Tuesday, June 18, 2013

When She's Older...

This morning I had the pleasure of going to the JDRF breakfast for the Ride to Cure, as I am the adult ambassador this year.  It was an early start to the day at 7:45 a.m at the Hilton, but totally worth getting up for.   I was speaking at this event followed by the teen ambassador who is an avid soccer player. He talked about his diagnosis and how he faithfully stuck with his soccer career despite the aggravation that diabetes can bring about.

After the plates were cleaned off and the speeches were finished I stood around a bit to get to know some of the people that were in attendance.  One thing I have learned is that everyone has an awesome story to tell. The average business man has a great story about his hiking trips in B.C and the older women in the back has some awesome words of wisdom to share.  All we have to do is take the time to listen and get to know the people around us.

One mother of a diabetic girl came up to me to tell me how much of an inspiration I am.  First of all, to hear those words really touch my heart.  Living with diabetes daily, doing what I do, it's hard to imagine the inspiration within it, yet when parents, diabetics and friends give me compliments and encouraging words, I take them for everything they are.

The mother explained to me that when her daughter was diagnosed she was upset that she could possibly not live to her full potential.  She as her mother, loved kayaking and hiking and was worried that if her daughter had similar interested as her, she would never get to really be wild, free and have fun.  She told me that she loved seeing and hearing me speak because it gave her that light again that reminded her that her daughter could do whatever she wanted to do.

She was worried about when she was older, she worried about going to the bars and other young adult activities, but she knew that it wasn't impossible for her daughter to be just like the crowd, that sticking out wasn't going to be because of her diabetes, but because she is unique. It's that wonderful.


  1. That was something I could never understand. Thinking a diabetic could not do anything they wanted to simply because they were a diabetic. I never thought that, not once. I did things back in the late 1960's and the 1970's that a lot of diabetic children don't. I spent the night at friends house. I didn't have a glucose monitor. All I had was my urine sugar testing things. I wasn't afraid of having an insulin reaction (hypo/low glucose) because I knew how to take care of myself. I was in the marching band. I was in several all-school plays. I had a job when I was 13. I went horse back riding with my best friend. I didn't look at my having diabetes as anything different. I just had to watch what I ate and have stupid shots. Nobody treated me differently. I wasn't special.

  2. I remember being so scared when I was first diagnosed at the age of eleven: I can't grow up to be normal; I can't have my mom's cookies (can you say "stigma"?) ... But now it's a part of me and always will be. And no matter what the future holds, I wouldn't change the here and now for anything.

  3. Emily, I don't recall being scared of my diagnosis since I was diagnosed at the age of 5. I hated the shots. I was allowed to have cookies, cakes and all the other stuff. I had wonderful doctors who taught my parents how to incorporate everything into my diet. In the 1960's, we counted calories by proteins, fruits, vegetables, fats, dairy and carbohydrates. So I was never "deprived" like a lot of diabetic children were.