This guest post, “He Has Never Let His Diabetes Stop Him”, was written by Jacob’s Grandmother as part of the Share Your Story program.

I am writing about my grandson. I was helping my son raise him and his sister, all of us living close together. Jake was with me every day. He started wetting his bed. He had never wet the bed since we had gotten him potty trained. We went a few days without doing anything until he started begging for more and more water. I had given him a 12 oz. glass full yet he kept wanting more.

I called our pediatrician and told the nurse that Jake was a diabetic and described his symptoms. She advised that she would speak to the doctor and call back. When she returned the call, she said that the doctor doubted it but to make me feel better, bring him to the hospital for lab work. They then called me and advised that the doctor felt like there might be a problem with the equipment and to take him back the next morning.

I was then told that he was a bad diabetic – four years old with a reading of 186. They requested that I bring him to the doctor’s office right then for insulin. We were sent to the hospital for training. I was told that following a bad case of the chicken pox, he saw more children becoming diabetics than at any other time. Jake had just had chicken pox.

He was on 5 shots a day and it was really hard to get his rate. We went through some tough times during his teens. He wanted to be normal and at times just did whatever he wanted to just be like his friends. Then we would run into problems. He was put on the pump and was doing much better, but because he was so thin, the catheter kept coming out. He then went back to the shots.

Jake is now 22 years old and back on the insulin pump. He works on an ambulance, has worked in cardio ICU, and with the fire department. He is going about his life, is married, has a beautiful son and is expecting another child.

I have to admit that his marriage to a nurse gave me comfort. He has passed some of the hardest fire and defense training. He has never let his diabetes stop him from doing what he wants to do. I am very proud of him dealing with this disease and not letting it consume his life. Jake lives his life by not letting pity overcome him because he has achieved these victories and has many years ahead of him.