Oh my goodness Abyssinian! Unless my parents didn't tell me something that my doctor told them, I never was told the "won't reach 30" story (I was 7 years old at the time, 37 now). Now that I am a parent myself, I can only imagine how disconcerting and heartbreaking that would be for a parent to hear. I'm sure glad it didn't hold true.
I don't remember the exact date of my diagnosis, nor do I remember the day I came home. All I remember was that I was at a flea market with my mother (a Registered Nurse herself) and kept needing the bathroom, and eventually she took me to the pediatrician. Apparently I was losing weight at the time, too, as I was told later.
I was just getting over the Chicken Pox at the time, so I had my own room 'upstairs' rather than a shared room in the pediatric ward, at least long enough until I advanced to the section of the hospital with the other kids. The nurses upstairs loved me, 'cause I was a youthful child that disrupted their normal roster of cranky old patients.
Going home (I was a bit of a science enthusiast) I thought it was cool to do urine tests, playing with test tubes and dropping in a tablet that made it fizz up like a mad scientist. That novelty wore off quickly, though. As did the other "novelty", I remember my mother chasing me around with an insulin syringe, eventually tackling me and holding me down to give the injection. It was just one shot per day at the time.
But my doctor, Dr. Max Salas, at St. Peter's Medical Center in New Brunswick, NJ was enthusiastic and entirely dedicated to treating and conquering diabetes. (I say his name because of the praise I have for him). He always wore a pin on his lab-coat with the word "DIABETES" in bold, black letters, with a red circle and slash through it. From what I can find on the web, he's still practicing. First impressions really last, it's a shame your first doctor wasn't so optimistic. But you've got a good attitude towards it now, and I'm glad everything seems to be working well (except for that darn pancreas!) for you now.