So I started to look for an answer. Countless Google searches phrases that seemed to describe what I was experiencing later, and finally I landed on a possibility in a word I'd never heard before: phenylalanine. For you and me? That's aspartame. And it was in so very much of what I was eating and drinking.
As an experiment, I cut out all diet products--diet coke, sugar-free gum and candy, Equal, most non-fat yogurt--everything. If it mentioned phenylalanine on the label I avoided it like the plague. And the out-of-controlness stopped.
My doctor was skeptical. Blood work didn't show that I had phenylketonuria. Or anything else. I also didn't have any symptoms ever "officially" reported or documents about phenylalanine sensitivity. She was perplexed.
Ok -- so if it wasn't that, I was going back to to my Diet Coke with lime. And yeah...you know what happened.
So I stopped again. And the problem stopped.
All in my head? Was hanging it on phenylalanine sensitivity enough to make whatever it actually was stop? Maybe I'm powerful beyond measure. All I know for sure is that when I avoid it, I'm fine. How that happens doesn't matter much to me.
I decided to write about this because I was just realizing that it's been just over a year since I had my very last Diet Coke--also the last phenylalanine I've had. Yay me!!! And while being diabetic without diet stuff is really limiting, I've done it. And I've survived. Quite nicely, I must say.
Today, I'm recommitting to taking care of myself in this particular way--even when it's hard, and even when I think that the best-tasting thing on the planet would be a Diet Coke with lime (which is actually fairly often).