Hello! In a few weeks I'll be taking part in JDRF's Walk to Cure Diabetes.
Type 1 diabetes is a devastating disease that affects millions of people, like me. I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes when I was 6 1/2 years old -- on my father's birthday. (I think it was his worst birthday ever!) Because I have diabetes, I test my blood sugar 8-10 times a day -- more when I am sick, very active, stressed or growing. Because my body doesn't make insulin, I have an insulin pump that I have to wear 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. I also wear a continuous glucose monitor every day to make sure that my blood sugar stays in range, so that my organs will stay healthy. I have to count the carbs in everything I eat, so that I get the right amount of insulin. Too much or too little can have a horrible result.
There is some good news, though. JDRF is working towards 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. I am very excited about the research they have done towards an artificial pancreas and encapsulation of beta cells. Either would give me a more normal life, where I don't have to be constantly testing my blood sugar and counting carbs before I eat. But research takes a lot of money and a lot of patience.
Last summer, I went to Washington, D.C. as a delegate from JDRF's Children's Congress. I met with each of the Senators from my state and my Representative and told them what life is like to be a kid with Type 1 Diabetes. I think they understood that my life isn't like most other kids. Every day brings a new set of issues, and I never get a break.
I hope to one day live a life without diabetes. Please help us raise money for more research to make a cure possible.