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Battle With Diabetes
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Kidney Failure
     I dealt with my Diabetes well as a child.  There were a couple of years where I had to readjust my insulin quite often due to grown spurts, but I went through that period without any major problems.  In 1990, I was diagnosed with high blood pressure and put on medication.  By 1991, after over 20 years, the disease was taking its toll on me.  In June 1991, just before I started my first job out of college (that was in my profession), I developed Diabetic Retinopathy and a detached retina in my right eye.  My high blood pressure was controlled by medication but may have contributed to the retinopathy.  I went bungee jumping the week before I noticing blood in my vision.  The bungee jump may have contributed to the detached retina.  I was blind in my right eye two weeks after I first noticed the problem.  I saw a specialist who said I needed surgery as soon as possible.  The following Monday I started my new job.  That week I went through training for my job while only being able to see out of one eye.  I had invasive surgery that same Friday, which corrected the problem.  I went back to work the following Monday.

     About a month after I recovered from eye surgery, I joined the local gym and made sure I never missed a day.  I kept in good shape, but still ended up with Diabetic Retinopathy in the other eye (left eye).  I went blind in that eye in September of 1992, one month before my oldest sister’s wedding day.  I had surgery and had the problem corrected, thanks again to Dr. Prensky from PA Retina Specialists, the best eye surgeon around.  I became so involved with fitness after that, that I became a certified aerobics instructor the following year.  I was certified from 1993 to 1997 through the American Council on Exercise.

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