In a few weeks, I will pass the 20th anniversary of the day I was diagnosed with Type I Diabetes (now often called T1D). Major milestones generally cause us to reflect on the time that has passed, and this one is no different. But in lieu of either my usual long narratives or global statistics to support my fundraising efforts, I have some personal numbers to share with you about the events of the past 20 years.
Those 20 years have seen approximately 43,830 finger pricks, to test my blood sugar.
1642 injections in the days before I started wearing an insulin pump in March, 1994.
I have been attached to a pump for over 162,060 hours since that day.
I have “changed my pump” over 2252 times. That number means the times that I have removed a tube from my body, filled a new one with insulin, inserted one end of the tube into the body of the pump itself, and used a needle to insert the other end into a new spot on my own body.
More than 2557 vials of insulin have been depleted in this way, keeping me alive.
I have visited an endocrinologist’s office over 80 times.
And this is the 20th fundraising letter my parents or Ihave written to raise money for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation’s(JDRF) annual walk, now known as the JDRF One Walk.
Those are high numbers, and I’m tired of them. In my work as a social worker and a children’s therapist, we spend a lot of time naming emotions, and I know well that “Over It” is not an emotion. But neither “Frustrated,”nor “Emotionally Exhausted” quite explain how I feel; I feel, simply, Over It.
What I want is to be finished with this disease. What I do not want is to still need to be writing these letters in another 20 years.
But for that wish to be a reality, I need a lot of help. Many of you have provided your support, emotionally and financially, over the years, and I don’t like asking for more. But I do need it. So please, join me in my fight against diabetes, and donate anything you can.
This year the JDRF One Walk is being held on Sunday, October 26 at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and my family will be there regardless of the weather. Registration begins at 8 and the actual Walking kicks off at 10 am.
The past 20 years have given me many reasons to be proud, and even more reasons to be grateful. So please allow me to thank you all for your continued support, from the past, present, or future. It means a lot to all of us in the Harmelin family, and we continue to rely upon it.