Wednesday, May 18, 2016

One of My Bright Sides of Type 1 Diabetes:
When I was diagnosed with type one diabetes I was 9 years old, I had no idea that it would affect me for the rest of my life. I didn’t think about needing to test my blood sugar every time before I drove a car, I didn’t think about how I could have a low blood sugar at my graduation, or that it might affect my future job… It just never occurred to me.  As I have gotten a little older (I’m 14 now) these have been thoughts of mine. Even though it can be hard I can still easily find ways to stay positive through it.  And I really wanted to share one of my bright sides with you guys…

Friends!  I have made so many life long friends that I never would have met if I didn’t have type one diabetes! In fact I think that I have more friends WITH diabetes than without diabetes! There are so many ways to make new type one diabetic friends… some examples would be CAMPwalks to cure diabetes, events based on diabetes, Facebook groups and more!

I also want to tell you that it sure means a lot to text my diabetic friends…  I cannot stress how important it is to find a type one community to back you up. I wish I could explain how AMAZING it feels to be able to text a friend (who also has type one) and be able to say, “Uhg my blood sugars are 400” and get a response like, “Aw, I’m sorry! I feel you, my sugars were crazy yesterday! Are you drinking Diet Coke or something?” It feels so good to be understood. Your friends and family can sympathize and it’s so nice. But to have those people who REALLY get it, is a gift.

So what are some ways you can find some friend with type one besides camp? You can find new friends through Beyond Type One’s Snail Mail Club: Here is the link. You guys should sign up! It is a pen pal program for kids and teens with type 1 diabetes around the world. Quoting their website, “Beyond Type 1 is a company built on social media and technology, but we know that good old fashioned personal connections are just as important. Our hope is that the Snail Mail Club will foster community, create lasting connections that go beyond the page, and that some of you can even meet in person one day.” What a fun way to make a new diabetic friend! I have signed up and have a new 14 year old friend in Illinois. 

Beyond Type One has ALSO launched an App that lets you interact and connect with other type one diabetics. You can post pictures and ask/give advice and even find people in your area! I am on it and I LOVE it! Click this LINK and sign up on the website. Then it will let you download the free app (works for iOS and Android) and have fun! Be sure to follow me on it ;)

It is also fun to find some events for people living with type 1 diabetes… I love going to JDRF events. There are tons of different organizations who put on events. One organization I love is in the California Bay Area called Carb DM. Here's their link (click it!!!!!!!!)  I love this organization, they always put on amazing events! Don’t live in CA? Wherever you are there is always an organization you can find. And if not then START ONE!

Social media!! There are so many diabetes accounts on Instagram and Facebook! Follow me on Facebook here and on IG @glittergwyneth and we can all connect!

I have also found friends through writing this blog at <3 We are also on Instagram @diabeticsunshine ;) Writing your own blog can be a great way to get your feelings out and to connect with others. I have had so many people stumble upon my blog and then reach out to connect with me because they found they had something in common with me. If you start blogging, let know and I'll follow your blog! 

I wanted to share this HUGE bright side with you guys! Get connected and make type one friends...they're the BEST! <3 I hope this helps you! Why don’t you comment on YOUR bright sides or email me here-Gwyneth Stewart