2016 Recap…

With 2016 coming to close soon (how fast has this year gone?!) and with it being quite an eventful year. I have decided to get back into blogging with a fun New Years game I found on Pinterest. This comes as a free printable game you can play with friends but I thought I’d answer some of the questions myself to recap 2016.

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My Instagram Best Nine Photos of the Year, you weren’t that bad 2016.

 

Most Memorable Moment of the Year: This is hard. I have had so many amazing moments in 2016 that I could consider memorable. However, the moment that I will always remember 2016 by, is being diagnosed with diabetes. It will definitely be the thing in years to come that helps me remember 2016.

Funniest Moment of the Year: I had several contenders for this. 2016 has been a year full of laughs and funny moments. My funniest moment though has to be when I ended up having my best friend Jake live with me for a whole weekend. What started as me just trying to get a friend home ended up in a weekend long drinking session full of laughs and memories we will cherish forever. He even introduced me to me new favourite comedian and for that I will be forever grateful.

Happiest Day of the Year: I think my happiest day(s) of the year this year has been my birthday weekend. I had all of my favourite people together celebrating my birthday. I had Ikea trips, family meals, drinks by the canal and a garden party fit for a Princess. It was such a fun filled few days with lots of giggles and drinks. I got to know one of my closest friends more over that weekend too, and for that its got to be my happiest day(s) of the year.

Biggest Lesson Learned: I think my biggest lesson learned this year was that life is too short. I now say this all the time (apologies to my family and friends) and live by it. It really is too short to worry about the small things in life and now I have learnt this I am much happier. It will definitely stick by me for years to come.

Best Trip of the Year: I think my favourite trip this year has to be my trip to Chester to visit the girls I went to University with. It was a great tour of the North with us visiting Liverpool and Chester. It was great catching up with the girls after months apart and we definitely made it worth while. We exchanged many hilarious stories and created some more that we will remember for years to come. 

Best Film of the Year: This is tricky as I have discovered loads of amazing films this year. However I was a massive fan of Deadpool and I think it might be my favourite film of 2016.

Favourite Holiday Memory: As I haven’t been ‘on holiday’ this year I’m going to give a memory from the school holidays I had. I think my favourite holiday memory will be when I went to Southampton to visit my best friend at her University. I also got a trip to Salisbury which was very beautiful and its a city I cannot wait to visit again. 

Favourite Food of this Year: If one food were to sum up this year it would be macaroni and cheese. I discovered its one of the few foods I can make and make well. Here is to many more macaroni and cheese meals in the future.

Favourite TV Show of the Year: One series I really got into this year was Black Mirror. I really didn’t think it would be my cup of tea as I was told it can be political which can go over my head a bit. However, I actually found each episode just as gripping as the one before and each expressed issues that instantly provoked thoughts about the world we are in and where it could head. If you haven’t already checked it out I would definitely recommend.

Favourite Song of the Year: This is a massively tricky one as music plays such an important role in my life. I think my song of 2016 will have to be Hair – Little Mix. This song is insanely catchy and not normally a song I’d like. However, it completely summed up my attitude towards certain people throughout the year. As I said before, life is too short.

One Word to Describe this Year: If I could pick one word to describe this year it would definitely be ‘Roller coaster’. There has been some real lows but some monumental highs. It has been a tricky year at times and I have often felt like I was dropping from dizzy heights. However, I have always got back up and I’m currently ending the year on what seems to be a massive high.

What I am Looking Forward to Next Year: Next year I am looking forward to travelling more. I have a trip to Australia booked and I hopefully will get to head abroad again. I’m looking forward to more trips away to see my university friends and completing my teaching qualification. I have high hopes for 2017 and I really hope it doesn’t let me down.

See you in 2017, with a big smile and new post all on my New Years resolutions. Until next time,

Katie

(want to see more of me follow my Twitter and Instagram)

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A letter to my diabetes.

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Dear diabetes,

You have turned my life on its head. We may have only been part of each others lives for a short while but you have made it a whirlwind few months. I don’t want to compare you to other peoples because I understand its different for everyone, but you haven’t been welcomed with open arms.

Now I understand ‘its not all your fault’. You are just the by-product of my shoddy immune system, it doesn’t make you any less of a pain though. You’re like an annoying ex that wont quit. Four times a day I have to ‘control’ you with injections which often can be painful and leave marks. My fingers will sting for hours after I’ve checked my blood sugars and are painted in little dots. I have to worry about not injecting in the same place or I could get lumps under my skin, joy. There are lots of long-term issues you can cause if ‘I’ don’t control you well, how is that fair?

This is just the start. I panic at every slight change in feeling. I get a little sweaty or I shiver, am I having a hypo? I feel a bit dizzy, are my sugars too high? I am constantly on edge that I might possibly getting myself in a dangerous situation and the stress is all too much. It’s remembering how many fruit pastilles you have left ‘just in case’ and being constantly worried your breath smells of pear drops and you may need to go to hospital. This isn’t things a normal 22 year old should be worrying about. I should be worrying about what lipstick I should wear with a certain dress?, why that boy isn’t texting me back? etc. All the ‘normal’ worries in my life are taking a massive back seat because I’m having to think of you.

