Friday, March 11, 2011
As I was sitting at the airport waiting to catch my plane to DC to attend JDRF’s Government Day(s), the woman sitting beside me and I started talking. When I told her where I was going and why, she said that her 12 year old son also has Type 1. We talked about their struggles with living in rural Texas and having Type 1 and we talked about athletics and how the level of activity affects his bg (blood glucose) numbers as well as other diabetes related issues. The one thing that really stuck with me was when she told me they weren’t really involved with JDRF or any other diabetes organizations because they did not want the disease to define their son.
The more I think about that statement the more I want The Cure! I thank God that everyone with diabetes does not feel that way, because if they did, JDRF would never have been formed, research would not have come so far in the management of diabetes and most certainly The Cure would be even farther away! But I do understand that not everyone is lucky enough to have the support of their friends and family, nor that everyone has the strength to deal with all of the misconceptions diabetes brings. All of those people already carrying the burden of living with Type 1 should not also have to worry about being defined by the disease they struggle to control 24/7.
Being an advocate for those living with Type 1 Diabetes, I am learning that it does not matter whether we are rich or poor, young or old, one person can make a difference! We all need to raise awareness of what it is like to live day in and day out with diabetes, not only for the person with Type 1, but all of their loved ones as well. For their parents, their siblings, their grandparents, their children, their aunts, their uncles, their cousins and their friends.
I boarded my plane with an increased need for more tools to enable me to help make a difference.