I'm Tired and Discouraged

By Pegsy Latest Reply 2018-02-24 01:40:40 -0600
Started 2018-02-09 11:31:03 -0600

I'm tired. I could really use some encouragement. I've been dealing with type 2 diabetes since the fall of 2011. I have accomplished much. I've lost 87 lbs. and have kept it off by following a low carb diet. I exercise every day. I have been able to reduce Metformin from 2000mg daily to 1000mg daily. I would love to get to that place where I can stop taking Metformin but can't seem to get my A1c below 6. I struggle with Dawn Phenomenon and nothing I try seems to work for very long. I have developed issues with anxiety which was never an issue for me in the past. I have learned that anxiety can be a side affect of Metformin, especially if you've been taking it for a while. I've been taking it for 5 years. The positive benefits of Metformin have kept me on it despite the side effects I have experienced over the years. The lower dose helps but the anxiety can be overwhelming at times. I do not want to add medication to treat anxiety. I am the sort of person that tends to experience the negative side effects of every drug I have ever taken so I would prefer to be on no prescription drugs at all. I know that stress has been a big part of the problem but my stress levels have decreased much in the past year without much benefit in regard to my A1c, Dawn Phenomenon and sleep issues. As a matter of fact the Dawn Phenomenon seems to suddenly be getting worse, not better. I will continue to do what works and seek additional info to help me overcome and deal with it all but…I'm tired and discouraged.

17 replies

IKnowWhoIAm 2018-02-15 20:49:09 -0600 Report

Have you looked into a Paleo dietary lifestyle? From what I've read doing research on it, it has helped numerous people get off diabetic medications. I've lost 7.8 pounds last week on it. (I'm a big girl though, so it doesn't like a big loss yet.) It does cut out all grains, dairy and legumes, but we're to make meals on the fly long as we keep meat and veggies in the fridge. There's also a website called FITera.com that worked amazingly to cut my sugars in half (when I kept up with it.) My erratic lifestyle that includes job travel, little sleep at times and poor management on my part made it harder to keep up with because you have to plan your meals in advance… HOWEVER, the plan used normal food. It is high in protein and focuses on the time of day that certain food combinations are eaten. You choose to plan 4-5 meals per day rather than 3. I had gotten off of insulin AND oral meds when I stuck to it…I just didn't stick to it. Too many excuses…

Chris Clement
Chris Clement 2018-02-14 23:21:25 -0600 Report

I hope you can overcome the discouragement. You are definitely not alone. At times, diabetes just gets you down. Sometimes it's hard to shake.

Have you discussed the dawn phenomenon with the doctor recently? If you do, I might suggest asking if metformin extended-release (ER) might help. I've heard that there are fewer side effects with it, and I wonder if it could reduce morning blood sugar.

Conadyl77 2018-02-11 04:38:24 -0600 Report

Hi Pegsy . I have just been diagnosed with type two . I think your a1c results sound impressive . I think maybe you should rethink you're perception of medication . I See nothing wrong with needing to be on medication . You might be affected in a more positive way if you look at it differently . Medicine can be a wonderful thing . I sympathize with your stress and anxiety problems . I'm a veteran of the warin Iraq and I've been plagued with severe ptsd ever since 2003 and anxiety with depression has haunted me all my life . I recently started seeing a very genuine good psychiatrist for ptsd , anxiety , and depression . I started taking a medication called mirtazapine . It is not a narcotic and it is not a serotonin re-uptake inhibitor either . It is used to treat anxiety , Ptsd , stress , depression , panic attacks , and can even help with insomnia which I suffer from too . It works the natural chemicals in your brain to deliver a genuine feeling of well being . I'm telling you all this because I could not believe how much it has helped me . It's the only thing that's ever worked for me . The stress and anxiety are becoming a thing of the past . I'm even able to sleep for a few hours at a time every night . It's totally compatible with all insulin and oral diabetic meds too . Please talk to your doctor about it and give it a try . It also has no negative side effects . Your comment just really spoke to me cause I suffered from the same feelings until very recently and wanted to tell you I case you're willing to try it . It's called Mirtazapine . Good luck and I hope it gets better for you . Have a blessed day . -Andrew

