Guest Post: Life’s An Adventure
I remember the day I was diagnosed like it was yesterday. It was a hot summer night in mid-July. I was 8 years old at the time. My family was sitting around the dinner table when my pediatrician called. “You need to take Julie to the emergency room. They have to run some tests.” I ran to my room instantly and the tears started falling. “Why now? What’s wrong with me?”
Like any 8-year-old you’ll meet, I wasn’t particularly keen on visiting the doctor…at any time. In my head, doctors meant needles. That was enough to keep me away forever. Much to my dismay, my parents got me to change clothes and head out for the emergency room. Our car ride there was eerily silent.
Still, I had no idea my life was about to change forever.
After several hours of waiting, then several more of examination, a doctor came in. It was already 2 am. “Mr. and Mrs. Weinstock, Julie has type 1 diabetes.” My mother fainted moments later.
I spent the next four days following that at the hospital learning about the disease and how to manage it. I don’t think I fully understood what I was in for at the time but in retrospect, my doctors helped me more than you could ever imagine. Still, there was only so much they could do for me.
Growing up with type 1 diabetes was a challenge like no other. Imagine being in fourth grade and having to stick yourself with needles every day. Imagine having to count carbs and feel weak or tired depending on the food you put (or didn’t put) into your body or the workout you did. Imagine being the odd one out at every birthday. These are the challenges of growing up diabetic.
Although challenging, I can say that having diabetes has made me a stronger person overall. I’ve always considered my determination one of my most dominant personality traits. I think diabetes plays a large role in this.
Although the disease is very draining in many aspects, although it gives you no break or vacation, it does teach you that no matter what, you can’t give up without a fight. I have that to be thankful for.
Since I’ve been diagnosed, I’ve only pushed harder in my life. I would never say it isn’t an obstacle but I refuse to let that obstacle stop me from living. I believe that life is all about the adventure and diabetes is only a small part of my journey.
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