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IDF Diabetes World Congress in Montreal - 13,000 attendees so far

Anna's Blog
By: FatCatAnna

The Roller Coaster Ride of Diabetes! Whoo! Whoo!

I am a Type 1 diabetic diagnosed back in the early 60's as a child.  I am living in Montreal, Canada and enjoy scribbling about diabetes from time to time. I’ve had my ups / downs just like any person would experience with going through life - diabetic or not.  My motto in life?  Diabetes does not control me – I control it!! 

You can find more posts/discussions at my Facebook page called "The Roller Coaster Ride of Diabetes" and also on Twitter under the name of FatCatAnna.  Feel free to follow me at both places or send me a private message!

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 Blog Entries
The joys of having Bowie my CGMS – Chapter 1 - Sep 02
 Okay, for those of you who have never read my #dblogs before, I give names to all my little gizmos that I use for controlling my diabetes.  What we have today, ...
In a slump and scared - Jul 21
It’s rare for me to compose a #dblog that is not all “chirpy chirpy” … I think the last time I did one that was kind of down was at Diabetes1.org ...
Surviving the Holocaust with Type 1 diabetes - Mar 27
  " To the best of my knowledge, I am the only diabetic who survived years of imprisonment in German concentration camps. This is my story "   The above words ...
Sugar and Your Health - Mar 06
The other day I emptied out a 4 kg (about 10 lbs) of white sugar that I had dated a year ago when I opened it.  I use white sugar purely for cooking (I make my own ...
Eating from the ground - Yuca Fries - Feb 20
I am home now from a working holiday, in the Bahamas and Miami.  Despite the weather being abit cooler then normal (they only get 2 weeks of winter - we were there in ...
Posted: Oct 19, 2009 20:25
  • IDF Diabetes World Congress in Montreal - 13,000 attendees so far

    Well, I am very fortunate this week to be attending the congress here in Montreal.  Luckily I was able to get a volunteer position with IDF and I am having such an amazing time!  So much so, that I'm not looking forward to seeing this all end on Thursday as I've never felt so connected to people that know what diabetes is all about.  It's truly an amazing experience for me, and something I doubt I will ever forget (anyone want to sponsor me for the 2011 IDF Diabetes World Congress taking place in Dubai?)

    I have met up with one other diabetic that has had diabetes longer then myself (50 years compared to my 41) and we've been exchanging how we deal with our disease.  Along with doctors, nurses, and others in the medical field, it's been an amazing experience so far.  Learning how they deal with diabetic patients and they have been learning about my experiences with diabetes over the years since I was diagnosed in 1968. Along with learning how they deal with diabetic patients in their areas of expertise, makes me still kick myself, wishing I'd continued on with my education instead of the university of life!  As Dr. Enrique José Medina Sandino, President of the Fundación Nicaraguense para la Diabetes in Nicaragua pointed out to me, I am doing fine at what I do in helping people via Diabetes1.org and other websites that I frequent on the world wide web.

    What I'm finding abit sad about this congress is that regular folks like myself that are interested in taking care of our health can't really attend this conference.  It's a very expensive thing to do, even for a day pass.  If more people like myself, not in the professional field were able to attend at a reasonable rate, then the world would be their oyster, in obtaining information to make their lives better with this disease. I just know at this point in time, and this is only the 2nd of 5 days for me, that I am emotionally effected, in a good way, of what I am taking in.   This is my first diabetic related event I've ever been to in my life, and I am just overwhelmed by it.  Hard to put in words, but I just know that I will end up with a few friendships that will hopefully last awhile along with many valuable new ideas in my approach to dealing with diabetes!

