I am Faiza Tahir. My journey with type 1 diabetes started in 2016 when I was 15 years old. There was no family history, no pre-existing infections, and my lifestyle was not unhealthy. I remember experiencing initial symptoms such as increased thirst, excessive urination, weight loss, dizziness, nausea, and vomiting. My parents were worried about my condition, and I didn’t know what was happening to me. I was given antibiotics, but my symptoms did not improve. Then, one night in April 2016, I started vomiting and became severely dehydrated, so my parents took me to the hospital. The doctors put me on a glucose drip 😣, and I fainted. Here’s to my misdiagnosis history 🙂

Subsequently, the doctor told the nurse to check my blood glucose levels and the first reading they obtained was around 650 mg/dl !
Given my critical condition, the doctors were not very hopeful. They diagnosed me with diabetes and started my insulin regime. At that time, I was in class 10. Two weeks later, I started going to school again, although physically weak. But regardless of initial difficulties, I managed to pass matriculation by the grace of Allah. I remember being afraid to eat chocolates or anything sweet in front of someone at school, fearing that my classmates wouldn’t understand or criticize me and that I could still love and eat chocolates while having diabetes. Back then, I only knew that I had diabetes without any knowledge of the different types and other related management strategies and knowledge.

After enrollment, I wanted to pursue an F.Sc pre-engineering, but my parents initially felt it would be difficult for me while living with this health condition. However, I convinced them, and they eventually agreed. When I started college, I told my friends not to disclose my diabetes to anyone and they agreed. Maybe I was afraid of being judged, stigmatized, and labeled as different from my peers.
I kept myself normal in front of others during those two years, despite the fact that there were difficult and dark times as well. At times I even thought if I was still the same person; doubted my self-worth and existence but I never gave up. After three years, I switched to a new doctor who told me I had type 1 diabetes. He motivated me and said, “Faiza, you are as normal as anyone else and can lead a fulfilling life.”

After fighting life’s difficulties, I finally graduated. I struggled a lot in those 6-7 years of my life, and I experienced both moments of weakness and strength. My purpose in life is to serve humanity, and my inspiration is Dr. Sana Ajmal, the CEO of Meethi Zindagi. Before joining Meethi Zindagi, I used to wonder, why me? But now, I realize that I am not alone in facing this challenge. I am certain that many other peers of my age are with me on the same page…

Whenever I feel sad, my family motivates me. My parents have been very supportive, helping me become independent and always trusting me. And when I am worried, I turn to Allah Almighty through prayer and the Quran, seeking patience. The process always brings me a sense of relief. If I ever see my parents upset because of me, I remind them that it’s just a test, and I must bear it patiently. I believe Allah must have planned well for me, and that serves as a great motivation for me.

I’m not defined by my diagnosis; I’m just like everyone else, facing just a few extra struggles.
This doesn’t make me weak; it makes me a fighter.
At first, it felt impossible but progressively it was just hard.
then it became bearable.
Eventually, it’s just a lifestyle.
I’m not my “diagnosis history” or the condition I’m living with.
I am more than that, I am an individual person with aims and inspirations. And no condition alone can define me.

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