Guest blog – Starting on a pump

Another special guest blog post for you today, this time from Rebecca Ireland who has just recently started using an insulin pump. She’s very kindly written about her first experiences of becoming a “pumper”! You can find Rebecca on Twitter, and also catch up with how she’s getting on through her blog.

The eve of my big pump day was almost comparable to Christmas Eve as a child. I was full of butterflies and excitement!

Some background for you here, my last HbA1C before the pump was 7.8, I received my results pre-pump and it was 8.6 and to be honest I was rather disappointed. I felt like I had understood my diabetes more recently and thought I might be on par for the previous results, but clearly not.

However I am now an insulin pumper (woohoo!) and I’m so very looking forward to well controlled 2011 and onwards. I know it’s going to be hard work and tough, but I’m ready for this challenge.

Whilst we are on the topic of challenges, my pump morning was a big one. It was information overload from 9.30am until 2.00pm, and then when I got home I had a cheeky snack, and I started the war of all repeated hypos. A total of four between 5.30pm and 8.00pm! By golly did that take every ounce of energy from me. I could already tell this was going to be a tough challenge.

So now its been just over a month since I have been on the pump, everything was quite stable to start with, however I was going to bed on target, and waking up at double that level. So you know what that means … overnight testing, yay! So I had to eat dinner before 8pm, be in bed at eleven, and then wake up every 2 hours to test. It was very interesting the next day to see it slowly creeping up from 6 to 12. A few weeks after being told to fast, my nighttime levels are now perfect, go to bed on 7; wake up on 7, and how great it feels to say that now after all the restless nights!

Of course it wasn’t going to be as simple as that, I have had a cold for the last two weeks, so my levels were all over the place. So a few days ago, I finally managed to start fasting again, so let the hunger commence!

Don’t get me wrong, I love my pump, but believe me it’s hard work, but when you see the results from your hard work its amazing! I hope my experience; even the little amount of it, has given some insight to pump therapy. If you have any questions feel free to ask, or contact me via my site.

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  1. Liv Connor says

    I’ve had my pump since 2004. I can re assure you it gets easier!
    Once you start learning what foods are what amounts and your basil rates have been adjusted to your own routine its easy! The hospitals tend to put alot of pressure on their patients when they first start a pump. For what reason I’m unsure! How did you get the opportunity to get a pump? I had to fight for a year to get mine and I was seriously ill. My friend is now trying to get one and once again due to funding has been turned down.

  2. Jenny Foster says

    Thanks for sharing your pump story. My son Ewan who is 8 was only diagnosed 7 months ago but he thinks the pump will be the answer to all his prayers!! I have been warned that if/when we go down the pumping route, its not all roses and your blog has put that into perspective for me, I will have to relay this to Ewan so he doesn’t pin all his hopes on it!

    Good luck with it all, would be great to hear how you are getting on in the future.

    Jenny X

  3. Rebecca Ireland says

    Hi Liv,

    It’s nice to hear from someone that has had a few years experience in pump therapy, most people I have talked to havn’t had one longer than two years. Good to know you are still entuastic and enjoying life with a pump.

    I had been suffering with morning highs for a long time, also known as Dawn Phenomenon. I tried various things to try and combat this, but nothing worked, my Diabetes Specalist Nurse then recommended pump therapy to me. I went away and did some research, decided I wanted to go ahead with it, and then six months later I started pump therapy (Jan 2011).

    Good luck to your friend, hope she gets funding :)

  4. Rebecca Ireland says

    Hi Jenny,

    I was also diagnosed when I was eight, im now 21. I found it hard to understand as a child, I always read things about cures which always got my hopes up. It’s good that your son is aware of these advancements, such as pump therapy, and has a positive attidude about it.

    I do feel that the hospital are enthuastic about pump therapy, however don’t tell you how much hard work and time is involved. Fortunatly my friend is also on a pump, so I was well aware of what to expect, and that it wasn’t going to be easy. I am glad I have made you aware of what living with a pump is like, and I hope it hasn’t put you off.

    If you are interested, I know there are a few mums with diabetic children who are on pumps, on a forum I go on



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