Complications, but Life Is Good

In 1945, when I was diagnosed, my family did not know that an early death for diabetics was very likely. I had to wait until I was in my 30’s to find that my life expectancy in 1945 was not so good. I might have died while in my teens, but I was alive and healthy at that time. A doctor in Richmond, Va, when I was 30, gave me a book that had a chart showing I might possibly live into my 40’s. I was told by a doctor in the 1970’s I was lucky to be alive, without complications, and I should prepare my will in case I did not live much longer. Very depressing!
In the meantime, my wife and I had two sons, and we had a good life in NY. I tried to not dwell on my life expectancy, and the forecasts of potential early death.
| have now lived with T1D for 72 years. My eyes and heart are in great shape, but I do have neuropathy in my feet and legs. My neurologist says the neuropathy is severe. Numbness, but very little pain. My walk is uneven, and I seem to stagger a bit at times, but I keep on taking long walks, without falling down. Just chugging along.
I have been having difficulty emptying my bladder. My urologist had me get an ultrasound to see if the urine has backed up into my kidneys, and caused damage. I got that report on Friday. I do not feel any pain there, and there is no damage, yet. I may have to get a catheter installed at a later date.

Is it Fall, yet? It does not look Fall here. Not much rain for awhile for a long time. The green leaves are turning brown and falling from the trees. No Fall colors seen here. I am grateful for ALL seasons as they occur one by one, while I keep on chugging along, living day by day. Life is good!! :slight_smile:


@Richard157 All the best wishes coming your way!

You have beaten the odds in a most convincing way. I see no reason why you should not continue to beat those odds. Your positive attitude will absolutely slay the D monster!


Richard, you’re an inspiration to anyone living with diabetes, or caring for anyone living with this disease. Look how you beat “their” odds! I have no doubt you’ll continue to beat the odds. Keep taking those walks! They’re good for the body AND the mind.

About the Fall - last night was the first night this year where our house got cold! Down into the mid 50’s. Time to pull out the big quilts and blankets and turn on the heat in VA.


ClaudinDaye, I was born in Roanoke, VA, and lived in the south for almost 31 years. We moved to the Catskills region of NY in 1970.


I was born SW VA and lived in Buchanan (just outside Roanoke) for 5 years or so - I graduated from “James River High School”. I was born in “Grundy, VA” and lived most of my life in a huge farm house off I-81 right as you pass through Draper, VA. Small world! I also lived in Dublin, VA and went to Pulaski County schools for 1/2 of my life.

I would probably still be sitting on those same street corners like everyone I grew up with still is had it not been for me going into the Army…that ended up sending me all over the world.

Also, most of my family lives down that way in Radford, Fairlawn, Pulaski, and the surrounding towns.

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Interesting background!

I am familiar with those areas. I attended Roanoke College for four years, and Va. Tech for two years.

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I didn’t attend Tech, but I had a lot of friends that attended which meant I was there for lots of tailgate and dorm parties. :stuck_out_tongue: There and Radford University. Remember the 80’s when there was that big “fake ID” scandal at RU – it involved teachers and students alike? I was the proud owner of one of those fake ID’s. lol

All my family are Hokie fans.

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I had forgotten the fake RU scandal. I am going to see if I can find it on Google.

It was very real. I remember all the news around it when the bust happened and I received (still have it somewhere) one of the ID’s they sold.

Many years after that, in 1970, when I was diagnosed at the age of nine, my parents were told it was unlikely I would live much past 30. On those grounds, my father would not allow me to go to medical school (in his view a waste of money, considering). I’m happy with where I ended up anyway, though I sometimes wouldn’t mind a doctor’s income. I’ve lost the sight in one eye, but that was more because of botched surgeries than retinopathy itself, so it’s hard to think of it as a complication per se. A miracle, I often think, considering how poorly I tended to my diabetes for the first 20 years. (Of course, all those complications could be lying in wait. I still have my appendix and wisdom teeth, too.)

@Richard157, I read all your posts. When I’m feeling frustrated by this disease, it is a great help to remind myself of your positive outlook. Spring is only 154 days away.


Richard, you are my hero! I was diagnosed at age 10 in 1959 so I have faced the challenges of TiD for 58.5 years. There were many inferences that I would not live past 30 and thus, was discouraged from going to medical school. I instead became a master’s level RD which in addition to helping others, had a huge impact on my own diabetes management.

I am just now experiencing some of the additional challenges of T1D - mild neuropathy in my feet affecting balance but no pain, slow emptying of my bladder, slower emptying of my GI tract, trigger fingers and other orthopedic issues. Now that I am approaching 70, it is harder to figure out what changes are diabetes-related versus aging-related.

All in all, I feel blessed to have made it this far! My only sadness comes with the likelihood that I will not be around long enough to see a cure. But I ravenously devour all the latest improvements in management that come with technology.

Keep chuggin’ along, Richard!


My brother went to Radford!! We lived in Fairfax, VA at the time (my father was in the army then working at the Pentagon).


Reading this thread today, I feel humbled! All contributors here inspire me and I am grateful - long timers, parents/partners advocating for their loved ones, others with other chronic conditions in addition to Diabetes… thank you!