Why is it important to foster and keep connections with other people who have type 1 diabetes? Megan Ehlers joins us on the show to share her experience as a kid with T1D whose first trip to diabetes camp and the exposure to other kids with T1D helped change how she thought about herself.
Now, decades later, she’s stayed close to those friends she made at Camp Shady Brook, and had an awesome full-circle moment going back to the same camp for an adult T1D experience with Connected in Motion.
Meet Megan Ehlers
Megan Ehlers was born in May of 1974. In April of 1979, Megan, who had been potty-trained since before age 2, began wetting her pants again. Her mother and father, a nurse and physician respectively, recognized the symptoms of what was then called juvenile onset diabetes. They lived in Denver and so went to the Barbara Davis Center for the diagnosis.
Megan’s life changed in that she could no longer eat sugar, but maybe because she was so young or maybe because she went to Barbara Davis, she was not told that she would die early like so many others diagnosed with Type 1 have been. She was on Regular and NPH insulins, one shot a day. She eventually went to two shots a day, but MDI didn’t start until maybe 1994 or so. An HbA1C level of below 10 was considered the goal in those days, and unsurprisingly, Megan rarely achieved that. Despite this fact, she has had very few complications to date, shockingly.
In 1983, she began to go to ADA’s T1 diabetes camp, then hosted at Camp Shady Brook in Deckers, CO. There, she learned independence and that there were others with the same condition she had. She learned how to test her blood sugar and how to give her own injections. She went to diabetes camp for nine years as a camper and two as a staff member. She made friends with other diabetic kids. Five of these women are still her friends.
Moving forward several decades, Megan is now on the Dexcom and T-Slim CGM/pump combo. Her A1C hovers around 6. She has some components of T2 diabetes including extreme insulin resistance. Her endo of many years started her on Jardiance and Ozempic. She has lost 85 pounds and at age 49, is in the best shape of her life.
One year ago, and then again just recently, she went to Connected in Motion’s second and third Colorado Slipstream events, which amazingly and wonderfully took place at Camp Shady Brook. She attended with a long-time friend from camp. There, they reconnected with some friends they had lost touch with.
Connect with Megan on Instagram @buddycat2
Mentioned in This Episode
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