know that knock. Its Maddison's BFF across the street. My mind starts racing!! OH NO!!! THEY WANT MADDISON TO COME SWIM!!! Seriously, I do believe my heart stopped. Maddison was lowish but now has 4.1 units active and wants to SWIM. SWIM!!!

Can I PLEASE just say NO to swimming? Can we PLEASE just wait until that lunch insulin bolus is worn off? No, not really. Life happens now. So, Maddison hits the pool with her buddies at 168. 4.1 units active. GASP. 27c of Capri Sun like all the other girls have...a super sugary cookie was JUST eaten....she SHOULD be good for an hour right? Not so much.

Maddison was 68 30 min later....with all that active insulin!!! I dont know what it is about swimming. Is it the dual action of arms and legs at one time? Is it the cardio of swimming laps? If we knew Maddison planned to swim I would have bolused FAR LESS insulin for what she ate, if anything! Insulin is TURBO CHARGED by exercise alone....but swimming? Swimming is our enemy. 15c juice. 82. 4 glucose tabs. 79. Gatorade. 128. Add in some Peanut Butter for staying power. My heart races as I try to look as though I'm not bothered at all by the chaos of numbers headed our way. All I could picture was having to pull Maddison's lifeless body out of the pool in front of her little friends. Insulin that is working just too fast, its DANGEROUS. I'm not being dramatic here people. I ask Maddison to please, sit in the Jacuzzi a few minutes so her BS can come up. (I'm sure the HEAT of the Jacuzzi wasn't in our favor either!) Maddison complained, but agreed. 5 min later she's swept away by her friends pool game and diving back into the pool. UGH.

By now its about 1.5 hours after Maddison ate. You know what that means. The 2hr mark is approaching. 2hrs after dosing insulin is when it starts to "peak" for Maddison. Meaning....insulin is working its hardest and fastest to bring blood sugar down. I'm watching with overwhelming stress as Maddison swim laps with her friends, playing some kind of crazy game that girls play. Maddison is having a blast, but soon enough my Diabetes radar says she is looking a bit drained. 54. At the 2hr mark. Where the HELL did her lunch and cookie go!!??

4 glucose tabs. 15c of juice. Gatorade and another 27c Capri Sun. My mind is picturing that 54 plummeting to a 24 or a 14. I want to puke at this point. I sit and chit chat with the neighbors instead, even though I really want to cry. I want to scream. I feel a lump in my throat. And then, all the girls climb out of the pool and decide swim time is done. I COULDNT BE HAPPIER!! THANK GOD!! Now off to play in the Cul-de-sac. 90 with .8 active.

WHY CANT MY GIRL JUST SWIM WITHOUT THIS FEAR?!! WITHOUT DIABETES TAKING OVER!!?? WHY!!?? Swim team is fast approaching. Lesson learned, no active insulin can be working when Maddison steps foot into that pool for training. If only it were that easy. If only Diabetes followed some kind of rules.

Maddison trended low all night last night even with a reduced basal rate and super protein rich snack. I wanted to crawl under the covers and cry. Well, I did actually...after setting my alarm for every two hours. All the what ifs. What if I didnt catch those lows while Maddison was swimming? What if our night was spent hooked up to a D5 drip in the ER? What if Maddison seized while swimming and DROWN? That is a very sad reality for me right now. It could have happened. It could. If I didnt catch those lows, it would have.

Swim team. Maddison wants to swim, and I cant say no just because Diabetes is there. Its up to me to figure it out. Its up to me to manage this. Its up to me to catch the lows. Is it wrong that I feel totally overwhelmed right now? Angry? Fearful? I can plan for swimming, yes. But that doesn't mean Maddison will be safe. That doesnt mean Diabetes will cooperate or even be predictable.

I'm not sure how the whole swim team thing goes. I know Maddison will "train" Monday through Thursday, a straight hour of lap training. I could slap on the CGM. I WILL slap on the CGM...but what am I supposed to do? Walk up and down the pool side while she swims her laps trying to keep the pump near the sensor so it doesn't lose communication? I don't want to have to stop her from swimming in front of all the other kids to check her blood sugar. I don't want to have to make her chew glucose tabs and ask her to stop swimming because she is low. I just want her to swim damn it! I don't want to run her in the 300's and cause damage to her body to assure she is safe from lows. I might just have to. Then again, if she's too high she can't compete well. She won't have the energy to swim her best. Diabetes is SO NOT FAIR.

And the day of the swim meet? Double the gawking eyes. PLEASE stop staring at my child when I poke her fingers. PLEASE stop staring at her pump site that's all wrapped in super sticky plastic tapes for swimming. PLEASE stop staring at the CGM attached just the same. PLEASE stop whispering behind my back. PLEASE don't give me your advice. PLEASE don't ask me stupid questions, because in the midst of all my worry I really might SNAP.

Swim meet day. Double the swim time. Double the stress and worry. Double the possibility of a low. I don't want to be that parent that pulls their child's lifeless body from the pool. I don't even want to think about that. But I cant stop the worry, the REAL possibility of what blood sugars may do on a day of swimming for multiple hours during competition. And...what will blood sugars do all the hours that follow?

I know people with Diabetes are athletes. I know people with Diabetes join swim teams, soccer, gymnastics, whatever the sport.... and do just fine. I know eventually you figure out what works and what doesn't. BUT. IT. WILL. REALLY. REALLY. SUCK. UNTIL. WE. GET. THERE.


Karen said...

Hang in there Kelly! I was on a swim team for 5 years, 4 of which when I had diabetes. It really does suck until you figure everything out....I had to get out an test about every half hour and maybe drink some juice or something, but eventually my mom and I got it figured out and you will too!

AjsMommy82 said...

WOW!!! I'm overwhelmed for you just reading your post!!! I don't know how you'll do it but I know you can and will!!!

Wendy said...

I wanna come to a meet. I wanna cheer with you and scream and hold your stuff while you run back and forth dealing with blood sugars.

And then I want to cry.

My WV: arive

A cure will arive.

Meri said...

One day at a time Kelly! You can do this! You will do this! Kick diabetes arse and DO. THIS!!!

I'm cheering for you!

Anonymous said...

Swimming is difficult; swim team incredibly so. But I'm sure you will figure it out. I would keep juice very handy, so she can gulp a box down after a couple of laps. Different for everybody; she may not drop as much. Gary Scheiner has a good exercise chart in the back of his book "Think Like a Pancreas" and his breakdowns of the exercise and carb amounts needed based on moderate or heavy worked for us. You would be amazed at the amount of extra carbs they need to consume. John Walsh also gives breakdowns but I find he advises too high a carb amount. You will figure it out. You will :)