Newly diagnosed with T1D

I’m not much of a writer, but I think writing about everything that has happened in the last few months might help me deal with it or maybe just understand it a little better. On May 6th, I was diagnosed with type 1. It was all pretty shocking. It still is.

I had all of the classic symptoms of diabetes, I was insanely thirsty all of time for the past couple of months. I would buy gallons of juice at costco and it would be gone within a day. Also, my vision got progressively worse.... I thought it was because I turned 30 and needed to update my prescription. I lost some weight...although it took a while for me to notice, since I rarely weigh myself. And finally I started having terrible leg cramps at night. One night when I couldn't sleep because of the leg cramps, I googled leg cramps, and found the long list of symptoms for diabetes, of which I had every single one of them. The next morning, I made an appointment to see a doctor. She ran some tests, and then called me the next day to tell me that I should rush to the emergency room or I could risk going into a comma (scary).

I spent the next three days at the ICU, recovering from something called ketoacidosis (dka), and learning much about diabetes. What? I have diabetes.... I honestly did not know much about it except for that there was no way that I had it. I've always been healthy, I didn't even have a primary care doctor, it is still pretty shocking, at least for me. For whatever reason, I associated diabetes with unhealthy older folks. Not me! Now I realize that type 1 is an entirely different disease then the ubiquitous type 2.

From what I was learning, a life with t1d seems absolutely miserable. I hate needles, blood and I love sugar. Having to test my blood sugar 5+ times a day, and giving myself multiple insulin injections seems like an absolute nightmare. I know, like everyone keeps telling me, I will get used to it, it will become second nature, blah blah blah.... but I don't want to get used to this. I don't want to have to carry tons of crap with me everywhere I go, and constantly think about what I'm going to eat, always worry about what my blood glucose is doing, and have to give myself insulin every time I want to eat something. It's been a few months now and I still get pretty depressed about it.

I wonder how other type 1s dealt with it when they were first diagnosed.

well i was only 9 when i was diagnosed, and i think kids tend to be pretty resilient. i think i would have been more resistant to this if i would have been diagnosed as a teen or adult.

as for ppl saying youll get used to it…i never did. im still not. its been 7 years. the fact is, we’re not normal. not trying to be negative or anything, but its true. all we can do is try our best to control what we have (even though i sometimes epically fail at that).

and for the record, i love sugar too. i still eat it, i just take insulin for it. its not like im gorging myself on it and never exercising. i like to run with my 3 dogs for to stay healthy.

Your story sounds like mine. While deep in DKA, I thought I had the flu. If my husband hadn’t gotten me to the ER, I’d have died. The shock, disbelief & anger are normal feelings. Took a while for the reality to sink in for me. Diagnosed T1 at 53 with no family history. I cried, I screamed & did the “why me” thing. Like everyone, I went through a depressed stage & was scared. Don’t mean this to sound trite, but I got to the point where I just moved forward.

I felt so sick with DKA that I didn’t care what it took to never feel that way again. Keeping my sight, legs & kidneys keeps me motivated when it all gets to be too much. I just do it & don’t fight it.