MrsCDogg 2018-02-10 20:19:07 -0600 Report

I was having severe anxiety/panic attacks. They were debilitating for me. I discovered EFT Tapping. Just happened across it one morning early while browsing on YouTube. It works ever time for me. I also do not want to take any more drugs because I already take a boat load because I am on dialysis. Hope you can find something to help with your anxiety.

GabbyPA 2018-02-11 11:35:16 -0600 Report

What is EFT Tapping?

AJNatural 2018-02-12 19:50:02 -0600 Report

Gabby - EFT stands for Emotional Freedom Technique. There are some instructional videos on YouTube that you can follow. I use this on myself and with my clients. It's based on the concept that negative thoughts, memories, and experiences are stored in our cells as cellular memory, where they stay until they're released. If these negative thoughts, memories, and experiences are not released, they can, and often do, affect our organs, tissues, and muscles, turning into disease.

It's a pretty neat process. I do it often. After I release an emotion, another comes up for healing. It's like peeling away layers of an onion. Give it a try and let me know how it turns out.

Consueloj 2018-02-09 22:44:55 -0600 Report

I hear you Sister! That freakin' DP seems to punch a big hole in all the hard work and discipline we practice. Insomnia/sleep issues also plague me alot of the time and I have found some sleep relief in taking Aleve PM a few nights a week. I hate having to take anything - but I have kids to drive around and it was getting scary. Reducing your metformin dosage is a huge success! I have found some lowering in my morning numbers by taking a shot of ACV during the night when I get up to use the bathroom. Have you researched bitter melon?

Pegsy 2018-02-10 12:09:28 -0600 Report

You are so right about DP punching holes in all our hard work and self discipline!

I'm sorry you experience sleep issues. My problem isn't falling asleep.
It's staying asleep or getting back to sleep. I don't want to use sleep aids because I will get hooked on them. I've done that in the past and don't want to go there again!

I found your use of ACV during the night to be interesting. I used to take it at bedtime but it didn't help. Taking it when I get up to use the bathroom could be doable. Does it ever bother your stomach? How much do you take?

I have no experience with Bitter Melon. Do you? I'd be interested in how you use it and and what it does for you.

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2018-02-09 21:38:39 -0600 Report

Hugs to you Pegsy.

I have been on Metformin longer than you but have never had a problem with anxiety. I know what it is like to become tired and discouraged but then I fall back on what my therapist told me years ago.

You can continue to be tired and discouraged or you can change that, the choice is yours. He was correct. I refocused on many things that I had let go because I was tired and discouraged.

I have a lot of hobbies that I can fall back on when I feel the need to do so. Doing things you like to do or learning something entirely different. I agree with what Gabby said, become one with nature. I live near our Inner Harbor and I frequently go over a bride over the river that feeds our Harbor. Looking at the water is very relaxing. I can see ships going to the port and wonder where they came from or where they are going when they leave.

Get involved in something that will allow you to meet and make new friends. As soon as I can find my Baby Loom (I have no idea where i put it) I am going to learn how to loom beaded pendants. Saw the video on You Tube.

Year before last for my birthday, my sister gave me a wireless speaker. I have Boomer Radio and I Heart Radio on my phone. I turn on Bluetooth and listen to all of my favorite music.

As for Dawn Phenomenon, I eat protein some nights before bed. My numbers are fine when I wake up. I really do not spend a majority of my time focused on Diabetes or being Diabetic. If my numbers are good I don't worry about it. If they are bad I get them back to the good level all without worrying or focusing on it. Worry, discouragement, anxiety and stress plays a role on your mental stability as well as your physical health. So it is up to you to choose between being tired and discouraged or finding something positive and fun to focus on. Good luck.

