Our guest blog post is all about a guy who has both and now embarking on a 5-week #dafne course.
Wow, day 2 of my DAFNE journey came around very quickly! My homework from week one was to begin calculating the carbohydrate content of the food I ate over five days, this is commonly known as ‘carb counting’.
Filling out my food diary. Using a simple (I say simple; it took my 3 out of the 5 days to really get it right!) formula this would then allow me to work out the correct amount of quick acting insulin to administer.
I am not going to lie. When I got home from the course I was confident; I was on a high, my thinking: “you’ve got this!”. Reality? I felt overwhelmed and consumed by the feeling that I couldn’t just eat. I felt I had to calculate, divide, multiply and on top of all that…I had to inject myself.
To put this into a little bit of context, when I was first diagnosed I didn’t take it well (not that I believe anyone would!) I went through a period of being very upset, feeling down, isolating myself from others. I was mentally exhausted and overwhelmed.
It took many months, perhaps years, to feel I had any sort of control over my life again. Thankfully, with the support of my (then girlfriend, now wife!) family, friends and healthcare team, I made it through the other-side to a more positive me. So when I was told that I needed to do something else different on top of injecting myself before I could eat, the same emotions came flooding back!
Again, with that same support network, I came to the realisation that in order to get to a place where I could manage my diabetes and not have the diabetes manage me, I knew that I had to commit, record all the details so that the DAFNE team could find the right strategy and doses of insulin for me.
Well, it’s now 5:30 and I have just got home from the course and I feel so much better. Hearing the experiences of the past week from others, I wasn’t alone. People found the same as I had (to a greater or lesser degree).
I realised; being a diabetic, much like anyone with a long-term medical condition, there are other people in the same boat. To carry that analogy on, I suppose by attending the DAFNE course, someone is giving us the oars so we can steer our boat on our own course towards happiness and ‘normality’.
This week’s homework? To carry on carb counting but now we take that figure and administer insulin in relation to that. There are other details and considerations to make but that is the basic theory. I’ll let you know how that goes.
Honestly, if you are a Type 1 diabetic (number one, join the club, I have badges!!) and number two, if you haven’t done it already, find a DAFNE course and enrol. The prospect can be daunting; meeting new people, changing some old habits but believe me, I’m only on day 2 and I feel that this is a change for the better and, after all, everyone needs an oar! ??
Follow Daniel on instagram: @coeliacanddiabetic
Have a great week, Until next time! For more information about DAFNE (the people who are responsible for the course materials that were given to me today and feature in my photographs) you can visit: http://www.dafne.uk.com/