Last week, my body said ‘Stop’. Not in a friendly, ‘Hey, let’s sit down for a minute and maybe close our eyes and have a little nap’ way. No. This was a ‘You, you’re done. No more.’

There was no negotiating. No cajoling. My body just refused to body.

On Monday and Tuesday last week, I came into work and was back home by midday. (Staying home all day, both days would have been smarter.) My head felt like it was full of paraffin wax and I could barely concentrate. I had to stop on the landing halfway up the stairs up to my office to catch my breath. And when I finally made it to the top, I felt as though I had run a marathon. I dosed up on cold and flu meds to help with the low-grade fever and achy muscles. I felt pathetic. And frustrated and annoyed. And grumpy.

My BGLs were all over the place – high mostly, with the occasional crashing low after I rage-bolused because I was sick of the week being brought to me by the number 15.

On top of it all, I was trying to work with the kidlet to plan her birthday party which was last Saturday. In a moment of weakness (she knows how to pick it!) we agreed to a sleepover party and sent out invitations inviting the little munchkins to head over on Saturday afternoon and settle in for the night. And then, after sending out the invitations, did nothing until the day before the party. We started planning at 5.30 on Friday evening, exactly 24 hours before a drove of excited tweens would be descending on our house.

This is November exhaustion. It happens every year and every year I forget about it until I am in the middle of it. Most years, my body throws a tanty similar to the one it threw last week. Inevitably, there is a day or two where I just have to stop, take stock and recover. And more than that, I need to refocus on the health choices I am making and try to make better ones.

Because when I started to feel exhausted and poorly, I stopped making sensible diabetes decisions. Not enough BGL checks to really know what they hell was going on with the mild infection my body was trying to fight off; too lazy to reconnect a sensor after I ripped one out squeezing into my dress for the Research Australia Awards Dinner on Wednesday night; lousy food choices because I just wanted to grab whatever was easy and nearby, rather than planning and cooking foods that would nourish me while I was feeling below par; and not spending every spare minute asleep or resting, instead trying to catch up on all the things that had slipped while we were in the midst of World Diabetes Day festivities.

The thing is that what I perceive to be the easy way out ends up meaning that it takes longer for me to feel better.  So, a week later, I am still feeling significantly worse than 100%.

This morning, I took stock. I am getting on a plane to Vancouver next Saturday for a very busy week of the World Diabetes Congress and realised that I really need to be better by then. I set alarms for regular BGL checks, I’ll put in a new sensor tonight when I get home and I’ve planned meals for the week. I hate that it takes a downward slide before I am jolted into doing what is best for me. But it just goes to show – yet again – that when the going gets tough, my health is the first thing to take a backseat. Until it can’t any longer.

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