The spectre of hypos

By | 7 September, 2009
The wife of a diabetic gazing into the fire in the days before television

The wife of a diabetic gazing into the fire in the days before television

Back by popular demand, my wife Katie writes about living with the spectre of hypos. -Tim

It has been said to me on a number of occasions – “Katie we can set our watches by your stomach”. At 12noon that’s it, lunch time, there’s no stopping me reaching for my sandwiches or popping to Marks and Spencer’s for a treat. The feeling of hunger sets in big time and there’s nothing for it, but to feed the hungry monster.

So having a physical job, running and lifting things around before lunch can often make me feel light headed, making it harder to concentrate, and I start to feel a bit shaky and generally the enthusiasm goes and all I want to do is eat. So, as you all know and have experienced, it’s a hypo. My body is lacking in sugars and the energy just goes.

As a non-diabetic my pancreas controls the amount of insulin it pumps in to my body throughout the day depending on how manic or lazy I am being, so it is quite rare for me to have a hypo.  If I do have one it tends to be before lunch or dinner, however, for a diabetic it can be any time through the day or night.

Being married to Tim [Yay! -Tim] I have got to understand how a diabetic body works, I understand how different things can trigger a hypo and affect the way the body functions, which are much more visible and obvious for a diabetic.

Hypos are not nice to have but at least I know my pancreas is working away in the background to help out a bit. For the majority of times Tim does know when he is going to be having a hypo, if I have dragged him round John Lewis shoe department for a bit too long, done a high energy gardening session or if he injects a bit too early for dinner time.  I am often there to help reach for the Lucozade and Fruit Pastilles but he thankfully gets it sorted before it gets too dangerous.

Hypos are obviously serious things to have, but the body is also very clever in giving out warning signs to you. I am not here to preach to anyone but I know from lifting Tim’s bag he has his stash of sugary goodness in there ready for action. As the Girl Guides say always be prepared.

I suppose there is one good thing too being married to a diabetic –the sweetie cupboard is always stocked up very well. Now, when is my next appointment at the dentists…?

6 thoughts on “The spectre of hypos

  1. Alison

    Great to have you back Katie! Have you ever considered that those lows in the John Lewis shoe dept may be strategically planned to help aid his escape? I only ask because I have considered it myself to get the husband out of a computer shop!

  2. Tim

    @Alison I’m too dense to strategically plan something like that; but there’s something about John Lewis that’s particularly hypo-inducing. Very odd.

    And anyway, why would you want to get out of a computer shop? Computer shops are cool!

  3. CALpumper aka Crystal

    Hi again Katie! Great having your perspective.
    I don’t have a candy stash, I have small juice boxes everywhere though.
    I hate lows. No fun. I would like to escape them, I do my best.

  4. Ckoei

    Dear Lady Baden-Powell Brown, I’ve always considered myself to be very prepared to do battle with the hypo-spectre; but usually (especially out in the wild), by the time I “realise” something needs to be done, I’ve regressed to inept fumbling mode and are incapable of whisking up some glucose powder. Therefore you should give your husband a ceremonial snog of gratitude for his mention of Lucozade*: fast, effective and no encouraging bite is needed to invoke my involuntary guzzling of it!

    Take care of your teeth – they are ecellent tools of intimidation when driving a downward-dipping diabetic.

    *If they’d named it Glucozade, I’d have stocked up on their bubbly years ago.


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