The day before I started my new life as an adolescent in high school, I got diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. So I didn’t just start my high school career with a backpack full of books, but also an extra piece of baggage called diabetes.
For years I tried to get rid of that baggage, which meant it took me a long time to start accepting my diabetes. Eventually, with the help of my diabetes nurse, I was able to accept my diabetes and in the end it even resulted in me becoming a nurse myself. Then, and now, my diabetes nurse has made the difference.
Throughout the years with diabetes I’ve had different diabetes nurses, and with all of them I had a really nice relationship. I’ve never really felt alone in the ups and downs that sometimes accompany having diabetes: it’s nice to be able to share the battle with diabetes (because that’s what it feels like sometimes). My nurses have helped me gain some perspective and look at things that I can do in my life, despite diabetes.
My current nurse Linda and I are born on the same day – instant connection! Linda helped me switch from pen to pump therapy and has even worn the pump for a weekend to experience how it was and to be able to help me to the best of her abilities. Linda is always helping me, takes me seriously and gives a very positive sentiment to my life with diabetes.
The most important thing for me in my relationship with my diabetes nurse is honesty and transparency. Not necessarily about glucose levels, but about who I am and what I want to achieve in my life – because that ensures we look at my life and a way to fit diabetes into that, instead of the other way around. This way I can fill my life with things I love, which makes me happier and in turn has a positive effect on my diabetes. I can definitely recommend it to everyone: be honest, be transparent and tell your nurse what makes you happy so you can get the support you need, without your diabetes or a specialist getting in the way. Because in the end, you’re more than your diabetes.
My name is Eva, I’m 32 years old and live in Apeldoorn, NL. By now I’ve been carrying around a piece of luggage called diabetes for about 20 years, which took me quite a while to accept. Now that acceptation is of huge value to my own clients as psychiatric nurse. I love spending time with my partner being outdoors or kickboxing and I have a lovebird called Guacamole.