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30 things you may not know...

It's Invisible Illness Awareness Week, and I've noticed a couple of blogs contributing to the 30 questions meme and fancied joining in, so here we go!

1. The illness I live with is: Type 1 diabetes.

2. I was diagnosed with it in the year: 1993.

3. But I had symptoms since: several weeks before.

4. The biggest adjustment I’ve had to make is: dealing with the constant worry of highs and lows.

5. Most people assume: lots of things. That I could keel over and faint with no warning, that I can't have sugar, that I can't drink alcohol...

6. The hardest part about mornings are: getting up with high blood sugar. It's next to impossible.

7. My favorite medical TV show is: I don't have one.

8. A gadget I couldn’t live without is: my insulin pump.

9. The hardest part about nights are: always falling asleep worrying about a night-time hypo.

10. Each day I take __ pills & vitamins. (No comments, please) Evening primrose oil capsules to help steady my hormones, a multivitamin and folic acid (I'm paranoid about an unexpected pregnancy and the harm the unplannedness may do to a developing baby).

11. Regarding alternative treatments I: think they are a slap in the face. If it were that easy, do you think I'd still be putting up with high and low blood sugars?!

12. If I had to choose between an invisible illness or visible I would choose: invisible. However, there are some times when I wish it were visible because people often forget.

13. Regarding working and career: the hours and work I do are affected by my diabetes. I always look for work with the same hours each day of the week, i.e. no shifts, because I find routine helps a lot with my control. I also tend to go for jobs which don't involve being on my feet all day - it's difficult enough to go in and sit at a desk with high/low BG without running around all day too.

14. People would be surprised to know: that I am grateful for being diagnosed so young (3) because I don't remember life without diabetes, so didn't go through a long period of adjustment. My parents did the adjusting for me!

15. The hardest thing to accept about my new reality has been: having it constantly on my mind. All day every day I'm wondering what my blood sugars are doing and thinking about any highs or lows I've had and how I can prevent them happening again. Nothing can pass my lips without me having to think about the effect it will have on my blood sugars, how much insulin I should take for it, if that particular food caused a high or low last time, how long it's been since I ate and when I will next eat again, how active I've been and will be...

16. Something I never thought I could do with my illness that I did was: get my A1c down to 7.1% from 8.3%, after a lot of hard work and a new form of treatment on an insulin pump.

17. The commercials about my illness: bug the hell out of me. They make everyone think that diabetes is caused by poor diet and being overweight and unfit. This is not necessarily the case with Type 2, and is never the case with Type 1.

18. Something I really miss doing since I was diagnosed is: nothing, since I can't remember life before diabetes.

19. It was really hard to have to give up: long lies - they do not help my control at all. I think my parents had issues to begin with in getting me to sleep a full night and get up at 8am every day.

20. A new hobby I have taken up since my diagnosis is: reading. I spend lots of time reading when waiting to come down from a high, or to come up from a low.

21. If I could have one day of feeling normal again I would: eat lots, and get very drunk. Then feel ten times worse the next day when returning to diabetes. I wouldn't thank you for just one day off!

22. My illness has taught me: to look after myself and appreciate my health.

23. Want to know a secret? One thing people say that gets under my skin is: "You're not going to faint, are you?" No. I haven't fainted since I was 3 years old. "I couldn't inject myself." Well, I'd have been dead by age 6 if I didn't. "Should you be eating chocolate?" What the hell would you know?! And just you try not eating chocolate for 17 years and see how you get on!

24. But I love it when people: show an interest and ask sensible questions.

25. My favorite motto, scripture, quote that gets me through tough times is: "If at first you don't succeed, try, try, try again.

26. When someone is diagnosed I’d like to tell them: that they will adjust and get used to it.

27. Something that has surprised me about living with an illness is: it makes you stronger.

28. The nicest thing someone did for me when I wasn’t feeling well was: check my BG and make decisions for me. My man is amazing when I'm having a hypo and deals with it better than I do.

29. I’m involved with Invisible Illness Week because: I think people make assumptions, jump to conclusions and forget about it way too often.

30. The fact that you read this list makes me feel: grateful that people are taking an interest.

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