Stories: Celebrating 40 Years

Just a way of life

I remember the day I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. It was 46 years ago. I can tell you what the wallpaper looked like in my parent's room and the layout of the furniture, as my mom told me "you have to tell me every time you eat, and I will give you two injections a day". It was quite a shock to say the least.

My grandmother said to me "you're not going to die and there are children far worse off than you are, so be happy you're alive". I've kept those words with me as I've been diagnosed with other health issues.

We first met Dorothy Gibson at the Diabetes Education Centre shortly after I was diagnosed. Over the years she became my role model of how to live with my diabetes, and showed me you could live a long healthy life with it.  My boyfriend, who later became my husband, attended several times with me and learned how to help me to live with my diabetes.

I've seen many changes, from peeing in a cup, to test sticks you pee on, to the blood monitoring systems. My first glucose tester was the size of a brick - look at the size now! 

During my pregnancy with my son 31years ago, I wore one of the first insulin pumps. It went into the skin on an angle, fell out a lot, and because it was a needle under your skin, got infected and had to be moved frequently. It worked well though and I had a very healthy pregnancy. Not bad for someone who thought they wouldn't have children. I had another pregnancy, my daughter, that was more of a problem as I was not on a pump trial at that time. But another healthy child!

To me living with my diabetes is just a way of life now. It does not stop me from doing anything, and I am healthy.

Submitted by:
Alison Clare, 
London, Ont.

Last updated: Tue, 2013-11-12 14:43