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Monthly Archives: January 2013

I’ve been thinking a lot about my diabetes this week most probably cause of university. You see we are doing long term conditions at University so this includes conditions like COPD, dementia and my personal favourite diabetes. To add to that I’ve also decided to do a presentation for some uni work on diabetes. However unlike what some people may think I haven’t chosen diabetes because I know more about it than any other condition, nope to the contray I have chosen it because I want to learn more. I may have diabetes but as a diabetic I have never wanted to fully look into what co-morbidities I may get when I’m older or what having a hypo or hyper does to my body each time.

But as you can expect by looking into diabetes and recalling patients I have met whilst on placements it has made me inspect my own diabetes a bit more and after finding my first diabetes record book made me think about whether or not my control has changed since then. You see I was a good little diabetic, ask my mum I’m sure she can back that one up. Yes I had my moments but with a nurse for a mum (who didn’t hold back on the horrors of what could happen if I had bad control) I tried to keep it as tight as possible. So is older megs as good as young megs was? If I’m honest probably not. There is so much more temptations as you get older; alcohol, going out for meals, buying food to get myself through uni lectures…the list goes on. Yet my control isn’t horrific, I know my boundries and failing that I’m not to shabby at carb counting. However I miss the little diabetic that I was who found life a bit more carefree, who was an independant little madam but had her family to run to and then failing that the wonderful Paeds team I had.

Don’t get me wrong I do want to be independant and control my diabetes without people checking up on me. But that’s never going to happen, people care thats why the check and make comments and get my snappy replies. The only difference now is that people don’t have as much “control” over me as they did then! I’m an adult now. Believe me I even go to an adults clinic. Moving up in the world I know 😉

It’s a big, scary change…moving from a paedatric team to an adults team and to be honest due to my pump and certain clinics not having the right funding I had an odd transition. I didn’t leave paeds dead on the age that most do because Southampton Adult Team don’t deal with pump users. So for about half a year I was hanging. No fault of the any of the teams but maybe it didn’t give me the chance to prepare myself for adult clinic, for the indepence of it all and for the fact it doesn’t run like child/young adults clinic does. I don’t sit in a waiting room with toys, a rocking horse (which I remember for when I was a little child even before my diabetes, when my dad took me to play on it when mum was in hospital), nope now I sit with adults who talk in hushed voices rather than screams and shouts and giggles. The worse thing is I DON’T GET TO WATCH DISNEY FILMS WHILST HAVING MY BLOOD TAKEN. I know, it’s horrible, poor megs ;(

On the plus side as I’ve grown older my diabetes has grown with me. Or maybe I’ve grown up with it. I don’t use it as an excuse not to do sports anymore…this is coming from a girl who got out of every cross country afternoon at secondary school and spent most of my P.E afternoons messing about or playing games with the other skivers. Nope now I just don’t need an excuse if I don’t want to do it I won’t so suck on that school! Hahaha! On a serious point though I now take in what people say about diabetes leading to heart problems or bad feet. I also now see myself going into a career which I love and hopefully leading me onto my favourite subject of diabetes because for me it isn’t just a chronic condition, it’s a condition that has made me and built the person I am now!

 

Fear, it’s something that grips us all every now and then as we go about our day. Fear that you won’t pass an exam, fear that you might trip and break a bone in the snow, fear of the unknown, fear you won’t get your dream job…the list goes on really.

I watched a gory film the other night which led me to thinking about how certain things scare me in life, that combined with the beautiful song by Ben Howard – The Fear  made me then realise;

Fear runs my life! 

But the big issue is the fear of something happening to me because of my diabetes! So technically that also means diabetes runs my life in a way I don’t want it to.

I should probably explain that in a long winded way 😉 Just to keep your brains occupied hahaha

You see I am a self proclaimed wimp. This whole snow issue has thrown me out the last few days, sent my mind into overdrive and for whoever has had the pleasure of venturing outdoors with me probably drove them mad. You see I step on the snow and then thing I’M GOING TO SLIP AND DIE. Which result in me walking like I have a stick up my bottom. Failing that I think to myself my pump is in my pocket if I go down that goes down with me = wet pump or a smashed pump. To be honest I’m probably not giving it credit enough, it is most likely able to survive me falling over in a bit of snow/ice. 

