Week 5 in our Life with Diabetes series. Only 10 days until the Walk to Cure Diabetes!
Today we introduce to you, Sarah.
Every time I hear the word 'diabetes', I laugh. My co-workers, friends, family and others who know me are aware that I do not let things get in my way. Diabetes is just another example.
I was diagnosed at the fine age of 19. Freshman in college, marching in the marching band at the University of Minnesota and feeling like utter crap. I got home from a bowl trip with the marching band and told my dear mother I felt like crap, and she simply replied, "I bet you have the flu." Nope, not even close. Finally, I land myself in the ER with my mother. Someone on the medical staff had the brilliant idea to test my blood glucose. My what?!
A finger prick later and a blood glucose reading of 701 and I became the newest member of the diabetic community. Cool, eh?!?! The doctors recommended I not develop an eating disorder, do not get pregnant and probably take a semester of school off to deal with this new "stress". Yeah. RIGHT. NO way was I going to let a little fussy pancreas get in my way of enjoying the rest of my start to my collegiate career, let alone keep me in Wisconsin!
I must say, the day that my pancreas decided to take a vacation was one of the best days of my life. I am not encouraging anyone to spend two days in the hospital with double IV's in their arms and learning how to count carbohydrates in a piece of bread and pasta. This auto-immune disease diagnosis has opened the door for more opportunities than I can imagine. 30+ triathlons and running races, 4 marathons and an Ironman race later, I am still standing with Type 1 Diabetes. Yep, read it again. I have NOT let anything stop me.
Granted, I have not done any of this blindly. I have embraced my diagnosis as something of great opportunity. I continue to learn about glucose, fat burn, low's and high's and everything in between that will influence my performance as an endurance athlete. I have many friends and great leaders in the diabetic community that I meet every day and continue to fuel my passion to inspire others and NOT let diabetes stop them. In no way, shape or form can I say that being a fitness professional and athlete is easy, but it is pretty fun and entertaining to have an insulin pump, ipod and heart rate monitor on all at the same time. I love being a human science project and learning the most effective ways to get from point A to point B with diabetes!
No, not every day is flowers and puppy dogs, but I do believe that anything is possible. With the proper education and knowledge around diabetes and the proper management, it only fuels the fire for more great achievements for one and all. It's okay to trip up or make mistakes, but as long as you keep moving forward with diabetes management, anything is possible.
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Thank you for your support!