Thursday, July 12, 2012

Local Betes: Brittany (Give Shots a Shot)



This is Brittany, I asked her to share her story of being diabetic and to talk a little bit as to why she chooses shots over and insulin pump. Not only did she write a great piece, but she also gave it a great name "Give Shots a Shot!" very clever. Here is her story.

Hi My Name is Brittany and I have Type 1 Diabetes. I am currently on insulin shots and use Novolog and Lantus. I decided to switch from an insulin pump to shots when I hopped into my shower one day with my pump on. I realized shortly after it was no longer under warranty and was clearly on its last leg, so I gave shots a try and I have not looked back since. I am not sure if I feel better on shots or if my numbers are more controlled, but I feel much less restricted and had no idea the freedom that would come with it. I remember one time being in San Francisco at a Giants game and heard something similar to a pump beeping alerts.  My heart sank and I reacted to the beeping even though I had not been on the pump for year. I think I always carried around more concern than necessary when I was on it, even throughout the night I was concerned with its proximity to me and whether or not it was going to fall of the bed, ext.  I am so happy with my choice to give shots a try and am now doing my best to manage my life in this way.

 It is crazy to me that I have now had diabetes for 12 years. I was diagnosed when I was 14 and it has been an adventure ever since. I was in London, England when I first started having symptoms (of coarse at the time I did not know). I was in London for a month with my mom and the day after we got home, my mom was heading out with my dad and sister to Tennessee for my sisters softball nationals. I was gladly staying home because the fourteen year old that I was, wanted to spend the amount of time they were gone, with every one of my friends. In the two day increments I chose, my friends or their parents didn’t have enough time to notice what was actual wrong with me, but they all knew something was. At this point I was SO tired, unable to even lift my head at times; I was drinking constantly and using the bathroom an awful lot. I think the scariest part was the amount of weight I lost. I clearly remember being at the last friends’ house on the day my parents arrived to pick me up after the tournaments were over. The look of astonishments on my moms face I will never forget, it appeared as if she didn’t recognize me. Minutes before I had just thrown up red Kool-Aid all over my friends white bed and her mother was ready to take me to the hospital, but my parents took me instead. We took a few tests and went back home and waited for a call. I remember being in the bathroom and heard my parents and sister say continually, she is so skinny, she is so skinny and I could tell they were scared. When you see yourself in the mirror everyday you don’t realize the drastic changes that everyone else notices when they haven’t seen you in a while. (at this point I lost 11 pounds in 5 days and  literally looked like a Skelton). By the time I came from the bathroom, we got a call about the tests and they told us to come in immediately. I stayed in the hospital for a few days until I got well and then was released. My mom told me years later that the doctors informed her that if it had been 24 hours later, I would have been in a coma. My Blood sugar was 960 and my A1C 14. On top of not feeling well and being confused, I honestly think the worst part was being given diet jelly at the hospital when I was 97 pounds. It was the only time I got emotional over food, ha.

 This actually leads me to a little bit about my only struggle with diabetes. After all having this disease really is not that bad. It is now just a part of my life and something I had to learn, like riding a bike. I don’t mind shots or really anything related to having it, but the hardest part for me is food and desiring to eat poorly simply for the fact that I believe my diabetes would be better if I ate a little more balanced. I have almost a rebellious attitude towards food because for so long I have felt guilty about eating sugary things. It is sadly hard to explain, but I guess I like not feeling restricted in any way. That seems to be the theme with me and diabetes and truthfully has more to do with me than the Betes. Overall, I am a pretty happy camper and excited to have friends who share similar struggles and joys. If I have any recommendation for a diabetic reading this, I would say…give shots a shot if you struggle at all with feeling restricted.


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