Insulin Pump Demystified

Monday, January 01, 2007

January 2, 1982

Tomorrow is the 25th anniversary of my Type 1 diagnosis; it came on the day just after New Year's when I was ten years old. I can still remember everything about that morning in clear detail...peeing into a cup at home, my Dad (a doctor) taking it with him to work, getting into the car with my mom and riding to the hospital, meeting my dad in the cafeteria where my parents explained what was going on before we went upstairs to the pediatrics ward.

Of course, I couldn't grasp that morning the dramatic effect that diagnosis would have on my life to come. But I do remember just wondering, in the midst of learning about insulin and practicing injections on an oragne, if my life would ever be "normal" again. What did it mean to have a disease? Was I going to grow up and be healthy and go to college and fall in love and have kids and all of the other things that my 10-year-old self dreamed of?

I wish I knew then what I know now--that in fact, my life has been better than normal, that the challenge and hurt of living with diabetes has opened my heart and I think has largely made me into the sensitive, compassionate person that I am. I wish I knew that growing up not taking mortality for granted could be an incredible gift--that because I had a sense that life is not a given, I have always been open to living fully, taking chances, and loving freely with all of my heart.

On the other side, I'm glad I didn't know about my struggles, about my years of rebellion, of not eating well, of being like every other college student and drinking too much, of ignoring my diabetes. I'm glad I didn't know how often I would be struck with pure terror during my pregnancies, desparately afraid that my children wouldn't make it out of my womb alive.

But in the end, living with diabetes for me has been all of the above and I can't imagine what my life would look like now if I hadn't received that diagnosis that day. But I do know that I am ready, fully open to record that other day, the day yet to come, when I recover, the day that I am cured of diabetes, do not need to take insulin by pump or injection ever again. What a day that will be. And it's coming. I don't know when. But I believe it is...

A happy, healthy New Year to you--


  • At 9:32 PM, Blogger MileMasterSarah said…

    things do change over time. They really do. I was 13 when I was diagnosed.

  • At 10:36 PM, Blogger Scott K. Johnson said…

    Hi Gabrielle,

    I very much agree with how it can (and is) both a blessing and a curse all in the same bag.

    Many things in life are. It is our ability to learn what lessons there are on both sides that makes us amazing.

    Yours in the struggle,


  • At 1:04 PM, Blogger Minnesota Nice said…

    That's a great way to put it - "opening the heart". I have frequently tried to figure out why we pwd's "feel things so deeply", and I believe you have now answered my question.
    Happy New Year, Gabrielle.


  • At 6:04 PM, Blogger Stryder319 said…

    Hi Gabrielle,

    As the father of a 4 year old diagnosed type 1 a month ago, I'd like to let you know that this post is one of the very few I've read recently (and I've read a LOT) that genuinely had an impact on my ability to look past the hardships of the moment and try and believe that some good can come of this for my boy and my family.



  • At 1:23 AM, Blogger Debi said…

    Let me join the club as well, I was very young when I was diagnosed as well.

    I rotate from using my insulin pump to the injections.

    It's nice to read that others can relate to what I have had to deal with my whole life too.


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