I can’t eat with everyone else as I am rushing off to the loo to inject myself, which isn’t ideal when your friends are too polite to eat without you and all of the food is cold. Healthy eating is a massive thing now but even thats hard as there is lots of thinking and pre planning when it comes to what I can and can’t eat. If I am having a carb heavy meal like pasta and garlic bread, I need more units of insulin otherwise you can’t cope. I much preferred the way I looked before you, you aren’t helping me keep a trim figure at all. I have to carry loads of different things around with me at all times, in case. Making it extremely difficult to leave the house quickly. Relying on people to get my prescriptions or to refer me to the right people in order to check on you has just been a pain and has caused me many sleepless nights. It’s just been an inconvenience at times and not a laughing matter.

However now you are part of my life, even if you are a pain, I’ve got used to you. You haven’t been the easiest customer to deal with but you are under control and the pain, worry and annoyances are dying down. I could do without you at times, yes, but you are here and here to stay so all I can do is put up with you. You wont stop me from doing what I want, no matter how much on an inconvenience you are at times. You can try your best but it’s my job to control you, not the other way round. I am sure one day I’ll have a lot more positive things to say about you but until then I will put up with my secret super power providing you get easier to deal with.

Keep being ‘normal’,

Katie

(Check out my Twitter and Instagram to see what I am up to)

5 happy things.

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These girls never fail to make me smile.

Since being diagnosed diabetic I have tried really hard to remain positive in all aspects of my life. It’s not that I feel overly upset about being diabetic, I am used to it now, I just don’t want to get myself into a negative mindset about it all. In order to do so I reflect regularly on the things that are making me happiest right in that moment, even if it’s just a Cornetto at the end of a long day.

  1. My Friends. – As majorly cliche as that is, it is beyond true. My friends have been incredible throughout diagnosis and even now. They still check in regularly about things and in some cases I think it has brought us all so much closer. I had such an incredible summer with all of them and I am so grateful for them. There is a lot that they have done for me and even now I don’t know how I will ever repay the favour. The one thing that really helps me stay positive is getting excited about going to visit them while they are at Uni, other ends of the country or world. Just in the next 6 months I’ll be going all over the UK and to Australia just to see them all.

2. My Family. – again, so cliche. Not a day goes by where I don’t almost collapse in laughter from a member in my family. Whether its pub quiz night or my dad trying to understand the latest IPhone update, I cannot help but smile when I am around those goofballs.

3. My Job. – This is something most people don’t rave about enjoying but I have really got so lucky with the school I am working in. I am currently training to be a primary school teacher and as my work load isn’t too bad at the moment I can do my job and really enjoy myself. I’m not panicking about marking yet or making sure I have enough evidence etc. The school I am at has the best vibe and everyone is so lovely there. Im really looking forward to being part of the team and being well supported through my time there.

4. The Time of Year. – It is coming up to my favourite time of year. I love summer and all the time to tan and relax. However, leading into Autumn and Christmas is my favourite time of the year. Snuggly sweaters, nights in, fireworks, gingerbread, everything about this time of year is just so much better. There is such an air of romance in the Autumn time and don’t even get me started on the colours *heart eye emoji*. I’m so ready for long, crisp dog walks down the canal then snuggling up on the sofa with my dog after.

5. Cornettos – Summer may be over but that doesn’t mean I have to curb my love of ice cream right? Sometimes after a long day the only thing that can perk me up is this naughty treat. My life has always revolved around food and I personally feel that a treat every now and again wont hurt. An ice-cream teamed with some good tv and a dog cuddle can really be the pick me up I need so I don’t go to sleep in a bad mood.

These will change and vary but I’m so glad to say that currently I am the happiest I’ve been for a while. I am smiling more and I’m back to where I was before being diagnosed and I am not looking back.  Do you have anything that is making you really happy lately? I’d love to know! If you want to check up on things I’m up to follow me on Twitter or Instagram.

Until next time,

Katie.

 

Reading Festival, take 4.

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On the bank holiday weekend I ventured to Reading Festival for the 4th time. However it was the first time I had been as a diabetic. I was well and truly bricking it. I had read all the advice on the diabetes UK website but obviously they couldn’t control my sugars for me and I was so nervous I wouldn’t cope in a festival environment. Luckily, I surprised myself.

I rolled on up on the Thursday armed with spares of everything, carby snacks and a £16 doctors note I wish I hadn’t bothered with. I breezed on through security checks and within the hour was sat in my tent (in the rain) with a rum and diet coke in hand. That night the arena was open for a very sweaty Hot Dub Time Machine. Dancing non-stop to music from 1954-2016 left us soaking. We hobbled back to the tent for an early night, while all our sweaty clothes air dried.

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Ready for my first full day.

Friday morning I got up stupidly early and after reluctantly walking over to use the campsite loo’s I munched on a couple of welsh cakes and went back to sleep. The plus of not wanting to see many bands until later in the day meant I could nap all I want and ensure my sugars were all ok in a semi-clean environment. Friday highlights for me were Die Antwoord, The Neighbourhood and Foals. I got so over excited when Foals played Cassius. Its the song that first got me listening to Foals and they don’t play it too often, it was a treat. Disclosure were also very good considering I thought it was just going to be two guys on their MacBooks. We stayed up that night chatting to some people from our home town and drinking more. I had survived a full day without any problems.

