This is what we call a long, persistant low blood sugar in my family: dragging the bottom.

And this is what we had yesterday, after — yes — two days of inexplicable highs. It was the first day back at school after half term, and despite changing patterns — (different insulin regimes on the pump, for different sets of activities: one for school, one for holidays), which for us involved lowering the insulin — E was still fighting lows for much of the day.

The real problem was the exercise he did first thing — at 9am. Like the good guy he is, he remembered to put himself on a lower temp basal afterwards, to lower the insulin and account for the sugar that will have been used up by the exercise. When he got home though, he was already dragging the bottom (8 hours after the exercise). He treated the low, then proceeded to eat LOADS of food, as he does, taking insulin for every snack along the way. Before dinner, he was still surprisingly low — only 5.4mmols, having had a snack only 45 minutes beforehand.

Our mistake was that we didn’t ‘undercarb’ his meal. Which we should have done. We just didn’t click that this was too low too soon after food (normally we would expect a 9 or 10mmol reading 45 mins into a snack).

An hour and a half later, he was 5mmols again and knew he was dropping, feeling grim. Had some juice. A half an hour later he was 3.8mmols, still rough. More juice. A half an hour later he was still 3.9mmols, and, you guessed it, feeling like a wrung out washrag. More juice. By this point he was on a lower temp basal too, to try to catch up with himself. A half an hour later he was 6.4mmols. Phew. In the middle of the night: 4.9mmols. A little more juice, just to be on the safe side. (The exercise and the day’s pattern made things unpredictable-feeling…)

This morning he woke on 7.4mmols. Good.

But he had spent two hours last night dragging the bottom. Was completely exhausted, pale, and cross about it all.

Damn. We did what we always do about exercise, and it wasn’t enough. As usual, with hindsight we can see that he’d been sedentary for a week, so the exercise probably hit hard. But hindsight doesn’t keep him from going through it!

Grrr… You get tired of learning things when really just knowing them would save a lot of heartache…