Snow

Another thing that scares me in the silliest way is roller coaster rides. I suppose everyone is slightly scared of roller-coaster rides that it may come off the track its on a you may plummet to your death, or that the harness will break and result in death or similar. But want to know what gets me the most? The fear of having a hypo or hyper whilst on a ride, collapsing and not being found in time. Thinking about it logically it is stupid really, a ride isn’t that long and if I checked my sugar levels before I went on it I am sure I will be fine. Well I know I would; I have been on rides before but still it’s funny how the mind works.

But although my fear has prevented me from doing things it has also stopped me from being reckless in life. I suppose most teenagers have times when they do idiotic things and I’m not saying I’m perfect cause I damn well am not and there is many stories my family could tell you all to back this up. However unlike a lot of people my age that I know my diabetes has prevented me from doing a few things such as;

Getting completely off my face most weekends – I’m not saying I don’t drink I do but I know my limitations and the few times where I have been reckless have been a learning curve and taught me that although I have never ended up hospitalised if I took it a step further I could have. Everyone does stupid things when they are drunk but I can’t risk acting like a twit when it comes to my diabetes and doing silly stuff like “pretending” to take my sugar levels or using my phone. Clever I know

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Taking drugs – I can proudly say I have never touched a drug and until someone pointed it out recently didn’t even know what weed smells like. I have been to parties where people have been high and seen people doing drugs but have never wanted to. Also if I’m honest I wouldn’t know how it would react with my diabetes and I want to live to an old age and not end up in hospital really so I have avoided it like the plague. It has never really appealed to me either, if I wanted to change my mood then I’d go to sleep and hope I woke up feeling different. Never works but is worth a try.

I’m sure there is many more things but the one that is my biggest diabetic fear is ending up in a coma. I avoid being hospitalised with my diabetes, not that I’ve ever needed to be. But even the suggestion of having to go in when I had the novovirus this year was a big no no. Six years without being hospitalised for anything diabetes related in my eyes is a brilliant achievement which I hope to carry on for many more years. Yet if I’m honest what keeps me from ever rebelling against my diabetes is that I’m so bleeding scared of ending up in a coma and possibly loosing my life. The though actually makes me slightly panicky and emotional.

So I suppose really fear can be a good thing. It prevents us from overstepping some marks but sometimes the fear can eat away at us. So maybe I do need to man up slightly, mess around in snow a bit more and if I fall over I fall over. Experience more theme parks, stop fearing what people think of me, and live my life out of the confines of fear. But remember not to over step the mark.

I wonder how many things you (my lovely readers) actually fear, if you take the time to sit down and think maybe you’ll be surprised cause I can tell you I was. Some of the thing’s I wrote down were random, weird and laughable. But to me in my head they create a little bit of fear. Some don’t prevent me from living my life…actually most don’t but there is the worry that one day they might.

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So do me a favour, write down things you are scared of and see if you can get over your fears or just make them known to you. As I’ve realised now I know my fears some of them I can try to get over and who knows life my be that little bit better.

I hope you all had fun in the snow and enjoy the prettiness of it. I also hope it did not stop you from enjoying your weekend and getting out…or maybe you didn’t want to and it gave you a reason to be lazy.

I wish you all a lovely week ahead and look forward to hearing any feedback. I hope you all enjoy this Sunday Blog and thank you for reading. It means so much to me 🙂

Sunday blog day today! So what’s been going on in my diabetic life this week then I hear you ask? Well read on and you’ll get to find out. 😉 

Two days ago; 11th January it was the 91st anniversary of when the first person was given an “insulin injection” at the age of 14. He lived for another 13 years and died at the age of 27.

After learning about this I did a little bit of digging into this history of diabetes and a man called Sir Frederick Banting which also lead me to  looking into a man called Charles Best. These are the two men who together after an idea from Banting created insulin.

So what did I find out? Until insulin was created the diagnosis of diabetes meant death. Doctors realised that sugar affected diabetics and put them on a strict diet – although this worked it was only a short time treatment and the combination of a lack of food and the diabetes meant an early death. 

