Thursday, April 18, 2013

Voice of Reason

Today's Prompt: I Take it Back. Write about a time that you lashed out at someone close to you because of frustration/fear/anger resulting from your health condition and you wish you could take it back. Forgive yourself and let it go.

This prompt resonates with me.

One of the symptoms of high blood sugar is rage. I won't call it uncontrollable, but it kind of is. The surge of stress hormones that occur with a high blood sugar is the same as that which occurs in the nervous system's Fight or Flight response. And my response is always Fight.

There were times early in my relationship with my husband where I would snap his head off while my blood sugar was high and he would snap back and I would escalate it and it would explode. We found out that, for us, it was important that he knew my blood sugar was high and that he touch me and tell me I was okay. The touch snapped me out of it and his gentle tone gave me no resistance. Nothing to fight back against. I always instantly stand down and realize what's happening.

When my blood sugar level returns to normal, we can talk about what I said or did.

If you love someone whose blood sugar fluctuates, one of the most supportive and gentle things you can do is honor that request - wait until their blood sugar has stabilized before you deal with the way you're upset that they behaved. Wait until it's level before you ask "what did you eat?" or "how dare you speak to me that way!" or "what is your problem?"

Their problem is that they are fighting for a shred of normal.

Now that I'm a parent, there is a new kink I haven't worked out yet. When I'm high, sometimes I snap at my daughter. My Sweetie. My everything.

And there's no begging patience from someone whom you are charged with protecting.

There have been a few times - I can count them on one hand - where I hear a voice speak that is not my own. It's an awful sound. I bark my daughter's name too loudly. I tell her to sit down for the umpteenth time or to stop jumping on the bed, but I say it with an unnecessary growl. It's a sound I recognize as that of my family members who are yellers. I have never considered myself a yeller. But there it comes. From deep within. A place of rage.

I can't stand that voice. I can't stand what it represents - someone who is lashing out because they can't control the situation. I've asked my husband to point it out if he hears it. I was high the other day, frustrated, and it happened. I don't remember what she was doing, but I shouted her name from the table, a little too harshly, abruptly, loudly. Hubster looked at me. I don't remember what he said, but he caught it. He pointed it out. He was gentle. It was helpful.

Now when I hear it, I have a new response. I immediately go check my blood sugar. I immediately correct the number I see. I take a deep breath and kiss my daughter. She always seems unaffected by my shout, but I've been growled at before. I am not naive enough to think it won't affect her. Every parent snaps at their kids now and then, I know.

But that's a voice I am trying to stifle. A voice that should remain silent.

I will not let diabetes speak to my children that way.

the sweetest rage face ever

1 comment:

  1. oh, I know. I know this. thank you for writing this poignant post.