Married with Type 1 Diabetes

Married with Type 1 Diabetes | www.iamatype1diabetic.comTomorrow marks one year of marriage for my husband and I. It seems like it was only yesterday, but at the same time, we have done a lot in our lives together in this past year that I will never forget.

He has been there through the best of times (like us finally closing on a house of our own) and through the worst of times (like the passing away of my beloved grandfather who walked me down the aisle). I cannot thank my husband enough for always being there for me, supporting me and of course, helping to manage my diabetes.

With some really tough work, I have managed to get my a1C down to a whopping 6.2%. This has come from checking my Dexcom CGM constantly and checking my blood sugars anywhere from 8 – 12 times per day. My endocrinologist was very pleased with my test results and exclaimed “Keep up the good work! This range is consistent with the recommended limit (4.2-6.3%) for a non-diabetic population.” I have never felt so happy and accomplished of for doing something I’ve worked for so long to achieve.

The post below was originally written over three months ago, so you will notice some differences in my a1C numbers. The differences are most certainly good ones. We are working together, as a married couple, to achieve the perfect blood sugar and an even better life together!

I recently wrote this post for Suite D — an online community created for diabetics using or wanting to learn more about the Omnipod Insulin Pump. Click here to see this public post on their website.

Getting married is a big deal to everyone. But getting married, balancing life as a married couple, and living with type 1 diabetes is even more difficult. We argue about things most newly married couples don’t even have to think about, let alone have to worry about.

I have been a type 1 diabetic since I was 9 years old. I claim to know how to control my blood sugar levels. My husband understands the frustrations I go through on a daily basis. Because he is fortunate enough to live without this disease, it is hard for him to completely comprehend what makes my blood sugars spike and drop so rapidly and so unpredictable.

My husband has always been very supportive in helping to manage my diabetes. When we first started dating, and before I got a CGM, I scared him half to death when I didn’t wake up one morning because of low blood sugar. He had to rush home from work, give me some juice and wait for my sugars to go back up. Ever since then, he has woken me up every morning before leaving for work to make sure I check my blood sugar level in front of him. We also mutually decided that it made sense to set an alarm at 3:00am to check my blood sugar. This way, we could both avoid further frustrations that type 1 diabetes has to offer.

Recently we got into an argument because of my OmniPod meter vibrating. I have an alert set to check my blood sugar for dinner at 6:30pm. By that point, I had already checked my blood sugar, bolused and we had already ate. My meter was tucked away in my purse, and I was in the other room completely oblivious to the vibrating noise. He kept hearing it. He was annoyed, and I told him to just turn it off. He refused.

He didn’t think its ‘right’ to go into a woman’s purse. I told him he had my permission to do so, and being that I am now his wife, he shouldn’t feel that way. Yet he still refused and continued to complain for me to turn it off. Annoyed and irritated, I dropped everything else I was working on and turned off the alert.

Since we are newlyweds, a lot of people surrounding us have asked when we are going to start a family. Neither of us is ready for the full time commitment of a baby right now, but we also know it is going to take a lot extra planning before we can even start trying. I have been trying to get my a1c number down significantly so I can get the green light from my endocrinologist and OBGYN. I have read up on what it takes to plan accordingly. With that being said, I have been testing my blood sugars more often and set the high & low limits on my CGM in tighter control. We have worked together to start eating better and more balanced food. We have worked together to get better blood sugar levels, and he has been on my butt even more about giving myself more insulin to avoid a high blood sugar.

In the last 3 months, my a1c has come down .6% (from a 7.4% to a 6.8%). We both know it needs to be even lower before I can even think about stopping my birth control. For now, I am working on getting tighter control of my daily blood sugar levels, while he has become a great assistant in managing them. Without him yelling at me to “turn off my CGM” or to “check my blood sugar,” my blood sugars would still be as bad as they were when I was in college! Being newlyweds while trying to keep a much tighter control of my diabetes has been a positive learning curve for the both of us.