Diagnosed at age 4 turned my world upside down. Growing up with diabetes has been a roller coaster but I’m living with it. I used to deny it and ended up in the hospital many times, don’t deny what is a part of you. It’s not worth it.

What is the weirdest question you’ve been asked about your diabetes, and how did you respond?
I’ve been asked if its ever hurt if someone hit my insulin pump. I’d laugh and joke saying “oh ya it hurts sooo badly,” but I’d then be serious and say no it doesn’t.

Has anyone told you that you couldn’t do something due to your diabetes, and you proved them wrong?
Yes. My gym teacher told me I couldn’t do volleyball or any sport because of my pump. Two weeks later I was traveling with the volleyball team, number 24

How do you inspire others?
I don’t know how I inspire others honestly.. I guess I just try to take care of myself to the best of my ability. Yes I stumble and fall. Meaning I forget to check every once in a while but I’m learning.

Tell us a story about how diabetes has affected you.
DKA- I went to the  hospital in the morning, so sick, in so much pain. I cried telling my parents and the nurses to give me whatever they could to make my pain stop. But they just told me “water water water,” of course keeping down liquid was impossible so they gave me little ice cubes. IVs over and over blood draws and finger pokes to see if I was coming down from DKA, but my blood sugars just kept going up and down up and down.  Soon at 4am, which was two days later, I finally came down. Scariest moment of my life. But I learned A LOT from it.

How has diabetes contributed to forming you into the person you are today? Mentally, physically, or emotionally?
Emotionally and mentally it’s still a challenge. Physically it’s helped me realize I need to get in shape so gym and exercise is what I do other than working and school. But it’s just hard and it’s a struggle at times but I’m getting there.

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