If I had been alive in the 1920s and was diagnosed with diabetes before insulin was created and therefore put on the diet I would have ended up looking like the child in the picture below. 

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It is amazing to think how medicine has progressed and how I owe my life really, or well at least some of it, to the two men that together created insulin; Frederick Banting and Charles Best. So if you fancy a night-time read maybe look into the history of these two men. As I do not think I could do the history of them justice and also give you lovely readers something to do when you are feeling bored other than reading my blog. 

As I’ve already read about them I have now made it one of my goals to visit Canada and the “Hometown of Insulin”; London, Ontario, Canada. Here I will be able to visit the Banting House and the Flame of Hope. The Flame of Hope was lit on 7th July 1989 by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother. It is to burn until the day a cure is made for type 1 diabetics. It also represents the creation of Insulin by Banting and the loss of those who death has been because of type 1 diabetes. 

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On another note I also this week decided that I would quite like to volunteer for Diabetes UK – an amazing charity which is a resource for diabetics, educates people and researches into everything diabetic including a cure. So I’m going to fill out the forms and fingers crossed in the future I could be representing Diabetes UK at events, even speaking maybe and generally using my diagnosis of diabetes in a positive way rather sitting and crying into a bowl of sugar – which I don’t do, icecream maybe but not sugar hahaha. 

Talking of Diabetes UK to any diabetics out there who don’t already have it then you need to download the app called D Tracker. It enables you to record your sugar levels, bolus rate, how many carbs you have eaten everything you need with the added bonus of how you feel. So give it a go. I personally love it. 

So really that has been my diabetic week, looking into the history and volunteering for Diabetes UK. Although I have also been revising for exams tomorrow and Tuesday which also includes preparing myself diabetic wise for what the stress can do to my diabetes. So I have my sweets at the ready in case of a hypo and have practised my deep breathing to release myself of stress before the exam. However I also find stress leads to my sugar level rising rather than causing hypos but we shall have to wait and see tomorrow and maybe I’ll talk about that more in my next blog.

Anyway I better get back to the revision and get an early night. I hope everyone has had a nice weekend and enjoy the ramblings of myself in this blog. 

Thanks for reading 🙂 

Old friends on facebook today have been talking about the past; my school years which made me remember the day I was diagnosed. As I haven’t fully gone into the details I thought I would tell the tale. 

I can remember the day like it was yesterday but the finer details seemed to have been lost in the haze of high blood sugars, drinking tanks of water and spending my life in the toilet. However my diabetes symptoms really started with my eyes worsening. That went on for a couple of months but then the weekend before I got put into hospital was probably the most ill I have ever felt in my life. 

Unfortunately I had always been a bit of a hypochondriac and the day I felt my worse happened to be the day I have 3 hours of P.E and I had always tried to get out of that. On top of that my great grandma was ill and my mum was preoccupied with that. So after my torturous day of P.E in which I ended up walking the cross country course, it was my dad who picked up on how ill I was. Which is surprising because I’m sure if I came home with bright pink hair he wouldn’t notice hahaha!

As soon as mum got home we took a nice walk to the walk in centre (car had broken down). There they tested my blood sugar and it was unreadable so it was a stint in hospital for me. Soon I was sat having a cannula jabbed into my hand by a lovely doctor who refused to put the numbing cream on my hand as there was no time, whilst explaining that I was a diabetic and that my pancreas had stopped working. I didn’t understand it fully at that time, all I wanted to do was sleep and feel better. 

Then I was given a dose of Insulin and found myself snuggling up in a hospital bed and falling asleep. Although that didn’t last long as I woke up not feeling very well. I was hot, shaking and hungry. These happen to be the symptoms I get when I am having a hypoglycaemia attack. You see the nurses had given me the wrong type of insulin which led to me having my first hypo an experience which I wouldn’t wish on anyone. 

The next few days were spent giving myself injections and learning a bit about my diabetes…and then I was sent home as a type 1 diabetic, injections, insulin and blood glucose machine and other stuff all with me. I also slept like a baby the days following and had the biggest strop ever when I wasn’t allowed chips at 11pm one night. Its strange what things you remember about the past.

