Diabetes from the 90s: My 27 Year Diabetic Experience

Diablogger Olga Monaenkova tells how to make friends with diabetes and lead a full and exciting life . About the experience of 27 years, the evolution of life with diabetes, the risks of complications and how diabetes is a “lifestyle”?…

My name is Olya, I am 34 years old and 27 of them I have been diabetic. And to be more precise, I don’t particularly remember the life “before”. And besides, after 4 days in a coma, I didn’t remember much at all, I was re-taught to hold a spoon, and then for 5 years, the events “before” popped up in my head like knowledge.

Briefly about me: “diabetes since the end of 1993-beginning of 1994, I can say like “diabetes mammoth”, we are also called “ diadinosaurs ”, we seem to be from another world, now everything is different and it’s very cool.

What kind of diabetes “was before”?

I WAS ILL IN THAT PERIOD WHEN we didn’t even dream of syringe pens, and SUGAR was CHECKED in urine and with the help of REAGENTS.

It was a whole procedure: “do the job, pour it into a test tube (preferably not a spill), add a reagent, go put a test tube in a ladle and boil, wait for it to darken or not. If darkened, then sugar is high. You understand? Just HIGH or not. There were no numbers and it is not known what kind of sugar was – 10 or 30. And if the sugar is high, then you need to add a dose. Then no one thought about the causes of high sugar: maybe she overate corny, maybe she got nervous or even got sick, since any inflammatory process leads to an increase in sugar. This is how we lived with just-HIGH sugar…

Blood was taken in the morning on an empty stomach in the clinic. It’s even scary to imagine: in the morning, a mother with a child who has diabetes mellitus had to run to the nearest clinic, wait in line for blood donation, then feed the child in the same clinic on the sidelines in Spartan conditions, while waiting for the result of the analysis. No comment.

Then there were strips to determine the level of sugar in the urine, life became easier. A little later, the first huge, like a brick, glucometer appeared – One touch basic . Thanks to this company for making life with Diabetes easier.

All this I remember in horror. And in comparison, I understand how great it is that everything is different now, that science and research do not stand still.

About Diablogging and why now is a great time for people with diabetes

On Christmas night this year, I decided that a column about me and my diabetes should be born! I thought about it for a long time – almost 4 years. For a long time I went to this morally, but did not dare. I was afraid of criticism, publicity and generally any negative. But life is one! And I really want to share my experience and show what mistakes can be, what you should not even try.

Am I ready to share my life with absolutely, it would seem strangers to me people? Not really … but I am ready to help with a word, share the information I have accumulated, practice and inspire hope in a quality and happy life with diabetes. Now is a great time to get diabetes, no matter how cynical it may sound. Those who fell ill in the 90s did not have even half of the information that is available now, and I generally keep quiet about gadgets .

Now there are so many glucometers , diabetes apps, KBJU counting apps, continuous sugar monitoring, insulin pumps, etc. The main thing is that science does not stand still. I believe that soon we will celebrate not only the birthday of the inventor of insulin, Frederick Banting. The day is not far off when the bright minds of scientists will find a way to solve the problem of diabetes. Everything is leading up to this!

27 years ago, my mother and I thought that in 10 years there would be a shift in diabetes. But no, he wasn’t. And after 15 it wasn’t. It seems to me that significant changes began around 2008. It was then that the first information about a competent approach to diabetes began to appear. And then… literally in the last 10 years there has been an incredible step in the management of diabetes. And this is not the opinion of the layman. I, a person who has felt the most difficult times without information and tools for self-control, have something to compare with. Believe me, we are in a new era!

Diabetes is a lifestyle?

Children who met with diabetes in the 90s, led their diabetes in fact “no way.” We didn’t even have the slightest idea what it really was. And most often thinking that you are doing everything “as the doctor ordered”, we raped our body and tested it for strength. Where it is thin, it breaks there. Therefore, these people often already have serious complications.

So, I developed proliferative diabetic retinopathy. During pregnancy, retinal detachment occurred in both eyes. Almost lost sight in one eye. I went through a long treatment – multiple laser coagulations and 2 vitrectomy surgeries . I also know firsthand what polyneuropathy and nephropathy are. All the baggage of complications taught me the main thing – working to compensate for diabetes is the best medicine. It was thanks to careful self-control that I managed to slow down the pathological processes and maintain a positive trend over the past 10 years.

Today , many people do not like the expression “diabetes is a way of life.” My diabetic experience since the distant 90s showed that at that time this particular formulation was detrimental to people with diabetes. Such a presentation created an imaginary feeling of lightness. In general, we were afraid of complications, but did not understand how much information we lacked and how low-quality our diabetes compensation was. This attitude can be salutary, but it can also be detrimental. It is important to understand that diabetes is a long-distance race where only one wins – diabetes or you. Today is the time for healthy lifestyles, software and the Internet of things, when your phone and devices for it track the quality of sleep, activity during the day, and a bunch of other well-being parameters. And yes, this is the perfect time for a quality life for people with type 1 diabetes. And now diabetes can be a way of life, because ideal conditions have been created for competent compensation.

What’s important to remember is that there are certain lifestyle choices you can’t give up with diabetes . And you also need to know more before your doctor. Learn and assess the situation with a perspective of 15-20 years. You need to understand that the entire responsibility for your diabetes or the diabetes of your children is solely in your hands!

In my case, information for a quality life with diabetes did not appear until almost 20 years later. By the time I had an understanding of how to live happily and in general health with an incurable autoimmune disease, I already had complications. And you know what, this is not a reason to give up. The main thing I want to convey is that now you can live perfectly with diabetes, study, work, start a family, give birth to children, and most importantly, without complications!

Knowing about diabetes is half the battle!

There is now a wealth of information available for a quality life with diabetes. Yes, you need to search for it and be able to filter it. It is also important to find “your” doctor with whom you will be comfortable in every sense. If not, then it is even more important for you to learn more and more about diabetes.

My ignorance led to complications. And it was my mistakes that became the motivation for creating articles about diabetes. I encourage you to learn from my mistakes so you don’t make your own! I went through fire and water in order for someone to rethink their lifestyle, set priorities and start a new DIA life .

Living with diabetes can be of high quality, bright and interesting … With a competent approach to diabetes, you can safely lead an active lifestyle. Knowledge helps not to be afraid to send a diabetic to school or university. Knowledge allows an adult with diabetes to get any desired job, move up the career ladder, travel or play sports. Diabetes is not a hindrance to creating a family and having a child. Knowledge and planning are our strongest helpers.

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