I am overwhelmed.
It doesn't happen often, but right now, at this very minute I am feeling absolutely overwhelmed and it's all because I was given one simple task:
Share what it's like for you or your loved one to live with Type 1 Diabetes.
Having diabetes is hard. Ask anyone who has diabetes and they'll tell you having to constantly watch what you eat and measure every carbohydrate you consume is a pain. Pricking you finger multiple times a day and taking shots throughout the day so you don't die isn't a great way to live, but at least it gives them a chance to live...so they do it. But let me tell you about something equally hard, being the parent of a person with Type 1 Diabetes.
When I held my daughter and looked into her beautiful face the first time I felt a love so strong and fierce that I knew instantly I would do anything to protect and nurture her. I imagined her first words, her first steps, her first day of school, her first dance, her first time falling in love, college, marriage, having children of her own. I never in my worse nightmare imagined her losing her eyesight, having a heart attack, watching her as she lay in a coma, having seizures, having her internal organs become damaged so severely that she couldn't eat, or pee,or have a bowel movement without medical intervention. I never thought the "fun years" of her life when she should be moving out of our home and into a college dorm would actually be spent laying in a hospital bed fighting for her life. I never, EVER imagined my 22 year old daughter sitting me down and telling me what music she wanted played at her funeral, or if she wanted to be buried or cremated.
That's why I'm going to participate in the 2013 Ride to Cure, because it's something I CAN do to help her and millions of others whose lives have been disrupted by this monster we call Diabetes. I want to feel the physical pain of training, I'll use it as a reminder of the pain she feels every day. I want the sweat to drip off me because it reminds me of the sweat that drips off the diabetic child when their blood sugar reaches dangerously low levels. I want feel the burn in my legs because it's a reminder of the burning sensation they feel when they have insulin injected into their body. I want to feel angry and overwhelmed when my body doesn't want to ride one more mile because my daughter feels angry and overwhelmed when her blood sugars are high and won't come down.
I'm suppose to share what it's like for our family but how do I find the words to express what I feel as I sit next to my comatose daughter doing nothing more than holding her hand, staring at her face, pleading with God to let her get better and offering my life in exchange for hers? How can I make people feel the shock we felt when we were told her body was resistant to the insulin needed to keep her alive? How can I make them understand what it's like to be told your daughter will die without a pancreas transplant or the frenzied feeling I had as I called hospital after hospital who did these transplants and was told by every one of them that she didn't fit the criteria to be placed on their transplant waiting list because she was too sick? How do I relay the feeling of being told by our insurance company that even when we get her "well" enough to receive a transplant they won't pay for the surgery because they've deemed it "experimental"?
How do I communicate the experience of being told diabetes has caused such severe neuropathies to your child's internal organs that her body no longer is able to absorb the nutrients in the food she eats, or what it's like to have your daughter tell you her heart feels like it's going to explode because it's beating so fast? How do I make them understand what it's like to watch your healthy, robust child become a walking skeleton of only 93 pounds?
How can I possibly make people understand what it's like to have your grandchild cling to you crying as the paramedics load her mother into an ambulance, or trying to find the right words when this precious child ask if her mommy is going to die?
How do I make people feel what it's like to sit in a dark room sobbing in despair at the thought of losing the person who makes my life worth living?
There are simply no words.
So instead I'm going to ask my friends and family to click on the DONATE button at the top of this page and make a donation to my Ride to a Cure page. $1, $5, $100, $1,000...as much as you can give, every single dollar helps me reach my goal. I've listed $2000 as my goal but if I'm being truthful I have to tell you that's not what I want to raise...I want to raise $50,000. I want to make a difference not only for Brandi but for the diabetic children of my friends and people I've never met. I want to help wipe this disease off our planet and have it only remembered in history books.
Please help me make a difference and then share this page with all of your friends, and ask them to share it with all of their friends. Help me get the word out, help me get Brandi's story out.
Help me make a difference.
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Kurt & Cindy Boehm
Mark, Lynda, Nate
Mary & MaryMike Kern
Miss Brandi N Moder
Mr. and Mrs. Josh Gant
Mrs Elizabeth Gordon
Mrs. Cathy McConkey
Mrs. Elizabeth Gordon
Mrs. Jeanette Collier
Mrs. Lisa Green
Mrs. Tanya Moder
Ms. Amanda Dawn Turner
Ms. Elma Nezic
The Gast Family