Her Story

29 April 2007

I’d not been feeling well for a couple of weeks by this time. I’d been feeling very thirsty all the time, I had no appetite whatsoever, and I was so lethargic I couldn’t even climb up a couple of steps without feeling faint and exhausted. I guzzled down litres of liquids – juices, isotonic drinks, water, milk – only to throw them up. I thought I had a lung infection coz I have a history of bronchitis, and I wasn’t breathing too well. I’d also noticed that I had some kind of infection growing on my lower abdomen but ignored it (yes, how stupid of me).

That night, my parents noticed I wasn’t breathing properly and insisted I sleep in their room. At something like 2am in the morning, my dad noticed I was hyperventilating and forced me into the car to get to the ER. By that time, I could barely stand and breathe. At the ER, they pricked my finger with an Accu-Check meter and the rest is history.

41mmol. Diabetic Ketoacidosis. Infected tissue on my lower abdomen which needed to be surgically removed. That marked the beginning of my life with diabetes.

I was warded for a total of three weeks. The first three of which I spent in the ICU ward. I had just finished freshman year and thank God it was the summer holidays! Although being stuck in the hospital isn’t a very nice way to spend nearly a month of summer.

During my hospital stay, I had to learn to give myself insulin injections. As a result of the infection and the blood sugars just skyrocketing, my pancreas had been pushed to breaking point and had stopped functioning. For a while, the medical team thought I might have Type 1, although factors like family history and weight pointed to Type 2. I also learned to count carbs and prick my finger. When I was finally released from hospital, I took daily insulin injections for 3 months and gained excellent control of my blood sugar.

August 2007 – 2008

Blood work came back when I visited the doctor’s and my pancreas had apparently begun to work a little again. My endo told me I had Type 2 diabetes, and I began taking 2 doses of Metformin a day. I maintained good control of my blood sugar for a number of months, even running my first 10K race in December 2008. I was (and still am) a very slow runner though!


I started getting tired of diabetes in this year and began running away from it. I was busy interning at the Youth Olympic Games office in Singapore, ironically leading a sedentary and unhealthy lifestyle while working for a sports event committee. Late nights at the office and irregular mealtimes led to me often caving in to unhealthy snacking on chips and instant ramen noodles. We’d sometimes order in fast food when we needed to work late. Fried chicken, pizza…you name it, we probably guzzled it right down. I would pretend that I didn’t have diabetes. I didn’t even want to think about it. All I did was run further from the problem.

A trip to Europe in summer helped a little. I did a lot of walking, at least 5-6 hours per day on average, and gained excellent numbers despite stuffing my face with carbs all the time. I was damaging myself, and I didn’t care. But when I got back, I let control slip all over again and I embarked on a downward spiral that would have me bingeing and purging food, stuffing my face with carbs and sugar, not exercising, skipping medication repeatedly, and even evading visits to the endo.

I wanted to forget that I was ‘sick’ and have this wonky pancreas. I wanted to be like my friends, who can eat and drink anything at all they like and be perfectly unaffected. I felt alone, and although I didn’t really care, the knowledge that I am diabetic lurked at the back of my mind.

This continued into March 2010, and I know that I have abused and battered my body, and that I still have plenty of emotional issues to work through.

I have resolved to gain back control of my blood sugar, and also to shed the kilos I packed on as a result of bingeing. I aim to live a healthy life and maintain such a lifestyle by eating right, exercising much and staying positive. I don’t know yet what the future will bring, but I know that being at the bottom can only mean that I must rise again.

Currently, my numbers hover between 5.6-8mmol after a week of starting to exercise and lowering my carb intake. I hope to get them down even more in the next few months, to hover between 4-6mmol. I hope to hit an A1c of 6 by August this year and also to slowly build up my fitness and lose weight. This blog will chronicle the highs and lows (yes, pun intended!) of my journey with diabetes, and getting my health and life back. Thank you for joining me on my journey. 🙂


2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Hannah  |  April 4, 2010 at 12:11 am

    Come… lets kick D’s butt together =)

  • 2. foo-chye  |  April 26, 2010 at 12:52 pm


    I am a T2, found out in May last year, so my dia-versary is coming up too.

    Send me an email, will be happy to support you in your journey


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