Well, that was underwhelming.

I went to my endo’s office on Friday and eagerly asked the nurse for my blood work so I could see my A1c. I’ve been working really hard in the past few months to tighten up control. My last one came back at 6.8%, which is ok, but I have a personal goal and comfort zone of keeping it under 6.5%. I’ve spent the past few months eating better, correcting more highs and lows, and keeping my exercising super-regular. I was more than ready to see the payoff on Friday, but when the nurse handed me my chart and I saw 6.6% all I could think was. “That’s it? That’s freaking it?! All that work for a measly .2% drop. What. The. Eff.

That’s the thing about diabetes. You try and try and try, and it’s every single day. Forever. There’s no blue ribbons handed out, there’s no pat on the back every time you test in range, there’s no motivational coach next to you saying “you are amazing for putting up with this insane, ridiculous, non-sensical disease.” That .2% drop felt like diabetes was smirking at while chuckling “nice try loser.” Even though it felt like I was putting in a tremendous effort, it felt like it didn’t show up in the numbers. Sure, that A1c could be a more “flat line” of numbers – e.g. it wasn’t lower because I was averaging out a bunch of highs and lows, but it still just felt so “meh.”

Results like that are so difficult because the last thing you want to do after diabetes slaps you in the face is try again. And that’s why I’ve always said that truly being successful with diabetes isn’t about perfect numbers, the right A1c, or always making the best decision. It’s about having the strength to get up the next day and try again. Every day. Forever. That’s no small feat by any means.

And yes, sometimes I type these posts because I’m the one that needs a reminder of that.

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Amen to that… All day, everyday. Every damn day lol.

I wouldn’t necessarily get so upset… Think about it: your 6.8% could have been because of all those balancing highs and lows. That’s not good! But a nice clean even 6.6% requires a lot more work, it just means that you’re hanging out at a certain level more often, rather than at a lower level.

Does that make sense? Mostly just to mean that your hard work is going to be shown in other areas, like your standard deviation. You can have a 6.8% A1C and actually have lousy control if you’re bouncing around. Think bigger picture and you’ll realize that you’ve really mastered diabetes. Way to go!

Thank you for that Allison – I do try an think about HOW did I get to that A1c number? Sometimes lower isnt better if you’re just making that out of an average of extremes. I know I need to also be thankful for that 6.6% – it’s in a healthy range!

Keep you head up. My 8 year old daughter was diagnosed in June and you blog saves me! You have such a real, yet positive outlook on this disease. You make me laugh, cry and sometimes just plain pissed about type 1. You work very hard to keep a balance of tight control, yet enjoying as much of a normal life as possible. Your A1c is proof, you are winning. I hope one day when my daughter is on her own managing this disease she will have a healthy balance like you.

Hey. Just wanted to say that you are amazing for putting up with this insane, ridiculous, non-sensical disease. 😀

At least they gave you your results! I called my endo this morning to get mine and they promised to call me back, but no one ever did…

Sierra – WOW, your comment made my day. I am so glad that the blog has been a place that has been helpful and hopeful for you. How wonderful that your daughter has a mom like you who’s involved and willing to learn about this disease. Although you see some of my worst days here on the blog, I’m glad you see the balance too – and that life keeps on trucking. We can do anything we want to do, sometimes it just takes a little more planning!

AJ – THANK YOU for saying that I am amazing! If only we could all do that for each other every single time we test haha! We’d all be feeling the love 🙂

Must say that your blog has so much great information, thanks for letting it all hang out and allowing us to see how the numbers affect your deeper thoughts. But AiC is just one part of the picture. Knowing you have a CGM, how does it compare with the A1C? Can you look at a 30- or 60-day history and see if indeed you are successfully balancing H/L to get this great average? An A1C of 6.8% doesn’t distinguish between your ranging BG 120 – 170 in tight control or 40 – 400, both mean on average you’re at 144, but the second is “making your point the hard way” (for you Vegas craps palyers).

Isn’t it crazy how it takes so much more work to improve when closer to our goal numbers? Exhausting.

Scott – I liken tightening control when you’re close to goal to “losing those last five pounds.” Feels impossible sometimes!!

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