Hi there! Today is my 9th year of living with Type 1 Juvenile Diabetes. Today is what I call my “Dia-versary”. I have lived almost half my life now with this chronic disease and I am here to share my experience of the last 9 years and what it has truly been like. I’m David and this is my story.
On October 13, 2008, I was 11 years old and had just started 6th grade, when one Sunday morning, as I was getting ready for the day, we got a phone call from the doctors telling me that I had to come straight to the doctors office, as my blood work I had gotten done days before had come in and the results were what nobody ever wants to receive. Being only 11 years old, I was absolutely terrified as my mom and I rushed over to the doctors office. I had no idea what to expect.
As we sat in the doctors office, a nurse came in and broke down the bad news to us. I had been diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.
It was like someone had punched me in the face with such horrible news. It was as though life had paused and everything went blank for a moment. As the nurse and my mom tried to comfort me and stop me from crying my eyes out, I couldn’t help but think how my life was over. But that wasn’t the case.
As I rushed back home to grab a few items from my house to keep with me for the next 4 days during my hospital stay, I was a ball of mixed emotions: nervous, scared, confused, lost, sad, and depressed, just to name a few. Then, my parents and I headed back out to the hospital, where I was immediately admitted, feeling as though I didn’t have control over my life anymore. Being hooked up to an IV machine, getting my fingers pricked for the first time, and having to somehow be okay with all that I was facing right then and there was very stressful and overwhelming for me.
Over the next few days, I had to learn how to check my blood sugar, take insulin injections on my own (which was such a crazy concept to me at the time), count carbs, and regulate my blood sugars.
Through all that, I had some family come in and visit with me from time to time, as well as this amazing therapy dog that honestly was the highlight of my stay in the hospital. Through all that, I felt like I had seen it all. I had seen pain, sadness, happiness, love, and support. All that was packed into a short few days, but I am honestly so grateful to this day for my amazing doctors and nurses that helped me since then on educating, comforting, and healing me (essentially).
Fast forward to today, October 13, 2017. I am alive, I am well, and I am at peace with my health. I look back to my time in the hospital, that dark and challenging time in my life, and it just reminds me of how blessed I have been within the last 9 years. Within these past few years, I have grown, matured, formed a sense of responsibility for my health and wellness, and found happiness within myself as I try and cope with the fact that is Type 1 Diabetes. I have been ultimately blessed to have formed my little Diabetic community via Instagram and make some really amazing friends through it, as we have something to bond and connect over, Diabetes. It truly has become a blessing in disguise and I am (as weird as it may sound) happy that I was selected in this life to have T1D as it has definitely shaped me to be the person I am today. Don’t get me wrong, I would give up this disease in a heartbeat and I am ready for that cure, but until then, I feel as though I am in the right place. Had I not been diagnosed with T1D, my life would have been one big mess and my health would have been the opposite of what it is now.
So I thank you all for your constant support and love towards me and the Diabetic community as we face our daily challenges and struggles.
The Diabetic community is amazing! I don’t feel alone anymore as I have the support I need to deal with my Diabetes because of all the amazing connections out there for us Diabetics.
I am sure of good things coming our way in the near future, but until then, this disease is manageable, livable, and treatable. We are all capable of battling Diabetes daily and proving all the stereotypes wrong. We are the ones who are in control, Diabetes should never get the best of us. Live your purpose and fight like no other, because in the end, when Type 1 Diabetes is a thing of the past, we will be able to say we are survivors and warriors!
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go and celebrate my Dia-versary!