I’m Jaime! I live in Minnesota with my daughter and my mom -- soon, I’ll be living with my husband and his daughter. We’re engaged!
I was originally diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, but kept struggling with my numbers even though I had lost a significant amount of weight. My general practitioner kept insisting that I wait another three months and that my numbers would eventually come down, but I finally got frustrated enough and went to an endocrinologist.
A week later, I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes and started short acting insulin approximately 6 months ago. I am proud to say that my A1C is the lowest it has ever been at 6.2%! My goal is to have it under 6%. It's a work in progress.
My Diabetes Community
Besides being a diabadass, I work in retail, doing retail loss prevention. In my free time, I hang out with my daughter, who just turned 13.
I’ve also recently found a passion for advocating with Insulin4All here in Minnesota. I spend a lot of time posting on Facebook about diabetes awareness and education, and I’ve been able to help people get the insulin they need when they’re facing an emergency situation.
I love being able to help other people living type 1 diabetes get what they need. I've made so many amazing friendships in the diabetic community and have learned so much from all of them.
These people have not only been shoulders to lean on, but they have given me advice that has saved my life more times than I can count. One of my friends talked me through keeping my body from going into DKA when I was super sick so that I didn't end up in the hospital.
These fellow type 1 diabetes connections are every part of my diabetes journey.
I felt so alone when I was first diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. It didn’t occur to me that there were other resources out there -- like Facebook groups, books, and local people with type 1 diabetes -- so I never looked for them!
I actually found the diabetes community when I was searching for information on a support group. I landed on the JDRF page and learned all about JDRF!
I want to find a way to let all T1Ds know there are resources for them and that they are not alone! I want to find a way to help lessen their learning curve so they can get a better handle on their diabetes as quickly as possible.
If I had a bucket list, this would be on it. Putting together a resource for other, newly-diagnosed people with type 1 diabetes that my endocrinologist could pass out. That, and going to Bali. ;)
What Diabetes Means to Me
Having diabetes has changed my life in so many ways. I think being diagnosed later in life has made it harder, but also easier.
It's easier because I am directly in charge of my own health; harder because I have very fresh memories of what life was like before diabetes.
I've spent a lot of time learning about food and nutrition since my diagnosis. It's become a hobby and passion! Through my diabetes, I’ve learned how to take care of my body. My diabetes has taught me when I need to slow down and take better care of myself.
Diabetes has also taught me that there isn't much in life that's as serious as I thought it was. Life is really lots of fun and the rough things are just...stuff or things. They pass quickly and life gets back to normal again!
It’s kind of like diabetes itself: part of me wishes the daily injections, the finger sticks, the extreme exhaustion, and pain in my body would go away. But at the same time, I feel that diabetes has made me a totally different person than I was before.
I'm stronger. I'm more outspoken. I'm more willing to advocate and reach out to those in need. Would I undo my diabetes? Probably not.
It’s a bit like my favorite quote:
“Be the change you wish to see in the world.”
It reminds me that if there is something I view as wrong, I can fix it. I have the power, I don't have to wait for someone else to come along and do it.
It’s the same with my diabetes: I hold the power.