A while ago, I wrote about some of the positive aspects of being diagnosed with T1D. I’d also like to talk a bit about some of the everyday challenges I have encountered since my diagnosis. It’s important to discuss both sides of T1D, since anyone who is familiar with it knows that it is definitely not all sugar-coated rainbows and butterflies! Maybe some of these are relatable to you?
- Remembering everything
Needles, insulin, prescription refills, medical appointments, the list goes on and on. It is sometimes tough to remember everything that comes along with being diabetic. Writing everything down helps, but I still find myself leaving the house without enough test strips or misplacing my endo’s request for bloodwork on a semi-regular basis. Lists and phone reminders are a necessity.
I cannot go shopping for anything without having my blood sugars plummet and then forgetting why I was at the store, what I was shopping for, and don’t even ask me to try and make a decision on which shoes look better. I’ve also left the grocery store with some pretty questionable food combinations, and without what I came there to get in the first place. When I treat the low and rest for a bit, I find I am usually too drained to continue with my shopping trip and just give up. I find I always need to shop with a list and having a buddy to help me avoid making fashion catastrophes is a necessity.
Especially after getting a taste of what it is like to be surrounded by other people who also have T1D, it can get pretty lonely sometimes. I start to feel like I’m the only one struggling and I have no one to turn to for help or simple understanding. Online support groups are really great during these times, as well as writing for this blog. Thanks for listening!
- Feeling selfish
Being late for work because we had to go get my diabetes kit, or leaving a party early because I am not feeling well can be a real bummer for people around me. I have always been a people pleaser and I hate for people to have to go out of my way to accommodate me. On the other hand, T1D has taught me to stand up for myself more and not let my own needs go unattended for too long.
- Thinking about long term plans
Lately, my planning doesn’t go much farther than what I am going to make for dinner that night. It’s tough to think about the future because it is so uncertain and there are just so many other urgent things that need to happen between now and then. Committing to events weeks or months in advance can be iffy, as I can never really predict how I may be feeling that day. T1D also brings about days where I am too tired from managing roller coaster sugars and don’t get to any of the items on my “To do” list, which can be frustrating.
T1D brings many daily challenges, besides the obvious ones related to blood sugar management and health complications. All of the T1Ds I have ever met are incredibly strong people, and sometimes when you are strong it’s hard to ask for help when you need it. Let’s start a dialogue about our everyday challenges and strategies for coping!