You, Me and T1D

Right now in the U.S., there are about 1.25 million people living with type 1 diabetes (T1D). Each one experiences it in his or her own way, but it’s important to remember, we are all in this together.

Meet a few of the incredible members of the T1D community, read their stories and find out how each of them chooses to join the fight against T1D.

Age 28
Gilbert, AZ
Diagnosed at age 7

Chelsea won’t let her T1D get in the way of her dreams–if anything, she believes managing the disease has made her even stronger. As a labor and delivery nurse, she is on her feet all day, working long, sometimes overnight shifts. With such a hectic schedule, she relies heavily on her Continuous Glucose Monitor (CGM) to help manage her blood sugar. The CGM lets her take care of herself and her patients at the same time.

Taking care of people is clearly in Chelsea’s genes. Last summer, she served as the nurse for a camp for kids with T1D. Finding and giving support within the T1D community has been a huge help for Chelsea and it can be for you too!

Age 42
Cincinnati, OH
Diagnosed at age 28

Marc’s story is a remarkable one. After his diagnosis forced him out of a career as a military pilot, he resolved to fight the disease however he could. Since then, he has joined his local JDRF board and become a passionate volunteer and advocate for the T1D community.

Ten years after being diagnosed, Marc and his wife Heather were devastated when their son Charlie was also diagnosed. Luckily, with a T1D dad and a nurse mom, Charlie has taken T1D in stride. Even since Marc’s diagnosis, major advances in technology, like artificial pancreas systems, have helped their family get through the ups and downs of the day and helped both Marc and his wife get through the night knowing Charlie will be safe. The entire family is excited to see what the next 10 years will bring!

Age 8
Diagnosed at age 4

Having T1D is hard for Mairead. Most kids her age don’t even know what a pancreas is, let alone what it does or what it means when it’s not working right, and Mairead must explain it to them. But through JDRF, Mairead has met friends just like her. Together, they are Youth Ambassadors, participate in One Walk ® and attend their local JDRF Gala.

The Gala is Mairead’s favorite — there she can dress up like a princess, go to a fancy party and do what she loves: dance. Dancing is Mairead’s passion, and as a competitive Irish Dancer she is constantly on her toes, managing her highs and lows and practicing her steps!

Age 17
Hendersen, NV
Diagnosed at age 18 months old

Kendall has two things on his mind: varsity basketball and preparing for college. He’s lived with T1D all his life and managing it has become second nature to him, but that doesn’t make it easy. He deals with his T1D every day with a balance of insulin, rest, food and activity and the loving support of his parents.

The balancing act doesn’t stop there! In addition to basketball, music and school, Kendall is a JDRF Youth Ambassador, a 2015 Children’s Congress delegate a leader in his JDRF Teen Talk group and an annual JDRF One Walk team captain.

Age 30
Orland Park, IL
Diagnosed at age 21

T1D can take a huge toll on those living with the disease and their loved ones. Staying healthy can be hard enough without having to worry about the financial burden as well. No one should be prohibited from the care that they need because of costs, yet that is the reality for many people — including Krissy. She has dealt with health issue after health issue and the cost of managing her T1D is a constant battle.

Despite the hardships, Krissy continues to fight. She owns her own business, helps homeschool her children and travels to share her story and make others feel less alone in what can often feel like a lonely struggle. This resilient spirit is one of the many ways in which the T1D community is truly remarkable.