Sunday, January 24, 2010

30 Days of Touch -- Granola Bar

One of the "joys" of the diabetic life, as my fellow diabetics will attest, is "going low." Technically, that's known as hypoglycemia, but most of us in the diabetic cohort just call it "going low." It happens when our blood sugar goes below the normal range and it impacts us differently depending upon our body chemistry. For me, I tend to start feeling very sluggish. Then I progress (or digress) to fuzzy thinking, slurring words, and dragging my left foot when I walk. And my nose starts running.
It's the last one that bothers me... When the others happen, I tell myself I'm fine, but if my nose starts running, then I know I had better get something to eat and get my blood sugar back up into the normal ranges. Because the next step, for me, after runny nose is ... um... cussing and becoming combative. Until I slip into a sort of sleep state where I feel aware but my body just lays there.

It's not fun.

That's why I've got stuff stashed in my car, my golf bag, my camera bag, desk drawer, etc.

So of course, I never go low where that at work or golfing or in my car. I only go low in places where I don't have a stash and when I have forgotten to carry something with me.

I had gotten lax about that lately and so had some "episodes." My friend Chantale, a fellow diabetic, chided me about that, so I've been trying to be better. So today, when I went to Meeting for Worship, I stuffed my faithful standby -- a Quaker granola bar -- in my pocket. I was teaching Sunday school after worship and so knew that the possibility of needing a snack was real.

And even if I didn't, it was a comfort to know that it was there. Throughout Meeting, I felt that granola bar there. And, when Meeting was over and I stood up, my head felt a little muzzy. So out came the granola bar and back up went the blood sugar. And I was fine to teach and would be okay until I arrived at home for lunch.

As I thought about the granola bar -- that little bit of rolled oats, rice, coconut, raisins, and so on -- and how it could bring me back to life, I thought about the little things I carry with me that bring me back to life spiritually. Mine are mostly invisible, unlike more liturgical friends of mine who carry rosaries or wear crosses or have a talisman in their pocket. Mine are things like spiritual silence and sentence prayers. Things that help me regain a sense of spiritual perspective in the midst of going low spiritually.

Of course, the idea of a spiritual granola bar is just a metaphor... and sometimes nothing can stave off a low, be it physical or spiritual, but professional intervention. A doctor. Or a spiritual friend. But, for me, most of the time, a granola bar is just what the doctor ordered -- for my body or my soul.

-- Brent

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