Diabetes Inequality in Canada - T1International
6 Oct 2017, 4:40 p.m. in Global Stories by Janet D
The one thing I know about in life is change. I was 12 turning 13 when my father got sick and died. He had been diagnosed with an enlarged heart and was awaiting a heart transplant, so we travelled from Canada down to the United States for him to say goodbye to the rest of the family. It was our last night there, and he didn't make it. I was with him as the paramedics arrived and tried to revive him.
I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes ten days before my sixteenth birthday, in April of 1996. I was rushed to the "big city" from my small town and hospitalized immediately. There I received my first shots and learned how to give them to myself. I was told I should be prepared for a short life. I now know that they were wrong, but it was a scary time. They stressed that I should not have children because I would likely not survive the pregnancy or childbirth.
I think because of the fear they imparted, I struggled a lot with my diagnosis. I spent many years rejecting the idea that I was a diabetic. I didn't want special attention, so I lived like everyone else did in my small town, drinking and taking part in other regular activities that most teenage kids do.
When I set out on my own and started to make a life for myself, I made some wrong choices and ended up in an abusive relationship. Both of us were unemployed, so instead of buying the medication I needed, I paid for rent. Still, he would blame everything on my diabetes and threatened to throw me in a psych ward. That's when the rationing started. First, it was a litt Continue reading