My first day back at school I remember as being a bit daunting as well. My friends made me a lovely card but I can remember feeling nervous about getting my injection out at the lunch table and testing my blood in lessons. Although I soon got the hang of it there were times people said things that made me want to cry and sometimes there still is times. But it get easier as time goes by and the little girl that got her diabetes at 13 now has six years worth of experience and a life time ahead to learn more.

And as much as I sometimes wish I wasn’t a diabetic and that it would go away, thinking on it with a clear head I couldn’t imagine not having it. Not waking up and testing my sugar level, not carb counting, not dealing with hypos and highs and everything diabetic. It’s part of me…sometimes it even controls my life (when I’m being nice to it and letting it win). It’s like a birth mark; something I will always have however it’s shaped me. Made me want to do things in life like become a diabetic nurse, prevented me from doing others like sky diving or taking drugs or doing stupid things that some people I know have! My diabetes to me is like having a partner; drives you mad sometimes but you couldn’t live without it…well not unless you want to…or they cheat on you or something horrible but at least I know my diabetes can’t do that hahaha! 

So here’s to a life of being a diabetic and all the highs and lows it will bring 😉 

 

 

I know I already did my Sunday post but I’m awake, tired of revising and can’t let myself sleep right now so thought I might as well explain why I’m not allowed to sleep. Contrary to what your mind may think I am not going to have any kinky sexual stuff in this post. Nope instead I’m going to talk about my one major problem with my pump; When the tube kinks. You see my pump is a machine, it tries its best to tell me about  my diabetes to the best of its abilities but can only go so far and the one thing it can’t do is tell me when the tube has kinked. Why is this a problem I hear you ask? Because it results in me getting no insulin = high blood sugars.

I’m writing this now at 02.01 (in the morning) wishing I could just curl up and sleep but because life is funny like this I can’t! My pump kinked…well actually after taking a proper look I found out that the set I currently had in was clogged with blood…nice I know. So this lead to me putting another one in right before bed, waiting 30 minutes realising my sugars hadn’t come down, taking it out and seeing it had kinked (picture below – it’s not the best picture but if you look you can see the tube is bent over = kinked tube). This meant putting another in, so now I’m sat trying to avoid falling asleep, listening to James breathing heavily in deep slumber and getting angrier by the minute.

Kinked

Don’t get me wrong I love my pump, its better than injections by miles. But still things like this grate on you a bit. Is sleep to much to ask for? My diabetes wakes me up during the night every now and then anyway what with low sugars or needing the toilet or jabbing myself with my pump in the night, the list goes on. To be honest I feel bad for James who’s going to wake up and have to deal with a sleep deprived grump of a person called Meg…who also has a diabetes appointment tomorrow where I will probably rant to them about kinking cannulas which equal high blood sugars, sleepy megs who can’t sleep and normally a moody bitchy meg as well.

So now I have to sit and wait for that baby of a high number to come down a little more before I can feel satisfied that my pump is in properly and I’m not going to end up in a coma. I suppose I could inform you all about the risks of high sugar levels whilst I’m on the subject cause I’m nice like that 😉

The main risk for me as a type one is Diabetic Ketoacidosis – this is a medical emergency which can lead to comas and death. It happens when there is a shortage of insulin so the body switches to burning fatty acids and producing acidic ketone bodies.

That is probably the main issue of having high blood sugar levels however it can also damage organs in the body and over long periods of time cause health problems such as kidney failure etc.

One of the main issues is that high blood sugar levels is uncomfortable and well as irritating and makes you hot, sweaty, thirsty, need to urinate more, irritable, angry and very sleepy.

So that my lovely readers is me having a early morning moan and giving a quick summary of the problems high sugars cause. This will probably not be the best post cause I’m tired so apologise for any mistakes but my sugars have now started to come down so I’m off for a loo break before finally snuggling up and enjoying the land of nod. Hope you are all enjoying your sleep 😉

Night x

So it’s nearly the end of the first day of 2013 (by the time I post this it will probably be the end haha)! Got to love the start of a new year, and I hope everyone had a good New Years Eve.

