Well, I’m afraid as winter closes in and 2011 starts to sputter out, it’s inevitably time for our usual self-regarding end of year blog review.
Inevitably the year started with the Hogmanay hangover, in which Tim talked about partying with his new pump. The article included a great long-exposure picture by my friend Stephan showing a star drawn by Katie with a lit sparkler. It also has me and our friend Sheena wearing stupid paper hats, which is not nearly so good.
Alison started her year with a Diabetic Brainstorm trying to work out what the hell was sending her blood glucose all out of goose. Was it hormones, dodgy insulin or mischievous elves? Disappointingly it turned out merely to be cold.
But misery and despond were swept away with a Shoot Up night out in January. Alison and I then spent some time fighting our hangovers the next day recording lots of videos for Shoot Up’s new YouTube channel. Highlights included a rather pointless vblog in front of Edinburgh Castle, in which we say absolutely nothing of any import whatsoever. But the background looks pretty though.
Terry kindly covered off the new Accu-Chek Mobile with a great review which attracted a huge number of comments for what is essentially a brick with the ability to measure blood glucose. Not that I’m biased or anything.
Tim then made the world a more dangerous place by learning to drive and Alison talked about the different types of hypos we all suffer from, including my favourite “The embarrassing hypo – any low that involves crying, arguing, falling over, spouting rubbish or generally humiliating yourself in public.”
We then interviewed our favourite diabetes rock-star Brett Ryan Stewart. Also through the year we also spoke to a real life health psychologist and a real life diabetes researcher. Stand aside Paxman, there’s a new interviewer in town!
Alison explained how to identify a diabetic’s house from the subtle clues left around. I went along to the Scottish Parliament and – if you don’t mind me saying so – wrote my favourite sentence on the blog this year “Shona Robison – currently Scottish Minister for Public Health and Sport – was so feeble and gutless I couldn’t even bring myself to hate her.” Hurrah!
Everyone’s second-favourite puppy-drowners Medtronic then made the mistake of inviting Alison and me to their lair in Lausanne. Alison’s coverage was headlined “Medtronic locks diabetics in room” while I went for the more subtle “Drowning puppies in Lake Geneva“. Needless to say we haven’t been invited back.
For once, I then wrote a serious piece about the Invisible Diabetics – those that drop off the health care and support radar. But Alison quickly lightened the mood with Diabetes and holidays – more selfless research. I then tried again to desiccate any humour from the blog with the review of the Roche Accu-Chek Aviva Expert, which is a seriously good bit of kit that – in my view – should be standard issue to anyone on MDI. But what the hell do I know, eh?
As usual we skipped over Diabetes Week while Tim, finally, passed his driving test and Alison questioned the Ungrateful Diabetic and asked whether she was a Nightmare Patient. I strongly suspect the answer to that is a resounding “yes”!
We then reported with great delight when we found that someone wrote some sense about finding a cure for type 1 and I burbled on about pump patterns. Sorry.
I wrote my second serious article of the year when I imagined what it would be like to have a Giant Diabetes Killer Death-Robot It would be quite good, I concluded. Never say we don’t give you in-depth insights here at your soaraway Shoot Up! However, a death robot would have been useful when addressing the UK government about new regulations to driving for diabetics, which thankfully seem to have now been delayed.
As we went into the Autumn, Alison talked of forming a Pancreas Promotion Society and Neville the Newshound wrote a one-size-fits-all piece about diabetes reporting in the media and I went on about my latest A1C. Alison also discussed her food thoughts and how diabetes saved Hallowe’en and I celebrated One Year of Pumping.
And, oh yeah, stuff happened on the forums too.
So there we have it – a year in diabetes. It’s been an exciting year but – as always – a cure remains ten years away! Huzzah!
All that therefore remains is for us to wish all our readers a very merry (and hypo free) Christmas and peaceful New Year to you and your families.
Tim & Alison