Jim Turner.jpeg

Age: 66 Year Diagnosed: 1970 Location: Los Angeles, Ca

“Because I kept ignoring the sound alert I had on the Dexcom app on my phone, I switched the urgent low glucose alarm to a baby crying. And by crying, I mean screaming. I did this because it is impossible to ignore. The morning after I switched to this bellowing howl, I was going through security at the airport. As I stood in the line, I could feel my blood sugar dropping. When my bags were going through the x-ray machine, the baby started howling. What kind of monster sends his baby through the x-ray machine? It was an awkward situation. I turned to a woman who was waiting for her bags and said, "My blood sugar is low." The baby screamed. "Very low," I said. She stared at me. I don't even know if she heard it. I looked around nervously and made strange gestures at the x-ray machine. Thank gawd the TSA didn't pull me aside. I was not capable of explaining any of what was happening. When my bags came through, I swept it all up and ran to my gate, forgetting to get anything to eat - until it started crying again.

I’ve had diabetes almost 3 times longer (49 years) than I’ve not had diabetes (17 years). In the beginning, I warred with this stupid, destructive disease. And for the longest time, it beat the crap out of me. Lots of kicking, spitting, and scratching - with me always on the receiving end. But the truth is this: diabetes has been the most resolute, consistent, exacting guide for the bulk of my life. Diabetes has informed every single decision I’ve made about anything every one of the past 18,000+ days. I now think of it as a friend I need to take care of and keep my eye on, and the day I stopped fighting my chronic friend (because I realized he was I), and started accepting him, was the day WE stopped getting knocked around.”