After a four-day trek, with high altitude playing havoc with her blood glucose levels, Jess's dream of completing the Machu Picchu's Inca trail came true.
I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes 17 years ago so have basically lived with the condition nearly the entirety of my life, however it was my aim to never let it stop me from doing what I wanted to do in life.
I decided after finishing my degree at university that I wanted to go travelling around South America for just under three months, have an action packed trip of a life time.
I made the decision to come off my insulin pump for the duration of the trip due to the remoteness of some of the areas I was travelling to, and also the risks of mechanical failure, it just seemed like the right decision for me.
I also had the task of keeping my insulin at the correct temperatures with no fridge to store it in.
My mum and I came up with the fantastic idea of Frio packs, which meant as long as I soaked the pack in water every 48 hours I could manage.
The trip itself was phenomenal, I saw landscapes and experienced culture that were breathtaking, exciting and exhilarating all at once.
One of my personal highlights was my completion of the Inca trail and seeing Machu Picchu in all its glory at the end of a long and hard four day trek.
The guide on the Inca trail had never had to send anyone back to the start point, and at one point at 4000m above sea level my blood sugars couldn't keep up with the constant uphill trekking, the altitude making it hard for me to drink/eat to raise my sugars. The guide suggested that I turn around and head back because of the inability to be airlifted out of the area if I did experience a more serious hypo. I was adamant that I would keep going and finally made it to camp three hours later than everyone else, tired but happy.
When I finally reached Machu Picchu , it was one of the proudest moments of my life, and really helped me understand that my diabetes does not control my life if I decide it won't. My guide also told me I was the first diabetic person he'd ever had do the Inca trail, which was another moment that made me feel very good inside!
I'd love to give other young people with diabetes the confidence that we are all very much capable of doing anything with our condition. My trip has helped me to understand that there are many exciting things in my future that I am able to do - and don't let anyone ever tell you otherwise!