In 2011, my husband and I ran the Twin Cities Marathon together. Jack, a Type 1 Diabetic, wore a shirt that said “Diabetes: Run with It.” Along the way we met other people who were also running with diabetes. We would run with them for short periods and they would share stories about some of the difficulties of training with diabetes or how running improved their A1Cs. I finished the race feeling so proud of what my husband and the other diabetics accomplished that day and amazed by the sense of community that we felt from strangers along the way.
I got to experience some of that same pride and sense of community when Jack and I visited Camp Needlepoint in August. Diabetes can sometimes make a person feel lonely. Camp Needlepoint allows kids who are living with diabetes to be part of a community of other people who know what they are going through. Jack and I sat down at the dinner table with some of the Counselors-in-Training and I watched as he was swallowed up in a community of young people with diabetes. They quizzed him about how many carbs were in his pizza, asked him what his last A1C was, and told him where he could buy a skin for his pump to make it ‘cooler’. After dinner we watched as the campers sang songs about diabetes and cheered each other on as they announced accomplishments like trying a new insulin pump infusion set location or giving themselves a shot for the first time.
I volunteer and support the Gala because diabetes is something that I see the effects of every day and I wanted to help. However, after visiting camp I now have a better understanding of how I want to help. I support the Gala because I want everyone living with diabetes to feel part of a community. I want children to be able to go to Camp Needlepoint and I want adults to be able to turn to the ADA for information and support. I want people with diabetes to feel proud of what they accomplish every day because I think that making the decisions for a healthy life really is something to be proud of.
Act on Diabetes Now Gala
Saturday, May 4, 2013
Treasure Island Resort & Casino