Day 3 – Share your most memorable diabetes day.
I remember the initial panic of sitting in my endo’s office and being told that the tablets weren’t working. We needed to move onto injections. I was really upset because I had been working extremely hard while being on the tablets and being told that I needed to go on insulin made me feel defeated. I think this is something that most people with type 2 diabetes experience when they start on insulin. That feeling of guilt and anger at yourself for not doing enough.
Yet there was a part of me that knew, subconsciously, that I had done everything I could. I woke up at the crack of dawn every weekday to head to the gym to do either a spin or bodypump class. They were all intensive classes that left me sweating like a mushrooms that haven’t been stored in a paper bag (possibly the worst analogy ever?). I was obsessive over what I ate and reduced my portion sizes dramatically. I felt like I was starving myself at one point. I knew this wasn’t a lifestyle I could sustain. But was there more I could have done to prevent going on insulin, or even diabetes altogether?
We hear it everywhere – that type 2 diabetes can be prevented with a healthy lifestyle with healthy eating. We’ve grown up with it – that it’s our fault we have type 2 diabetes because we haven’t looked after myself. But I never expected to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes at 19. When I’ve been physically active and eat fairly well. I did a pretty damned good job of looking after my health at that age, when most of my friends were out partying, clubbing and drinking. I couldn’t comprehend why or how this was happening. Sometimes, genetics just sucks!
I guessed how I felt came through because my endo reassured that I was doing an amazing job on my part but my body is just stubborn. The insulin will just help make things easier for me and manage my sugars much better too. There was no point in working myself to the ground just to manage my sugars and let diabetes dictate my life. And I agreed. I was given the choice between starting on a Mixtard twice a day or Basal/Bolus four times a day. And what happened next felt like a major turning point for me. Instead of having my endo determine what regime I was going to do, I sat up a bit straighter and said confidently ‘Let’s try having it twice a day and if it the numbers still don’t budge, we can do four times a day.’
Did I just have a say in my diabetes management? Did I just choose to go insulin? This endo is so sneaky! He immediately sat back, smiled and said alright let’s do it.
It’s been three and a half years since I started on insulin and I’m now on the basal/bolus regime and I haven’t looked back since. My Hba1c took a dramatic dive from the high 9s to 6s since starting insulin and I’m much more relaxed with the things I eat. It has taken me a long time to stop feeling the guilt and anger of my diagnosis and accept the fact that I do have diabetes (whatever the type may be). I can’t do much about it but to move on, manage it the best I can now and live my life to the fullest! To diabetes dictating lives, Ashley says no! (Cringe factor of a 100 for that corny statement!)