A glimpse into my diagnosis story:
It was early morning as I slowly moseyed out of my warm, comfy bed. I grabbed my phone and saw several missed calls and voicemails from doctors telling me to go to the ER. I was so confused. Sure, I hadn’t been feeling well, but the ER?! I called my husband who was at work and told him I was heading to the ER per doctors orders. I grabbed a few things, and drove myself to the hospital.
…Leading up to this ER visit I was seeing doctors for a variety of things. I was exhausted, losing weight, constantly thirsty, battling an elevated heart rate, and SUPER burnt out from not feeling my normal self. I was on medicine for bronchitis and a UTI—both which were the culprits of my constant, elevated blood sugars. My OBGYN ordered labs, and this was when my sugar levels were finally revealed...
After checking into the hospital, the nurses that were drawing my blood and checking my levels were concerned. Why haven't you taken your insulin? How long have your blood sugars been elevated? Do you have your diabetes supplies with you? [Insert my own confused and indifferent face here] “Ummmm, I am not sure what any of that means? I am just here because doctors told me to come here. I don’t know why my blood sugars are high.”
The rest of the conversations were a fog really. After much waiting and questioning, they brought me back into the ER where they connected me with IV’s and began administering insulin. They didn’t want me to eat anything for a while, but finally when I could, I requested fried chicken—which my mom gladly went out to grab me! #lifemade
As my blood sugars finally normalized, they sent me home with Type 2 diabetes material and metmorphin--Thankfully my mom had a hunch and told me to wait on this since we had an endocrinology appointment early the next morning. As you may suspect, my endocrinology appointment went just like most others. My doctor shared that my A1C and positive antibodies revealed that I had Type 1 Diabetes. Injections, insulin, carb counting, blood sugar monitoring was my new “normal." I remember vividly staring at all of these things that I would need to survive and feeling so overwhelmed and confused.
I was also in DENIAL.
Stress? Pregnancy? Some possible illness triggering this (hopefully temporary) need for insulin? Something else has to be going on here and I was going to get to the bottom of it—Google was my BFF (or frenemy) for a few months.
…..Flash forward 3 1/2 years later and here I am—living and thriving with Type 1 diabetes. Despite the heaviness that comes with 24/7 management of Type 1 diabetes, I am grateful.
The tiresome calculating and dosing has cultivated a strong sense of mindfulness of what I am fueling my body with. The constant pricks and pokes have strengthened my mental and physical strength. The high and low blood sugars have brought a new level of awareness to listening/ being in tune with my body. The “risks” involved with managing a chronic illness have empowered me to rise above the status quo of what diabetes has to look like. To serve my body. To prioritize my health and wellness. The epiphany of my Type 1 Diagnosis? Finding my passion! Educating and supporting fellow Type 1’s on how to live their happiest and healthiest life. I am grateful to be a part of such an inspiring, beautiful community that constantly proves we are GREATER THAN any diagnosis or trial that comes our way. I hope that you choose to adventure with me as I continue to share how my diagnosis has empowered me to live the healthiest life possible--mentally and physically. Check in for my next post “"Foods That Serve: What Foods are the BEST for Happy Blood Sugars and Why?” .... coming soon!
Whitney Lewis | Happy Pancreas