Really? REALLY?!

So not even a week ago I booked my Study Abroad trip – 4 weeks in France, 6 weeks in Italy…

Today I’ve had two separate emails about my diabetes.

The co-ordinator in France is asking for a medical certificate because she doesn’t think I can travel on my own without a medical certificate verifying that I can. 
Yes, because those four months backpacking through Europe with diabetes doesn’t prove that I can do it. It’s much better to get a medical certificate from a specialist who sees me every 6 months and only looks at a graph with numbers. (sense the sarcasm)

The health insurance my uni provides on Study Abroad says I must be ‘fit to travel’, but doesn’t say what ‘fit to travel’ ACTUALLY means. The office is being supremely unhelpful and no-one seems to care that I’ve just spent thousands on dollars on something I may not even be allowed to go on. 

I understand that they need a medical certificate for insurance reasons and have to cover their arses, but FUCK it’s just so annoying!! I would give anything to just do what 99% of my friends do and just jet off with the normal worries of safety and cost. I have so much desire to travel and experience new things, and time after time diabetes gets in my bloody way. I didn’t have insurance at all when I left for the UK…they wouldn’t cover me because I hadn’t had it for 12 months…well excuse me, let me just scold my tardy pancreas, why did you not fail in January 2010 instead of March? Inconsiderate.

I just miss the freedom I used to have. I want the freedom my friends have. I HATE that every single time I leave the country I have to FIGHT to show strangers that I’m a normal human being who is not going to drop dead on them. 

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7 responses to “Really? REALLY?!

  1. Great article! I understand your frustration. People are way too caught up on paperwork. Don’t let that discourage your travels! Let it fuel it. You don’t have to prove anything to anybody! 🙂 Happy and safe travels!

    Jess

  2. Gah! I’m so sorry that you have to deal with ignorant people… everywhere.
    Keep up that fighting spirit. Be the face of Type 1 that said, “I didn’t let a wonky pancreas stop me from doing *anything*!”
    P.S. Italy is gorgeous! Savour every moment of your trip!

  3. Urgh yep, Europe~ It basically means a letter from your Doctor (GP is fine) saying you’re fit and not…like you haven’t been admitted to hospital with DKA recently and likely to do so soon, you’re not suffering from chronic hypo-unawareness. It is stupid but Europeans like their scraps of paper. GPs here have a pretty standard letter they basically print and sign without paying much attention so while it sounds scary, it tends to be simple in practice. Hope it all sorts itself out 🙂

  4. Just tell them the story about sucking sugar off Nurofen tablets while hypo on a boat in the middle of somewhere overseas… then they’ll get how amazing and capable you are! 😉

  5. So sorry for your hassles. What a pain! Best wishes on your travels. My son is also a type one diabetic. He has faced a lot of challenges too. Maybe his story will inspire you. He made it into the NFL.

  6. Cameron Von St James

    Hey I have a quick question about your blog, could you email me whenever you have a chance? Thanks! -Cameron

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