During the mid to late-nineties I was a sponger. A parasite. Living off the state and sucking it dry like a voracious Highland midge getting its fangs on an unwary hill walker on a damp May afternoon. I lay in bed all day, only rising to play England-France grudge matches on Jonah Lomu Rugby for the PS1 against my housemate.
Yes, you’ve guessed it, I was a student.
Sadly, however, the halcyon days of studying for my law degree at Southampton University came to an end and I had to face up to reality, get a job and start paying back my debts to society (and, naturally,The Student Loans Company Limited).
Fast forward several years and I was ensconced in my current career – a combination of information technology and law so mind-bogglingly difficult to explain in a short post that I won’t. My feet comfortably under the desk I was diagnosed with Type One. Woop-de-doo!
My job doesn’t really have a physical element – I don’t have to drive buses, work with heavy machinery or pilot hundreds of passengers over the Atlantic. This is probably just as well, as a degree in law leaves you pretty much qualified to do nothing practical or useful. I sit in an office, type away at a PC, ring clients and tell underlings what to do. Therefore my diabetes is very rarely a problem.
However, just to be on the safe side I briefed my two bosses on the condition and what it entails (essentially a few hours off every once in a while to go to the hospital, check ups, etc., etc.) Being careful they checked up any legislation that might apply (virtually none, of course) and I went on to tell my underlings about the joys of diabetes.
I happily test my blood glucose and shoot up at my desk and,disappointingly for an ego-maniac like me, no-one pays the slightest attention.
Hypos have rarely been a problem as I make sure I keep a stack of Mars bars and other tasty morsels in my desk drawer. This has, however, caught the attentions of my colleagues and I’ve become a sort of office-based school tuck shop for the peckish. If only I bought my sweets wholesale – I could have turned a neat profit. Maybe diabetes does have some pros after all.