It's happened again.
But this time diabetes hasn't just claimed ONE life. It's claimed FIVE.
Today was a crazy day. Work. Very grumpy four year old. Left my phone at work and had to go back and get it. Highway closed down. Errands to run. Didn't get home until 8 pm.
I log on to Facebook and I see the blue candles.
I know instantly what that means.
It means loss. Heartbreak. Sadness. Anxiety. Fear.
Tonight I read that a 24 year old Australian woman has passed away from DKA. And a 27 year old mother of two. And a 16 year old boy. And a 9 year old girl who succumbed to depression and took her own life. And an 18 month old who was misdiagnosed.
And I realize how quickly we fall into that false sense of security.
It's not that we don't worry about it. Oh, we do.
It's just that seeing those blue candles... it reminds us that our fears are not unfounded.
And it forces us to face the TRUTH about this disease.
Because the truth is... People die from diabetes every day. People of all ages.
The truth is... Just because my child grows up, turns 18, gets married, has a family of her own - does not mean that I won't still worry about her and her health.
The truth is... I can no longer take for granted that my child will live a long and healthy life.
The truth is... Diabetes did change our lives forever. Not just for a short time and then it will go back to normal. There is no going back to "before".
The truth is... It doesn't matter if your child is 4, 14, 24, or 54 - losing a child is the most horrific thing I can imagine.
The truth is... No matter how hard we try and how carefully we attempt to manage this disease, we can't control it.
The truth is... Bad things happen.
The truth is... Many of us suffer from depression.
The truth is... I can't ever take a break or let my guard down. Not ever.
The truth is... Pumps and cgms and other "fancy" equipment help... but they're not perfect.
The truth is... Seeing those candles brings us face to face with our biggest fear.
The truth is... I won't sleep much tonight.
The truth is... We can't let any of these things hold us back.
Tonight... I am so overwhelmed with sadness and grief for people I've never met. Because I know it could be me.
Tonight I will feel sick. Tonight I will cry. Tonight I will light my candle.
And tomorrow.... Tomorrow I have to find a way through this. A way through the sadness, the pain, the anxiety, the fear.
Because I owe it to my daughter, to those who are still fighting, and to those who have lost their battle - to never give up.
Because the truth is... We need a CURE. And we need it NOW.