I can feel the goosebumps on my neck as I type those two words out.
In some ways, it feels like only yesterday that I didn’t know a world without type 1 diabetes.
In other ways, it feels like a lifetime.
Type 1 diabetes is undoubtedly the biggest challenge life has thrown my way.
Trying to mimic a healthy, working pancreas is no easy feat. Trying to cover carbohydrates with insulin. Trying to keep my blood sugar levels between 4 and 8 mmol/L as often as possible. Trying to make choices that will help me to live a long and healthy life. All while trying to live some sort of a life at the same time.
There’s a lot of trying, if you hadn’t guessed that much already.
As much as I’d like to call myself a superhero and say that diabetes doesn’t get the better of me, it does. When you choose to give something a go, you open yourself up to the possibility of failure. When you choose to open a door, you run the risk of exposing all of your flaws.
Diabetes is demanding. It requires constant attention. It drains me, mentally and emotionally. Every single decision I make through the day has an impact on my diabetes. I feel waves of guilt and emotion course through my veins, from a decision as stupid as eating a piece of chocolate. Diabetes doesn’t stop demanding of me, even at the lowest of times where all I want to do is shut the door and throw in the towel. There are still times where I do feel different, limited or alone because of this stupid condition I was dealt with.
But when you give something a go, you also open yourself up to the possibility of flying.
Starting on insulin pump therapy last May was a huge leap, that ultimately helped me to refocus on my diabetes management and reduce the highs and lows. Having access to continuous glucose data through the FreeStyle Libre flash monitor overwhelmed me at first, but I’ve since learned how to best utilise the data from it. Starting a blog was a little nerve wracking at first, but it’s since made me more passionate and open about diabetes, and led me to some amazing advocacy opportunities.
As a wise person once said, it’s better to try and fail, than to not try at all.
As I celebrate my seventh diaversary today, those are the words I am choosing to live by.
Because there sure is life after a diabetes diagnosis.