Age: 26 Year Diagnosed: 1994 Location: San Diego, Ca

"I think it's funny when people say that I have my life together. Maybe because I married young? Because I have an 8-5 Monday-Friday job? Or because I practice yoga? Or maybe I unknowingly put on this I have my sh*t together façade? Regardless, it's funny to me, because my everyday life is anything but put together. 

Every day is so different, and rarely do things go entirely according to plan. I could refer to it as a constant battle, but I’d rather use the term “adventure.” I guess non-Type 1's don't truly understand what a Diabetic has to remember to do (and what not to do). Every. Single. Day. Just to stay alive. And then throw in the other autoimmune diseases that a lot of us endure in our lives. It becomes a balancing act to say the least. 

In all honesty, my personality is very Type B. I want to be wild and free and careless and eat carbs and drink wine and travel to Africa and sleep with the lions (okay, maybe that last one is pushing it, but you get the picture). That's how I see myself. That has always been me. Very laissez-faire, go with the flow, let it be. But this disease doesn't fully allow you to do that. Sure, you can try to master it — and try your best to be free and careless — but that will most likely only last a few days, tops. And then, WHAM. It kicks you right in the pancreas! 

Being a Type 1 Diabetic doesn't fully allow me to be me, which brings me back to my original point — I don't have my life together! Do any of us, really? Most of the time I'm messy, I don't count my carbs correctly, my hormones are all jacked up, and I don't remember to charge my pump and then have to run home to charge it in the middle of a work day. It's things like that that make me laugh when people perceive me as a together person — because most often, my brain is all over the place!

What I've learned from this disease is that it can hold you back sometimes. However, it can also catapult you into this other realm, where you’re meeting new people that understand what you’re talking about, or are open to learning about it. And those open minds can lead to an understanding that all the imperfect and flawed people of the world can actually be responsible for much of its beauty. "