I don't appreciate much about T1D, but I do appreciate this:

I don’t appreciate much about T1D, but I do appreciate these three things that it’s added to my life: perspective, priorities, and clarity.

I was diagnosed at age 21. It was eye opening after diagnosis to see the cause and effect of my lifestyle choices on my blood sugar. I was a self-funded college student with zero safety net who was trying to figure out how I was going to make a good life for myself in adulthood. Which translated into me doing every single extracurricular in my field so that I could find at least one open door upon graduation. I wasn’t the heavy partying type, but I did burn the candle at both ends between all of my school commitments and socializing. Once I was diagnosed, I could quantify how much a lack of sleep impacted my health. Or living on Cheez Whiz and Hot Pockets. Or not exercising. Or being stressed out from over-committing to extracurriculars.

Respecting the natural limiting factors of good health (sleep, hydration, exercise, stress mitigation) has made me soooo much happier and well-rounded since diagnosis. I see people in my peer group who have been their own worst enemy because of how hard they live, and they don’t even realize it. I might have been one of those people were it not for my blood sugar showing me the results of my choices.

I had children wayyyyyy earlier than any of the women I went to college with. When I’ve seen them at weddings since graduation, they’ve remarked, “You were SO young when you had kids! We’re just now ready professionally to have kids.” I figured that with T1D on my plate, pregnancy was only going to get potentially more complicated and riskier the longer I waited, so I had my boys at 26 and 29. Biologically that’s not late. Professionally for most women, that would be way too soon. Fortunately I had earned enough negotiating capital at my workplace that I was able to change my schedule to better accommodate motherhood, but most women don’t have that option that early in their career. I love being the age that I am as my boys grow up. I feel much more capable to have a lot of physical adventures with them that might be much harder had I started having kids 10-15 years later as is becoming common.

Given all of the great tools available today to make LIVING with this disease less cumbersome, I don’t expect that the worst will happen to me. But there is always that little 0.1% when I go to bed wondering if I would feel a bad low if my Dexcom/Sugarmate malfunctioned. And I feel like in some ways that awareness is a good thing in the grand scheme. Knowing that we’re lucky everyday and that time is not forever pushes me (and my husband) to live a lot more life Now. We’ve invested in our goals far more far earlier than we probably would have without this sort of awareness about the precious aspect of life. And we’re much happier for it, because we’re not waiting for tomorrow to do all of the good stuff. It’s a blessing to know how fortunate we are and how good life is.


I have spoken to you many times. You are one of the most insightful people I know. And you speak with a wisdom and clarity well beyond your years. I still have a hard time grasping how young you are, because you already have it together at such a young age.

And your mom stuff is wonderful. All the stuff I’ve heard about from you, the things you are doing, the activities, the love, your attitude for all of it. Every single thing you are doing for them and with them.

Whether it was a contribution the D has made, or the timing, or whether it is just the way it would have always been - who knows.

The stars lined up for you and your boys.


Thank you, @Eric. Your heart for helping people is my gold standard to chase. :heart:


I appreciate you sharing your experience, and helps me understand how things have changed over time. Being diagnosed in the 1960s means i’ve had gradual introduction to the changes that today can be overwhelming. I was able to live quite “normally” the first 20 years, on 1 injection per day, and somewhat healthy eating habits before the evolution of junk food and fast food restaurants.

My switch to “intensive” management came over time, with switch to newer insulins, pump and cgms, that spanned 25 years, not weeks or months.

My neighbors son was diagnosed several years ago, and I let her do first dexcom insertion on me! Helping her in those first few months also helped me understand how different it is to be diagnosed now, and realized how much experience and knowledge I had accumulated over time, without the “overwhelming” factor that is common today.



You clearly demonstrated each of those things that you appreciate in your incredibly thoughtful and articulate posting. Thank you!

While I’m not nearly so articulate, I was diagnosed as T1D in my first year of grad school at nearly the same age as you were diagnosed … except that was way back in 1972!

As I have just turned 70, I have definitely learned to appreciate the improved lifestyle choices that I have made for the past 50 years when compared to some of the choices I made as an undergraduate. While there is no way of knowing, I firmly believe that being T1D has helped me to avoid lifestyle-based complications that have claimed some of my peers.

As far as perspective, my younger brother has suffered from severe RA for many years. In terms of autoimmune disorders, I feel as if I drew the lucky card and I try to be thankful each day that I’m dealing with a comparatively manageable disease compared to many folks.

Thank you again for your inspiring posting.



@MM2 and @shott, I very much appreciate your kind words and support. :+1::heart: