Upon first reading this prompt, my initial reaction was, "what isn't weird about type 1 diabetes?" At its most fundamental, it's a disease that is essentially the same in everyone (an ability of the pancreas to produce insulin), yet it shows itself so differently from day to day and person to person. What works for one person may not work for another, and what works for someone one day may not repeat itself the next.
So I thought I would pick one aspect that is perhaps more frustrating than weird, but still a regular issue in our house. Exercise.
Last year and the year before, Dylan played ice hockey. A grueling, strenuous, and highly skilled sport that demands a level of fitness and commitment that can challenge any child, and parent, let alone one with type 1 diabetes. Yet we managed. After some trial and error with temp basal rates (and different rates for practices than games), we finally found a system that worked for us. MOST of the time at least.
Then this fall Dylan decided he wanted to switch back to soccer instead, so that he could play on a team with many of his friends.
Back to square one we go. While hockey and soccer may appear similar in terms of cardiovascular fitness and physical exertion, according to Dylan's blood glucose rates, they are quite different. Well, at least we think they are. Every time we think we've got the temp basal for games figured out, his post game bg is totally different than the previous game.
So many variables are involved - what position he plays (he'll run much more playing midfield than defense, for example); what the weather is like; how much playing time he gets (dependent on the number of subs available at each game); what time of day the game begins (is it right before lunch, or 2 hrs after lunch, for example)?
After the first game of the season we were convinced we were on to something! He ran a 70% temp basal starting 15 minutes prior to the game. He drank a 750ml 10 carb electrolyte drink instead of water, and had 4 orange wedges at half-time. His post-game bg was 4.7mmol/l. Not bad. The following game I wasn't there and he forgot to run a temp basal altogether. He drank water and his post-game bg was 11.9. Wtf? Without the temp basal his bg should have been low, not high.
And so it has continued every game since then. Up and down, up and down. The weirdness of type 1 diabetes...