Mountain West Youth Ambassador to Bring Back T1D Teen Time

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Mountain West Youth Ambassador Zoe shares her type 1 diabetes (T1D) story and why she’s committed to inviting you to join her at T1D Teen Time in 2024.

Hello everyone! My name is Zoe. I am 16 years old and was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes (T1D) at age 9.

A little bit about me is that I love to be active and outdoors! I swim, play tennis, and ski. I am currently on my high school swim team and tennis team. Even though sometimes my T1D makes these activities harder, I don’t let it stop me.

As a kid, dealing with T1D was especially hard. I didn’t know anyone else with T1D and as you can imagine, it was extremely isolating. I felt uncertain and scared, and for the first time, it was clear to me that my parents felt the same. This made me feel even more alone. Knowing that you are going to spend the rest of your life with a chronic disease is something that only people experiencing the exact same thing can understand. Of course, I had amazing medical care and an incredible support system from my family and friends, but still, something was missing.

I didn’t have a T1D community. I had no one to talk to when I was feeling down who could respond to me with a valid “I know” or “I understand.” I didn’t know how great a feeling this was until I moved to Colorado and got involved with JDRF.

Finding other people with T1D to talk to is a feeling I cannot describe. To get on a Zoom or to enter a room full of people that get it makes me feel supported, validated, and understood. Knowing you are not alone makes life so much easier.

That is why I started Teen Time. I hoped to create an outlet and place for teenagers to turn to when they needed to be understood. Last year was the first year I hosted Teen Time, and this year, I am working extra hard to improve the experience. We learned a lot, and I really want to make Teen Time a success for everyone this year.

Being a teenager is a whole new and scary phase of life, and dealing with that on top of T1D is extremely tough. I want Teen Time to be an uplifting and fun experience that makes you feel surrounded and supported. So please join me!!

I can’t wait to see you there!!

If you are between the ages of 13 and 18 and looking for other teens with T1D to connect with, join JDRF Mountain West Youth Ambassadors for T1D Teen Time!

We will meet online on the fourth Sunday of every month at 5pm MT for conversation and connection. Find more details and register for our first online meetup here.