By Travis Grubbs
November 6, 2008, 7:45 a.m: I was so cold! I hadn’t gone deer hunting in the morning in several years. Even though I had dressed in layers, the 45 degree air was still finding its way to my skin. I kept thinking that while it was such a “rush” riding my new (and first) 4 wheeler to the deer stand, the ride had also chilled me to the bone.
I had wanted a 4 wheeler for a long time, and I finally bit the bullet and bought one, a 2008 Yamaha Grizzly! I call it one of my rewards for keeping my weight down and my blood sugar numbers controlled. You know us guys; take a motor, put it on a metal frame with wheels, add some colored plastic, and some other accessories like a seat and handle bars. Then give it a macho sounding name that has nothing to do with a motorized vehicle, such as the name of a mammal that can rip a man’s arm from its socket, and we will buy it! Thus I bought a Grizzly, and a green one at that.
I tried not to move around much on my little deer stand seat, perched some twenty feet a top a ladder stand, secured to a tree. I turned to my right to look down the dirt trail behind me where my 4 wheeler was parked, some seventy-five yards away. Standing about ten yards behind the Grizzly was a deer, the reason I was sitting in the cold, looking up at me.
I forgot about being cold. Without even thinking I began to raise my rifle. Without showing any alarm, the buck smoothly turned toward the trees from which he had entered the trail. As my scope got to my eye, the buck entered the safety of the trees. I smiled, and was reminded of the saying “This is why we call it hunting and not killing.” Deer = 1, Travis = 0.
This morning was not only my first morning hunt in several years, and it was the first day I was planning on spending all day hunting and roaming around my hunting club, an 1100 acre (very rural) site twenty miles from home. In planning this excursion, I had become concerned about having a low while out in the “wilderness”. This past October I experienced a series of lows that tended to occur around 8:30 a.m. I was determined to be prepared and guard against a low. I had carefully packed my hunting pack that included such essentials as ammunition, a safety harness to wear while sitting high up in a deer stand, a couple of orange vests (required by state law), several flash lights, my cell phone, toilet paper (see also: Metformin Happens), my diabetes meter to check my blood sugar numbers, food, drinks, and glucose tabs.
That afternoon I hunted on the edge of a swamp. About 3:30 p.m, I was sitting at the base of a tree when I heard some hogs coming down the other side of the swamp. They were being very noisy and could be heard a long ways off. This was a first for me. They were squealing and grunting as they made their way to a point directly across from me. Eventually, I could see the grass and brush shaking across from me where the wild hogs were splashing in the water. Since they were down wind from me, that was as close as they came. They eventually reversed course and went back up the same side of the swamp. Wild hogs = 1, Travis = 0.
As I drove home that night I was tired, but content with the day’s events. I was pleased about my encounters with the deer and the hogs. I was also encouraged about how well I felt and that my blood sugar numbers had stayed under control. I planned on several more extensive hunting trips and I wanted to make sure that I had a good routine set up to keep my diabetes under control. Today was a success. Travis = 1, Diabetes = 0.
dLife's Daily Living columnists are not all medical experts, but everyday people living with diabetes and sharing their personal experiences. While their method of diabetes management may work for them, everyone is different. Please consult with your diabetes care team to find out what will work best for you.
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