Just got diagnosed and I'm feeling scared and overwhelmed.

NicoleSteph
By NicoleSteph Latest Reply 2018-02-18 13:33:29 -0600
Started 2018-02-09 00:35:31 -0600

Hi, I'm new here and not entirely sure how this works but I just really need a place to get all this out.

I found out Monday that I have diabetes and I can't stop crying and feeling hopeless and anxious. My numbers weren't terribly high, fortunately, and I'm not on any medication currently; just a strict low carb diet and lots of exercise while self-monitoring at home. Which is a big change to adjust to but it's nowhere near impossible. But I just can't stop thinking about how this is it, this is the rest of my life. Out of the blue I suddenly have to change the way I live forever. I know it sounds (and is) dramatic. Especially after searching around and seeing so many people who have it so much worse than I do. I should be grateful. And it's just a diet and exercise! Which I need anyway. But I think what's getting to me is the suddenness and not having any choice in the matter. I feel like my control over my life has been snatched away from me and I can't stand it.

I also can't stop obsessing over all the possible complications and whether or not I'm going to be able to do this right. I have no idea what's going to happen now or in the future and I'm scared to death. I hate the thought of this disease ruling my life forever. I'm afraid it's all I'll ever be able to think about and I'll never be able feel carefree and enjoy my life again without this shadow hanging over me.

I guess I just needed to vent, but also wanted to ask if it ever gets easier? Do you ever come to terms with it and not let it bother you and stress you out? After the initial shock wears off, do you go back to enjoying your daily life, just with the added task of managing your blood sugar?
Sorry if this sounds too dramatic or whiny and thank you to anyone in advance for listening. Any tips on getting/staying more positive are of course welcome. It's just been a rough week.


6 replies

suecsdy
suecsdy 2018-02-18 13:33:29 -0600 Report

Diabetes does have an impact on one's life (that's putting it mildly). But it isn't as bad as you're thinking. There's still lots of life to live with diabetes. Yes, you have to be much more aware of what you eat and drink, but you can still do all the activities that you've always done. You do need to listen to your body a little more carefully.
Enforced lifestyle changes aren't easy but you still have choices. You can choose to live healthy and long (hopefully), or to continue as you are and risk the complications. I choose life. That's not to say I didn't do my share of ranting and crying. I did. It didn't change anything. I still have diabetes. So now I live with diabetes, but on my terms. I'm in charge, not the disease.
Please don't stress over complications that might not even happen. It sounds like your diabetes was uncovered pretty early so I think that's a plus for you. Many of us had diabetes for several years before it was dxd (me included).
It really does get easier once you get the hang of things. And education. Get educated on diabetes, how it works. Many cities have diabetes education classes, many free since diabetes is epidemic now. And ins will often pay for diabetes education and nutrition classes.
This is the first support group I found after dx and everyone here is so helpful, willing to answer questions, share experiences and advice and listen. It was a blessing to me and I hope we can help you too. Welcome to DC. glad you found us.

Dr Gary
Dr GaryCA 2018-02-17 22:24:43 -0600 Report

Hi NicoleSteph,

I am so glad you found your way to our supportive community. I am glad you are here. I am a therapist and not a physician, so I am all about emotional support. It's really important to have people around that you can talk to, and vent with, when you are coping with a new medical diagnosis. Support is power. And your emotions have an impact your overall wellness. So talk things out, do things you enjoy, keep the stress down. Stay involved in your life. Vent when you need to. We are always here to listen.

Your diabetes doesn't have to define you. You are still the person you have always been. But sure, with some new challenges.

Here are links to a couple of articles I wrote recently that you might find valuable:

http://www.diabeticconnect.com/diabetes-information-articles/coping/2804-newly-diagnosed-taking-medication-for-life-how-to-accept-how-to-cope

http://www.diabeticconnect.com/diabetes-discussions/general/11188-facing-the-fear-factor

I hope you will give yourself time to adjust to your diabetes diagnosis and the changes you will be making in your life. Be patient with yourself. Take things one day at a time. Stay connected with your doctor. Get educated.

