Diagnosis: Alese

Fall of 2011 was an eventful year.  I started a new job.  I was maid of honor in my sister’s wedding.  My paid off car was totaled by an uninsured motorist who decided texting was more important than stopping at a red light.  Chronic sinusitis is a phrase I got used to hearing.  Allergy shots and antibiotics would take care of it so not to worry.  Except…  I was ALWAYS tired, achy, thirsty, my lips were peeling off daily, there was not enough espresso to feel energetic.  I found a new GP across the street from my job that did labs in house, yay!  Less time away from the office. I had lots of blood work, steroid and antibiotic shots to no avail. My latest sinus infection was not responding to anything.  My shiny new GP was about to put me in the hospital.  My big concern was not to have bruises on my arm from blood being drawn that would show in my bridesmaid dress.  The wedding and pictures were great!  I fell asleep at every opportunity to make it through the weekend.   Then the holiday season was upon us.  All these events let me explain away how run down I was.  Since my doctor couldn’t find anything specific I was given the advice this could be my age and weight catching up to me. If I did not make some lifestyle changes I was at high risk for diabetes.

I was an overweight 32-year-old who could walk a couple miles when needed.  In January I made some resolutions to get healthy. I started eating better. Why tempt fate??  The doctors couldn’t find a reason for the way I felt.  I needed to try harder. More vitamins, less fat, and walk more. Every morning I would have espresso and sugar free syrup before work. It helped shake the cobwebs.  When I got to work I would have vanilla yogurt, flax seeds, and a cup and a half of mixed berries. Thirty minutes later I could barely keep my eyes open.  More caffeine.  Every aspect of my life was suffering. Job performance was horrible. My home life was a bad Ground Hog Day.  Open the door, drop keys and purse, mumble hi, and climb into bed. The man I love was kind enough to take my shoes off and turn off the light.  Oh… I forgot to mention the chronic yeast infections.  I had taken my last Diflucan prescribed by my GP and waiting to get fit in with my Gyno.  Monistat was not cutting it on a Saturday and I could not wait until Monday for relief.   Off to the doc in the box I went.

I was dying of thirst, so I stopped at McDonald’s for healthy drive through breakfast and super sized diet coke. I finished the biscuit in the car and took in my gallon drink.  After waiting the normal 45 minutes to be seen I was angry, thirsty, my bladder was about to burst, and I could not find my Chapstick for my sand paper lips.  This lovely, patient GP came in and asked me about my symptoms. I gave him a recap and he said he would call something in for the infection.  I was ready to buy a liter of water at the gas station on my way to CVS.  He kept asking me additional questions about my health and if had a history of diabetes in my family.  My maternal grandmother is a type 2. I brushed that off because of lifestyle factors and she is in her eighties.  He explained he had moved here recently from Canada where he was an OBGYN that specialized in gestational diabetes. He asked if I would mind checking my A1C.

Then it all clicked mentally.  Thanks to being a prolific Babysitter’s club reader and Stacey’s struggles as a type 1 there had been a nagging voice in my head for months.  I even went to the Mayo Clinic’s website and looked up the symptoms for diabetes.  I checked a lot of the boxes but…I couldn’t be a type 1. I am not a child and not overweight enough to be a 2.  My GP would have tested me if there was an issue. I was in his office almost weekly.

I will always be so grateful for Doc in the box’s kindness and patience when he delivered the news I was diabetic. My A1C was 9.7. With lifestyle and diet changes it could be managed.  He asked if I wanted to make a follow up appointment with him. I said I would see my GP on Monday to start treatment.

I called Hottie on the way home. He was as stunned as I was.  This was good news!!! Even hopeful. It meant I could easily resolve the health issues of the past few years. Who really cares about carbs?!?!  I was going to be healthy again in a few months. Yup. Nope. Things played out a little differently. Fast forward over the next year and a half.  Months of being misdiagnosed as a 2, then LADA, type 2 classes, highs, the medications, (Metformin is the devil) self-doubt, fighting BCBS for more than 6 finger sticks a day, appointments, feeling like a failure because I couldn’t get it under control, finding new employment, new insurance, and FINALLY being an insulin dependent type 1.  That was my welcome to the club experience. I did not have the one medical episode that revealed I was a T1D.  I had several years of trying to find solutions.  I am here and blessed to have a great support system of family and friends.