Emotional Stress and Type 1 Diabetes

Living life with an invisible illness can be tough. Here’s the truth about dealing with emotional stress and Type 1 Diabetes…

Over the course of my life with Type 1 Diabetes thus far, I’ve experienced a roller coaster of emotions. I’ve gone from feeling like my world flipped upside down to being so proud my progress and feeling stronger than ever. Since Type 1 Diabetes is something that requires 24/7 management, it’s easy to quickly become emotionally stressed, which can then lead to burnout and other unpleasant endeavors.

To avoid the anxiety and stress, I try to follow three mantras:

  1. It’s okay to not have perfect numbers.

  2. You own your T1D, T1D does not own you.

  3. Everything that goes up, must come down.

It’s okay to not have perfect numbers…

When I was first diagnosed, I was absolutely terrified. I had extreme anxiety any time my numbers even moved by 10 points. I was whipped into thinking I had to be perfect all the time. As a teenager, this made it hard to focus on school, friends, and high school in general (we know how that goes). I faced a bit of depression in my first few years as I let my emotional stress from T1D control my life.

After therapy and confiding in my support circle of family and friends, I finally came to terms that I didn’t have to be perfect. This was the first time I started to enjoy life with my chronic illness. I obviously still have to monitor my sugars closely, but I know how to raise my sugar or lower it when the time comes. This was truly the first step for me in learning how to deal with the emotional stress that comes with my disease.

You own your T1D, T1D does not own you…

Next step was truly living by this mantra in every shape and form. While T1D is unpredictable and sometimes we aren’t ready for the highs and lows that come with it, I own it at the end of the day. It is the choices I make as an individual that contribute to my health. If something isn’t working for me, then I make a change. By letting a disease take over your life, you surrender. Living by this mantra is easier said than done, but I am so thankful for other T1D influencers who have paved the way for so many on this topic. To be honest, my blog has helped me do this by becoming an advocate in everything that I do. Connecting with all of you lifts my spirits in ways I couldn’t imagine. Thank you for helping me live by this mantra.

Everything that goes up, must come down…

Yes, these are also the lyrics to a Kacey Musgraves song. But, they couldn’t be more accurate! Just like life, T1D does fluctuate. Some days you could be riding high and others you could be chugging apple juice boxes left and right to fight a low. I live confidently and accept that life will always be a bit of a rollercoaster - but, it is a manageable one! This mantra reminds me that I can always find balance at the end of the day.

There’s not perfect way to tackle emotional stress and Type 1 Diabetes, but these three mantras have helped me keep health and positivity at my core. What are ways that you work to deal with emotional stress with or without T1D?