I was 16 years old. 99 pounds. Emaciated. Sick.
I didn't know what was wrong with me.
I woke up multiple times every night, having to pee. I was constantly thirsty and nothing could quench my thirst.
I felt like I was dying.
My parents just told me "you're just growing."
But I physically wasn't. My growth was stunted. I hadn't gone through puberty.
Two weeks later, after visiting my doctor:
In the car with my mom, she receives a phone call from my doctor. I remember her face as she looked over at me. It was sheer concern and fear. Sorrowful and apologetic. I knew what was happening. I had known it for a while. She hung up the phone and told me we have to go to the hospital.
Next thing I know, I'm in the children's hospital bed with a team of doctors around me. They all introduce themselves. I don't remember their names. They were kind. I didn't know how much my life would change. But it did. It changed forever.
I didn't want to accept it. I remember going out for ice cream with my friends a few days after my diagnosis. I was terrified to tell them about this new chapter of my life. When I did, they didn't really understand. I don't know what I was expecting, telling them, but it definitely wasn't pity or anything like that. I think I just wanted a hug.
I quickly realized how different I was than everyone else. I had just graduated high school and was about to start college (CEGEP in Quebec). I ate my lunches in a bathroom stall because I was scared to test my blood sugar and inject myself with insulin in front of other people. If I couldn't do that, I'd just let my sugar levels get out of control.
I recognized how the world wasn't built for people like me. I could see the demarcation between pre-diabetes and post-diabetes life. I felt broken. I felt invisible.
I put all of my energy into my Youtube channel (FuriousEggs for the curious). I made dumb videos. I built cameras and camera rigs. It was the outlet to my frustration with a world that kept going while I was trying to survive.
That obsession with early Youtube became an obsession with cinema and led me to where I am today.
This company, Type 1 Films, is an attempt to create a space where others can have a safe outlet for their work while also managing their disability or illness, because making work as a disabled filmmaker is radically different than making work as an able-bodied filmmaker. It's an industry, and a world, that isn't made for us. But Type 1 is (or tries to be.)