If you would like to suggest someone for a member spotlight, please contact us.Elizabeth Wolff has been a member of TuDiabetes since early 2009. She dedicates her life to help raise funds to find a cure for diabetes. This is her story.
1) When did you get diagnosed?
I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in March of 1995 when I was 11 years old.
2) What/when was your most current A1C?
My most current A1C was a 6.8, which is still way above my target. Still, I am happy to be healthier than I was as a teenager when my A1C was as high as 12.
3) What is a typical day like for you?
I don’t live a typical life. I own and operate the Cure Thrift Shop, a high-end thrift shop in Manhattan. All proceeds from the shop benefit the Diabetes Research Institute Foundation, a world-recognized leader in cure focused diabetes research.
On a typical day, I wake up as early as 5:30 AM with my husband, a doctor in his residency at NYU. I test my blood sugar immediately - pretty much before I have fully opened my eyes. I then spend the next couple of hours arranging for pick-ups of donations of furniture for the shop. Once I arrive to work, I spend the majority of my day rearranging furniture to look like scenes out of a real home. I sort through boxes of donations, price, and display new merchandise. Since my job is extremely physical and unpredictable, I continue to test my blood sugar at least 8 times throughout the day. There is nothing worse than having my blood sugar crash while moving a sofa over my head!
4) What were the biggest challenges with diabetes you have encountered since you got diagnosed?
When I was first diagnosed, I took the news extremely well. I was incredibly diligent about staying in control of my diabetes. But, once my teenage years arrived, I no longer cared about my health. I convinced myself that I did not need to test my glucose levels to determine how much insulin I required and would just inject a dose based on whether I felt high, low, or somewhere in between. This went on for 8 years. My biggest challenge was finally getting back in control of my diabetes. I had to get back into the habit of testing my blood sugar on a daily basis and living as a healthy diabetic.
5) Anything you would have done differently if you could?
If I could go back in time, I would absolutely grab the shoulders of my 15 year old self and shake some sense into the careless girl that I once was. Miraculously, the neglect that I put my body through for all of those years did not leave permanent damage.
6) What is your biggest dream today?
My biggest dream today is to have children and experience normal, healthy pregnancies. I once thought that I would never be able to re-gain control over my diabetes and as a result, would not be well enough to become pregnant. Diabetes is not always easy to handle, but I am motivated to take care of myself for the future of myself, my husband, and the family that we will have one day.
7) What is your advice for other people with diabetes?
My advice for other people with diabetes is to live. You can not allow diabetes to rule your life and must recognize that the road will be bumpy and that there will be obstacles. As long as you love yourself and believe in your strength, you can accomplish anything - even with diabetes.
If you live in the New York City area, make sure to drop by the Cure Thrift Shop on 111 East 12th St. as you think of any holiday gifts for your loved ones. All proceeds from the shop benefit the Diabetes Research Institute Foundation.
Previous Member Spotlights
- Nel Peach: Carrying the Torch of Diabetes in Canada (November 2009)
- Traveling the World with Diabetes: Bridget McNulty (October 2009)
- Fighting Colon Cancer and Diabetes: Brian's Story (July 2009)
- Gastric Bypass Surgery: Debb's Journey (June 2009)
- Kitty's insulin-free life after 40 years of diabetes (March 2009)
- Doug Klein: 50 Years With Diabetes (January 2009)
- Sandy dreams of a kidney transplant... and having a baby (December 2008)
- A conversation with Captain Glucose and Meter Boy (September 2008)
- Meet Chuck: a fun guy that makes you reflect (August 2008)
- Meet Mr. Peachy: a person with type 2 diabetes who loves to answer people's questions (July 2008)
- Olaf R. Saugen: Memories of a Great Life With Diabetes (June 2008)
- Charlie Cherry: Inspiring People With Diabetes Through His Podcast (Nov. 2007)