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  1. Life's a funny old thing. Today, it leads me to talk to you about a very important issue, which concerns us all.


    Yes, cake. I was planning to just talk about food in general, but since several mildly interesting events have happened over the past hour or so, cake is definitely on my mind.

    For those of you who don't know, I work in a theatre. Albeit, not in a creative capacity these days (though I have in the past, and still hope to in the future), rather I manage the Box Office, and look after 1800 or so lovely people all over the country who donate money and other things to us. We call them Members.

    Now, if you've never spent time around people in theatre, I'll let you in on a (not very well kept) secret. We like cake. Oh yes. We do. Doesn't matter where you work within the theatre - it's a rare exception if this doesn't hold true. Cake is good. Cake brings people together. However, as you can imagine, cake is not exactly my best friend these days. Cake will send me spiking up, but without the option of a bolus to counteract the baked goodness.

    So what's a girl to do? It's an interesting question. Because what has been happening is one of two things. When cake arrives, either I am bypassed in the passing around of the plate (since my desk is in the foyer - Box Office, remember), or I get offered it, and being sans bolus, have to turn it down. I can imagine that in the mind of others, this is a potentially difficult subject. Do you offer, and possibly tempt, or do you decide not to, and possibly alienate? How do you decide? And do you know what? I don't blame you if you find that a difficult choice to make. Because the thing is, dear reader, is that I'm not sure which I prefer either.

    On other notably cake-related matters, I went out to buy my lunch today, to discover that, to my joy, the Farmers' Market was in full swing. This is usually a good thing. It means really nice, locally produced food, and the possibility of amazing sausages or a venison burger for lunch (I'll get to the cake again, I promise). However, the lack of any sort of bread other than white rolls for these sandwiches, and weirdly enough, no-one selling bread made this a bad choice. Which made me sad. As did the sight of my favourite cake from this market. Ah Porter are truly heaven. Yet, on this stall, and the stall alongside it, I saw those interesting words:

    'Suitable for diabetics'

    Oh really? When I ask the people at the stall why, this is apparently because the cakes in question (including a rather amazing looking chocolate fudge cake) are low in sugar. Yes, well that's all well and good, but they're not really low in carbs now are they? And, when the very kindly man at one stall actually had the recipe to hand (which I was impressed with), there was very little low in sugar about it. I suppose I have to give them points for trying, however, I left with no cake for myself, (although with a Porter cake loaf for my housemate) and the feeling that these labels were somewhat misleading.

    I then returned back to work to discover....


    And so the circle continues.


  2. Honey, honey

    Wednesday, 24 June 2009

    So I was waiting most of today on a call from my DSN (also called Becky), with the likelihood that she would have results of some blood tests I had done last week.

    Now there's a story in itself. Shortly after I was discharged, I switched from NovoMix 30 injections twice daily, to taking Lantus. NM was giving me way too many hypos due to the way it has its peaks. So having dialed down my doses to stupidly low amounts, and still having hypos, we decided to switch me to Lantus and NovoRapid (but holding off on the NR for the time being). All worked fairly well, but then the hypos started again. So we continued dialing down the Lantus, but added in some NR for spikes in my readings.

    But still the hypos came. (Now, as a side note, I feel like there's room in this story for a song similar to 'The Cat Came Back (The Very Next Day)" I'll have to have further thoughts on the matter) Eventually, after one that wouldn't shift for over an hour, the great and mighty minds at the clinic decided that they felt I was going through the Honeymoon Period (say it aloud, and you can totally hear the capital letters, for the record), and that, for the time being, I should come off my insulin.

    Yes, you read that correctly. Now it's amazing how quickly you can become conditioned to a thing. A month earlier, the idea of having to do daily injections was, let's say, a little frightening. Now, the idea of NOT doing them? Oh, trust me, we did not like that at all. So I carry on regardless. Have several spikes up to around 15 of an evening, and having to inject a few units of NR along the way.

    But going back to the blood tests mentioned at the beginning of this. I'd been told to have a veritable menagarie of tests done, including ones checking thyroid activity, a screen for coeliac disease, C Peptides, islet cells and GAD antibodies. As well as my fasting glucose level, HbA1C and the like. Seems that they're a little concerned how sensitive I was to my injections, and it's just to confirm I'm not a Type 2. Now my problem with this whole scenario, despite T2 being a very (in their words) slim possibility, is that I've just got used to one thing, and I could see it being very difficult to adjust to another. Plus I'd just bought myself a rather nice medical ID bracelet (mostly to appease my Mum), and I would be rather put out if I'd just wasted money on it.