    A couple of guys that have been a delight to meet are Jim and Richard from California. They are part of the Desert Dingo Racing offroad race team, driving a Class 11 (Stock VW).  This little reeved up engine of a beauty (shook the windows abit in the hall before the battery was disconnected) is the official World Diabetes Day race car. Richard has had diabetes for I believe 13 years now due to  contact with Agent Orange during his years in Vietnam, and we talked about the ups and downs of dealing with diabetes. He is actually grateful that diabetes is all he has experienced from his exposure to this substance, others have suffered worse consequences and death, sigh.  Anyway, it has been great to shoot the breeze with someone that knows what diabetes is all about!  I'm planning on showing them some better places to eat that won't blow our carb count out of this world and also try to encourage them that they need a femme fatale such as myself on the team (they've been invited to Qatar)!  I'll work my charms on them over a good mug of microbrewed beer!

    Below is the The World Diabetes Day Official Car.  I got to get strapped into this baby (thanks Jim - you know how to strap up a gal fine for safety reasons) !  Too bad the battery was disengaged - otherwise - I would have taken it out for a spin! Whoo! Whoo!

    Desert Dingo

    Well, that's about it for now,  I'm knackered, but I'll be back when I can, with more information to share with you all!  Having been on my feet each day from 0700 - 1800 has been something I'm not used to since I'm usually here at my desktop typing out my sponge brain thoughts to you.  I'm having to lower my basal rates on my insulin pump, as I use the stairs to get around the Palais du Congress where  the congress is being held as I'm experiencing a few hypos.  I'm prepared for them - as the rest of the IDF volunteer team mates are as well as they are all in the medical profession and have knowledge of diabetes - though I am teaching them a few new tricks that work for myself.  I should be in shape for the 5K Walk/Run on Thursday - still working on a room to stay in for the night before - so I can be bright eyed and bushy tailed for the 0645 event!


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  • By: FatCatAnna: Oct, 26, 2009 23:30 PM

    Well, I hate to say it, but I did about 1/3 of the walk - sigh.  That morning my alarm didn't go off - SCREAM - so in 10 minutes I was up and out the door - booting off in my Smart to the Old Port of Montreal in record time!  We Montreallers are known for our Grand Prix you know <lol>.  I should have taken up the Desert Dingo's invite of sleeping in their hotel room the night before - maybe I would have been in better shape.  To top it all off, my BG was 3.3 mmol/l (60 mg/dl) when I tested it (felt low).  I guess I panicked (remember, not used to getting up at 05h30 in the a.m.) - and drank a juice box - probably at that point I was heading towards the Dawn Effect.

    When I started the walk, I was feeling fine, had warmed up in the 4C (40F) - not my usual type of weather for a walk mind you.  There were runners there with just shorts on - ugh! I realised something wasn't right when my legs started to cramp up in the calves area - and I wasn't walking fast. It's something I rarely get, but it's associated with BG's going up, I think the last time I felt this way was when I used to trudge to work, and in those days, I wasn't in good control of my BG's.  I had to stop at that point and head to the tent to get my BG meter, as I felt like my feet/legs were lumps of cement.  Luckily a few girls from St. Lucia quit at the same time so I didn't feel so bad, but still I was pretty annoyed with myself.

    Result of the BG was that within 1 hour, I guess due to stress, early hour wake up, whatever other excuses you want to fill in the blank ____ with - my BG had elevated to 13 mmol/l (234 mg/dl)!!! I really wish I had a CGMS on at the time - that would have been helpful - and I was silly enough not to have a water bottle with me. 

    So, next time, I will be better prepared, wake up on time!  It was still fun, but I felt sort of like I'd failed, but as one person said, it wasn't a race, the main thing was to do your best and have fun with the rest of the people there!

    By: 19556: Oct, 22, 2009 11:14 AM

    Hello Anna,

    How did the 5K run go?    Was that your first time competing with a pump in an athletic event - crazy?  or manageable?    Jus curious..

    By: : Oct, 20, 2009 03:14 AM

    Sounds like a mind-expanding couple of days, Anna!
    I wonder if you can give me  a hand (once you've had time to recover!) and help me connect with someone at the IDF? We really want to get the word out about our Traveling with Diabetes journey, and I think connecting with the IDF would help a lot... Would you mind?
    Thanks so much! Hope you get a good rest soon...


    Congress (1) Diabetes (1) World (1) IDF (1) 2009 (1)

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