One thing my clients have taught me is the value of being connected with other people who are traveling the same road. DiabeticConnect is that place! Nobody understands what it is like to live with diabetes better than others who are traveling the road along beside you.

So stay in touch with us. Post discussions. Ask questions. Share your experiences. Keep us posted on how you're doing.

And take good care of yourself.

Gary

Gabby
GabbyPA 2018-02-11 11:45:39 -0600 Report

Welcome to the community.
Yes, ultimately, it does get easier. Just like all things with practice it will be easier. The thing that is different is that you can't just quit.

What I have found is to embrace the positive things this has done for me. I have lost weight, I exercise now, I feel better than I did when I found out I was diabetic, and it has also introduced me to some incredible new ways of cooking, great friends, and advocacy not just for my diabetes, but for others as well.

There are negative things, but if I focus on those (not that I ignore them) they will fill me with angst and depression. I don't like feeling that way so I do my best to focus on good things.

I am reading a great book by Adam Brown called Bright Spots and Land Mines and it is about finding things that work for you in your management and avoiding those that don't. I highly recommend it. Easy read, and inspires you to form your own Bright Spots.

Venting always helps, and here is a safe place to do that. Many of us have been in your shoes so we can help you find a way out.

Conadyl77
Conadyl77 2018-02-11 05:10:02 -0600 Report

You'll be fine . It only gets easier and you'll realize that all the changes you need to make are things everyone should do to live a healthy life .

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2018-02-10 21:43:24 -0600 Report

The day I was diagnosed, I at first thought my world ended as I knew it. I went back to work and my best friend also worked there. She took one look at me and asked what was wrong and I said I have Diabetes. That evening I went home and decided to go to a National Night Out event. Our Community Police Sargent looked at me and gave me a hug along with another friend. I told them and my friend said that he had been diabetic for 10 years and asked me what was I going to do about it. He got me something to eat because I was afraid to eat anything. The Sgt had to go to other events and took my hand and said come on and hang with me. I got in his police car and we went to 11 community events. I did have some fun.

The next day at work another coworker had also been diagnosed a week before me. She gave me tons of info and I never looked back. It took me less than 24 hours to adjust. Another coworker had a grant to distribute meters to the community. She had extras and gave me all I needed.

I will tell you this. Yes you have to change your life style and yes at times you will be overwhelmed and to answer your question about enjoying life. Yes I went right back to enjoying my life the very next day. I let friends and family know and told them symptoms for highs and lows and how they can help me. I continued my community work, making jewelry, going to family functions, hanging with friends and living life to the fullest.

You can choose to cry and feel sorry for yourself or you can choose to pull yourself up and get on with life. Being diabetic is not the end of the world. It is a beginning to a new phase of living. The key is opening a dialog with your doctor. Ask questions and get answers. Lists all the questions you need to ask him/her and self educate. Find what works for you because diabetes can be different for each person. I have diabetes it does not have me. I control my diabetes, it does not control me. I have a blast most of the time and I don't focus on diabetes. Good luck. .

Type1Lou
Type1Lou 2018-02-10 08:47:49 -0600 Report

Our diagnoses of diabetes, regardless of Type, is a life-changing event. Your reaction is not unusual. Yes, to manage your diabetes well, you will need to make some difficult choices and life-style changes. But, by making those changes, you will increase your chances for enjoying your life for many more years. I credit my diabetes with actually making me a healthier person (except for the diabetes) because I eat healthier and exercise more than I otherwise would. You can't change the fact of your diabetes. All you can do is learn as much as you can about what you can do to manage your condition and then find the determination to make those needed changes. It can be done and life can continue to be good. (I was dx'd at age 27 and am now 68…thoroughly enjoying my retirement and hoping for many more years.)

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