Taking Our Life Back From Diabetes

Monday, January 6, 2020 - 14:54

Just over a month ago my type one girl turned sixteen and I look at where we are now compared to where we were when she was diagnosed and how much things have changed.

When she was three we were on injections daily. I couldn’t work.  I was constantly at the kindergarten testing and adjusting blood sugar levels and could never really be far away from her. The kindy teachers were anxious all the time about watching for hypos and keeping her safe. Even coffee dates with friends were often interrupted by emergency dashes to kindy to check her sugars. Sleep was done in little two-hour blocks waking often to test her to treat hypos just to check she was still there, that she was still with us.

My life and my daughter’s felt consumed by diabetes. I was overweight from eating lollies all day myself the next day to try and keep awake. (I hadn’t discovered coffee at that stage) I was so unhealthy. I had no time or energy to exercise or to look after myself.  All I could do or think about was just keeping my precious little girl alive. 

The first step to take our life back from diabetes was switching to our first Medtronic insulin pump. It was life changing. No longer did she require multiple daily injections, just a set change every three days and she could eat to her appetite. There was no force-feeding to match the insulin she already had on board. There were no more conversations with my three-year-old tagged with “well yes you can have a tub of yoghurt, Chloe but you’ll need a needle “. I just felt like there was some normality of some sort back in our life by starting insulin pump therapy and it was a breath of fresh air. 

It was the start of a series of huge improvements in our quality of life. The insulin pump helped us keep her blood sugar more stable as we had a lot more adaptability with power to change Basal rates. I was able to trust her levels to be more stable overnight without some of the slow acting insulin on board and I started to be able to sleep just a little easier still, a long way from perfect but it was a step in the right direction.

Over the years through sticking with Medtronic Insulin Pumps has seen improvements at a speed more than I could’ve imagined and I fast forward now to my daughter who’s just turned sixteen. With the advances in technology I’ve now just embraced her first overnight alone at home with just her sister and without me whilst I travel for work. Leaving your sixteen-year-old child home alone for the first time is scary for any parent. For someone who’s got a child with diabetes it’s actually at times, unimaginable. 

Certainly when she was young it was unimaginable that we would ever get to this point but thanks to the technology available with Medtronic and knowing that I can trust her to be in range for majority of the time, knowing that there is technology that will protect  her when her blood sugar gets too low, knowing that it will adjust the insulin to match what is happening within her body, has opened up this possibility.

It also gives her the chance to be independent and it’s part of growing up and preparing her for the next stage of her life that she needs to move through and when I know that her insulin pump has got her back I can step back and let her do that, I can let her grow. She is sixteen and hurtling towards adulthood. I love how her pump keeps her in range most of the time and with just a little effort from her she can get on with life knowing that her pump has her back and is constantly adjusting and calibrating to keep her in range, to keep her safe. That makes me one happy Mumma.

Janice, Mother of Chloe.


*The patient is a member of the Medtronic Patient Ambassador Program and has received consideration for their time. This patient testimonial relates an account of an individual’s response to the treatment. The account is genuine, typical and documented. However, the individual’s response does not provide any indication, guide, warranty or guarantee as to the response other persons may have to the treatment. The response other persons have to the treatment could be different. Responses to the treatment discussed can and do vary and are specific to the individual patient. Please consult your healthcare professional for a full list of benefits, indications, precautions, clinical results and other important medical information that pertains to the therapy or products discussed. Spring Approval 6692-1109.

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