Sensing small changes

Ever since I realized that unfelt (on the surface) stress responses to an event pitches me into three days of glucose chaos, I vowed to raise my awareness of how I react to small, seemingly minor frustrations.

Yesterday, I sensed in the morning a slight disconnection, a small struggle to remember things I knew well and my mounting frustration at this slowness in my responses. Underlying anxiety is usually at play here.

I start my work day at 7 a.m., and have everything I need in specific pockets of my jeans. My debit and discount cards are in the front right, my iPhone and insulin pen in the left rear, my name tag (which I use to clock in and out) is in my front left. Usually, after I clock in I clip the name tag on my vest. Occasionally, I’m absent minded after clocking in, and I return to the name tag to my pocket. This raises the question of whether I clocked in or wandered right past the time clock.

I had one of those “did I or didn’t I?” moments yesterday. If I don’t clock in, the cash register won’t let me install the float, so it’s a problem. Then my mind flashed to the exact time on the clock when I swiped my card, which proves that I did clock in. Still, not remembering something so routine is unsettling. Or maybe it’s the routine that makes it easy to forget.

I noted the incident and moved on. There are a number of things to remember at the next phase of my job, and I managed to get through that fine. But later, I added an extra zero to the amount of cash a customer handed me, and the till told 10-times the amount of change to give. The customer clarified what change she was owed. I called a supervisor because I didn’t want the error to mess up the accounting. But I paused while using the telephone to page the supervisor — the numbers to access the paging system vanished from my brain. Fortunately, my fingers remembered the sequence. The supervisor came to my department and said all was fine. The mistake makes no difference to accounting; the important thing is the customer got the correct change.

I consciously calmed myself after the incident. No harm was done. The customer recognized I had a brain fart moment. No biggie.

None of this was a big deal, other than to me. And I could have made things so much worse by blowing it up in my mind. I could have chastised myself, felt worthless and done the whole thing I’ve done all my life when mistakes are made, and that’s beat myself up. A proportionate response has never really mattered — small things end up in huge responses. I know now I’ve taken things too far in the past, and I’m trying to resolve that now.

I try to merely note the incidents in an “Oh, that’s interesting,” kind of way and carry on. Still, yesterday, I found it hard to make eye contact with customers, a fact that I only became aware of later in the day. Some part of me didn’t want to connect with people and I wonder what was going on there.

I have so much on my mind right now, it’s probably not a surprise parts of my thought process are overwhelmed. I’m facing my last four-day week at my current job before I reduce it to one day. I have a new home-based job in the offing, and am working with a tech guy to get the government-issued computer up and running. After the first session, we set up a variety of passwords. I tried to log in the next day and my password wasn’t accepted. I have to make another appointment. I’m trying to convince myself the error isn’t my fault.

I also got booted off the work benefits plan for unknown reasons, so yesterday at my lunch break I was on the phone to them. The reason given in the email was a non-payment of monthly fees, but they are supposed to take it from my bank account. The rep didn’t have an answer for how that could happen, so said she’s “making a case” for another department to resolve it on my behalf. Oh, and I have a dental cleaning in a couple weeks…yikes.

As for fasting…I tried to immediately return to fasting after that five-day non-successful go at it, and immediately I felt awful. I had a kind of internal tremor going on that seemed unhealthy, so I returned to eating for a few days. I will start again soon. The incentive to lose weight hits me every time I pull on the only pair of jeans in my wardrobe that fit me. Insulin makes me fat, and fasting reduces the amount of insulin I need, allowing me to lose weight.

My glucose was noticeably up yesterday in a reaction to my emotional turmoil. The day before I didn’t need to use corrective insulin for most of the shift while yesterday I injected two or three times. No conscious feeling of anxiety. It’s that deep stuff that messes me up.

Today is a day off, and the weather is going to be okay so I’d like to take Gemma out to the bay for a while. In these pre-dawn hours I’m already writing, which gives me a sense of completion, calm and connection.

And I’m commending myself for a heightened awareness of how I process adversity. In that regard, yesterday was a good day. When I was younger these kind of small things would snowball into major bouts of self-deprecation. Today, I’m more aware of the hazards of beating myself up. I don’t want my blood sugar to spike. I want to remain as calm as I can be. Life is better that way.

Thanks for being there. I’m afraid “getting a new like or follower” is added to how I measure my self-worth.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: