I am a 21 year old girl who was only diagnosed five months ago with Type 1 diabetes. When I was told by the hospital that I had diabetes I had no idea what it was or how it would affect my “normal” life. Before I was diagnosed my priorities were going out with my friends to nightclubs, bars and pubs.
I didn’t realise at the time but looking back everything I did revolved around getting drunk with my friends. When I found out what diabetes really was and that I was going on to insulin straight away, I couldn’t hold back the tears. I was so scared, my whole life was about to change and my immediate thought was that it was going to change for the worse.
Help and support
When I met my diabetic nurse, she made me look at everything in a different way. I was feeling slightly positive about it. She explained how I was to inject my self four times a day and test my blood. But she helped me with the first one and I was shocked at how much it didn’t hurt. The first week or so it took me at least 10 minutes to take my blood and do my Insulin. With practice it all became part of my routine, and after a few weeks I was doing it all in less then two minutes.
So many questions
Telling my friends and family was hard as they all had so many questions and I didn’t know the answers. I remember one night going on the Internet search engine and typing in diabetes. All these different videos came up, one video was of a girl and it had a slow song playing in the back round and different clips showed up with captions under them. It said things like “There is no cure”, “It’s not fair”, “Everyday is a battle”, “we try to be normal but it affects the entire family”. As I watched tears were running down my face. Some of the things I could relate to but they were put in such a depressing negative way.
My advice to someone with diabetes is to never look at these sorts of videos, if you have a question or want more information go on towww.diabetes.org.uk and see the different types of support on offer.
The links I went on to were made to make people feel bad and donate money. For someone with diabetes it really wasn’t pleasant to watch.
The good and the bad
My life has dramatically changed in the past five months. The bad points are the mood swings, I am told this is related to diabetes. I feel very guilty and sad that my family and friends have to put up with this. It’s something I really do want to control.
I look at my mum sometimes and the word sorry wouldn’t come close to what she deserves. She is my number one best friend. In the past five months I’ve never felt so close to my mum. She has helped me so much to deal with every day and to come to terms with it. Also, the time keeping with my injections has been hard to keep up with, but with adjustments to my life style, it is becoming easier every day.
The good points are that I have lost two stone, and I have never felt more confident with my body. I am healthier, I cut down loads on drinking and have given up smoking all together. I now look at my diabetes with a positive attitude and I feel that if I look after myself I will even live longer.
Everyone has good days and bad days, not just diabetics.