Namo amitabha Buddhaya, y'all.
This here's a religious establishment. Act respectable.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Practicing Medicine Without a License

I went to an OA convention this weekend. Well, part of one, anyway. I never did get my shit together enough to actually register for this thing, so I just showed up on Saturday morning and paid the day registration fee. It was pretty cool, though, all things considered. There was a great motivational speaker, a couple of nifty workshops, a decent lunch (the restaurant was completely FUBAR, but that's neither here nor there) and a lot of people I know were there, so I got to chat with everybody. Sunday was a bust, between a massage appointment (yay!) and the Oscars (boo!), and I ended up going to bed somewhat early and missing the "big awards" at the end. Nobody tell me who won Best Picture. I'm hiding under a rock until The Hunger Games comes out.

So, today I went to the Post Office at lunchtime to send yet another partial to yet another literary agent (yay!). This did not go well. It kind of never does. I get weirded out, paranoid, think that everyone is staring at me and am sure I'm going to be caught at any moment. Caught doing what, I have no idea. The whole thing is Scaley and Fang territory if I've ever been there, and Caesar, the cat who keeps dinosaurs out of my kitchen, is usually miles away and fast asleep.

But, okay, I got there, and I mailed the package, and I was on my way back to the office when my blood sugar hit the floor. In a great example of I-should-not-be-driving-in-this-condition I managed to miss my turn, get on the freeway for no apparent reason, get off one exit later and loop back to the office around the High-Five interchange, which was inefficient, but worked, I guess. I made it to the elevator without falling down and grabbed a package of Skittles out of the candy jar up front, snarfed them all down in one gulp (no chewing necessary) and kind of fell into my chair, waiting for the sugar to kick in.

I hate this part. My whole body is telling me I need to keep eating until the sugar kicks in, which takes a little time. My brain, on the other hand, knows it just had some sugar, that straight sugar is really bad for it, that a titrated dose is the only amount I'd better have, and that if I have more I'm probably going to be right back in this position in a couple of hours, only with a nice splitting headache to go along. So I sat there, as I often do, gritting my teeth and going, "Come on, come on," until the sugar kicked in, which it did in about ten minutes. Then I was able to get up, go into the kitchen, get my lunch, eat it and behave like a fairly normal human being the rest of the day.

(Annoyingly, I have a lollipop in my car for such emergencies. Completely forgot about it. The brain does not engage when the blood glucose drops below 60.)

Anyway, as I was eating, I was reading stuff from the convention. I found this flyer about things to consider when you're making your food plan. It was all good stuff, good advice and so on, until I got to No. 14: "Have I diagnosed myself as hypoglycemic so I can eat many times each day?"

Oh, yeah. Hypoglycemia doesn't exist (it's even bolded for effect) and I'm making this up.

For Buddha's sake, who wrote that flyer, and where did they get their M.D.? This has been happening to me since I was a little kid. It's worse when I eat sugar. It's better when I have meals about every three hours. I don't have to eat a lot. Just a piece of fruit and some cheese is fine. But I really don't need to burn extra energy hopping up and down trying to convince people I have a "real" disorder.

Okay, maybe I'm overpersonalizing this, but the tone these things are written in comes across to me as, well, a bunch of sanctimonious bullshit. Not that it isn't well-intended, but you remember the obnoxious kindergarten or first-grade teacher you had who used the royal "we" when she meant "you" all the time? Ie, "We don't poke other people" or "We remember our seats"? Yeah. Like that. I hated being talked to like a six-year-old when I was a six-year-old. I promise you, my temperament has not improved since then.

I'd like to hunt down the author of this flyer and see if he or she is aware of how he or she comes across. I bet he or she would be horrified to be compared to an obnoxious kindergarten teacher. But then, I know how these conversations tend to go. "There, there, dear. We didn't mean you. A real medical diagnosis is okay. It's those other people, the ones that are diagnosing themselves, that this is directed toward."

To which I say, bullshit. If you've been moping around for weeks and all you can think about is how great it would be to slash your wrists, I'm not going to wait for you to be diagnosed with clinical depression before I tell you to fucking call 911. If you have a condition, and something makes it better, why would you not do that something?! Nobody prescribed to me four days a week of swimming in chlorinated water. It just seems to help. So I do it. It's called common sense, people. Believe it or not, it's out there somewhere.

Seeing as my language is deteriorating, I'm cutting off this blog post before it gets downright un-religionish. But you see my point. Besides, Joan is wiping the foam from my mouth and taking the keyboard from my hands. Bye, now.

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