WELCOME TO MY VERY FIRST BLOG!
My Tweet the other week received some serious love from the UK’s Diabetes community so I’ve even bought myself a laptop to make this a THING! This is the first little taster of Know your type!
Just to introduce myself my name is Jonny Labey, and I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes 10 years ago! As an active and healthy child finding out I had chicken pocks was a shock… Diabetes was a whole different kettle of fish and to top it off, understanding that this unheard of condition may one day affect my feet, as a dancer, was all a bit much to take in and digest. I never really got my huge ‘WHY’ question answered and just had to accept it and make peace with it, like having an extra feature in my life that in many ways since, I’ve strangely benefitted from! However, it was all a bit MUCH at the start, but I knew that the sooner I came to terms with it the easier it’ll get. HENCE 10 years later… here I am BLOGGING!
I know the title Know your type is fairly non-specific and if you hadn’t guessed already, no this isn’t anything to do with dating and finding Mr/Mrs right so if that’s what you’re after I’m afraid ‘Type’ is referring to type 1 and 2 Diabetes! If, however, you are looking to find out a little bit about managing the stresses and overcoming being diagnosed with this alien condition then hopefully I can be of assistance!
At the age of 15 (which is considered fairly normal, although a large percentage are diagnosed from much younger) no matter what the causes are or were for my diagnosis, being determined to pursue my ambitions in performing I attended a 3 year BA(Hons) course in Professional Dance and Musical Theatre at Doreen Bird college and ended up managing my Diabetes alongside this crazily athletic lifestyle. So I guess to… celebrate…commemorate… mark the century of being in the Diabetic family I thought it was only apt to give something back and pass on any knowledge that I have accumulated over 10 years, so that you newly diagnosed lot are 10 years wiser than I was at the time. In a roundabout way I’d now proudly say that Diabetes defines a huge part of who I am and has taught me a lot about myself, giving me attributes that I’d never thought I’d have i.e. organisational skills! Maybe you’re reading this as a parent to a child that’s been diagnosed, maybe you’re a friend of someone who has it, maybe you fancy brushing up on your Diabetes street cred or maybe you were looking for a different ‘type’ but found that actually Diabetes sounds awesome so you stuck with it. Either way something I’ve learnt is that the more people read, know and talk about how to treat a HYPER or HYPO or understand Diabetes in general the more we’ve essentially cured it from being an issue.
As this is predominantly aimed at newly diagnosed patients and, as I’m going to be ‘Blogging’ once every couple of months, so that you’re not sat with your own thoughts for the next edition I want to start off by saying that YOU’RE NOT ALONE and that if you aim to adjust Diabetes to your life it won’t hold you back from whatever it is you want to do! There is always help on hand, Diabetes UK is one of the UK’s most developed charities with help on hand near to 24/7 as it’s one of our most common conditions, sadly sitting at roughly 3.8 million in the UK. Although I am Type 1 Diabetic, which statistically makes up 10% of the diabetes population, I will also be using my knowledge in Dance and exercise to help battle the cause of Type 2 Diabetes, more on this when rehearsals for Strictly Ballroom chill out a bit
Admittedly the performing industry is one of the many inconsistent careers that Diabetics deal with, but we do deal with it so know that anything is manageable! Just to give a wide spread of different walks of life and different life styles I’ve got an exciting and successful range of (what I consider as) …
Everyone with diabetes or any terminal condition is in my eyes is a bit of a legend, but think of these as examples from who you can steal tips and tactics (like cheating an exam)! This is to send out a bunch of Diabetic voices as well as professional (more scientific and studied) voices hopefully giving you a balance of real cases mixed with scientific JARGON.
If you know of any others PLEASE COMMENT AND SEND THEIR STORY IN and I may share it with the wide web, from acrobats to astronauts I wanna hear and share as many words of wisdom as possible!
Know your type is about understanding for yourself what it is you have but also about hearing from the community that are all there to help one another and support each other… Trust me you’re apart of a very loving and COOL, yeah that’s right Diabetics are COOL, community
WHAT THIS BLOG ISN’T…
“Don’t do this… Don’t do that… exactly how MANY peas did you have with your dinner last night?”. This Blog is more about mentality and approaching diagnosis in a different way, a new and different life NOT a death sentence! As an Ambassador and Patron of Diabetes UK I will admit I’M NOT PERFECT… No one is! Don’t let this stress you out! It’s about finding a balance and routine that works for you and finding those little techniques and nuisances that makes every Diabetic different!
Take diabetes seriously but don’t let it control you! Managing your Diabetes is up to you and you only. In terms of managing Diabetes and the facts and figure I’ve always felt the support in this field is covered in depth and you will receive a lot of information with regards to important things such as ‘Carb counting’ and managing your insulin dosages etc. However for me the most important thing to reiterate and address is your mentality and mind set in terms of moving on with your life and finding a positive balance between staying strong and staying healthy.
-LIFE JUST GOT INTERESTING!