I am made of finger pricks and the chemical odor of insulin. Headaches due to high blood sugars and an inability to fear needles. Since the time I was playing with Barbies, I’ve been acutely aware of my mortality because while other children were being reminded to look both ways when you cross the street, I was learning that a dip or spike of my blood sugar could send me straight to the hospital. Failing to fall near that elusive target of one hundred milligrams of sugar per deciliter of blood leaves me fighting off guilt. Frequent report cards based on your maintenance of this balancing act issued by a doctor who knows hardly anything about you and reminders of the risk of neuropathy and blindness will do that. While I may not always show it on the outside, Type 1 Diabetes has made me perpetually anxious. However, it’s also made me stronger than anything else I’ve gone through and helped me acquire the maturity level of someone far beyond my years. It drives me to keep going, to give everything my best shot and kick the world in the damn face because, frankly, I’m not even supposed to be here.
As I near graduation from Smith, the planner in me desperately wants my life to be solidified. The past four years have been defined by my improvement in time management along with other skills, by the fortune I’ve had, and the happiness I’ve learned to create for myself. Ironically, what I need to do now is let go. To move forward but also part with my obsession for thinking ahead, for ensuring that I won’t drown in the ocean of life, because my path may change or take some unexpected turns, but I will stay afloat.