My name is Kerri Sparling and my favorite color used to be blue, but I think it's slowly transitioning to green. My husband and I have been married a little over a year and we battle regularly against the three cats who somehow came to live in our house. I love a clean car, I enjoy working out (I know - ridiculous, eh?), and I'm looking forward to starting my family.
... what? You were expecting something more diabetes-related?
Oh all right. My name is Kerri Sparling and I've had type 1 diabetes for over 23 years. To my 30 year old brain, that's a long time, and I don't really remember what life was like "before." But I can say with certainty that the "after" has been a life filled with love, laughter, times of triumph and tribulation, and everything in between. So while almost all of my life has included diabetes, it's been a pretty good life, even with it.
I'm new to the crew here at MyDiabetesCentral, and I'm proud to be joining as one of their experts. I'm a very active advocate (read: loudmouth) for diabetes and I've been writing my personal diabetes blog, Six Until Me, for about 4 1/2 years now. I worked for a few years as an editor at dLife and am now branching out on my own as a freelancer. I love doing JDRF walks and participating in professional conferences and panels about the impact of online support for people with diabetes. Before I joined the diabetes online community, I didn't know anyone else who was diabetic. Now? I have so many friends and online acquaintances who are living with diabetes, just like I am. It's made a huge difference in how I manage my health.
There is something so cool about being able to say, "I am just so HIGH," to someone without having their eyebrows shoot up into their hairline. Or knowing you can bum a few test strips off of a friend when you realize you've left the house with an empty bottle in your testing kit. Or when your insulin pump infusion set order doesn't arrive in time? Just call one of your fellow PWDs and they'll bring a set to your house, no problem.
Diabetes is something I lived with for decades without having a group of people who "get it" as part of my support team. And now, after years of feeling alone, I have that niche group, the ones who understand fully the physical AND emotional highs and lows of diabetes. Part of what I'll be discussing in my HealthCentral shareposts here will be the emotional side of diabetes, so please - get involved! If you have questions about handling that moment of disclosure with a new employer,
This disease is more than just our A1C results and measuring our medications. There is so much more to living a life with diabetes than just our numbers - there is a whole emotional and mental side to diabetes that plays a huge role in our mental and physical health. I'm looking forward to exploring this topic with you all.