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A Journey of Acceptance

At the beginning of my diabetes journey, I didn’t know what diabetes was. In my head, I had a mixture of Type 1 and Type 2. A disease where you had to take pills daily and had to inject yourself multiple times a day. Being diagnosed with type 1 made me realize I was completely wrong. It’s constantly on one’s mind and every day brings a new challenge. Every injection, every blood sugar test, every finger prick, every number. There is so much you have to pay attention to, and most of the time you have no idea what you’re doing, hoping that what you’re doing right now is the right thing. I know that many people still struggle with diabetes, even though they already have it for years. Everyone reacts differently and there are certainly many different ways to cope. I am writing this to share my story with you.

All my life I’ve had hurdles to take, some higher than others. When I was little I was diagnosed with an unknown Tumor. Even the best doctors didn’t know what it was. I went through many surgeries. The hospital was my second home. Since then I’ve always wanted to become a doctor. I worked towards that goal for my whole life. Due to different tv shows my fascination for neurosurgery grew and I wanted to work in that field. That was my dream until I was 16 and a half. On February 26th, 2019 I was diagnosed with diabetes type one. It was a huge shock for me and my family. No one related to me had the disease, making it even harder for me to comprehend my situation. I had no idea what to expect. I am so grateful that I have an awesome endocrinologist that taught me everything I needed to know. I remember the first words he said to me: “Ira, don’t you dare call this an illness. That’s not what it is at all. It’s more of an inconvenience you have to pay attention too.” Those words did help me and took away my fear. After a day at the hospital, I started to take matters in my own hands and began to inject myself without the help of the hospital staff. I caught on to everything pretty fast. To the outside, it seemed like I was perfectly fine. What no one saw was that after my week at the hospital, when I finally had my head cleared and free of all the information, I finally had time to think about what had happened to me. I blamed everything on my body which, yet again, didn’t seem to work properly. I hated myself. I fell into a deep hole of hatred which I couldn’t seem to get out of. I couldn’t even look at myself in the mirror. I despised my body wanting everything to be gone. Amazingly I never stopped and disregarded my diabetes completely. I started to get out of my never-ending circle of hatred by naming the different things of my diabetes cool names. My pen, for example, is called Ferrari and my Dexcom receiver goes by the name Draco. This gave me a feeling of power. I had control over something diabetes-related. Although they were just names, they helped a lot. I also searched for other diabetics, resulting in me opening up my diabetes Instagram account. I found a huge community of amazing people that always supports you and that answers every question you possibly have. Not only did I search virtually, but also in my area. Finally meeting up with people that have faced the same struggles as me. Knowing that more people have diabetes helped me get out of my hell hole. I started to accept it. And I wanted to be as chill and cool with it as all the others. I remember one encounter quite clearly. I asked what the secret behind a perfect HbA1c was. The answer was simple: A balanced harmony and a good relationship between the body and yourself. That was the moment, in which I realized I had to accept my body the way it was so we could work together and finally reach my goal of a good HbA1c. It might only be a number but for every diabetic out there, it is a test. A test to see if we did well or have completely screwed up.

We always work towards one thing. Not wanting to disappoint ourselves and our doctors. So please, if you see a diabetic outside always smile and show respect. You never know what we are going through right now. If it’s a low or a high, a sensor malfunctioning, or just another injection. We always worry. There is not one point where we don’t think about diabetes. So please, dear doctors, dear family, and dear friends take it easy on us, we are already struggling, even when we don’t look like it. Every diabetic out there deserves a huge round of applause. They do everything they can to survive and they start over every day.

Ira
diagnosed with T1d on 26.02.2019!

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