Hi,I’ve been diabetic for 17 years. I try to enjoy being me everyday despite struggling with diabetes, nerve damage, and chronic pain. I have a very wonderful husband who is supportive and encouraging. My parents are always a great source of comfort. There is no judging, only love. Not many people with diabetes get this support and it’s hard to deal with our reality. Most people can’t imagine having a disease that they can’t control. If only they knew how we feel .
What is the weirdest question you’ve been asked about your diabetes, and how did you respond?
Will I get diabetes if my blood touches your blood?
Wow, I said are you kidding? No! Who told you that?..after I calmed down I explained that diabetes, especially type one, is caused by the pancreas shutting down. That it no longer makes insulin.
Has anyone told you that you couldn’t do something due to your diabetes, and you proved them wrong?
Yes, when I was little my blood sugars were very erratic. No matter what we did I was either too high or too low. A Diabetes doctor (endocrinologist) said;”you’re going to die and your friends are going to be partying without you,while you lay in the hospital with your limbs amputated because your sugars are so high”.That really hurt. My sugars were so crazy. I got nerve damage at 14…since then I still have bad days but my sugars are doing better. I enjoy dancing and having a good time with my friends. I still have my limbs and they look awesome. I’ve seen that doctor again, and she acts like she doesn’t remember me. I can tell she feels bad. I remember she was my first endocrinologist, but I didn’t let doctors like her tell me how I should feel. I think everyone should be treated with respect. Don’t say or treat someone the way you wouldn’t want your family treated.
How do you inspire others?
I try to be encouraging, not judgemental. When I meet others who share my fight I tell them to be proud of themselves, they’re doing the best that they can do. If there is something to work on, start fresh the next day, and most importantly make sure that the endocrinologist they choose is helpful, kind, tries to listen, sets goals, works with them. Make sure your doctor is reasonable, you can’t expect someone to do something you’re not willing to do.
Tell us a story about how diabetes has affected you.
Diabetes has shown me that I really don’t know everything, and I need to give others a chance. Have faith in people. Try to see what God sees in me. He gives me hope. I also have to know my limits,understanding what I can do, and not feeling bad about what I can’t.
How has diabetes contributed to forming you into the person you are today? Mentally, physically, or emotionally?
If I didn’t have diabetes, I’d probably do everything I wanted,but it would be difficult to understand what it feels like to not have all the control you want. We all have,struggles, diabetic or not,but we are perfected by our shortcomings. I know myself better today than I’ve ever have.
Would you rather fight one horse sized duck or 100 regular sized ducks?
One horse sized duck