If you, like me, live on the east coast of the United States, you may have noticed something: winter’s here. After weeks of flirtation (oh, I’m 65 degrees and sunny! Oh, I’m a hurricane that devastates the eastern seaboard and yet leaves foliage on the trees!) it is now decidedly cold. Not to the point where stepping outside brings tears to my eyes cold, but cold enough that a hat is a necessity. And, more importantly, blueberries are no longer in season.
This might not be a big deal to most people, but it is really fucking me up. Why? Because for the past six or seven months, blueberries have been an integral part of breakfast for me, which is my most difficult meal of the day for me to control, blood sugar-wise. Here is my breakfast: a 4-oz container of 2 percent low-fat Breakstone’s cottage cheese (don’t even think of pulling Friendship cottage cheese on me — that stuff is bullshit), and one cup of blueberries. That takes 3.8 units of Novolog for me to cover; I take it as a dual wave with 60 units of Symlin to slow things down. On days when I don’t go to the gym, that covers me (though it does make me very confused about what sort of morning hormones are requiring such a ridiculously high insulin-to-carb ratio). But whatever. It tends to work. On mornings when I go to the gym I skip the Symlin, save the blueberries for after the workout, and take 2 units of insulin with my cottage cheese.
So want to know why I am cursing so much? BECAUSE THERE ARE NO LONGER ANY BLUEBERRIES AVAILABLE. (Or at least not ones that I can rationalize paying for.) As a result, I am typing this blog post with a blood sugar of 38 mg/dl, waiting desperately for it to come back up. IT IS NOT EASY TO TYPE A BLOG POST WITH A BLOOD SUGAR OF 38 MG/DL!!! And it is even more difficult not to down the entire tube of glucose tablets sitting next to me. But I’m not going to. Because if I do, I am going to spend the entire morning soaring in the high 200s and am not going to be able to bring my glucose back down. I have to be patient and wait for the food that I KNOW IS IN MY STOMACH to kick in and bring me back up.
This is not what I intended to blog about this morning. I was going to blog about the connections between home renovation and diabetes management. That may sound equally low-blood-sugar-influenced but I’ve been thinking a lot about it and have things to say. But I am not going to write about that now, because instead I would like to lament the general ill effects of any kind of schedule or season changes on diabetes management. It has been 12 years now and yet this continues to amaze me — how traveling, or holidays, or even the freaking time of year can destroy whatever semblance of “control” I’ve managed to achieve.
I know what the solution is. Omelettes. My winter go-to breakfast tends to revolve around eggs. But first of all, I’m not working at home these days, which makes it harder to fry up eggs. And second, I don’t want to eat eggs for breakfast every day. When I was diagnosed, I remember eating a breakfast of cottage cheese and Egg Beater omelettes with parmesan cheese every day for a year, and the mere thought of it makes me want to throw up. I am considering doing something with yogurt and frozen blueberries, but that involves getting the blender out and then cleaning little bits of blueberry skin out of the blades every day. And I am too lazy and tired at the moment to do that. So instead, this morning I had my cottage cheese and a Lara Bar (which affects my blood sugar much less than I would think). And I took only 2.9 units. And I biked to work, which I do every morning. And I went to 38.
Now I’m back up to 75, but my irritation has not subsided. I need a new breakfast plan, ideally one that involves fruit, and I don’t know what it should be. My husband has gotten really into oatmeal recently and when I look at that, I am filled with nostalgia for the days before diabetes when I was able to eat Cream of Wheat — so creamy, so delicious, so carbohydrate-heavy and nutritionally vapid. Like the blueberries, those days are gone. And it’s not even December. I’ve got some figuring out to do.