Saturday, November 08, 2008

Highs and Lows

As I have posted before Steve has diabetes. He has Type 1, which yes, means he injects himself with Insulin up to 4 times a day. He has had it for the last 24 odd years, so this is nothing new.

Yesterday he came home from work and went outside to finish clearing some of the garden. After dinner he spent another hour and a half out there with the boys.
The boys finally went to bed late about 8.30 and him and I sat down to watch a movie. We finally watched 'St Trinians' with Colin Firth and Rupert Everett, it was a good laugh.
In the evenings Steve will sometimes have a snack, keeps him going, and last night was no different although he ony had a snack size packet of chips.
I went to bed about 11.15 and I think he followed a little while later.

At 2.10am I got woken up by Steve as his arm jerked across the bed. I thought Ben was with him and had maybe kicked him, which he is good at doing when he is sleeping with you, but 2 minutes later Steve did it again.
This time I leaned over to check for Ben and realised that he wasn't there, and that got my brain ticking because Steve didn't ask me what I was doing!
I quickly got the light on and there is Steve laid there staring having these jerky movements. Of course the first thing I did was ask him if he was ok and of course all I got back was this glassy eyed stare.
Now you have to remember that it is 2am and I have just woken out of a deep sleep, so the brain doesn't work as fast as normal at that time. So of course it took me more than a second to realise that he was having a hypo.
So I quickly got a chocolate bar from the box by his bed and then had to ask him to eat it!
It is very weird asking someone who is not communicating with you, who doesn't have any idea what is going on, who probably at that moment thinks the world is a triangle and that green men do exsist! to eat a chocolate bar. Infact after this time Steve asked me why I had woken him up? Because they have no idea this has happened until they come out of it when they go very low.
Luckily for me this time he happily opened his mouth and chewed the bar down, in fact he happily chewed down 4 mini choc bars and a whole glass of juice. The problem I have is that I don't want to give him too much because otherwise then you make him feel like crap because his blood sugar goes so high, but you need enough to get him out of the hypo. The other problem is there is not an instant reaction, in fact last night it took 20 minutes before he was actually talking sensible to me. In hind sight I should have jabbed him with the small glucose injection I have, but as he was able to eat for me then I went down that route instead, but I suppose I could have done both, but hey, there is no manual for this sort of thing, it is a feel as you go situation at 2am all on your own! If I can get him to eat for me then I can get him out of it on my own, but if he is unable to eat then I jab him at the same time as calling for an ambulance. They don't ever have to take him to hospital, but when you have an uncooperative semi consious man help is always nice.

Is it scary? Well my heart is racing the whole time, it is a pain having to race down the stairs to get stuff from the kitchen.
Am I scared of him? Sometimes, unfortunately they get snappy when having a hypo and you are never sure what they will do, although when they go as low as Steve did last night I kinda had no worries as he was never going to be able to physically move off the bed so I knew he was in no harm. You have to use humour during the episode beacuse otherwise you get annoyed with them and they can't help it.
Last night I couldn't work out how to use the blood sampling kit, couldn't get the stabbing pen to work, so there I am trying to test his blood, but I was actually unable to get any. I finally got some with his help after he had come round enough to assist me.
That is the other problem, this is not a regular occurance so 18 months can go by and in that time I kinda forget the silly little things or more to the point I don't forget them but your brain is not thinking straight at 2am when you are suddenly woken out of a deep sleep!

What happened last night....well he informed me that he had forgotten to have his drugs after dinner, so he took them before he came to bed. No problem with that but he forgot a few vital things to take into consideration at the time...
  1. He didn't test his blood to see what it was so he could adjust the amount to take
  2. He forgot to take into consideration that he had used a lot of energy in the garden after dinner, thus burning off a lot of what he had eaten and therefore not needing as much insulin.
  3. He hadn't eaten much during the evening
  4. He took his drugs so close to going to bed that due to points 2 & 3 when the insulin took his blood sugar so low he was in a very deep sleep so he didn't wake up when it started to go low, thus the reason his body woke him, sort of, when it got very low and he was now past the point of being able to help himself.

It is difficult to get annoyed with him, you can't at 2am and then at 7am it doesn't have as much kick to the annoyance. But this is what does scare me.....

We have 2 gorgeous boys, who are a little too young to know what is going on. If I wasn't there last night what would have happened? The boys wouldn't have found him until 6/7am.

My best friend thought it was weird when she realised that I had never had a night away from Steve and the boys on my own. But when I explained to her that I have 3 people to think about at night she kinda saw my point. My first ever night away was at my Hen's Party, it crossed my mind several times and Steve told me to go away one of the times I called home, but it was too bad, I had to call so I knew all was ok at home.

He did spend 3 weeks on his own last year when we moved to Hamilton, so I know he is a big boy and can look after himself, and I have to keep remembering that when I go away, but it still doesn't make it any easier, because I think about the boys.

Oh well, that is a big look into what I live with. Don't get me wrong, this is a rare happening. As I mentioned this was the first time for 18 months that has happened in the night and I have had to assist with. So life is pretty normal to us, just every now and then it has some drama!

1 comment:

Kent and Leisy said...

that is scary!! I guess you know how to deal with issues like that- but I would have freaked!