Meet Christine Goudreau. She’s been living with Type 1 diabetes for 45 years. She’s also been living a very full and successful life, in spite of her diagnosis.
Christine was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at the age of 12 and a half. Six months after her diagnosis her parents divorced, with her older sister staying with their mom and Christine staying with dad. Christine’s father, wanting the very best care for his daughter, drove her two hours to Joslin Clinic in Boston, MA for her endocrinology appointments. The support of her father, and the caring, professional staff at the Joslin Clinic, set a solid foundation for Christine’s diabetes management and provided Christine with a drive towards self-care from a young age.
Her diagnosis has never defined who she is, and it has never kept her from achieving her dreams. Christine began her career as a Registered Dental Hygienist, proudly achieving the “HuFriedy’s Golden Scaler” award given to the top student in all clinical classes. After 14 years as a dental hygienist, Christine’s sister, who has a master’s degree in nursing from Boston College, suggested Christine would make an excellent nurse using her experiences with Type 1 diabetes to help others struggling with a diabetic diagnosis. In 1988, Christine did just that, earning her registered nursing degree, followed by a two year internship with endocrinology, becoming a Certified Diabetes Educator. In addition, Christine earned a bachelor’s degree in Adult Education from the University of Central Florida, She is also a Certified Insulin Pump Trainer.
Christine currently manages her diabetes with a Tandem insulin pump and a Dexcom continuous glucose monitor. She never forgets how her journey started using a 1970’s Clinitest Kit to urine, one injection of NPH insulin and sugar cubes to treat low blood glucose issues. She’s grateful for the rapidly changing technology that has improved the daily control of diabetes, not only for her, but for her patients as well. Christine enjoys sharing her unique perspective of living with diabetes with patients and is a role model in living a full and vibrant life. She truly enhances the lives of those fortunate enough to interact with her on both a personal and professional level.
If you ask Christine about overcoming the obstacles in her life, she is quick to cite her faith. Her father and sister have always encouraged her to stay strong, they along with her husband continue to be her biggest blessings in life. And after 45 years of living with Type 1 diabetes she continues to live her life well and encourages others to do the same!
Christine Goudreau, RN, CDCES, CPT, BS Ed has worked for Halifax Health for 15 years. She began working as an RN, CDCES in the Halifax Health Endocrinology practice, which was awarded a Certificate of Distinction by the Joint Commission under Dr. Alberto Gonzalez, MD (her mentor). Christine is currently a Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialist with Halifax Health Diabetes Education Department and educates patients in an outpatient setting for our American Diabetes Association accredited services. Christine will be taking on an expanded role working with the UF Health Endocrinology at Halifax Health under Dr. Poonam Kapadia. She also volunteers her diabetes knowledge and services to the community at the Jesus Clinic in Daytona Beach.
For more information about Diabetes Education Services at Halifax Health, please visit Halifax Health Diabetes Care