Trial and Error

I’m a math-minded person.  I like it when there’s a right answer and a wrong answer and a clear way to find out which is which. 

I like formulas with predictable outcomes.  I like it when there’s one path to the solution.

I don’t like trial and error.

But as someone with diabetes, I’m pretty familiar with trial and error.  It drives me nuts that so often I have to attempt the wrong diabetes-management strategy a few times before I find the right one.

Take, for example, my current “what-the-heck-is-going-wrong?” situation:

My night time bloodsugars were great for a while, but a few days ago they started to go up.  For about a week now I’ve been spending the majority of the night up above 9.0 mmol/l (160 mg/dl) – and bolusing multiple times during the night to try to get it down.  Unacceptable!

So I have two theories:

  1. I often nosh on various sources of protein in the evening to curb my snacky cravings.  I’m thinking I may need to be bolusing for this protein.
  2. I am in the process of weaning my daughter, which means less milk production (FYI – milk production seriously drags down the bloodsugar!) and some crazy hormone changes which may be causing these wacky highs.

I would love to be able to plug all the variables into a formula and spit out the answer, but it’s not that easy.  Instead, I’ll have to assume it’s one of my theories (I’m starting with the protein one), make the related changes to either my basals or my boluses, and then see what happens. 

Of course, one night of “trial” isn’t enough to prove whether or not it’s working, because there could always be other factors at play.  So I try again for a couple of nights, attempting to keep all other variables the same so as not to skew my results.  If I’m lucky, I’ve found something that works.  If not, I chalk it up to “error” and do a new “trial”.

It just bothers me that every time I end up with an “error” it means a couple of days of less-than-ideal bloodsugar levels.  I want to get it right the first time!

But, I suppose all this trial and error is teaching me patience and flexibility….

…or something like that.


3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Sylvie on March 29, 2010 at 9:24 am

    Good one Bethany!! I just started on the pump recently and so I am trying to figure out if my basals are right, especially overnight. But the “multiple variables’ factor is driving me around the bend and back!!! I get ya!!!


  2. Posted by Noel on March 31, 2010 at 12:23 pm

    I have to do a delayed bolus for protein. It only affects my BG after approximately 2-3 hours, so it’s hard to time, and I haven’t figured out the proper ratio yet either. It’s a tough nut to crack.


  3. Posted by Sarah on April 23, 2010 at 10:37 pm

    My BS does the up at night thing. It started out of the blue about 6 months ago, go to bed normal and wake up close to 200. I had to end up raising my basal by 0.40U over night to combat the highs (over several days). Mine comes up from normal, so no dawn effect. Endos were absolutely no help. I had to work with trial and error to get mine right too. Keep up the trying. Best of luck!

    I am thrilled to see your new blog, bc you invited me to follow your pregnancy on the old blog. Thanks for taking the time to let us all in!


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