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‘ITS KAHL DROGO!’

On the Saturday we got up early, despite being ridiculously hungover and went on a booze/food run. The plus side of a festival like Reading is that its so close to the town centre that if you run out of anything Tesco is only a short walk or river boat away. My best friend also was coming later that day and I was beyond excited to create some memories at her first festival. We watched You Me At Six’s secret set and it was like being 16 again. I sung my little heart out, to the songs I knew (why did I stop listening to these guys?) and I couldn’t be happier. Other Saturday highlights were The Courteeners and Red Hot Chilli Peppers… obviously. However, I do have to give a slight shout out to the guys we met just before Imagine Dragons who saved us from getting angry at 16 year olds. They also helped me confirm that I had spotted Jason Momoa behind us, even if they took the piss out of me for hours after.

Sunday came and I wasn’t ready for the weekend to be over. This was the hardest day for clashes too. I had decided to see Deaf Havana (just to feel 16 again), but I left early to catch the end of Sleeping With Sirens. Well worth it as I saw my favourite songs by both bands and I was blown away with how great Deaf Havana were live even when I didn’t know half the songs. I also fell in love with a new band after being dragged to see Half Moon Run. How I had never listened to this band before was a shock. The front man is a James Bay look-a-like and their music is just as beautiful. After that we ran over to catch A$AP Rocky, he put on such a good show. I could not stop attempting to twerk while making friends with everyone else around me. I then enjoyed my first healthy meal of the weekend, sweet potato falafel in a flat bread *heart eyes emoji* before catching Fall Out Boy. They had the best stage show of the whole weekend by far as well as the perfect mix of old and new songs. Then it was time for the final act and the end of the music, Biffy Clyro. As these guys are one of my favourite bands, I knew I would get emotional. By the time they played their final song, I had cried everything out and lost my voice.

14141908_10153688912806246_365887250248129478_nI genuinely felt like I had blinked and just like that the weekend had finished. It was a stress-free weekend (thankfully) and the perfect end to my summer holidays. I had no issues with my sugars and in fact they were the most ‘normal’ they’d ever been. I didn’t even need to flash my expensive doctors note to anyone. I’m so glad that I went and I didn’t get too worried to go. I’m planning next years festival experience already, see you in 2017 Reading.

To see more of what I’m up to check out my Twitter and Instagram.

Until next time,

Katie.

 

 

Type 1 FAQ’s

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‘Are you sure you can eat that?’

Since being diagnosed with type 1 diabetes I have been bombarded with questions. I am writing this FAQ post so family/friends/anyone can get a few answers without overloading a newly diagnosed diabetic.

1. Which type is worse, you have the good type right?

If I’m honest both are pretty pants to have. Type 1 you have forever, and type 2 normally hits you later in life. Neither are great really but they are both completely manageable.

2. So can you not eat cake now?

The good thing about having type 1 is that monitoring it is a lot better now. Meaning you can eat anything, within reason. Obviously you need to maintain a healthy balanced diet just like your average joe but it doesn’t mean I can’t enjoy a sweet treat every now and again.

3. I don’t think I could inject myself 4 times a day.

Ok, this isn’t a question but its a phrase I’m getting a little sick of hearing. Well its great for you as you don’t have to. However if I am honest it isn’t that bad. Pre-diagnosis I was a massive needle phobe, where the thought of a blood test sent me into a state. Now I can inject myself like a true pro. The needles are so thin and tiny if you get it in straight you cant even feel it, AMAZING! It, unfortunately, is something you just have to get on with.

4. But you aren’t fat? Was it because you ate too much sugar? I didn’t think you were eating that unhealthily?

One of the main symptoms of Type 1 is rapid weight loss, its labelled as the ‘lean’ diabetes for this reason. So yes you can get diabetes and not be fat. No, if you eat loads of sugar it doesn’t always increase your chances of getting diabetes. Just before I was diagnosed I was eating the best I have ever eaten in my life. It definitely wasn’t anything to do with my diet. Sometimes you just get it and there isn’t anything you could have done about it.

5. What happens when your sugars are too high/low?

If my sugars are too high I can get really sleepy and feel like I have no energy, this is when I need insulin. If they are too low, I get the shakes and cold sweats then I eat some sugar (my emergency fruit pastilles) and keep checking my blood sugars until they are in normal range. Everyones symptoms for hypos/hypers can differ so it’s best to ask them what their symptoms are.

These are just a few questions I have been asked a lot and I’m sure that this isn’t the end of all the questions. It can all be a bit daunting to begin with, especially when you are newly diagnosed and just learning about it yourself. Hopefully some of these FAQ’s help people understand a little bit more.

If there are any questions you have or if you have any questions/phrases you are sick of hearing let me know by commenting. Also follow me on Twitter and Instagram for regular updates on what I am up to. Next week I’ll be telling you all about my experience at Reading Festival, it was a good one.

Until next time,

Katie.