‘I will eat my Hat’ if you have a thyroid problem…July 1996

I made an appointment to revisit my diabetic specialist, he didn’t really believe in alternative therapies so when I mentioned I believed I had a thyroid problem he laughed and said I needed to come to terms with my diabetes.

As I was a private patient I insisted on some blood tests to see if the iridologist was correct,  my specialist agreed to do them but said he would eat his hat if I had a thyroid problem !!!

That evening the specialist called me at my home to say he was eating his hat as he spoke to me … I had a severe under active thyroid ‘myxoedema’ and should start Thyroxine therapy that evening and to come to the hospital to collect my prescription!!

I started on a high dose 150 micrograms straight away …

Oct 1992….My 2nd Endocrinologist !!

Just in case someone doesn’t know what an Endocrinologist is …

Endocrinologists have the training to diagnose and treat hormone imbalances and problems by helping to restore the normal balance of hormones in the body. The common diseases and disorders of the endocrine system that endocrinologists deal with include diabetes mellitus and thyroid disorders. (8 Sep 2014 Google)

I hadn’t had diabetes for long so transferring to a new Endocrinologist was easy… my diabetes continued to be difficult to control especially as I was pregnant! Due to my age and the fact I was  diabetic,  I had to have an Amniocentesis test. They also referred to it as a Grays test! All I can say is I’m glad I had got over my needle phobia!!

Amniocentesis (also referred to as amniotic fluid test or AFT) is a medical procedure used in prenatal diagnosis of chromosomal abnormalities and fetal infections….(en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amniocentesis)

The Endocrinologists wife was a nutritionist, and helped me change my diet , in those days you had to count your carbs i.e. an apple was 10 carbs… I was too scared to cheat as I was worried about the development of the baby!…

Apple =10 Carbs
Apple =10 Carbs

Sept 1992…Given the green light to start a family..but I was already Pregnant !!

I followed all the guidelines, I was on an insulin called Actrapid injected 3 times a day before meals and Ultratard injected before bed ..I avoided anything with sugar and became obsessed with recording my sugars as I was determined to bring my HB1C down ! (I have kept diaries for the past 23yrs of injection sites and sugar readings and hypos ..which occurred most days !!) We decided to go for a holiday in Europe , where most of the food was self service so I didn’t worry about portions and could eat at the times I wanted.

I went back to work soon after being diagnosed , September 1992 I was given the green light to try for a family, my HB1C was 6.8%. Little did I know I had already conceived and was 1 month pregnant !!

I conceived in August 1992, due date being April 1993. The monitoring began! My 1st Endocrinologist.. wanted me to have the baby in a local hospital but my Gynaecologist (whom I had known for a few years) lived in central London and I had to choose ..hence bye bye number 1 hello my 2nd Endocrinologist!!

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July 1992… Reality began to sink in , things I didn’t know !

Even though it was many years ago certain things don’t change, I had to surrender my full driving licence ! I then had to be assessed by a doctor and a form completed to re-apply for a driving licence for 3 years and then to continually apply every 3 yrs onwards !!

I  subscribed to  Diabetes UK  to receive a magazine called Balance showing the latest changes to medication and problems I may encounter..I actually paid to be a life member .. I figured once a diabetic always a diabetic !

I also subscribed to Medic Alert for a bracelet highlighting the medication I was on! I hated the feeling that I had an illness and everyone had to be aware , so I purposely bought trendy versions of everything to hide the fact. I didn’t join any forums or clubs as I didn’t want to see what happened to diabetics further down the line ! The whole thing scared me !!

I had to see a dietician, I was taught to carb count ,  although over the years the guidelines have changed! I had to keep a diary of my injections & sites (4 a day) also food diary !  I really thought my life would never be the same again!!

I began to suffer drops in blood sugars every day , Hypoglycemia otherwise known as Hypos ! I was told until I was stable this would happen, so I began my regime of pricking my finger at least 7 times a day …

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31st March 2015 .. Preview of what’s to come ….

Just to clarify, I am writing a blog on the past 23 years of my life since discovering I had Type 1 Diabetes gradually bringing it up to 2015 ..I am now 56 yrs old .. Happily married with 3 Children now 22, 19 & 16 and a successful business…My journey has had its ups and downs dealing with diabetes, diabetes during pregnancy and other autoimmune disorders.. I realise there has been many advancements in diabetes along the way .. So some of my story will be out of date but will still show you the journey I have taken .. the rest you will discover in my blog !
I hope to help people who are on a similar path to see there is light at the end of the tunnel and life is what you make of it …..

June 1992 .. My life turned upside down !

I was still working, but needed to read everything about travelling with diabetes as my job meant me travelling to the Far East and turning my body clock round!  Now that I injected it worried me.

The end of late night dinners ..I started staying in more as I used to have low sugars everyday sometimes twice a day but that was because my sugars were  up and down ..later to be diagnosed as brittle diabetes .

We were trying for a baby , soon after our honeymoon I conceived but 8weeks later I had a miscarriage which transpired was because I was early stages diabetic but had not been diagnosed yet!

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I was told I couldn’t get pregnant until my sugars were stable …6.0 to 6.9 mmol/l (108 to 126 mg/dl)….

My 1st Endocrinologist …

There is a reason why I refer to my Endocrinologist as number 1, you will get to understand further into the blogs… I was extremely nervous to find out how diabetes was going to affect me . I still didn’t know if I would have to inject insulin( Type 1) or just take tablets (Type 2).

After further tests, it was decided I would need to inject insulin! However I had a phobia of needles ! I decided there was no way I could do this , so the specialist had no option but to admit me to hospital until I learnt to inject. I had to practise on an orange ..It took a week before I overcame my fears !

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Shock set in …

Being told you are diabetic out of the blue sent me into shock …I went home and read everything I could about diabetes on the Internet ! What happens now  I thought ..my life changed overnight ..I had an emergency appointment the following day to meet a specialist in a local private hospital, I was lucky enough to have Private Medical Insurance . Other  people may have had to wait a week or two for an appointment on the NHS !

June 1992 (6 Months after I got married) I was diagnosed with diabetes…

I was working on some drawings as I designed toys at the time and I noticed my vision began to change …I figured I needed glasses ! Then I started to lose weight and became excited as my diet was finally working ..little did I know what would happen next. I was always running to the toilet , but now I know they were all symptoms of the beginning of Diabetes !

When I visited my local GP  at the time, he pricked  my finger with a blood monitor to see my glucose reading and test my urine…”Yes” he said “you have diabetes , I will need to refer you to a specialist called an Endocrinologist”