25 years ago today I was a 17 year old senior in high school, looking forward to a road trip to East Texas with my mom and some family members. My biggest concern at the time was normal high school drama and preparing for college.
25 years ago today I could eat and drink whatever I wanted without having to worry about anything.
25 years ago today I had no idea why I was so tired all the time. Or why I was losing weight. Or why my vision was blurry. Or why I was so darn thirsty all the time.
25 years ago today the only time I’d heard the word diabetes was when I had overheard the nurse in my orthodontist’s office once tell another patient that she couldn’t order anything from her school fundraiser, because she had diabetes and that meant she couldn’t eat sugar.
25 years ago today I had no idea that tomorrow my world would be flipped upside down when I heard the word diabetes again – but this time it was a doctor telling me and my mom that I had it. And that I would need to take 4 shots of insulin a day. Every day. For the rest of my life. And that I would need to spend a week in the hospital so I could learn how to give myself shots, and learn how to eat a diabetic diet.
25 years ago today was the last day I would not know that my pancreas had stopped working. Up to that point I don’t know that I even knew what a pancreas was. It was the last day that I would be able to eat without having to count carbs. Without having to calculate how much insulin I would need to take to cover said carbs. The last day I would be able to drink a soda or Gatorade without having to calculate carbs or decide if my blood sugar was high/low enough to “need” the sugary drink.
But when I would wake up 25 years ago tomorrow, I would take that road trip to East Texas. And I would feel very sick the entire day. And I would sleep most of the way in the back of the car. Except for when we had to stop at almost every gas station so I could go to the bathroom, and get more to drink.
25 years ago tomorrow, I would be given a book that told me how many carbs, veggies, fruits, dairy, etc., that I was allowed/supposed to eat every day.
25 years ago tomorrow, I would give an orange several injections, as practice so I would be able to learn how to give them to myself. Four times a day.
25 years ago tomorrow, I would be told by a doctor that I would never be able to have children.
And now fast forward 25 years …..
I am a healthy 42 year old wife and mother. I wear an insulin pump, and a CGM. I am an advocate for those living with diabetes. I blog about life with diabetes. I spread awareness about diabetes. I mentor newly diagnosed families. I have friends that I would not have known had it not been for that diagnosis 25 years ago.
I am thankful for every single day of these last 25 years and am looking forward to the next 25. Time flies when you’re having fun. 🙂