Hello! This year, I'll be taking part in JDRF's Walk to Cure Diabetes, along with one-half million other walkers across the country, as we try to reach our goal of raising $89 million.
Type 1, or juvenile diabetes, is a devastating disease that affects millions of people, a large and growing percentage of them children.
There is some good news, though. JDRF is our best hope for finding a cure. It funds more type 1 diabetes research than any other charity worldwide and it's making progress along many promising paths toward better treatments and a cure.
Now, more than ever, you can make a crucial difference. Won't you please give to JDRF as generously as possible? Together, we can make the cure a reality!
In 2010, I received an email about donating to Team Brooke. I gave something small, and received the best thank you letter ever back from Brooke. It was hanging above my computer all year during my senior year of college.
Two months after I donated the first time to Juvenile Diabetes, I received a phone call from my mom and didn't answer because I was going in to take a final. She texted me and said call me as soon as possible. I knew something wasn't right. I called right away, and heard my mom crying and telling me they were at the hospital and Karen (my youngest sister) had been diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. My heart stopped- I didn't really know what that meant- I didn't know if I should come home- I was stunned. My mom told me they had a urine test at the doctor's office and they immediately sent them to the hospital. Karen's sugar was so high it didn't even register and their machines go up somewhere around 500-600.
If any of you have met Karen you know how much of a spit fire that girl is. When I finally talked to her she said she knew she had diabetes- because she googled the symptoms she was having. It took a lot of getting used to- shots, finger pricks, carb counting. If anyone knows me you know I am terrified of needles- I hate shots- I actually pass out. The first time I gave Karen a shot she laughed at me (I had to sit down and not look at the 2 mm needle), I cried and so did my mom. It is crazy to think that if I didn't give her that shot she could be back in the hospital.
Karen was on the shot for awhile, and then her amazing nurse Martha told us about the insulin pump. She has been on the pump since about February/March of 2011 and it seems to have made life easier- if that is possible. She plays softball, so the ump always stops the game to tell the Coach to tell number 19 to take off her phone from her hip. She hikes up her shirt to show him its an insulin pump with quite the attitude. She wears it during dance class, but it is removed for performances. It is hard to hide under a costume!
Now, Karen has been living with diabetes for about two years. She is in seventh grade, and she is kind of over having diabetes. She hates the pump, she is annoyed she cannot eat candy whenever she wants, and she just wants to be done with it. This past Easter Karen asked my mom for an Itunes gift card for Easter, and I was quick to remind her you do not get presents on Easter and that is not what it is about. She was quick to remind me that I received candy on Easter and could eat it all, however, she cannot have a basket full of candy. That is a perfect example of a foot in mouth moment.
Karen is resilient- and so is my family. This is not something that only effects Karen, but everyone around her. I am so happy that JDRF is doing so much to research diabetes, and I hope one day Karen will never have to lift her shirt at an umpire again.
i have decided to add to the story as the years pass. Karen is now in 8th grade and is still as feisty as ever! She dances and cheers (following in both big sisters footsteps- proud sister moment), maintains good grades, fights with Laura and my mom, and looks forward to High School. Last year I said she was sort of over diabetes. This year she is for sure over diabetes- which is why I am continuing to walk and support JDRF in anyway I can. I hope that you can also find it in your heart to support Karen's fight and many others living with T1D.
My goal for this year is to walk along with Team Brooke and all of her supporters. I have set a goal of $150.00, which will assist team Brooke in reaching their team goal. The cure is so close, and any amount of help you can give is so greatly appreciated. Type 1- Type NONE!
Thank you for your continued support!
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