"Have you ever seen me defeated? Don't you forget what I've been through And yet I'm still standing." (Evita, 1996)
I arrived at the Diabetes Centre at St Paul's hospital this morning, dreading my appointment with my endocrinologist. The receiving area was almost devoid of people: I had arrived early. I checked myself in before sitting down to gather my thoughts while I wait to be called.
My doctor emerged from his office, a man in his 60s with a rather cheery disposition that made me suspicious. He called my name and shook my hand. He led me into his office, and started going through my blood work -- an endless list of mystifying acronyms and puzzling medical terms with numbers that did not make sense to me.
He looked up from the reports and suggested I take more insulin before every meal. He also suggested, that I cut the carbs from my diet.
I wasn't prepared to do all those things and flatly said no. He sighed. Both him and I knew there's not much he can do unless I make significant lifestyle changes. I was already on a trifecta of powerful antihyperglycemic drugs, and they won't make a huge difference if I continue eating and drinking whatever I want. I refused to see a dietitian because I'm offended at the thought of someone telling me what to eat. The last dietitian I saw, unfortunately, was on the receiving end of my snarkiness.
"No," I had said, standing up and heading towards the door. "You do NOT tell me what I should or shouldn't be eating."
"I'm only trying to help," she protested.
"Didn't ask for it," I snarled as I unceremoniously left her at her table, her diet chart empty.
It seemed like my options these days were awful-tasting brown rice, boring lentils, unremarkable quinoa, tasteless greens and unsalted food. I cannot consume too much protein as this will, in turn, trigger my gout.
I've done this before, and I was a bitch. No one would want to be on the receiving end of my sugar-deprived nastiness especially when the very food that gave me comfort was taken away.
I just looked at my endocrinologist, noticing the wispy white hair on the sides of his head. I glanced at my doctor's notes, even though they were upside down to me. The first line read: "Nelson's diabetes maintenance has been sub-optimal." I sighed. I tried to stay positive, but I also felt very defeated.
Tomorrow is another day.