Roxanna, from Brownsville, Texas, shares the story of her diagnosis—and how it changed her life.
My diabetes journey began in August 2016. I was 29 years old. Like many who are first diagnosed, I ended up in the hospital with high blood sugar, severe dehydration, fatigue and exhaustion.
“If you were my sister,” I recall my doctor saying, “I’d send you to the hospital.” And off to the hospital I went.
I remember that day like it was yesterday: the doctors, the nurses, the diabetes educator, the concerned look on my parents’ faces. I didn’t even know what diabetes was at the time, much less how it would change my life forever.
At the time of my diagnosis, I was also suffering from Crohn’s disease. A high dose of steroids to help manage my severe symptoms was the likely culprit, but it’s hard to say with certainty, as I had also experienced several instances of reactive hypoglycemia. Perhaps, diabetes was an inevitable part of my journey.
It’s been four years since my diagnosis. The journey hasn’t been easy; some days are great, others—not so great. The COVID-19 pandemic we are experiencing has been particularly challenging for me. A few months of stay-at-home orders led me down a path of bad habits: over-eating, over-snacking, not exercising, not taking my medication. In May 2020, I was admitted to the hospital again. This time, I spent a week in the ICU for diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), an experience I don’t want to remember, but one I’ll never forget. Looking back, I realize it was a serious wake-up call I needed to start taking my health seriously.
My diabetes journey continues with a renewed focus on prioritizing my health through mindfulness, exercise, healthy eating habits, and making better, data-driven decisions. Today, I’m using a Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) system that not only provides me real-time glucose data, but also gives me comfort and confidence as I try my best to manage this disease moving forward.
I am grateful for the opportunity to share my story, and I hope it helps a fellow diabetic along their journey.
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