Another Thriveabetes is in the bag.   I don’t know where to start to summarise the day. Finding the right words to describe the fun, emotion and how much I enjoyed Thriveabetes 2018 on Saturday 24th February has been tough.

So, I gave up and decided to use your words instead and a jumble of moments  I wanted to share with you. I’ll put together a series of posts on specific talks that I attended on the day and I would love if people who attended the other talks, especially the ones in the Parents room, would like to submit guest blog posts so that we could give a rounded review. 


Here’s my jumble of thoughts:

#1. Here are some numbers, that won’t give you a pain in your head like blood glucose numbers or HbA1c’s.

  • – 276 people registered for Thriveabetes.

  • – 70 children aged between 5 and 18 years

  • – 97 adults with type 1 diabetes and some brave partners

  • – 110 parents of children with type 1

  • – 16 Exhibitors – our biggest number yet with some new faces.

We grew again! The good news if there was loads of space.


#2. We are international!

We’ve always had international speakers but this year, we had attendees from UK, Scotland, Moldova and Belgium! How cool is that!


#3. BG meter sharing – only at a diabetes conference.

Christine, do you have spare lancets for your pricker so can I borrow your BG meter until Phil gets here with mine?!?”

Friday morning, I left my house in Clare with every little detail of the conference organised, only to discover when we stopped for lunch that I had forgotten my blood glucose meter at home. Only at a diabetes conferences would you know if you forget something you will never be stuck! 


#4. The Glucose Exchange Programme.

Wouldn’t be great to be able to share your glucose?

Ken Barclay’s running around all morning lowered his glucose levels a lot. I, on the other hand, was having the complete opposite problem and reading HIGH. Ken, please have some of mine! No, I insist:-S If only.


#5. D-Aunties

Moira McCarthy introduced me to the concept of having a Diabetes Auntie. A “D-Aunty” is someone who is a mother of a child with type 1 diabetes who is now an adult but she’s not your mother. So, you can tell her things that you would NEVER tell your own mother. I really like this!


#6. Swept up in a teen hug

Teens are tough and, you know, whatever! I don’t spend any time at all with any of the children at Thriveabetes, not because I don’t want to, but because it’s one day and we are cramming as much as we possibly can in. So, when this young lady swooped me into a hug and say thank you I almost cried.

All the hugs!!! So many hugs!


#7. One of my favourite quotes:

“I went to bed with a good bg number but I woke up with a really bad bg number- what did I do, dream about pizza???” Joe Solo


And here are some of the comments from Facebook and some from our delegate feedback forms;

From Funky pumpers
Having a great time at Thriveabetes Type 1 Diabetes Conference …. here’s one reason everyone should attend these events: conversation I just overheard from a group of boys aged around 8.

‘I’m 5.6, what are you? ….

oh you have a red libre case like mine, but mines blue….

I was diagnosed when I was 6, what about you?

Oh I was diagnosed last year, my hospital have computer games’ …. and off they run together.

Probably have never met before, yet totally united. These conferences normalise everything. If you have never been to one please make a promise to yourself to come along to the next one. There’s loads of events to choose from. You won’t regret it.

From Diabeticme-T1
A brilliant day.
I feel so inspired, motivated and together 
If you are #type1 diabetic this is a must follow


Brilliant event. This has been my 2nd conference and i find it great to just sit, chat and listen to fellow diabetics about stuff that affects us all on a daily basis. Long may these conferences continue.


Been trying to attend for a number of years and finally got to go today. Everything was just brilliant, venue, stands, presenters and attendees. Well done everyone, thank you.


 Congratulations! It was a fantastic event, dedicated to insulin dependents (including from other countries …), their challenges and solutions. I appreciate all aspects of organizing – speakers, content, attitude and  inspiring you to continue such events. Thank you so much!


Being amongst people that just get it. I always come away feeling recharged and ready to take on Diabetes with a renewed energy and strength.


I love the stories told and the honesty. I laughed and cried and I loved it. I loved the fact that when I go there I feel like I belong. All these people understand how I feel inside without me having to tell them. It comforts me. I love how much my kids love going.


Sitting at the tables and meeting new parents like myself.


Moving Forward

Organising a national diabetes conference in your “spare time” is a challenge and very stressful. This year, everything worked so well – the stress was very much shared that by 7pm Saturday evening I had decided if the team were game I was in again. Our timeline is probably October 2019 and we hope to see you back again:-)