Sunday, 13 May 2012

Diabetes blog week 2011: What we've learned

What we’ve learned - Sunday 5/15: Last year, Wendy of Candy Hearts made a suggestion for this year. She commented “I think Day 7 should be a post about stuff we've learned from other blogs or the experience of coming together online...” Today, let’s do just that!! What have you learned from other blogs - either this week or since finding the D-OC? What has your experience of blogging the DBlog Week topics with other participants been like? What has finding the D-OC done for you? If you'd like, you can even look ahead and tell us what you think the future holds!

I think this might be my favourite topic this week. I owe so much to the DOC.

When I moved to Cambridge about five years ago, I was on two injections of mixtard a day, my HbA1c was in double figures, I barely tested and had stopped carb counting.  I wasn't because I didn't know how to do these things, or didn't realise their importance, it was just that it seemed that nothing I did made a difference.  I'd test, the number would be high, and there was nothing I could do - I had no fast acting insulin, or knowledge of how to correct even if I did.  I didn't know how to adjust my insulin, and it didn't seem to matter what I ate or did, my numbers were always Bad, and so I just stopped bothering.

The first thing the clinic at Cambridge did was switch me to MDI, which helped, but I was still suffering from what I now realise was a fairly extended burnout.  My HbA1c came down down a little, into single figures but only just, but I still felt like there was nothing I could really do, that I was powerless in the management of my diabetes.

And then, one day, I can't even remember how, I came across the DOC.  I've alwasy been fairly active online, parts of various forums and mailing lists (huge geek here ;)), but I'd never thoguht to look for anything diabetes related. I came across a couple of websites (diabetes daily was the first, I think) and it was amazing.  Here were all these people with diabetes, getting on with things, helping each other, talking about problems they were having and, most importantly, people who got it, who understood what it was like to live with diabetes.  It was a revelation.

I joined a couple of these forums, and began reading.  It was inspiring, especially knowing that there were people who had similar problems to me, but who had improved their diabetes control.  who still made mistakes, and tried things that didn't work, and had the random highs and lows, and didn't beat themselves up about it.  It gave me the motivation I needed.  I picked up a couple of books that were recommended for MDI, I learned about pumps and how to deal with whatever diabetes tried to throw at me.  I asked questions, and I took every opportunity to learn that I could, and put the new information I had to use.

And it worked.  My HbA1c came down from 9.1 to 7.5 in three months.  I felt so much better, and I realised that it was possible to live with diabetes and not have it control me.  It was so empowering.

Now I have a pump, and my HbA1c had been around 7% for the last three years.  All thanks to the wonderful DOC. :)

1 comment:

  1. Hi Angie
    it's Leanne here - i'd like to have a conversation with you about your diabetes blog but feel that the conversation is better in email. can't seem to find your email address on your blog though. hope you can get back to me: leanne at ?

    thanks very much, hun. hope you're okay today! Leanne xo