Hello! Who are you? And tell us a little bit more about your diabetes.
I’m a dancer and I was diagnosed at the age of 6 with diabetes type 1. I have my own instagram account @t1d.cece and I am a JDRF youth ambassador.
I grew up with diabetes type 1 since I was 6. It was easier to manage at first but as I started getting older it became difficult to manage emotionally.
Emotionally it was pretty hard and dealing with teachers at my school who were discriminative towards my diabetes made it even harder.
“It was easier to manage at first but as I started getting older it became difficult to manage emotionally.”
How do you treat your diabetes, did a lot change over the past years and are you able to manage it well?
I receive support from my diabetes team at the hospital. Also friends and family help me a lot with my diabetes.
I use an Omnipod insulin pump and a Dexcom CGM. I use Novorapid insulin to help with slow absorbing carbs.
I don’t remember life before diabetes as I was six years old when diagnosed. But I think it changed my whole outlook on life. It also made me more accepting and understanding.
However it also had negative effects on my mental health but I think I’m pretty good at managing my diabetes.
Cece at her last hospital visit.
Can you recognize the symptoms of a low/high blood sugar? Do you test often and can you tell a bit more about your experiences with low blood sugar?
Yes, sometimes I can recognize them. Dizziness, feeling sick, confused, headaches, tiredness, and blurry vision.
I use the Dexcom so I never actually need to prick my finger and test. I just check my phone APP whenever I feel like it.
I treat my low blood sugar with Lucozade or jelly babies.
I fainted because of low blood sugar about twice in the past 4 years.
Food and diet
How does your diabetes affect your eating and do you find being on a diet restrictive?
For breakfast at 7AM I eat frozen berries, for lunch at 12:30 I eat one slice of toast and for dinner at 6:45PM I eat whatever my mam makes. Chicken is my favorite food.
Sometimes I skip meals. I do my regular insulin when I’m hungry and eat snacks in between my meals. It depends on what’s in the house at that moment.
During the day I drink 1 and a half bottles of water.
I don’t find being on a diet is restrictive. Diabetes doesn’t mean I’m on a diet that of type 2. But I like to stay fit and healthy especially as a dancer and ice skater, so I do like to eat low calories.
I do get annoyed when people ask me about what I can or can’t eat. Because more people should be educated. I can eat anything I want with insulin. That’s like the whole point of insulin. Right?
Do you believe that a plant based diet can improve diabetes? Did you ever experiment with this?
No, because I have type 1 diabetes. I can eat whatever I want with insulin. Diet or lifestyle is not something that causes or effects type 1.
Do you have a hard time eating out in a restaurant? And what are you thoughts on making this easier?
“I can eat anything I want with insulin. That’s like the whole point of insulin.”
Cece's dog Jasper who she got the same time as her diagnosis. Jasper trained himself to alert Cece when her bloods are low or high.
Exercise and work
Does your diabetes restrict you from exercise or your daily job?
No it does not restrict me. I dance up to 3 hours a week and I do ice skating twice a month. I also do Cardio Latin workout for 30 minutes every day.
I’m still in school and also there I have no restrictions because of my diabetes.
Do you have any positive or negative effects because of your diabetes?
The negative effects are the stereotypes, judgemental people and facing discrimination.
But the best part is that I can skip the lines in Disney World.
My diabetes does not cause me any other problems.
Cece at Disney World
What is the best advice that you can give to non-diabetics, new diagnosed diabetics and diabetics?
Yes, diabetes is a disability. No, I didn’t get it from being fat. It’s an auto immune system disease. Yes, I can eat whatever I want. Yes, we face discrimination. Yes, sometimes it’s hard. Please stop comparing me to your cat who has diabetes. And also start educating yourself on diabetes. Stop making jokes about diabetes.
It gets better. It becomes your new normal. One day you’ll wake up and it won’t be as scary anymore.
Keep going. Ask for help when u need it. Don’t ever feel alone.
What would you ask the other diabetics?
What’s the worst stereotype about diabetes?
Feel free to answer in the comments below.
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Hey! I'm Ely Fornoville, the founder of Diabetic & Me.
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