Intro and a Little About Me

Well, where do I begin? I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes on Christmas Day in 2003, at the age of 28. A little strange to be hit with Type 1 at that age, but what can you do? Just when I thought I’d won the genetic lottery, Santa Claus gave me diabetes. (Santa Claus is your mom and dad.) To deal with the diagnosis, I wrote a song called "Santa Claus Gave Me Diabetes."


It’s not that I don’t take diabetes very seriously, it’s just that I often deal with the unfortunate by finding humor in it. (It’s a function of the equation C = T + t, or Comedy = Tragedy + time.) The look on the audience’s faces the first time I performed “Santa Gave Me Diabetes” was priceless. It has since brought people to tears of laughter and sadness.

My younger brother, Reeves, has had Type 1 for 20 years (he is now 25), so diabetes has been a way of life for my family and something we’ve always known about. I had been told as a 16-year-old that I had the “markers” in my blood and I was at a higher risk for diabetes than my older brother, Curt. By December of 2003, I had lost some weight and had the classic symptoms—always thirsty, frequent urination, etc.—so I checked my blood sugar on my brother’s meter and there it was: 240 mg/dl. I knew then it had happened.

Since the diagnosis, I have to say my life has changed. I’ve become ridiculously aware of every single thing that goes into my body. It’s a constant struggle to manage the disease, and it’s one that will simply never go away. It takes an attitude adjustment, a lifestyle change, and a whole team of friends and doctors (if you’re lucky and have health insurance).

More on that in the future.

Learn more about the health and medical experts who who provide you with the cutting-edge resources, tools, news, and more on Diabetes Self-Management.
About Our Experts >>

  • jblee

    I have been a type 1 diabetic for 35 yrs now. Its always a challenge and struggle to control and understand it. My last A1C was 6.5, but I’m hoping to improve that.
    I am really concerned about keeping health insurance. I work for a major retailer who provides it now but the other day, I was perusing the part time health insurance. Because my wife and I wish to travel with a spiritual ministry part time in the future. Scratch that idea, the part timers insurance program covers a maximum yearly coverage of 600 unless you stay overnight in the hospital then they pay 80% of covered expenses. This isn’t worth having!!! The real irony is that it costs 100/ month so for 1200/year one gets 600 in coverage. I understand that insurance companies are in business to make money, but at least they can offer a worthwhile package. I guess my only option is to be self insured and hope for the best.

  • AprilZ

    Where can I hear “Santa Claus Gave Me Diabetes”?

  • stuckey

    Try itunes and search Stuckey and Murray.

  • Laura Smalley

    I was diagnosed with my diabetes when I was 19 I am now only 22 years old, I was originally diagnosed with type two diabetes and told to control it with only diet and I would be ok. At the time I had NO HEALTH INSURANCE. Three months later I found myself almost dead in DKA in the ICU at the local hospital.

    Here it is years later and I was only this past year told I had type one diabetes, I have been on insulin for 3 years though, and no doctor can figure out what to do. I take an insane amount of insulin for my wieght and I still have regular (everyday) a reading of 300 or more, I have managed to get my A1C down from an 11.6 to a 10.3 I have a long way to go.

    I am afraid for my life, diabetes scares me, I have lost two relitives including my mother to this disease, and I am no afraid that the doctors aren’t going to be able to help me. I need an insulin pump and even that scares me. I pray for a cure soon!