Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Faces of Heroes

Recently Reyna of Beta Buddies posted a great article on her life as a pancreas. I was worn out just reading it and then realized that it mimicked a lot of what our life has been for more years than I can remember. I began to think that maybe I should try that, to write out a description of my life. I still might but not today.

In viewing what her family does each day, I also realized something about my own attitude towards diabetes care. It has always been a "suck it up, Buttercup" kind of thing.  When I inject a site and he complains, I will tell my son that it wasn't that bad--not that I have ever injected myself with an infusion set but, get over it kid! When I ask him to lance his finger again to give me more information, I don't think, Dang that's gotta hurt. I just think, its more information for me to keep him healthy. 

I am not really so cruel that I don't care about his pain.  I have to depersonalize it so that it doesn't overwhelm me. Since that fateful day in March of 2000, I swore to do whatever it took to keep my son alive.  His life was a gift and I would work hard to protect it. Poking and prodding him at all hours of the day seemed to be a far better option than what I had seen on March 17th. There was no going back if I could help it.

One of the first Canadian pilots with Type 1 diabetes
With all of this swirling through my head, I began to further think of the people who will say that their children are their heroes. Not just the children living with diabetes, but also the siblings that support them. I have been slowly working on a new look for my website.  I am changing pages, making things fresh and looking at adding new sections. Years ago I created a campaign called "Faces of Diabetes".  It was printed and bound and then presented to politicians to show them the real "faces of diabetes".  These were everyday people and their stories.  Some made me cry and some gave me hope but the common theme was that they were all working hard to make the most of their lives with diabetes.

Cameron has lived with diabetes for most of her life
I then began to think that maybe the Faces of Diabetes should also have a new section--Diabetes Heroes. I decided to see if this had already been done.  A quick Google search led me to an AccuChek site that showcased Oskar Minkowski and Elliot Joslin.  This was not what I was looking for. They were dead and I was looking for real people who have been heroes in their own right. I was looking for the sister who has raised money for diabetes awareness because her younger sister lives with the disease.  The little boy who bravely injects himself with insulin so that Mom and Dad can go out on a date night. To me, those are the heroes to be recognized.

So here is my challenge to you...send me those stories (and ask your friends to do the same)! Provide a picture, when they were diagnosed and of course why you think that they are heroes.  I will then provide the page to showcase them. If you want to add yourself but don't feel that "hero" works for you, please help me add to the Faces of Diabetes page.  Those people are still heroes whether they realize it or not.


  1. At the Roche Social Media Summit this year, they gave attendees a preview of the Diabetes Heroes project. I think you'll like the next two phases which will perhaps be more relevant to families dealing with diabetes in this day and age.

    Good luck with your project!!

  2. Thanks Leighann! Glad to see that there will be more coming! There are so many real heroes out there that amaze us every day!

  3. Hello! Yes, please stay tuned to our Diabetes Heroes program. It seems right in line with what you're talking about; there will be a section where people can post a picture and a short bio of their own Diabetes Heroes! They do indeed deserve a spotlight.
    Thanks Leighann for the mention.
    Have a great day!