For 55 years I have been plodding along with my life, eating, drinking and walking…..
November 2018 I was diagnosed as Diabetic Type 1 (although not yet confirmed but I do need insulin) ..
so how did this all come about and what has changed …. this is my life so far as a Diabetic ..
21st November 8.30 – a date I wont forget.
This all started a few months ago, I was in a stressful job which was going the way of redundancy and things got worse work wise, more stress, I suddenly started to loose weight, overall this was 2 stone, didn’t think much about it as we all put it down to “stress”.
I decided in the end to take redundancy and move on with life, while I was working my notice period I did get another job, so things were looking up, stress levels had gone and life was good.
I moved onto my new job working from home, stress had gone down a lot, things were good.
Then I started to loose more weight, this time in pounds, so I decided to give the doctors a ring, they were all full but when I told her the symptoms she sent me to the evening doctor in Crookes. He went through all sorts of questions trying to figure out what’s wrong, the word Cancer was mentioned which terrified me. He then took my blood test to see what my sugar levels were and they were sky high, well over 28 which I later found out is VERY high.
His next words were the most terrifying I have ever heard from a doctor “You are diabetic, your sugar levels are high, I am going to send you to the hospital immediately” … silence came from me, thoughts were running through my mind, what does all this mean ?, why me ?, I was physically trembling.
I went off to the hospital and spent a week there, they were pumping stuff into me the first couple of days to get my sugar levels down as they were hovering around 16-19 which was still high.
Skip ahead to the end of the week and I was ready to go home, I had visitors to come see me and kept me sane, I had time in hospital to read all about being a diabetic and what is needed.
so what caused this to happen ?, my pancreas doesn’t produce any insulin which everyone needs, my body needed something so it was using my fat as insulin and that’s why I lost sudden weight, its one symptom of being a diabetic, and hence why I lost so much weight, if I didn’t do something when I did things could have got much worse, which could have gone to feet problems (which I have had years ago), liver failure, heart attack, eye sight problems – basically its not good.
so what has changed now ? – my body needs insulin so I have to inject myself 5 times a day with insulin, x2 first thing in a morning and when I go to bed, this is the long lasting insulin, x3 times a day with the fast acting insulin before breakfast, dinner and main tea. I also take my blood sugar test 4 times a day to make sure my sugar levels are okay, ideally they need to be around 5-9. If it goes below 4 I will hypo = I need sugar stuff to get it back up which is why I carry round with me jelly babies, feel free to ask me if I have them on me, its a reminder that I should.
what’s changed food wise – I have to basically cut out sugary stuff, chocolates, sweets, cakes, buns, things I like but when the alternative is death you have to do it. I have to cut down on portion size with food and watch the carbs quantity. If I am out drinking then I need to push my carbs up, if I don’t I will hypo. Its a balancing game which I haven’t got used to yet, but I will. Although I have not yet hypo`d. I also need starchy food and protein so I am reading all food labels. Everything is being looked at from a angle of – whats the carb quantity, is there loads of sugar, does it have any protein, is the carbs enough for this meal before injection. I am sure I will have more questions as I go along, it is a learning curve.
what about drinking – those who know me know I like a drink, well that’s going to change or I could end up having many hypo`s and I don’t want that. Beer Festivals have all gone, those I can no longer do, but thankfully I have done quite a few in my time so I shall get used to that. I also cutting down on nights out and when I am out its the low % alcohol I am drinking, so far this has worked for me. the big % in pubs are a no no, only at home where I can control any hypo`s. I still go out during the weekend walking and pubs visiting but again it is mixing alcohol with 0% – 0.5% alcohol which I am more looking at, this wont make me hypo at all. It is all about taking it steady and don’t go mad. If I feel a hypo coming on – eat jelly babies.
A month has gone by now and starting to realise I have to get on with life, its not going to go away, I have to inject myself 5 times a day and take blood readings 4 times a day FOR LIFE… that’s 1,456 injections a year and 1,820 blood test a year. it isn’t curable so if I slip up once .. well I dare not think of that. One motivation I have is the guy opposite me at the hospital is a diabetic type 1, he didn’t keep to the regime of injections blood testing and now he has lost all his toes on one foot, and the state of his legs is something out of a horror movie. do I want to end up like that … NO
so what have I done – I have books galore reading about diabetes, the information out there is endless. I have joined a diabetic forum and the people on there are wonderful, they are going through the same thing as me and I can ask questions and they give advice. the Diabetic Nurses are fantastic and help/advice is also something I am listening to, if they tell me to do this then I do, I always think if not then remember the guy in hospital, and talking about hospital Northern General staff were fantastic, how they cope on a daily basis is amazing. you don’t realise how much they do until you land in hospital.
some post it notes will arrive today and I am going to stick them on my wall to remind me what I need to do, and what I need not to do, what to eat, what to stay away from.
My website isn’t going to go away, I am still going to continue with it although visiting pubs wont be as much but why give up. I shall be sticking to low alcohol drinks and even wine is good for me. There are alternatives out there, I need to explore them.
thankfully I am surrounded by friends who are to help me, there to keep an eye on me when I am out in a evening, they ask me what my sugar reading are, thankfully they are currently around 4.6 to 10.4 over the past few weeks and starting to form a pattern during the 3 eating meal times. these are the small things that keep me going, don’t be afraid to ask me how my sugar levels are or how many jelly babies I have had tonight or, more importantly – have I eaten before I came out.
if you ask me – wow you have lost weight I will guess you haven’t read this then I shall send you to this webpage for you to read.
I feel tons better now I am on insulin injections, gawd knows how long I have had this for, no one will probably know but now it can be controlled.
I refuse to let this kill me, I am already in a routine with injections and blood testing levels, its a matter of time before I manage the food intake against insulin.
a quick summary – I have diabetes – I take 5 injections a day and take blood reading 4 times a day, I just have to be more careful what I eat and drink, this is with me for LIFE, it isn’t going away and as I always say …
…. life goes on.