I met Christine Meehan in 2008 when a small number of us decided to start a type 1 support group in Co. Clare. We have been friends since day one. Christine has two grown up children and a dog and is currently on an internship with Focus Ireland. She is also completing BA degree in Community and Family Studies in NUIG.
In 2012, she completed a 200 foot abseil down the side of the Clarion Hotel in Limerick to raise money for Diabetes Ireland and has completed a number of Clare 10Ks.
If that wasn't enough "giving back to the community", she also volunteers with Childline, Clare Youth Service and Spina Bifida Hydrocephalus Ireland.
I recently asked her to tell us why she wants to be a part of organising Thrive-abetes and what she wants to get out of it for herself.
Christine; “I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes 9 years ago when I was in my 30’s which left me feeling shell shocked. Before this I took my health for granted. There was so much that I had to take in and try to understand it was overwhelming.
While trying to find out as much as I could about Type 1 Diabetes I started to attend a support group which I found so helpful, getting out and meeting other people with the disease and sharing our experiences. Living with Type 1 Diabetes can be a daily struggle, juggling all the different elements that have an effect on my blood glucose levels can sometimes leave me feeling alone and frustrated.
I try to learn as much as I can about Type 1 Diabetes and how best to deal with it because I feel being armed with good information makes it easier to make informed decisions on controlling my blood glucose levels and good health.
Last year. I attended a conference in the UK on Type 1 Diabetes which I found really beneficial. Meeting others with Type 1 Diabetes and their families and the talks that went on throughout the conference were all so relevant.
That is why when my friend, Gráinne, asked if I would be interested in getting involved in trying to run a similar conference in Ireland I was completely on board. I believe that Thrive-abetes is an amazing opportunity to meet people with Type 1 Diabetes and gaining knowledge and life experiences along with listening to highly renowned and motivational speakers is so worthwhile for my own self-care. The Thrive-abetes conference will be the first of its kind in Ireland and will hopefully become a regular event."