My son was two years old when he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes
After a fairly severe bout of flu, my son Hugo, who was two at the time, kept asking for something to drink. This did not worry me straight away, since I thought he must have lost a lot of fluids while he was ill. He had a diaper rash, cried a lot and was moody. At this time I still thought he was recovering from a bad case of the flu.
When Hugo was still very thirsty a couple of days later, I made an appointment with my general practitioner. His blood glucose was measured and the value was 30+, whereas a healthy level sits around 5.5. Conclusion: type 1 diabetes.
We started injecting insulin via an insulin pen. When the so-called “honeymoon phase” was over, Hugo was eligible for an insulin pump and a glucose sensor.
Needless to say, I am very happy that insulin pumps exist but not only did I now have a son, I had a son with a device on his body. Hugo was so small and the pump so big. Where were we going to put that thing?
Hugo never used the pouch that came with the insulin pump. With the pouch, the tube was dangling outside of his clothes and so I worried it would get caught on something.
The diabetes nurse told me that some parents make sleeveless shirts of their own to store the pump in. So I got to work with a sewing machine.
A top with a pouch for an insulin pump. But where? How? On the back? At the front? I needed to be able to have good access to the pump to administer the insulin. I also had to make sure the pump would not get in his way while playing. The tubing needed to be put away securely and I did not want the pump to show under his clothing.
I experimented a lot with the design of this homemade top over the years but I was never quite satisfied with the result. Every top was different and I was glad whenever I had three to alternate with.
For years I toyed with the idea to design the perfect top and have it manufactured so that I could also help others carry their insulin pumps in a safe, comfortable and concealed way.
After picking several fabrics (cotton), getting sewing patterns made (fit, position/size of pouch), deciding on the type of label (no itching or irritation) and finally assessing several samples, the perfect top was finally there. Diabasicwear was born!
Notes on the details:
dia = diabetes
basic = practical/basic/plain colors
wear = to wear/clothing
oval shape = the pouch in which the insulin pump is worn/stored
plus sign = medical/positivity. Hence the slogan ‘wear a smile’.