Thursday, 16 May 2013

Diabetes Blog Week: Day 4 - Accomplishments Big And Small.

We don't always realise it, but each one of us has come a long way since diabetes first came into our life. It doesn't matter if it's been 5 weeks, 5 years or 50 years, you've done something outstanding diabetes-wise. So today let's share the greatest accomplishment you've made in terms of dealing with your (or your loved one's) diabetes. No accomplishment is too big or too small - think about self-acceptance, something you've mastered (pump/exercise/diet/etc), making a tough care decision (finding a new endo or support group/choosing to use or not use a technology/etc).

My biggest accomplishment since diagnosis has definitely been what I'm doing now: my year abroad. Back in September, I said "au revoir" to my diabetes clinic for 4 months and embarked upon the start of my year abroad adventure. Armed with a carry-on case filled to the brim with all things diabetes, and my life packed into one suitcase to be checked in, I left the UK and moved to Toulouse, France for the my first semester and studied at the university there. After going through a phase of insulin omission, it's safe to say I was nervous about how things would go once I was abroad, but I was determined to get through first semester without relapsing, and that's exactly what I did! And I met some amazing people along the way. 

In December, I bid my DSN "salut" and had my hba1c done, as well as being armed with more information about changes I may have to make and even more supplies to take away with me again. This time round, I said "adios" to the clinic for six months, ready to head to Alcalá, Spain, for the second semester of my year abroad, once again armed with all things diabetes, my case and some extra bits and bobs I received for Christmas. This is where the problems started: going from France to England to Spain really meant I had no routine for about two months, and things really got out of hand. It was like I'd completely forgotten what to do when it came to my diabetes. I was so lost. Not only was I lost, but I was lost, living in Spain, away from my friends, away from my family, away from my healthcare team. But thanks to this wonderful thing we call the internet, I got it back. I emailed my DSN, I emailed/skyped my friends, I got reconnected with the diabetes online community. And I got through it. 

And here I am, three months later, back on injections, eating properly, blogging about my life with diabetes, living the Spanish life (sadly, for only three more weeks, and then I return to the UK).

This year (well, September 2012 to June 2013) is my greatest achievement. Diabetes had it's moment, but I got through it, with help from various places around the globe. And that is something I am proud of.

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