I've had type 1 diabetes for nearly 14 years. I have fallen off the wagon a few times, battled diabulimia, survived numerous insulin shock comas and ketoacidosis episodes, and struggled with acceptance: I have my scars. Despite these mistakes, I've picked myself up countless times and have prevailed. I've persevered with a disease that doesn't take vacations for even a minute, and I've come out on top. I'm alive and healthy, with a full life and a child of my own.
Last year, I gave birth to my daughter and shared my pregnancy and birthing experiences with you. The pregnancy was a very difficult but extremely rewarding experience. A few months after our daughter was born, my husband and I discussed whether we'd have another child. On one hand, I went through several insulin shock comas, severe insulin resistance, and pre-eclampsia, ending in an emergency cesarean section. Because my first pregnancy was so tough, we weren't sure if we wanted to risk another one. On the other hand, if we did have two children, we wanted them to be very close in age so that they could bond well. We figured that if the two children were around fifteen months apart, then my daughter would be too young to feel any tension about having another baby in the house. We hoped they'd be close enough in age that they would always have one another as a companion.
My oldest nephew, James, has a double whammy to deal with. His aunt, yours truly, has type 1 diabetes, and so does his father. I was in the room when my sister had an ultrasound during her pregnancy with James, and I clearly remember the doctor asking her if anyone in her family had diabetes. We shared a look as she informed the doctor of my diabetes and her husband's diabetes. I know we also shared a silent prayer as the reality hit us that diabetes might be passed on to her children.
The challenges of pregnancy are daunting on their own, but when you're diabetic, they can seem insurmountable. That's one of the reasons Cheryl Alkon wrote a book on the subject. Having type 1 diabetes herself, Alkon knew firsthand the challenges of controlling her disease during pregnancy, and of raising the kids who followed.
During my 14 years with type 1 diabetes and my time spent interacting with the diabetes online community, I constantly hear the same theme: Doctors aren't listening to their patients, and their bedside manners are deteriorating. Every day, it seems, I hear about people who have been treated as if they are simply a number or dismissed as uneducated in their own health conditions.
As a woman with diabetes, you may have noticed that you face unique challenges, from where to place your insulin pump, to pregnancy, to hormone fluctuations. Many diabetes books offer general diabetes advice, but few focus on women beyond just a short chapter. That is, until now.
Diabetes Health is the essential resource for people living with diabetes- both newly diagnosed and experienced as well as the professionals who care for them. We provide balanced expert news and information on living healthfully with diabetes. Each issue includes cutting-edge editorial coverage of new products, research, treatment options, and meaningful lifestyle issues.
The information on this site is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. All content, including text, graphics, images, and information, contained on or available through this website is for general information purposes only. Opinions expressed here are the opinions of writers, contributors, and commentators, and are not necessarily those of Diabetes Health. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website.