2012 was both a good year and a hard year for me. However it lead me to amazing people (and finding out which of my friends weren’t so great), finding out things about myself and realising how much of a lovely family I have and how lucky I am. It also made me realise that although I don’t have despicable diabetes control I need to get a bit tighter on my control as unfortunately as much as people say it doesn’t rule your life – it does – problems with my diabetes can affect my life as much as I wish it didn’t. So this is me realising that to enjoy my life to the full I need to push my diabetes into shape.

Number One- Get the perfect sugar levels! So this isn’t going to be easy and I probably will never get them “perfect” but I WILL get them as close to perfect as can be. My sugars will in the future effect a lot of things if I don’t get them as tight as I can.Things like my health, my body, work life, driving, having a family – things that although most people have to worry about them and do worry about them, I wake up sometimes in a panic over certain ones. It also affects my mood when my levels are up and down. Which results in me taking it out on those closest to me which isn’t fair on them and recently I’ve realised it only takes so long before people start wondering if it actually is your diabetes. Obviously that hurts a fair bit and isn’t true or my fault I need to start doing something about it. Control my sugar levels and basically the world is my oyster, well it is anyway but a nicer oyster haha – a high-class, beautiful oyster.

Number Two – Cut out the junk food! You see I’m a bit of a sweetaholic actually scrap that I’m a junkfoodholic. Which obviously isn’t the best thing when you have diabetes…to be honest it generally isn’t the best thing in the world and even though I know this I can’t stop myself from munching on crisps, nuts, biscuits etc It’s surprising that I’m not 50 stone by now. But if I don’t stop now I might be one day and also it’s not going to help with the control of my diabetes. So goodbye sensation crisps and hello carrot sticks. Okay so maybe I won’t go that far – my self-control isn’t that amazing and I’m not fat…yet. But I will watch what I eat and carbohydrate count like it’s going out of fashion. You never know I might get a taste for the healthy stuff and become one of those overly health people who live in the health shop (no offence if anyone does – in my opinion it’s not a bad thing) but if I’m honest I don’t see that happening any time soon.

Number Three – Get fit!  I’m a self-declared slob, I’d rather exercise my arms picking up the remote than I would lifting weights. However I went through a stage where I enjoyed it but then I had issues with my shoulders so stopped. But part of me still gets the urge to do some fitness every now and then and I’ve decided I’m going to go with these urges. Got to get rid of the little Christmas belly that’s started to appear and get my beach body again. Maybe if I can get my fitness that good I will do a run for diabetes – raise some money for diabetes but also raise awareness. Watch this space people 😉

 

I’ve decided to leave it to those three for the moment as they all sort of tally in together! But you never know I might add ones to it here and there because in my view everyday is a new day – a new day to take control of things you want to. New Years resolutions shouldn’t just have to be left to new years. Each day brings you something new and if you don’t think it has you can always make sure it does one way or another.

 

2012 taught me some things in life. I made mistakes but now I can learn from them. Which is why 2013 is going to be different. I’m going to achieve the above things, surround myself with people who love me and I care about just as much and achieve everything I want to cause I can – and I’m sure anyone reading this can to. Sometimes it’s just about realising a few things in your life need a tweak.

But for now I’m off to sleep and hopefully dream about the gorgeous men that appear in vampire diaries! But before I do I’m going to have to say thanks to my amazing family and lovely boyfriend and awesome friends who I am sure are going to make sure those three things I’ve written about I do.

Also my mum and boyfriends’ mum are doing a sponsored diet for a charity that is close to my heart.  Not diabetes but Papyrus which is a charity for prevention of young suicide – I lost my brother back in June 2011 so to me the charity is amazing and really provides help to those that are suicidal. So if you fancy sponsoring them or just donating to the charity or even just making people aware of it then I’ll pop a few links down!

http://www.justgiving.com/TracyClive-Brook?fb_action_ids=504808959540915&fb_action_types=og.likes&fb_ref=fundraising-page-new&fb_source=aggregation&fb_aggregation_id=246965925417366

https://www.facebook.com/PAPYRUSUK?fref=ts

Anyway that’s all folks 😉

Hope 2013 brings you everything you want it to or deserve and thank you for reading. Means a lot to me