So: I went to my doctor this past Thursday for my annual physical, and by the end of the exam had learned I have type 2 diabetes.
If I’m being honest, then looking back over the last eight to ten months, this isn’t the biggest surprise. During that time, I’ve lost about thirty pounds, without any real effort on my part. (And this after busting my hump at Tang Soo Do for five and a half years.) I’ve also been tired pretty much all the time, and have felt genuinely physically awful. I chalked some of this up to sleep apnea, some to allergies, but I’d also done the Web MD thing, and in addition to a host of horrifying cancers and Scottish sporan rot, had read that diabetes was a possible culprit. Which isn’t to say that my doctor saying, “Yep, it’s diabetes,” wasn’t a shock, but not an unmitigated one, if you see what I mean.
At the moment, it’s still early days. I’m checking my blood sugar four times a day and injecting fast-acting insulin when the reading’s too high. I’m also taking a pill designed, in the words of the pharmacist, to tickle my pancreas. And of course, my diet has changed, radically. The good news is, my blood sugar has descended, if slowly, from its Olympian heights. And I feel better than I have in a long, long time, which is more cheering than I can say. I’m hoping this might mean I’ll be a bit more productive as a writer, too (I’m looking at you, Ellen Datlow).
I can’t help wanting to include a bit of the public service announcement here: go to your doctor, take care of yourself, that kind of thing. This past July, I turned 48, which is the age my father was when he had two heart attacks, one that put him in the hospital, and one shortly after he was admitted. Even before this doctor’s visit, I was looking over my shoulder, wondering what might be headed my way. Superstitious, but what are you gonna do? After his health catastrophe, my dad had ten years to go. I’m hoping for more.