Monday, March 26, 2012

No one's better!

We all have experience with diabetes as diabetics and while some of have had diabetes longer than others that doesn't make us less diabetic or less educated about diabetes than those veteran diabetics.  It feels like as soon as you enter that hospital you instantly become 'diabetic' when previous, although you may have had all the symptoms, you were just a regular person.  As soon as you're diagnosed you gain a whole bunch of knowledge and that begins your journey with diabetes.

I've come across a few 'veteran' diabetics and realized that although they have lived with diabetes much longer than I have, our common knowledge about diabetes is similar and if it differs in any way it would be because of our sources (i.e nurses or endocrinologists.) It doesn't take long to be a professional diabetic when your working hours are around the clock, seven days a week.

Someone once asked me how long I was diagnosed for and after saying three years they replied with, "well _________ has been diagnosed longer, so she/he has way more experience than you."  I have to admit that this offended me.  Yes, he/she may have had diabetes longer than me, but that does not mean that I know less about diabetes.  I have administrated insulin both with syringes, pens and an insulin pump, and I have checked my blood sugar more than a thousand times.   

The truth is, is that we all have different views on our diabetes and we all manage our diabetes in different ways, but really once you're diagnosed you're only a few days away from figuring what diabetes is about and knowing exactly what it is like to live with type 1 diabetes no matter if you're five years old or fifteen.  



  1. I am going on my 3rd year of being diagnosed. I am turning 13 in a few weeks! Reading your blogs really helps me!! My mom runs a support group for Type 1 diabetics in Northern, KY and we have put a link to your page and everything! I think its great that someone else is just like me and has and is going through the same thing!! When I was reading your last post about talking to other people It was actually just like reading my own story!! I also have a friend from England and we send Christmas presents to each other and everything!! But I was just commenting to let you know that I love reading your blogs and i think its awesome that you have this blog!! Thanks!!(:

  2. I would be offended too.
    And really, would probably retort with something less then friendly. 3 years of keeping yourself alive every day does not mean you lack "experience". Gah. sorry someone was an ass to you. But don't worry, WE know ;)

  3. I sure hope you didn't think I thought I was "better" than you at diabetes because I commented that I'd had it for over 20 years. I don't think that, nor did I intend to say that. The reason I keep going back to the online diabetes community, even after all these years, is because you change, and your body changes, and questions arise. Every time I start going online again to read about diabetes, I learn things I never knew before. Like, I recently learned that I have many more places I could be injecting!

    The key to being a "good" diabetic, is caring enough to try to take good care of yourself!! I've definitely known people who never test, who don't notice a high blood sugar until they're over 230 mg/dl, who skip injections. You definitely seem to be on just the right road, though. It's inspiring, I've sent your blog to some of my more newly-diagnosed friends to help them see how they can engage with their diabetes, and care for it, without letting it get them down.

  4. @AbsurdistGap No, no this blogpost was not about you at all! I respect all those that are living with type 1 diabetes and the quote that I used wasn't from a type 1 themselves; rather from a parent of a type 1.

    Keep reading! I enjoy your comments!

  5. A true veteran type 1 (46 years for me) will never say they know everything about being a diabetic because you cannot. They are always coming up with new things. The insulin pen, the pump, the CGM are just a few of the latest discoveries.

    BUT each type 1 is an EXPERT of themselves. I know when I'm low (hypo), I may not know when any other diabetic is. Not all of us follow the guidelines for hypos: Double vision or blurry vision, Fast or pounding heartbeat, Feeling cranky or acting aggressive, Feeling nervous, Headache, Hunger, Shaking or trembling, Sleeping trouble, Sweating, Tingling or numbness of the skin, Tiredness or weakness, Unclear thinking.

    I only sweat when I'm below 35mg/dL, I rarely get disoriented, most of the time I'm not hungry. But I do act silly and giggle a lot, which is not typical of me.