So I have always wanted to be a lawyer since my 7th grade debate class. Throughout college I had a rough time to say the least, with financial worries, a unreliable roommate, working full time, attending school full time and not to mention secretly battling T1 diabetes. I was so burned out from everything that going to law school was not on my radar at all…Well with the recent economy as a twenty something rethinking my future is a requirement. And somehow becoming a lawyer has come back into my heart. My new concern is could I be a good lawyer as a T1. My diabetes is so sensitive; EVERTHING irritates it including stress and pressure. Yesterday I became stressed over something that has been a lifetime stressor and since then my numbers have been out of control, they shot up to the 300’s like it was nothing. I took some Apidra and it was finally in the 100’s before bed however woke up back in the 300’s.
This concerns me because being a lawyer is all about pressure.
Are there any occupations you always wanted to do and felt diabetes may hinder you from succeeding in it?
There is absolutely no reason that you cannot be an attorney if that is what you want to do. Don’t forget Sonia Sotomayor! As for going back to school now, there is no reason why you should not do that either. I worked with a guy that decided to go to law school when he was in his 30s. He took a part-time job with a law firm while he was in school using his skills as a CPA. He went on to become a partner in the firm. He wasn’t diabetic, but just in case you were trying to tell yourself you were too old.
I believe that you should follow your gut. This is a dream you have had and there is a reason it came back to life – you should do it!
This is tough. I really, really want to say that you can absolutely do ANYTHING you want in spite of diabetes, but I also know the kind of stress-related reactions you are referring to because I experience them too and they are horrible. Personally, I am trying to really work on learning how to manage that common stress-related reaction of soaring BGs in response to those pesky stress hormones. Sometimes this means deep breathing, sometimes this means more testing, and sometimes this means actually bolusing a small amount of insulin in stressful situations (like a really hectic day at work or being in the middle of a stressful project). I have found this past year that I am able to control my BG better during times of stress by sticking to a low carb diet and bolusing small amounts in response to small changes in my BG levels.
Keep in mind that there are many, many different kinds of lawyers out there, and not all of them are in courtrooms every day dealing with the stress. You may want to look into the various kinds of law and see if there is a particular type of legal work that interests you and is low(er) stress.
In addition, you should really experiment and try to find a regimen that keeps your BGs under better control when you’re stressed. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, T1D is all about trial and error and what works for one person may not work for another. You have to find the right combination of things that works for YOU.
And don’t forget that Sonia Sotamayor got through law school and being a lawyer and achieved something pretty damn amazing, all with T1D at her side
Stress will affect you whether you’re a lawyer or not. Since you’re going to have the effects of stress anyway, wouldn’t you rather do it while following you dream career?
There’s nothing about T1 that prevents you from practicing law and doing it well. Sonya Sotomayor is a great example to follow. There are lawyers from all walks of life and every variety of physical ability and condition. Don’t let T1 hold you back.
BTW, why are you battling T1 in secret?
I know all about trial and error…I know I have to find ways to control my stress, its all been recent. I’ve been thinking about talking to a doctor about it maybe that will help
Thanks for the inspirational words!
I do need to find a way to deal with the stress. I never thought it would hold me back from being a lawyer more like being a lawyer would make it difficult to control my diabetes…
It was secret because I was under diagnosed then misdiagnosed for years while I was in college…Good times, lol
Little sis Do whatever you want to do!! I recently reired from a challenging, stressful; but ultimately rewarding career as a speech/language pathologist in an urban school district. I had some stress-filled days and nights, but I learned to correct, to exercise, to rehydrate, and meditate on HIS PRESENCE in my life…Helps to keep the" stress surges" at bay.
Well, there is nothing I wanted to do & felt my T1D would hinder it…I don’t know, maybe something will pop into my head but at the moment, I got nothin’. I’m 33 years old and just graduated in May with my 2yr Associates in Accounting…One more year of Gen Eds and then I’m transferring to a top 4 yr business school to get my Master Degree in Accounting. I plan to get my CPA and then become a forensic accountant. I’ve been taking anywhere from 19-23 credits per semester, and this fall, I’m taking 24. I’m in both honor societies at my school, and I run the Business Club as well as a volunteer income tax prep program, plus I’m a volunteer coach for 4 competitive youth cheerleading teams. I have the Omnipod, so when I get stressed out (which is just constantly throughout each day), I just jack up the insulin and drink lots of water, and take the long way/powerwalk to my next class =)
You can do it. T1D doesn’t have to hold you back, your age doesn’t have to hold you back, your hesitation doesn’t have to hold you back. Go for it!
What area interests you?
Good for you!
Well I usually dont live my life in forms of limitations but its so hard to control my BG just on a Tuesday let alone on a stressed out day. My diabetes has a direct line to my stress levels, even if its too hot my numbers are out of control. I have learned to adjust to still do the things I want to do but everything is a challenge. It most likely will not be a reason why I wouldnt be a lawyer if I ever decide not to its just def a concern now. I dont want to be a kick @ss lawyer with a A1c of 9 because thats not an accomplishment in my book…I have time to decide anyways because there is no way I can afford to go right now…
Follow your goals/dreams. Sometimes you don’t always know how something will turn out or how you’ll manage unless you give it a shot. There are a lot of occupations that can make it tough to manage a chronic illness like diabetes, but you learn to adapt and take the steps necessary to succeed, both in your career and in the management of D.
My last job had a very inconsistent schedule (days, nights, evenings, weekends), I was running around most of the time, and had a lot of stress associated with it. I hated it (because it did not fit into my career goals) and found it very hard to manage D and even went into DKA a few times from all the stress and running around I used to have to do. Long story short, I quit to get my RN. Now I work a menial (but busy) job as a barista full time while enrolled in school. My schedule still sucks, the stress is there, and I am running around the same (if not more) than I used to. Big difference is that I am happy with where I am at (and where I am going) and my control/BG management is terrific.
Do what makes you happy and the rest will fall into place. Good luck!
One other thing to consider is that I think that there’s a considerable glut of lawyers in the marketplace these days? If you have seen “The Good Wife”, where they have 12 “associates” competing for a single permanent job is not beyond the pale these days.
I’m not an attorney but am an adjuster at an insurance company working files with (and against…) attorneys and there can be a huge amount of stress with things but it’s EXTREMELY interesting!! FWIW, it’s also very handy for maintaining a regular schedule for my BG control/ data collection purposes as I’m busy enough that leaving to go out to eat is not in the cards most days so I just woof a 1/2 sandwich and my desk and keep plugging away.
I’m a CPA in solo practice and I reduced my client load by 20% after I got T1 in my late fifties. You can probably do law - there are diabetic lawyers already - but you probably won’t be able to do the same grind that you might be able to do with working beta cells. I know that as hard as I try my A1c is probably .3 or .4 higher during tax season. The schedule and stress are real and they have consequences.
The question with diabetes isn’t - is X possible? It’s what reasonable accomodation can I make with my goals and expectations so that I do what I want and not do myself harm.
I feel the same way…Its not so much if I can but should I take that gamble?
Thanks…I have brought up my stress and anxiety to my endo so maybe I can get some help on how to control it.