I have been type one diabetic (also known as juvenile diabetes) since the age of 8. Before my diagnosis, I was a healthy 8 year old girl just about to enter the 3rd grade. I played all sports known to man! You name it, and I wanted to play it. But on September 4th, 2002, my life was flipped turned upside down. It all happened, what seems like, overnight. I had all the tell tale signs of diabetes, massive weight loss, frequent urination and I was constantly thirsty. When I went into the doctor, I weighed 42 pounds (before this I weighed about 60lbs) and was using the bathroom 3 times every hour! When I arrived at the doctor the first thing that they did was check my blood sugar. The number? A whopping 513! This is 433 points over what the average blood sugar should be. I was immediately sent to the hospital where I was greeted by an endocrinologist and his entire team upon walking in the door.
Let’s jump to today; I have just celebrated my 12th “diaversary” (my diabetic anniversary), and my 11th pumpaversary (11 years being on an insulin pump). I am a very healthy and happy 20 year old college junior. I have not let diabetes slow me down in any way possible. I played 3 sports in high school (receiving high honors in all) and played volleyball my freshman and sophomore year of college, and now playing tennis at Olivet College (I play 2 singles and #1 Doubles with my sister as my partner). Many people let diabetes rule their lives and I vowed to myself, when I was first diagnosed, that I would not let that happen; I run my diabetes, it does NOT run me. Diabetes affects more than 8% of the U.S. population and that number is growing. It is also the seventh leading cause of death-but it doesn’t have to be a death sentence.
Next week I'll go over the difference between type one and type two diabetes.