My diabetes also led to love. As I grew up with my best friend,
Samantha, she watched me take care of my diabetes every day. When we
were 17, Sam decided to work at the local ADA diabetes camp with me.
She had no idea what she was getting into: that week she met one of my
camp counselor friends, who she eventually went on to marry and have
two children with - all because of my diabetes.
More recently, another friend’s 7-year old nephew was diagnosed with
type 1 diabetes and she immediately reached out to me. Fortunately,
diabetes treatment has significantly progressed since I got my
diagnosis around his age. What became most helpful to him was having
me to talk to, to compare his continuous glucose monitor with, and to
discuss things people who don’t have diabetes may not relate to. And
like me, he’ll attend my old diabetes camp where I still volunteer. I
was able to help him prepare to meet new friends with confidence and
make his own camp memories - all because of my diabetes.
Managing my diabetes isn’t always easy, but when I step back and
look at all the lives that have been positively influenced because of
my diabetes - it gives me a sense of meaning.