Pegsy 2018-02-10 12:01:01 -0600 Report

Hi Joyce. Thank you for the hugs and well wishes. Thank you also for reminding me that long term discouragement is a choice.

Thank you for sharing your therapist's advice. Sometimes all it takes is to refocus.

And thanks for telling me about your wireless speaker. I am definitely going to look into that. My favorite music is not on a local radio station but my husband streams it via the internet. They now have a phone app and we are going to try to stream it via our phones. A wireless speaker would really help. Music is a great stress reliever!

As for Dawn Phenomenon, I tried eating protein before bed for a while but it didn't always help and it caused me to gain weight. I really want to try fasting but I really need to get off the Metformin for that.

One good thing that I am focusing on right now is our plans for life after my husband is retired. He will be retiring around this time next year. We plan to do some serious RV traveling for at least a year. See the country and visit family for as long as we please. I am really looking forward to that and already planning and preparing for it.

GabbyPA 2018-02-09 14:01:44 -0600 Report

Big giant hugs!!
I know it gets to be a tiresome trek because there is not an end to it. It is there 24/7 and that is something many people don't realize. I wish I could give you a magic answer, but I'm afraid I don't have one.
The thing that helps me most with feelings of being overwhelmed or anxious about situations is doing something I really enjoy. For me, that generally involves time to commune with nature, on my own, in a place of wonder. I always feel so much better after I do that. The other thing that helps me is to express my feelings either in words or in art. Both give me a safe outlet to just be real. No one else has to receive it or see it, I can burn it when I am done, which I often do if it's a very negative view of things. It is a release for me.

The only thing I have found to really help me with my dawn phenomenon is fasting. I know it's not for everyone, but it is the only way I can get my liver under control. The longer I fast the better the results. The more consistent I fast the better the results. It is a challenge for me sometimes, specially with lots of stress because I eat when I am stressed. Knowing it helps me curb it, but sometimes I am not on top of it and it gets away from me.

I know it's easy to say to focus on the good stuff. But it's not always easy to do. Perhaps a little less of feeling the need to be perfect might help?

Pegsy 2018-02-10 11:48:17 -0600 Report

Thank you for the hugs, Gabby! I needed that.

I understand what you're saying about, "no end to it". While I am prepared to deal with it for life, I am frustrated about still having to take the Metformin despite all the other changes I've made. That's really the core of what I am tired and frustrated about.

I do need to focus more on doing the things I enjoy. I've kinda lost track of what that is! I have had so many years of overwhelming responsibility that there just wasn't time for that and I have changed a lot. I need to learn all over again what I enjoy doing. I love to travel and we are doing more of that.
I love to walk and hike but that can be prohibitive this time of year. I like to read and I'm getting back into that. I love to sing and have joined a community choir. Writing is something I did as a teen but haven't done any since those days. I'd love to take up painting again but everything else seems to take priority over it. Maybe I'll explore photography while I'm out walking and traveling!

I would love to try fasting for glucose control and Dawn Phenomenon but I take Metformin twice a day and it must be taken with a meal, otherwise I will have digestive issues. This is another reason why I want to get off the Metformin.

I understand about eating when stressed. That's a big part of how I got up to 215 lbs. I was a sugar addict and used sweets to swallow my stress. When I stopped sugar I had to learn new ways to deal with stress. That was hard. I learned to pray, exercise and find other, non food distractions.

Thank you also for the advice on not trying to be so perfect. I was trained as a child to be a people pleaser and to always strive for perfection in everything I do. An impossible standard such as that is a sure recipe for anxiety and depression, isn't it? I'm learning to say to myself, "Good enough, is." Not everything needs to be done perfectly. I am also learning that when I am not so hard on myself it frees me up to not have such high expectations of others.

Thank you for caring and for your words of wisdom. I really appreciate you!