3 days before starting my final college semester, I made a doctor's appointment because of some weird, out-of-the-box symptoms. I was tired, extremely thirsty, getting cramps in my legs... this might sound familiar to some of you-- the tell-tale symptoms of diabetes. "There's no way I have diabetes," I told my doctor, "I'm an active, healthy college student. Diabetes only happens to people who don't take care of themselves." Boy, was I wrong. My fasted blood glucose came back as 450 mg/dL (normal is <100mg/dL) My doctor sent me back into the world under the instruction to modify my diet and increase my exercise. So, that's what I did.
Fast-forward a couple months and I end up in the ER because of unregulated diabetes. My hemoglobin A1c (a measure of your average blood glucose levels for the past 3 months) was 16.2%, when it should be below 5.6%. My blood glucose reading that morning was 700mg/dL. They started me on an insulin drip with lots of fluids, ran a bunch of tests, and officially diagnosed me with type 1 diabetes (here’s the difference between type 1 and type 2 diabetes). I stayed in the hospital for 3 days learning how and when to inject myself with insulin, how to measure the grams of carbohydrates in each meal, and how to manage this disease-- a disease I'll have for the rest of my life.
As I'm sure you can imagine, it took me a while to process the diagnosis and figure out how to move forward. But Carrie and Kirsten Barry at The Corner Boxing Club presented me with the perfect outlet. Founder Fights is an annual, amateur charity boxing event in Boulder, Colorado where community members train to step into the boxing ring and raise awareness and donations for a nonprofit close to their hearts.
Here's a link if you're interested in learning more: https://otrboulder.org/founder-fights-about
I've decided to raise money for JDRF, a non-profit organization that's leading the fight against T1D by funding research, advocating for policies that increase access to new therapies, and providing a support network for millions of people around the world who are impacted by T1D. https://www.jdrf.org/?_ga=2.218607065.1386194599.1584049383-1613867660.1583290515
Your donation will help JDRF in their continued search for a cure. Together, we can have an impact on the lives of individuals and families affected by T1D.
When I'm boxing, I forget about my diabetes. I forget about how much it sucks to be diagnosed with something at 22 years old, to not be able to eat skittles without reading the nutrition label and then waiting 15 minutes for my insulin to kick in... I forget that I have a chronic disease, and I start to feel normal again. I'm fighting for a chance to share that feeling with other type 1 diabetics, and I hope you'll join me.