I was diagnosed at 9 years old and didn’t even know what diabetes was. Suddenly my entire life changed. I had to have shots every day, keep track of my blood sugar and everything I ate, it was all new. But I am more active than ever and diabetes hasn’t slowed me down at all. I surf, I skateboard, I ski and snowboard, I play basketball and football. Type 1 is my new normal but it doesn’t change who I am and will never stop me from what I want to do.
What is the weirdest question you’ve been asked about your diabetes, and how did you respond?
Them: So you can’t have any sugar?
Me: It’s not about the sugar, it’s the carbs.
Them: So, you can have sugar?
Me: Sugar is irrelevant. It’s the carbs that matter. I can have them but have to be sure I make up for them by taking insulin.
Them: (confused face)
Has anyone told you that you couldn’t do something due to your diabetes, and you proved them wrong?
Someone said that people with Type 1 can’t scuba dive, and I plan on getting my certification this year, now that I’m ten.
How do you inspire others?
One of the teachers at my school found out her three year old son had type 1 and was very sad, she told my mom and was crying. I met her son and he liked knowing that there was someone else who had to get “shotties” and go through all that new stuff.
Tell us a story about how diabetes has affected you.
It’s made my life way more complicated. I can’t ever just grab a snack without thinking about it, like my friends can. The constant finger pricking, the shots, figuring out how much I can eat of what and how much insulin to have, it can be confusing. I also don’t like having to go to the office to get a shot for a birthday party at school when someone brings cupcakes, or have to figure out how many units of insulin I need if I have any extra carbs.
How has diabetes contributed to forming you into the person you are today? Mentally, physically, or emotionally?
If anything I’m stronger. To have two shots a day and multiple finger pricks can only make someone stronger.
Would you rather fight one horse sized duck or 100 regular sized ducks?
First, I’d never want to fight a duck or any other animal. I believe all creatures should get along, human ones included. But if I had to… One horse sized duck for sure. If you hit it in just the right place, you win. The 100 regular ducks, you have to hit them all.