Dear Family and Friends,
As many of you know, one year ago, our lives were forever changed when Emma was hospitalized and diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes at age 8. She has been a brave and patient girl as she has learned all of the new information and daily activities that have come along with having this incurable (at least for now) disease. No child wants to prick her finger multiple times a day, worry about keeping up with supplies everywhere she goes, eat snacks even when she's not hungry, and the worst part is the shots! Those come several times a day. Thankfully, Emma was able to start using an insulin pump a couple of weeks ago, so no more shots every day, but the finger pricks and the worries are still there, along with the new fear of inserting a new infusion set every three days. That's the "button" that sticks onto her cute little belly with the canula that goes under her skin to deliver the insulin from the pump. She still gets to be a kid, it just takes a little more thought and preparation than it would for someone without T1D. Blood sugar checks before and after playing hard must be done, snacks eaten or lots of water, depending on those numbers. Bedtime has a whole new routine outside of brushing teeth and getting PJ's on. Sleepovers away from home don't happen, yet. Birthday cupcakes at school for friends require an added trip to the nurse's office. Supplies are vital and we can tell you from experience, forgetting even one small part of that equation when you leave home is not fun! We are now on a first name basis with the pharmacy and I have become expert at calling in prescriptions.
No one in Emma's family is diabetic, so it has definitely been a learning process for all of us. As a mother, I have learned to live with that nagging sense of worry that we usually get if our child has a high fever for a day or so, except it is with me all the time. The diabetes doesn't go away, neither does the worry. We have been extremely blessed not to have had any major emergencies since her initial diagnosis and hospitalization. She goes to the specialist every three months and we do our best at home to care for her and help her continue learning how to care for herslef. She continues to amaze me with her acceptance of this most inconvenient intruder to her little body.
We will be walking, Emma included, in Atlanta on the morning of October 19th, 2013 in the Walk For The Cure in support of Type 1 Diabetes research. Please join us in this fight by donating, sharing our page with your own friends and family, or by showing up to walk with us.
Thank you so much for your participation!
Marisa Tils (Captain)
Team Emma's Grace
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