For Hereford High School sophomore Will Schueler, his recent diabetes diagnosis has taken some getting use to, but it certainly hasn't stopped him.
Will became one of the more than fifteen thousand children and fifteen thousand adults diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes last year. Will also finished his sophomore tennis season at Hereford High with an all-district singles nod and the best win percentage on the boys' side. He was ranked number one in his class, and spent the summer at Cornell University and finished a School of Business summer session with a 4.0. Obviously, Will isn't letting diabetes dictate his life on or off the court.
"It's constant management. You have to check your finger ten times a day by pricking it to check blood sugar. Then, you have to give yourself insulin every time you have a snack or meal," Will said. "Every time you eat, you have to give insulin to yourself since your pancreas isn't functioning."
It's a life that, for most, seems pretty daunting, and sometimes there are challenges.
"I have to take breaks between matches and practices to get my blood sugar up," he said.
"They [my parents] worry sometimes at night making sure I don't go too low or too high," Will went on to say. "That's another time the CGM helps me out; it alerts them if I'm going too low at night."
Because of incredible advances in technology and treatment, those worries and those struggles are lessened. Currently, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation is funding more than fifty clinical trials, and pumping $530 million into research projects worldwide so kids like Will can serve up a life without limitations.
"This is my glucose monitor," Will said. "It's hooked up to a sensor which constantly tells me my blood sugar. It checks every five minutes, and gives me a warning if I'm going low or high."
"I used to be on shots. Now, I have the pump which I change every three days, and it makes it a lot easier," he added. "I plug into an iPhone looking thing and gives me all the insulin I need."
So, that means no more shots for Will-- shots of the insulin variety, that is. As for shots on the tennis court, he's got plenty of those up his sleeve.
JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes & Roasters Rock the Park 5K
- John Stiff Park
- Walk: 9 a.m.
- Roasters Run: 8 a.m.
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