At One Drop, we don't just talk the talk -- we walk the walk.
In our One Droppers series, we'll be hearing from One Drop team members who live with diabetes every day.They're here to share their stories and explain what working professionally with diabetes means to them. Mary Elizabeth Adams kicks things off below! She's lived longer with diabetes than without, passing that road marker at age 15.
When I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of 7, 'career' was a word far beyond my limited 3rd grade vocabulary (outside the occasional Career Day). But who would have ever guessed that one day that diagnosis would lead to a job opportunity? And not just any job opportunity. Rather, one specifically geared to empower and bolster the lives of other people living with diabetes.
This dia-journey began like most.
I had all the classic symptoms (thirst, frequent urination, extreme weight loss, exhaustion), and my sweet mother took quick notice. After learning all the proper needle injection techniques, BG extremes and how to handle them, and what in the world this whole diseasething even meant, my parents and I dove head-first into the world of diabetes.
We did every walk, met with every doctor, and hunted down all the latest and greatest organizations we could find and join. The amazing people at JDRF, ADA and UAB gave us (and still do!) hope; Camp Seale Harris gave me newfound friends with diabetes. I didn't realize it at the time, but constantly being around those people — the ever-loud, ever-hopeful community of awe-inspiring movers and shakers — was a huge influence on how I came to see, accept and live with this chronic illness. They allowed me to not only survive, but to also thrive.
Fast forward Through college, life in Spain, an exciting stint in the music industry, and voila.
Here we are now.
With a crippling healthcare situation and an upcoming election that had HCPs running for the hills, I started thinking long and hard about my own health. Where was I headed with my own diabetes status? What did all these changes in healthcare mean for me? In doing so, I opened back up that Pandora's Box of the diabetes community. Inside the #DOC, I found what I'd been missing out on for the past ten years. This space is full of loud, unstoppable, will-not-take-no-for-an-answer go-getters; their presence, encouraging and their voice, resilient.
I am lucky enough to have found One Drop in my search. Amidst all the amazing blogs out there (shoutout to Coffee & Insulin), I stumbled across One Drop and immediately downloaded the app. I started keeping track with my BGs and food-intake, much more so than I'd done in a long while; it became my accountability partner. After logging and tracking within the app for a few months, I started to realize the company was on to something. Their voice was all about change, all about healthcare disruption. And they were PWDs themselves! And devoted to making a change. With their fervent conversations on selfcare, their emphasis on design, and their upcoming meter and unlimited strips roll out, I had to be a part of this revolution.
Now we're talkin'.
And now, thankfully and gratefully, I am! I am part of this boisterous, fearless group of individuals in a new capacity. I am living and working with diabetes. I am fortunate enough to be surrounded by individuals who wake up and face this disease each and every day (and night, for all those sleepless ones with the nonstop beeping!); who are relentless in their fight to make a change. We've all been told a cure is coming. But until then, we are taking matters into our own hands. We are fighting this extraordinary fight, arm in arm, and we will not go gently.
That is why we're here, doing what we're doing; not for the love of the job — the job is diabetes — but for the love of this community; for the love of the people (the millions of us all over the globe) who are being taken by this disease. While we may not have a cure, we have alternatives; at One Drop, we will always continue to fight for better care. Because we are all in this (the raging fight against diabetes), together.