Hi Everyone! Just wanted to let everyone know about a big event I have coming up! Next Thursday, August 26th, I am chartering a bus that I am filling with 50 of my closest friends with diabetes and traveling from Taunton, MA to New York City to invade the Today Show on NBC with my blue flamingos! This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to make a HUGE impact on people and let everyone know about my campaign! I hope that by doing this, people will realize that diabetes is a REAL disease that effects so many of us, young and old, and I hope to encourage people from all over the country to get out and do something to help raise diabetes awareness just like me and my friends!
We can all come up with plenty of excuses not to test our blood sugar. For one, yeah, it stings a little (No pain, no gain, the angel on my shoulder whispers in my ear). For another, testing isn't convenient, no matter how quickly the meter works or how small it is. While seemingly everyone else is carelessly enjoying a meal or leaping into the swimming pool, you are on the sidelines trying to ignore your diabetes. And of course, sometimes, we just do not want to know what the number will be. It's easier to ignore the ugly truth than face it.
Last summer, I led thethird annual swim-run biathlon for the Barton Center for Diabetes Education, which hosts two Massachusetts camps for children with type 1-Camp Joslin for boys and Camp Clara Barton for girls. It was at Camp Joslin that I met a memorable eight-year-old boy who exemplifies what being a diabetes hero is all about. I'll call him "Adam."
I was in the parking lot of the mall, walking past wheelchair parking, when I noticed a man using the lift gate of his specially equipped van. There he was, lowering himself and his motorized wheelchair down to the ground all by himself. As I walked through the mall that day, I couldn't get the man in the wheelchair off my mind.
Hardly a day goes by that I am not asked a question related to diabetes. I'm a "heart on my sleeve" diabetic. Because one of my jobs, writing articles and guest blog posts, centers on the subject of diabetes, I'm known, in part, by my disease.
When I was undiagnosed and sick, I was very angry with God. I didn't understand why I was weak, fatigued, constantly thirsty and hungry, scarily thin, and mentally foggy. I prayed and prayed for an answer. I cried, I cursed, and I yelled. Nothing. For a year and a half. When I received my diagnosis in a local emergency room, I felt instant relief. Finally, I had an answer, a name, and some hope. But soon after, the anger reappeared, this time because God had failed to pass over me. I had done nothing to earn this fate. Why me?
My four-year-diabetes-diagnosis anniversary is almost here. It falls on March 24th, a day just like any other to most people, but a day full of sadness, loss, and victory for me. Will I celebrate? I'm not sure if reflection is a form of celebration. I'd much prefer a birthday-like affair featuring balloons, cards, and, of course, something sweet to eat. But I also feel as if the impending date is much like a funeral on the calendar, a time for mourning as well as reflection.
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