ER nurse deals with Type 1 diabetes and goes back to school

Three full-time jobs: It’s how Shannon Dayton describes her life as an ER nurse, a…

Three full-time jobs: It’s how Shannon Dayton describes her life as an ER nurse, a nurse practitioner student and a Type 1 diabetic.

DRIPPING SPRINGS, Texas — For those with risk factors for COVID-19, it can add extra stress to their day-to-day lives.

During most of her time off, Shannon Dayton is doing schoolwork to become a nurse practitioner.

“I wish it was decompressing, but I spend most of my time studying,” she said. 

She calls it her second full-time job, on top of being an ER nurse. But if you ask her, there’s another part, a third full-time job, that makes things even more difficult.

“It’s managing three full-time jobs really if you think about it,” she explained. “Type 1 diabetes is a full-time job and school is a full-time job, then being an ER nurse is a full-time job obviously, that I get paid for.”

Especially with coronavirus, finding the time to take care of herself is harder.

“When I’m working, it’s nonstop running and standing up and moving,” she said. “I’ll just go, go, go, work, work, work. I’m like a robot.”  

Type 1 diabetes means her body doesn’t make insulin, so she has to inject it herself. It also means she is at a higher risk for COVID-19. Between a monitor and an insulin pump, she is able to mostly forget about it and keep up with her studies and work.

“I got a lot going on, but I have things that help me out and help me manage,” she said. “So ultimately the goal is to take care of yourself now, so you have a good future.”

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