The interview of Alexia
Hello Alexia, could you introduce yourself in a few words ?
Hello everyone, I am Alexia, I am 34 years old and I live in the South of France and more precisely in the Var. I'm currently in professional reconversion after 15 years in the women's wear industry. I like to laugh and cultivate this grain of madness, I am a real chatterbox and I like to see the positive in everything that surrounds me.
When was your diabetes diagnosed? What do you remember about the first period after the diagnosis?
I was diagnosed at the age of 6, impossible for my parents to remember the exact date of this diagnosis, we just know that it was during the first half of August 1992. Unofficially I chose the date of August 10, 1992. I remember going home after the hospitalization and my injections, at that time it was with syringes and vials of slow and fast insulin. We mixed it ourselves, I felt like a great chemist. I don't remember much, but what I do remember is that my lifestyle didn't change, just a lot of explanations from my parents about diabetes and why I had to eat this or that.
Diabetes is still not well known to the general public. How would you explain to someone what diabetes is and how it affects your daily life?
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease, the cells of the pancreas that produce insulin are destroyed. Insulin is vital to regulate the sugar level in our blood. A sugar level that is too high is hyperglycemia and a level that is too low is hypoglycemia, both of which can be dangerous, which is why we must act on them quickly, by injecting insulin for hyper and taking sugar for hypo. We must control this sugar level every day and several times a day, we must also inject synthetic insulin every day and several times a day. To date it is treated but not cured.
I have lived with type 1 diabetes since I was a little girl, diabetes has never "bothered" me in my everyday life, I put it in my pocket and it follows me everywhere. I live my life, not my diabetes.
The preconceived notion that you want to debunk at all costs?
The preconceived idea that people should get out of their heads for me would be the one that starts with a good feeling but often ends with a "Ah but you can't eat it, you're diabetic!". People with diabetes can eat anything, as long as the right amount of insulin is injected at the same time.
Tell us a positive or funny story about your diabetes.
A nice anecdote about my diabetes, one day in the middle of an argument with my husband, I was crying, then laughing, then crying again, until he asked me to scan myself. A big hypoglycemia was there, he went to get me a glass of grenadine and it went off with a big laugh, no more arguing.
What advice would you give to someone who has just been diagnosed with diabetes?
The advice I could give to a newly diagnosed person would be not to worry, the sun always comes out from behind the clouds. That today if everything seems insurmountable, the information that falls one after the other, it will all become gymnastics and life will be just too good. That diabetes is not a barrier, and that we must continue to have fun and live life to the fullest.
Kaio-Dia was created because many accessories were either boring, of poor quality, or uncomfortable. We would really like to continue to change this, as we have already started to do. For that, we would like to know what you need, like, dislike or miss in your daily life.
If you can come up with a system so I can stop looking all over the house for my devices, that would be great. On a more serious note, I'm a fan of pouches, I could have tons of them... Put everything diabetes related in one pouch so it doesn't get lost or wandered around. And why a micro strip garbage can, that too gets lost everywhere. :-D