How Has Diabetes Changed My Life

Well, life was a lot simpler before diabetes decided to invade my life and become my partner!

I was reading somewhere that shock, fear, anger or denial, are common reactions people have when told they have diabetes.

When I was told I had diabetes I don’t remember having any reaction, I didn’t know that much about diabetes, I didn’t know anyone with diabetes and I didn;t realize what a serious condition it can be. I thought “oh, ok, I’ve got diabetes, I’ll take medication for it and it will be fine”.
But at that time I didn’t realise that it wasn’t quite that simple, I didn’t realise…

* that Diabetes can be a very dangerous and deadly disease,
* that it is a growing epidemic
* that it can cause blindness
* that it can cause kidney failure
* that it can cause nerve damage
* that every 30 seconds a leg is lost to diabetes somewhere in the world
* that diabetes kills more people each year than HIV/AIDS
* that every day 275 Australian adults develop diabetes
* that diabetes has been one of the top ten underlying causes of death in Australia for a number of years.
* that diabetes is a major threat to global public health that is rapidly getting worse
* 3.2 million deaths can be attributed to diabetes each year

(wow, the list could just go on and on and on, so many facts that not many people are even aware of!)

I also finally realized, after so many years of living with it and not seeing any improvement, that the big secret to staying healthy and keeping our diabetes under control is LIFESTYLE CHANGE!

For years I was not prepared to change my lifestyle but I have now gotten to the point that I can’t do the things I used to do. The weight I have put on deters me from even doing my housework. There is no way around it I have to change my lifestyle!!

Five years ago I managed to quit smoking just like that with no help.
I went from smoking more than 40 cigarettes a day to zero, all in one go.
Now, I thought, if i was capable of succeeding in giving up an addiction like smoking, which any smoker knows is very very hard to do, surely trying to eat healthier and give myself a better lifestyle should be easier?

Then one day I went to see my doctor and i started crying, I’d had enough, I told him that I couldn’t go on like this, that I needed to do something.

So after so many years of being a diabetic my doctor (just before retiring) finally gave me a referral to go and see an endocrinologist and a dietitian for the first time!

I think this was the first step in the right direction. It gave me hope and a little strength knowing that i would be in the hands of professionals who might really be able to help me, to give me encouragement.

So far I see my endocrinologist every 3 months and we are working on getting the insulin to the right dose. And at the same time I have seen the dietitian twice and she has been a great source of information on what to eat and what not to eat. I also saw the Diabetes Educator for the first time a couple of weeks ago and she was able to give me a few tips.

The Dietitian at the Centre also holds a “Weight Class” every Thursday (kinda like Weight Watchers) which I attended I must admit that I came out of that class feeling more positive, it is a great support group!

After I had left the first class I left with one goal in mind, to start some exercise program. My body is riddled with arthritis and I find it very hard to walk and move so at the “Weight” class they suggested to me a “Walk In Water” class in the heated pool of the local gymnasium.

So the following week I started the “Walk in Water” class hoping and praying that i would find the strength and courage to continue, both the classes because I was sure that if I persevered it could be the start to a new lifestyle for me.

I continued for 4 weeks and I was starting to feel really positive and pleased with myself.

My mum then went into hospital for an operation and I had to stay with her every day for 3 months. In the meantime I stopped going to both classes, because of this I started to feel depressed and like I was worth nothing. Having to help my mother with everything just made all my pain worse and I felt terrible.

Since November, mum started doing things on her own but I have just lost interest in everything. I went from feeling so good about myself to feeling worthless and since 5 days ago have been on anti-depressants.

I’m also worried because I’m on the waiting list to go into hospital (around mid year) to have 2 operations and if I don’t lose some weight there will most certainly be complications.

So I am trying to get motivated to restart both the classes. I’m hoping that next week I’ll get up enough courage to start again. At least that will be a start.

I also want to enquire about those meal replacement powders (Tony Ferguson Weight Loss Program). If they are not too expensive I might give it a try. I’ve asked the Endo and he said it’s ok as long as i monitor my BGL and give myself the right dosage of insulin according to the carbs contained in the powder drink.

Well all I need to do now is to get motivated and get the ball rolling!

Wish me luck, I need all the encouragement I can get!

Loren,what a beautiful blog.I like the way it is laid out.Good job.If you want a dream bad enough you will make up your mind and do something about it.Good luck.

Thank you so much Dee!

Hi Dirk, thank you so much for your encouragement!
I’m definitely going to try my best!