“If something isn’t broken it, why fix it?” – it’s been a phrase I’ve heard and used many times as part of my diabetes management. For several years now, I’ve had an amazing diabetes team around me. Life before kids gave me the luxury to travel across town to see my team. Life during COVID gave us the convenience of telehealth. Life during and between my pregnancies gave me the luxury of being with a specialised clinic and very regular endo care. Now I’m ready to put my days with the pregnancy clinic behind me. As I’m transitioning through some major changes in my life, I realised that it’s time for me to make some changes in my diabetes team and perhaps in my diabetes care.
Thinking about getting a new diabetes team was overwhelming. Luckily my endo is based in the city, which isn’t too bad to get to. However, visiting my diabetes educator would be a day trip in itself, which I couldn’t do now in case the kids needed to be picked up from childcare at short notice. So I decided that I needed to find a new diabetes educator closer to me. I needed a diabetes educator who was my Mary Poppins (like my last educator) – easy to talk to, takes the time to listen to me, knowledgeable with the latest diabetes tech and research, and someone who just gets it.
Finding a new healthcare professional is always daunting. I was tired of doctor shopping and somewhat traumatised after having recent bad experiences with GPs and psychologists. I don’t have the time or funds to be “interviewing” private diabetes educators and the waitlist for the public clinic would probably be crazy.
I jumped onto the ADEA website to search for a diabetes educator, hoping to find a familiar name within my area. Even though I’ve met some amazing diabetes educators over the years, I’m really bad with remembering names (sorry!). After filtering the search to what I technically wanted from a diabetes educator, the choices were few. I did a lot of googling and finally settled on one 20 minutes away. I emailed them to ask about a few diabetes tech things I was interested in and if they could help as a way of testing the waters.
Amazingly, they responded almost immediately saying that they’re about to undergo training, so I should book in after then and we could have a chat. I felt like I had just matched with someone amazing on a dating app and had just organised to go on a first date. And what a great first date it turned out to be! They were thorough, took time to listen, honest about still learning the new tech and followed up after the appointment as promised with additional resources. I felt like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders.
We often hear about diabetes self-care when it comes to managing diabetes burnout. This time, my diabetes self-care includes getting in touch with a diabetes educator to support me during this transition in managing diabetes while adjusting to life with two young kids. I’m glad I made the leap to step outside my comfort zone to try something (or someone) new.