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A Spoonful of Sugar: An Interview with a T1 Mary Poppins

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

A spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down....

Well, unless the medicine is insulin and then you will need to bolus for it!

Mary Poppins is a musical that I loved as a child and still love to this day.  I first saw the show as young child.  It happened to be just at the time that my aunt and babysitter would be leaving and I would be starting school.  I sobbed and sobbed thinking she would go off into the sky with her umbrella!

This show has always been a favorite of mine so I was thrilled to hear that Mary Poppins would be coming to our own local theatre!

But wait... It gets better!

Mary Poppins herself has Type 1 Diabetes!

Ok, so maybe not Mary Poppins but the extraordinarily talented actress, Madeline Trumble, who plays Mary Poppins does.

She was kind enough to be interviewed by my own little Type 1 Reporter who loves musicals and thought that a actress with diabetes... JUST LIKE HER... was about the coolest thing EVER.

Sweets came up these questions all on her own.  And Madeline was so sweet to answer!

Sweets:   How old were you when you got diabetes?  Were you in the hospital?  Was it scary?
Madeline Trumble:    I found out I had diabetes on the first day of Kindergarten. I was a month away from being five. I didn't need to be hospitalized when I was diagnosed. I got really lucky! 

Sweets:     Do you have a pump or a cgm?  What kind?  I have an Omnipod and a Dexcom I call Dexie.

MT:     I have a medtronic pump. I had the same pump for years and years and then last year, I got a new one! I went from blue to purple! It was a big change for me. 
Sweets:   Do you have any friends with type 1?  Are you the only one in your family with type 1?

MT:       I'm the only person in my family with Type 1. And I don't have any friends with Type 1. I kind of am on my own figuring it out... 
(When I read this to Sweets her immediate response was "Well... she does now!")

Sweets:      What happens if you are low on stage?  Do you keep a meter and juice close by?

MT: I've gotten pretty lucky and have never been too low on stage. But I also don't have a lot of time to test my blood sugar or drink juice, so I have to be really careful in the moments I do have. I have to eat good carbs before the show and at intermission. There are juice boxes on either side of the stage, and the whole cast and crew know I have diabetes, so there's always someone to help hand me a juice box if I need it. 

Sweets:     Do you test your blood sugar a lot?

MT: I've been testing a lot more since I've started the show. I have to be really careful, because the show is too hard on my body even when I have good blood sugar. 

Sweets:      What happens if you get sick (she means diabetes sick - not "real people" sick) when you are traveling?  Do you have a special doctor you go to?
MT: I don't have a doctor on the road. I have a doctor at home that I correspond with. But I've had diabetes for almost 20 years, so I know all the inns and outs and am pretty good at monitoring by myself. 

Sweets:     Was it hard to become a singer and actor with diabetes?

MT: No! I've had diabetes for so long, I don't remember life without it. Diabetes has always been a part of me and just something different about me. It can definitely be hard at times and make me sad that I have to deal with something no one else in my life has to deal with. But it's never gotten in the way of anything I've wanted to do. Diabetes makes us more special- because it makes us work harder. It has never held me back and I'm really proud to say that. 

A big THANK YOU to Madeline for answering all of Sweetpea's questions and for being such a wonderful role model!

If you would like information on the show and to see if it's coming to your area, click HERE.

If you live in the Dayton/Cincinnati Ohio area and would like information on the show and getting tickets, click HERE.

And stay tuned...  Sweets gets to meet Madeline IN PERSON on Thursday and we are seeing the show Friday night.  I'm sure we will have lots to share!



  1. I love the part about "D" making PWDs work harder. That is what is so darn inspiring...yet makes me a bit sad too. Must be in the Joe is in The Wizard Of Oz. Just blogged about opening night. xo

  2. :) We are going to see the show on Friday too! Not sure if we are going to make the meet and greet on Thursday though.

    1. Oh, we'll be the ones managing our T1 daughter at her soccer game via cell. Silly rescheduled game!

  3. Cute! I can imagine her asking the questions :)

  4. Mary was here in our town too (Dallas, Texas) and there was a write up in our paper about her. It was amazing time though, because my daughter was diagnosed just a month ago with type one diabetes right in the middle of her own rehearsal schedule for The King and I. She is six years old and had the part of Princess Ying Yaowalak. It was quite a coincidence that the interview was published just as my own little star of the stage was diagnosed. I kept up quite a performance of my own, carrying her kit around backstage, always making sure I knew which side to be on for easy access for her entrances and exits. She had a lot of determination to stick with it even with a hospital stay right in the middle!

  5. Really these type of post makes a person to believes that when there is a will there is a way.

    Gestational diabetes


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