As a sixth grader, Hannah Schube remembers how she was forced into a new lifestyle after she learned that she had Type 1 diabetes.
“Looking back, I remember how my situation differed from that of my friends,” says Schube. “I couldn’t eat any candy from trick-or- treating until I got home and checked with my parents. I was the only kid that had to carry a purse full of my medical supplies. I secretly pricked my finger under the table because some friends were afraid of blood. I left class early every day to visit the nurse and inject myself with insulin.
“I remember my parents running across the soccer field during breaks to check my blood sugar levels. Even though these situations seem trivial now, I always saw these things as setting me apart and keeping me from being a normal kid.”
As Schube grew up, technology to help manage Type 1 diabetes sped forward into the future, too.
“I am so lucky to be able to see all of these amazing innovations that have sprung up since I was diagnosed,” says Schube. “I no longer need my little purse full of needles and testing strips, as it has been replaced with my Dexcom Continuous Glucose Monitor that communicates directly to my iPhone and Tandem Insulin Pump which automatically adds more insulin when my blood sugar levels dip. This closed-loop system has forever changed my diabetes management.”
Because of these advancements, Schube not only felt more confidence to move a few states away to go to college, but it has also afforded her other opportunities she may have missed out on otherwise.
“I have a very adventurous side,” says Schube. “And my parents have taught me that anything is possible while living with Type 1 diabetes as long as you do a little planning. It’s typical to see a rise in blood glucose after any extreme activity due to an increase in adrenaline, so I must think ahead.
“I like skydiving, scuba diving and bungee jumping, and I always chat with my instructors or leaders so they understand my situation and what to do in case anything goes south. I carry a lot of carbohydrates on me when I inevitably will hit a low blood sugar level — especially when I hike, go snowboarding or spend the day riding ATVs.” Schube and her family are not only part of the JDRF family, but they participate in numerous fundraisers as well.
“There’s never been a question on who to support, as JDRF is the organization doing the most to find a cure for Type 1 diabetes,” says Schube. “I believe a big reason JDRF is making such giant strides is because of the dedicated people who work there and make it their mission to find a cure.”
Schube will be recognized by JDRF as this year’s “Fund A Cure” family at the organization’s Gala at the Duke Energy Convention Center.
“Overall, I really enjoy pushing the limits with this disease, and it’s a great reminder that diabetes cannot hold you back as long as you don’t let it,” says Schube.
For more information, please visit swojdrf.org.