27 years old
T1D for 23 years
Having a father at home with type 1 diabetes (T1D) made it a bit easier to understand and control even at my diagnosis age of four and a half. As I went through my teenage years, I struggled with my choice to stay on insulin shots or transfer over to the insulin pump, which works kind of like an IV. I knew the insulin pump would give me more flexibility, but at that time the insulin pumps all had lots of tubing and wiring that would always be under my skin – all these things scared me.
Right before college, my endocrinologist asked me to try the insulin pump one more time. The OmniPod, which is a pump that sits right on the skin, had just come out and I fell in love. My blood sugar levels were so much easier to manage, and I had an easier time figuring out how to give myself insulin for tough foods for people with T1D to dose for, like pizza and bagels. With long acting insulin shots, my blood sugar levels would go up and down constantly, but with the insulin pump I maintained more steady blood sugars throughout the day regardless of my food or exercise choices.
All of these great features, extending my insulin dose throughout the thanksgiving meal, choosing the amount of insulin I receive at certain times of the day – all new to me, but exciting! College had its ups and downs in terms of workload and social life, but at least I knew how to control my blood sugar levels throughout all of it!