Wednesday Warrior: Mac Vollet

I’m pumped to announce this week’s Wednesday Warrior: Mac Vollet

Mac and I go way back. We first met in the nurse’s office on the first day of 6th grade when getting our insulin shot for lunch. I just became diabetic when I first met Mac and he made me feel like a normal kid with no specific condition. We instantly bonded and little did we know our daily lunch shots would lead to a 13-year friendship.

Mac doesn’t look at himself as any different when compared to someone without diabetes. He sees his life as normal and manages his diabetes on his own terms. He is currently working as a Police officer and engaged to his high school sweetheart (so sweet!). Our paths crossed just recently and I was so happy to hear he was on the Omnipod pump (we both have been on insulin shots majority of our lives)! His pumper helps to manage his blood sugars when he’s at work, so his diabetes doesn’t interfere with his line of duty.

Mac is someone that usually keeps his personal life with diabetes to himself, so I’m very thankful for him sharing his story with us. I love Mac’s outlook on his diagnosis and how he looks at it as a part of him, rather than a condition he acquired.

Mac, I’m very thankful to have you as a friend for all these years! I’m proud of you for never letting diabetes stop you from chasing your dreams and proud to be DIABETES BUDDIES FOR LIFE!

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Here is his story:

I was diagnosed on February 2000.

I’ve been living with diabetes for 18+ years.

I’m living in Northern Kentucky.

My current occupation is a Police Officer.

What type of diabetes do you have?

Type 1

How was your life before your diagnosis?

I was only 5 at the time, but I would say I was very active, and I played a lot of sports.

What were your first thoughts when you were diagnosed?

My first initial thoughts were:

Was I still going to be able to do everything everyone else my age was doing?

Was I still going to be able to play sports?

However, luckily since I was diagnosed at an early age, I didn’t allow diabetes to change this. 

Did you try to hide your diabetes?

I don’t mind if people ask me about my diabetes. A lot of people to this day don’t really understand the differences between type 1 and type 2.

Do you do anything else to manage your diabetes more effectively, such as exercise, diet, or other medications?

Obviously, medication is a given and without insulin, diabetics wouldn’t be able to survive. I’ve always enjoyed exercising, which is a good way to manage your diabetes, but challenging at the same time. Diet is another important aspect for me. I like to eat essentially the same types of food every week. This allows me to know how a specific food impacts my sugars.

With that being said, I don’t allow diabetes to control everything I eat- if I want something with a lot of sugar or whatever I’ll still eat it, just more insulin.

What are the hardest parts of being diabetic? (This can include job or everyday life)

Diabetes, in general, is a challenge. When I began my career as a Police officer, I knew it wasn’t logical for myself to continue using insulin shots (having to keep them cool, where to inject the shot due to all of my equipment, etc.). I started using the OmniPod pump about 2 years ago and it has helped.

With any pump, comes other problems. Where to wear it- I wear mine on the back of my arm (because of all my equipment). I sweat a lot, which has caused many pods to fall off.

However, I’ve recently discovered Colorless Tuf-Skin (used for taping ankles) which has helped tremendously.

Where do you get your support from?

I’ve always had a great support system in regard to my diabetes.

My fiancé is with me every day and is very helpful (she likes when my sugar’s low because I’m a lot more talkative, which is a pretty clear sign to her).

Growing up my family and friends were also very helpful. From a young age, I always taught my friends signs to look for in case something was to go wrong and that’s come in handy PLENTY of times. I recommend letting people who are close to you aware of the signs and things to look/help for.

Are you diabetic proud? Why or why not?

Honestly, I don’t look at myself any differently than a person without diabetes. That’s the mentality I’ve had growing up and what any person with diabetes should have. I don’t manage my diabetes perfectly, but how I manage it works well for me. (So, I guess I am haha)

What is a piece of advice for someone who was just diagnosed?

My advice for someone who is just diagnosed would be to take what the doctors give you and create your own routine. What works for Brooke, might not work for me, and vice versa. Not one diabetic is the same, so you need to create a routine that works for you. A doctor can help lead you toward this, but you need to figure out what works best for you. Improvise, adapt, and overcome.

What would you like someone who doesn’t have diabetes to know about your diabetes?

I can eat everything you can (just more insulin). A lot of people don’t understand this ? Along with understanding the differences between type 1 and type 2 because there is a difference.

 

If you would like to personally connect with Mac, please don’t hesitate to reach out! He would love to connect. 

You’re not in this war alone. We’re fighting this TOGETHER.