By Claire Lynch
At age 19 Michele Cramer went to her doctor afraid that she had a urinary tract infection. The nurse asked her to give a urine sample and they discovered sugar in her urine. She had all of the classic symptoms of Type 1 – fatigue, excessive thirst and frequent UTIs – and after additional testing they determined that’s what it was.
Her medical team put her on insulin and today Michele uses a t:slim G4 insulin pump and Humalog. Now 32, Michele works full-time as a fast food manager for a busy restaurant in Florida. She notes, “I eat for free. I eat what everyone else eats, but counting carbohydrates is critical in taking the correct amount of insulin.
“All types of carbs appeal to me – cereal, potatoes, fruits and pasta. Watching the amount helps and so does adding salads and healthy helpings of fresh vegetables to my diet. I’ve definitely seen a reduction in my A1C these past few years.
“Even though I’ve been insulin dependent for the past 14 years, by using the pump my blood sugar levels stay within a good range. That’s the main thing!”
An Ohio native, Michele, her husband, Rob, and child moved to Florida five years ago for some warmer weather and to be near Rob’s immediate family. Today the Cramers like spending time with their two children and each other by going out on their boat, fishing and going to the theme parks in the Sunshine State.
Michele adds that she didn’t ask to be Type 1 but she’s dealing with it. She tells fellow diabetics and new ones, “Be sure to keep your doctor’s appointments and get your blood work done on a regular basis. It is critical in self-care. Try to follow a meal plan and eat small meals throughout the day. That helps. The bottom line is there will be ups and downs. You probably won’t succeed every day but every day is a new opportunity to do better. Each day you can start over.”