Saturday, January 10, 2015

My Type 1 Diabetes Breakdown.

I wanted to write a post about this because I am working on my journey, and it is something that will make it more of a challenge for me.

I don't want this to be a medical post, but more emotional and personal.

I was diagnosed with Diabetes on October 25, 2012. I had been feeling physically terrible and emotionally drained. I thought it was just because of some emotional hardships I was dealing with. I couldn't go an entire day without a two-hour nap, and resting or laying down most of the day. I was really sad and hard on myself because I didn't know what my problem was! I couldn't figure out my energy levels and what was making me feel so low. It was hard on my heart and self-esteem.

Looking back on it, I think I was struggling and fighting the battle with Diabetes for a few years before I was actually diagnosed. I was always thirsty and always using the bathroom, I was eating anything, and everything I wanted and maintaining my weight, my ankles were swelling, and when I got sick, I was sick for weeks! It all seemed, to me, to be a coincidence. I went to my family doctor and even saw a specialist for my ankles and I just couldn't get an answer. I was told that it was my age, the ankle swelling was lack of circulation.

So I suffered, and suffered. Well, in October, it got really bad. I was sick and sad and felt like I was slowing losing myself and my health. So I found a doctor in my area, a holistic doctor that had beautiful reviews. She was amazing on paper, I was sold, so I called and made an appointment.

The second I got there I felt better already. They took me back, the nurse had purple hair and tattoos! So the doctor came in and gave me a hug. Done. It was the best I had felt at a doctor in a long time. So she had my blood drawn, we talked about all my other problems and if I was struggling with anything else. Personal, medical, psychological, she wanted me to open up about everything so she could get a sense of me as a whole. I felt so good about going there and speaking to her and I almost felt healed when I left. She hugged me again and I cried knowing I had a doctor who wanted to know what was wrong as much as I did.

The next morning when they got the test results back from my blood, they called me right away and explained that there were some inconsistencies. So I walked over (Yes! I lived close enough to walk!) and they told me that they believed I was diabetic. My blood sugar was 346 (and at the time of the blood draw, I hadn't eaten since the night before)! I had an appointment with an Endocrinologist three days later, and I started the long journey of learning about insulin and carbs, sugars, and proteins. I have gone to see several endocronologists since diagnosis, and I struggle to find one that I like. This is still such an emotional journey for me, I know there are so many things that can go wrong, and it makes it overwhelming.

Now, I think I should get a little medical for a moment so this is better understood. Type I Diabetes is when your body, specifically your pancreas, doesn't produce any insulin at all. Some people are born with this, some people develop it over time, and some people are fine one day and not the next. It all depends. So many factors go into it. I developed it later than most. The older term is "Childhood Diabetes". This differs from Type II Diabetes, which happens later in life and is due to diet and food choices over time. It causes your pancreas to produce insulin irregularly, or only partially enough. Type II Diabetes can be reversed, and Type I Diabetes cannot.

As for blood sugar numbers. Normal people are between 70-120 when fasting, or haven't had anything to eat, and up to 180 when they have eaten. And that is what my blood sugar should be too. However, it takes a little more work than just my body. I have to inject myself four times a day, usually. Sometimes more, if my blood sugar is super high, or if I eat more than three times a day. That's all. The fourth injection is "long acting insulin". That is a different kind of insulin and partners with the short acting insulin to keep my blood sugars stable. Lows are bad, highs are bad, but like anything, it all takes a while to figure out and understand.

Since my diagnosis, I have gone through several stages of grief. It is hard to decide if I am glad that I got it later in life, or I wished I had gotten it sooner so it wouldn't all be so overwhelming. The grass is never greener on the other side. It may seem that way until you get there. 

I am learning every day about my internal struggles with it and gaining knowledge about my own body, how I react to foods, how my numbers change.

There is no secret to the fact that I am more mad than anything that I was cursed with this. I just know that I can either use it as a way to get myself healthy in all aspects, or I can use it as an excuse. I make it a mountain, or I can make it a speed bump. Part of this new year is learning more about my diabetes and focusing on that, rather than all the bad that is comes with. Quite honestly, if I am trying to be objective, it is hard, but it isn't the worst thing. There are so many things that people have to deal with Diabetes seems to be right in the middle: plenty of things in life are better to deal with than T1D, but there is a giant list of things that are so much worse than it too.

I am reclaiming my body, I am hoping to unearth some things about myself, and who knows! This could open doors for me within in the Diabetic community. Maybe this is actually a blessing to use to help everyone else? God works in mysterious ways.

If you have any questions or I need to clarify anything, let me know! I know this is a lot to throw at you. But I thought it was pertinent! I talk about it often, and its very much something I deal with and struggle with every day.

No comments:

Post a Comment