A Letter To My 17 Year Old Classmates

To My 17 Year Old Classmates,

While you were getting ready to buy your first bottle of alcohol, I was getting ready to buy my first blood glucose meter.

While you were nervous about getting past the bouncer, I was nervous about getting past my first insulin injection.

While you were applying for your proof of age card, I was applying for my National Diabetes Services Scheme card.

While you were busy planning your next wild night out, I was busy planning my next diabetes appointment.

While you were surviving from 4 cans of Red Bull a day, I was surviving from 4 insulin injections a day.

While you were in a state of extreme drunkenness, I was in a state of extreme ketoacidosis.

While you were in hospital getting your stomach pumped, I was in hospital getting insulin pumped.

While you were procrastinating on your uni assignments, I was desperately trying to get an extension from my hospital bed.

While you were out there partying, my blood sugar levels were out there having a party of their own.

While you were getting a 2am hangover feed from McDonald’s, I was getting a 2am hypo feed from my jelly bean tin.

While you felt wrecked after partying all night, I felt wrecked from dealing with diabetes all night.

While you were getting through a hangover, I was getting through a hypo.

While you were boasting about how many beers you’d had, I was boasting about how many good blood glucose readings I’d had.

While you were counting the number of jello shots you’d downed, I was counting the number of carbs that I’d downed.

While you had been abusing your body for a while, I was a fairly sensible kid.

While you were the one that deserved this more than me, I was the one that got diabetes instead.

And while I wouldn’t wish diabetes on you or anyone else, it would be nice to see you treat your healthy body with a little more respect.

Your classmate always,

Frank

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