Though the notion of the “little black book” may seem archaic in today’s wireless world of Blackberrys and iPhones, I find something charming in the idea of a little book with neatly penned names and phone numbers lining the pages. I do not own such a book, however charming it may be, as I do succumb to the wonders of wireless technology. But I do have my own, albeit diabetic, form of a little black book.
It’s a beautiful, brown leather book, with a ribbon to hold one’s page, approximately the same width and length as my tester, which I use as my daily blood sugar, insulin and carbohydrate log. It had been a gift for me from a friend before I had diabetes, but I had never been sure what to use it for. When I was diagnosed with diabetes I started using a standard spiral bound notebook to record my blood sugars, insulin dosages and carbohydrate intake as recommended by the doctor, in order to better control my diabetes. I went through spells of using large notebooks, small ones, and not using one at all. Regretfully, the latter stage lasted longer than it should have and directly correlated to an increase in my A1C levels.
My doctor had recommended the log to better track blood sugar patterns and make appropriate basal or carb ratio changes, but this isn’t the number one reason I feel I need to use one. Writing down my blood sugars and carb intake as they occur forces me to pay attention to the fact that yes, I am diabetic, and yes, that means I need to do all that fun stuff like monitoring my blood sugar levels, giving insulin and calculating carb intake. As a result, I am more attentive to my diabetes when I’m using the log book than when I’m not. This is why I’m a fan of a log book over the digital options that track insulin and blood sugars via a pump or tester, because although those can create some great graphs, they allow me to ignore my diabetes too easily.
So despite my Blackberry, laptop, iPod, and all the other wireless wonders I indulge in, when it comes to logging my blood sugars, I’ll stick to my old fashioned log book, which constantly reminds me to pay attention.