I’m feeling a little vulnerable after a few nasty overnight lows. Three times in the last week I’ve woken around 2.30am with the tell-tale ‘I’m low’ alarms screeching in my heads. I feel heavy. I feel like this.

It goes like this. The middle of the night, and I wake, but not really. I drift between sleep and awake, and whatever dream I am in the midst of starts to become real. I sleep some more, but now, my awake becomes part of my dream and I can’t tell where I begin and where I end.

I know that something is not right and I try to force myself to stir. My eyes are forced open. Legs and arms are heavy. All of me is heavy and thick and my head is muddled. I’m low and I know it, but I can’t remember how to respond.

I drift off to sleep again.

And wake.

‘Get up. Move!’ I tell myself. I try to call to Aaron, but there’s no sound. I reach over for the jar on the bedside table and prise open the lid. And sleep again.

When I wake, there are jellybeans in my hand, but none in my mouth. (I’m lucid right now as I write this, and think about how easy it would be if the glucose could be absorbed through my skin into my bloodstream!) Hand to mouth, tell myself to chew and feel the glucose running down my throat. I force myself not to drift to sleep again, now conscious enough to know that falling asleep with a mouthful of jellybeans is probably not a good idea.

And I’m awake – wide awake, heart pounding, drenched in sweat and starting to panic. Aaron sits up – sensing my terror. He passes me my meter after putting a strip into it. Click goes the lancet and five seconds counts down. 1.2mmol/l it says to me. The numbers don’t register to me, but I can see in Aaron’s face that it’s low. He gets up and grabs me a glass of juice and coaxes it down.

We wait, silently. Bella, our dog stirs in the bathroom, hearing us, thinking it’s morning. She gently scratches at the door, but goes back to sleep when she realised that no one is coming to get her and let her out.

Another BGL check and a 2.6mmol/l. Who would have thought that a number beginning with a two would make us feel better? Safer.

Aaron starts to fall asleep, but I can’t. I am now scared as I start to wonder what this hypo has done to my body. I try to remember recent hypos and how low I was. I lie awake, too scared to sleep. And now I start to count down the hours until the alarm goes off and the day begins.

Eventually, I sleep. But I’m unsettled and force myself awake every hour or so to check my BGL. Not reassured by any number. But I’m not low, so I allow myself to doze again.

The alarm sounds. My body feels like lead. I get up, face the day. It’s another night with diabetes. It’s another day.

So, I guess it’s time for some basal testing and maybe a visit to my lovely endocrinologist. What do others do to help deal with the fallout from hypos that leave you feeling overwhelmed?

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