I just "celebrated" my 19th anniversary of my diagnosis of Type 1 diabetes. Usually I get pretty down around this time of year, but this year I took a different approach. I decided to look at the good things in life and a made a list of them over the past 19 years. It had the usuals on there- a great marriage, two healthy kids, a good job, etc- then I got to thinking of my diabetes and I can't believe how much my diabetes care has changed in 19 years. I know for some people, 19 years is a drop in the bucket, and I admire those people who have lived with this lifestyle for so many years!!
Thinking back to 1991, I only had to test my blood sugar 4 times a day and the meter required a huge amount of blood. It took 45 seconds to countdown and if the sample was a little too small or large, it didn't read it.
I took five-six shots a day and I had to mix the humulin N and R together, load the needle in the autojector, and shoot myself. Then I had to wait at least 30 minutes to eat.
I had to keep a diary of all my blood sugars, and if I missed a couple of days, I had a lot of makeup work to do.
I saw my pediatric endocrinologist twice a year and they did an A1C once a year.
Now I think of my care and I am amazed at how much progress there has been. I now have a meter that requires a pindrop size of blood. I have an insulin pump that requires a needles once every three days. I have a CGM that monitors my BS levels all day long, and I see my endo 4 times a year and get all kinds of wonderful labs done to make sure everything is ok. I have a computer program that loads all my pump data for me so I no longer have to fill in the diary. This program also shows graphs, trends, patterns, and a bunch of other great information to improve my care. Best of all, there is Juvenation. I don't post much, but I read many of the posts and it is very helpful to see there are other people out there who experience the same probelms as me. They offer advice, stories, and luck when needed, which helps me get through my slumps.
To me, the level of care has made life much easier. I think back and wonder how on earth was I able to test my BS only 4 times a day. If I don't do it every couple hours now I start to wonder. I wonder what it will be like in another 19 years. Will there be a cure? Hopefully!!
P.S. Thank you Ron Santo for all the work you did for the JDRF and the Cubs. He brought diabetes to the public eye in northern Illinois, even getting Walgreens to donate money to the JDRF for every walk the Cubbies drew during a game. Rest in Peace #10!
Does anyone else have similar stories of how their care has changed over the years since the diagnosis? If so, I'd be curious to read about them.