Well, here's one thing I used to have to do. It involved a test tube and this pill looking thing. You put a urine sample in the test tube and then added the pill. If the specimen turned blue, it was "within range" lol. If the color was something else, well...uh oh...blood sugar out of range!
There were two pills...the second one was, as I recall, a little smaller and changed to various shades of pink, based on whether ketones were present or not and how concentrated they were within the specimen provided.
Then there were these wipe off strips with a color chart on the side of this around-three-inch-tall vial. The lip on the vial was sometimes hard to get off of the top of the bottle, and it popped like a champagne cork. Anyway...you stuck your finger and applied a generous drop of blood to the strip and then waited...and wiped it off...then you compared the color of the strip (it's been a while...I think you waited for some more time before comparing the strip color to the chart).
In the hospital where I was diagnosed, they saved my life, but they were lacking somewhat in care levels...they would take a razor, tourniquet the arm, make an incision, let the blood drip onto a plate which they held underneath the arm, and use that for I suppose blood sugar tests. It was 1981 in France. The care was not the best, but I survived because of it. I was on pork insulin as well. For some reason, I still have some insulin from back then, along with the differently-gauged syringes. I tried to use one of those older syringes with newer insulin......bad, bad idea.
Did you ever use...what was it called...the Monolet? It was this hand-sized...hard to describe...maybe I can sort of "draw" it...
It looked like this:
plunger end 0---- )--0 lancet end (there was a large opening, an indentation, where you put your finger
connect the 0 with vertical lines with the corresponding 0 directly underneath it...anyway...this is a poor illustration, but it was this thing that was about hand sized that you had to push the lancet up into...then you pushed this gigantic plunger on the other end while wincing and holding your finger at the target location.
The autolet, compared to that machine (it made scary sounds as well, sort of a winding, mechanical twisting sound, like a guillotine being cranked up before the blade is let loose) wasn't so bad. I was glad I could actually see the dang lancet.
I love carb counting, too. Sweet Humalog, lovely insulin pump...I still take them for granted, though, and the whole no sleep thing is for the birds. Ah, memories.