    So these blood tests were round 2 of the same. The first lot, which were done fasting, I'd had done the evening after having a curry night round at my flat (yes - dinner parties and fasting bloods are not the best combination, but it was the only appointment they had!), and were with a wonderful nurse called Iffa (the nurse from DX Day [wow that sounds like a film!]) at my GP's surgery. Turns out though, that the C Peptide test has to be at the lab within 20 minutes. Not 60 hours, as it was when sample number 1 made it there.

    So I do sample number 2. And I've been waiting over a week for the results. So, they'll probably be there when I next check in with the clinic.

    In other news, I'm very excited about my Frio wallet for my pens. The pens, I did however discover, have passed the 28 day expiry from opening. So the 4 units I injected over the weekend were 'out of date'.

    But that's another story


  3. And so I begin...

    Tuesday, 23 June 2009

    Well. I always wonder how to begin things like this, but here goes, I suppose.

    *stands up*

    I'm Becky. I'm 24. And I'm diabetic.

    *sits back down again*

    Now with my AA-style introduction out of the way, I'll expand on that a little. I'm newly diagnosed - 1st May 2009. So I've been dealing with this month and twenty-three days. And trust me, June has been going a lot faster than May. May was like the month that went on forever. It truly did not want to end.

    So what's the point of this? Well, I've been reading some pretty amazing blogs out there from PWD, and I thought I'd give it a bash for myself. I doubt anyone will ever read it, but you never know.

    Now, just to warn you in advance, this is probably the introductory post that will get really long. Turn away now if you like.

    Before my DX, I did actually know a fair bit about diabetes. My Mum and Grandma are both Type 2's, so was aware it was a distinct possibility that I might develop T2 somewhere down the line. But we don't have a history of Type 1. Which is why this was a little bit surprising.

    For April and the last half of March, I was drinking - a LOT. Which for someone who normally struggles to drink the recommended amount of water a day is somewhat out of character. I was in and out of the bathroom all night. Tired all the time - I felt like someone had opened up a tap that had just drained all my energy away.

    But I didn't want to admit that something was probably wrong. But I got 'persuaded' (and I use that word with a touch of the sarcastic) that it might be a good idea for me to go and see someone. So Friday lunchtime before the bank holiday weekend (for which I had many plans), I popped into the walk in clinic. I wasn't registered with a GP here in York, so I figured this would be the next best thing. I told the nurse there some vague description of symptoms, as I was pretty convinced that I was wasting her time. She told me that it was probably nothing, but she could do a urine test for me 'if I wanted'. In retrospect, it was a good idea I said yes.

    'There's a lot of glucose. I'd suggest you went and registered with a GP today.'

    So I did. I went over to the nearest surgery to my work, and registered. They had no appointments with a doctor, but could give me an appointment with a nurse, who could do a blood test to sent to labs, and schedule me for a glucose tolerance test.

    Went away, came back. Saw the nurse (who I have seen several times since, and utterly adore, for the record), who did a finger prick test on me. Raised eyebrows are not a great reaction.

    31.4 (565 for any US readers)

    Now, as you would imagine, this means absolutely squat to me. I ask if that's high. She tells me that if it were 13 (234) or higher, she'd say I probably needed to get some immediate help. She goes out to confer with a GP, who comes back in and sits down next to me.

    'I hear you're planning on going to Manchester this weekend?'

    I was. I was going to support my friend Jenny in her try-outs for something, and then coming back for another friend's annual house party, having missed it for the past two years.

    'That's not going to happen. You need to go to the hospital. Now'.

    OK, that was not what I wanted to hear. But I was composed, dignified, and took it sensibly and like an adult.

    For between 30 seconds and a minute and a half. Which was when I started crying. And I couldn't stop. I went and sat out in the waiting room whilst they printed out a letter for me to take to the hospital. So I'm sat there, frantically calling my housemate (who I'm surprised could understand me), crying my eyes out, when my fab nurse calls in her next appointment. A boy of about seven, who was looking at me with rather wide eyes. In retrospect, I find that quite amusing. I'm sure he wasn't too keen on going in when he saw what the nurse had done to her last patient!

    So off I go to the hospital. I insist on going back to my flat first to get some things. And then walking there. No way I'm doing anything but, and I can be extremely stubborn when I want to be. I'm told that if I'd left it much longer, I probably would have arrived in an ambulance after having collapsed from DKA, rather than on my own two feet.

    I go in on the 1st, and leave on the 5th with a DX of Type 1 diabetes, a sharps box, glucose meter which will now be my daily companion, and box of NovoMix pens.

    So, congratulations if you've made it through this. Welcome to my world.