Team Captain
Jessica Ducharme
Jessica Ducharme
Team Members
JDRF One Walk, Twin Cities 2023


On Nov 7, 2022 our lives changed forever. 

At a normal well-child check, a few days after our daughter had the flu, I told our pediatrician that I wanted my daughter to have her blood tested due to the fact that she was always thirsty, never full and losing weight.  Little did I know that request would save her life.  

A few hours later, I received a late evening call from our pediatrician stating that our daughter had Type 1 diabetes.  I told her she needed to run the tests again and that it had to be wrong because no one on either side of the family had Type 1 diabetes.  After explaining that her A1C level was >15 (the chart doesn't go any higher), her glucose level was 535 and a plethora of other scary results, we rushed our daughter to Children’s hospital.  Scared.  Uncertain. And full of questions.

The next few days were a whirlwind.  We were surrounded by the most amazing care team we could ask for at Children’s, but our heads were spinning with information overload.  All my brain processed was high levels will kill her, low levels will kill her.  Control is a science and an art.......with no guarantees. 

Like many, I had no idea what the difference was between Type 1 diabetes and Type 2.  Type 2 can often be controlled with diet and lifestyle.  But when you have T1 diabetes (T1D), your body stops producing insulin—a hormone essential to turning food into energy. Managing the disease is a constant struggle that involves continuously monitoring your blood-sugar level via finger pricks and/or CGM devices, administering insulin before eating any meal, snack, treat, carefully balancing doses with eating and activity and for us it also involves a different insulin type to be administered before bedtime.  Even with a strict regimen, people with T1D may still experience dangerously high or low blood-glucose levels that can, in extreme cases, be life threatening.

With T1D there are no days off and there is no cure. But there is hope. We know God won’t put more on us (and our daughter) than we/she can handle.  As challenging as this disease is, we try to focus on the positive and try to figure out a way to make light in the battle.  We believe everything happens for a reason and I’m quite certain our daughter is going to make a positive impact in a big way toward raising awareness and finding a cure in her lifetime.

That’s why we started GiGi’s Team and why we are participating in the 2023 JRDF One Walk Twin Cities event this year.  We want to raise awareness, raise support and raise funds to find a cure.

We hope you will join our team or donate to our fundraising goal!  Your support is greatly appreciated!

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JDRF One Walk, Twin Cities 2023

Your support will help fund life-changing research and create a world without type 1 diabetes (T1D).