We are gearing up for our fifth Walk to Cure Diabetes.
In some ways it feels like our first walk just last week. And in others it feels like diabetes has been a part of our lives forever.
Each year it gets harder to get people involved.
Each year it gets harder to raise money.
Each year our numbers dwindle.
The "novelty" has worn off. People are tired of us asking for money. People are tired of hearing about type 1 diabetes. Sweets is no longer the cute little toddler she once was.
And you know what?
I'm tired. Doing fundraisers and organizing a walk team takes a lot of effort and energy. Time and energy I don't have.
And you REALLY wanna know what?
Blogging takes a lot of time and energy, too. So does volunteering for JDRF.
But we are still walking. We have a team. We are raising money. We have a REALLY cool fundraiser planned for this weekend.
I'm still blogging. I'm still volunteering.
And this is why...
An 8 month old baby girl passed away recently from undiagnosed T1D.
I get so upset when I hear about this. NO ONE should die from undiagnosed Type 1 diabetes. It is SUCH an easy test. In my opinion, it should be a regular part of well child visits. Pediatricians should know more about this disease - this epidemic - and keep it in mind when they hear symptoms that sound familiar.
I was the one who asked Sweetpea's pediatrician about type 1. He said it was the flu. If I had not mentioned it... If I had only told him the symptoms with out saying "diabetes"... the increased urination, thirst, exhaustion, lethargy, irritability and vomiting... We would have gone home. She was in DKA. She could have died. She could have easily been a victim of undiagnosed T1D.
This is why...
An 8 year old local boy passed away from complications of type 1 diabetes.
I don't know the details. I'm not sure I really want to know the details. I believe is a hypoglycemic episode over night. But I'm not sure. And I'm not sure, for me, the gritty details matter.
What matters is that an 8 year old child died from this disease.
Type 1 Diabetes kills.
It kills now. It kills even though. It kills in spite of. It kills because.
You don't have to be old.
You don't have to have lived with the disease for years.
You don't have to have poor control.
It doesn't matter if you check religiously.
It doesn't matter if you are active and healthy.
It doesn't matter if you do everything right.
In spite of good control...
In spite good health...
In spite of meters and pumps and cgms...
Diabetes kills because it can.
Diabetes kills because that's what it does.
Even though people aren't as interested...
In spite of the fact that people are tired of us asking for money...
Even though our walk team is a third the size it was the first year...
In spite of how tired I am...
WE ARE WALKING.
WE ARE RAISING MONEY.
Because people are dying.
People like Sweets.
And I may not be able to control diabetes... But I am going to do everything in my power to help us find a cure.
I'm not naive enough anymore to think that it couldn't happen to us. That it won't happen to us.
And my choices are to ignore that reality. To put my head in the sand. To pretend this disease is no big deal.
I can live my life in fear. I can let my fear keep her from living.
I can refuse to let our lives be ruled by fear.
I can get involved.
I can talk about T1D anyway.
I can ask for money anyway.
I can walk anyway.
I can volunteer anyway.
I can advocate anyway.
Because I don't have the luxury of pretending it's nothing.
Because I don't have time to mess around.
Because I can't let myself get distracted.
Because people DO care.
Because every little bit helps.
Because no donation is too small.
Because no team is too small.
Because it matters.
Because people are dying.
Because it's time for cure.
This is why.