What is the weirdest question you’ve been asked about your diabetes, and how did you respond?
There are too many weird questions to be able to remember them all! Someone once asked me what part of my body my pump tubing went into. That was a really weird one.
Has anyone told you that you couldn’t do something due to your diabetes, and you proved them wrong?
Ever since I was very young, I wanted to be a police officer. I was this tiny little kindergartener with curly hair and a blood sugar kit, and when asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, I’d always say that I wanted to be a police officer. People would say all sorts of things like: “you can’t, you’re a girl”, or “you’re too small”, but the one that hurt the worst was: “you can’t, you have diabetes”. I had to prove them wrong. Not only because I knew I was born to be a cop, but because someone once told me I couldn’t do it. My parents supported me whole heartedly. I have been a police officer now for over a year and I can’t imagine having a different career.
How do you inspire others?
I try to inspire fellow diabetics that diabetes doesn’t and shouldn’t stop us from doing anything! I have spoken at a few camps for diabetic children that I had once attended and was able to share my story with them. I want to help kids that are struggling with the “why me?” emotion that we have all felt. I want everyone, diabetics and non, that we are not disabled, we are just as strong as anyone else.
Tell us a story about how diabetes has affected you.
Diabetes, in part, has made me who I am today. It gave me a lot of responsibility at a very young age. It’s hard to pick just one story because it has affected everything I am today. But I’m not just a diabetic, none of us are. We are more than “that kid with the pager thing”.
How has diabetes contributed to forming you into the person you are today? Mentally, physically, or emotionally?
I feel like diabetes has made me very in tune with my body and how I feel. You have to take care of yourself to be able to take care of others, whether that be your spouse, children, or anyone else for that matter. If you aren’t at your best, it makes everything else that much harder, and your life that much shorter. I have had diabetes for 26 years and am complication free. I know that if I neglect any part of my care for myself, that could all change. Emotionally, I feel like being diabetic has given me a sense of pride. I am proud that God chose to give this challenge to me. I’m proud of days of perfect blood sugars. I’m proud of my courage on days of adversity. I’m proud of all diabetics who take this disease in stride and make the best of it.
Would you rather fight one horse sized duck or 100 regular sized ducks?
One horse sized duck for sure!