So, just as I was thinking through my life today, I realized something…Where would my life be without diabetes? Now I know no one would ask for this disease, but honestly, would I be doing what I am in my life without it? Probably not. It has opened so many doors, and made me that much more aware of the world around me. But saying that- I’ve had enough. I’m ready for a cure. I’m ready to not have to think about if I have enough syringes on me, or that my insulin stays cold all the time. I’m ready to not have to think about if my blood sugar is high before a test and what it might do to my concentration. I think I’ve learned enough from having a chronic illness…don’t you agree?
Hot off the presses!
Over 38,000 people took the risk test for type 2 diabetes on Tuesday, March 27th. That is the good news. Over 50% of those that took the test are at HIGH RISK for type 2 diabetes. We need to find the prevention and we need to find a cure – now!
First off, let me say that Megan’s Touch is a place for my family and I to reflect on our lives with diabetes, but also a place to share our everyday triumphs and thoughts. That being said, here’s a little post on how special this Easter will always be remembered.
This picture is special in so many ways, not only is this a picture of the most amazing Grandparents a girl could imagine, but they have always been my biggest cheerleaders in my everyday challenges with diabetes. Now, in a blog post, you can’t see the tears streaming down my face, but let me assure you, they are there.
March 2nd, my Gramps went into the hospital. Not knowing what was wrong, or going into the details, he spent 12 extremely long days there. After several annoying doctors later, there was diagnosis of cancer. A word that I never wanted to hear, let alone know that my precious Gramps was diagnosed with. But it’s here and we’re dealing with it, as a family, as we always do. The picture above was taken the day after he started his 1st chemo treatment in Dallas, TX at an amazing facility and he got to spend some time with my amazing Aunt and Uncle who reside in Dallas.
Now, for the fun stuff, interesting part of my Gramps being on chemo – he got to wear a pump for 48 hours, and will continue to for, I believe, 4 more treatments at 48 hours each. So he carried his big pump around with him, and I got to kid him about what it’s like wearing/living with an insulin pump/pod. Interesting how these things work out. I got to show him how to roll in his sleep wearing that, get up in the middle of the night with beeping low batteries and try to “deal” with being connected to something for living-saving treatment. Now I understand chemo and an insulin pump are COMPLETELY different, and I understand no one can compare cancer to diabetes, that’s not my point. But the fact that I had someone else in my family understand what it’s like being hooked up to something, made it seem a little easier for a bit. Life isn’t always fair, our health isn’t always guaranteed, but learning to live the life we have is what we have to do. So Gramps, this one is for you!
(This article was written for a Tulsa World editorial by my amazing Mom, Kim Koleber )
Every day in the United States, more than 4,000 men, women and children hear these words from their doctor: “I’m sorry, you have diabetes.”
And their lives change forever.
The 20th annual American Diabetes Alert Day is Tuesday, March 25, 2008. Alert Day is a one-day, “wake-up” call to inform the American public about the seriousness of diabetes. The American Diabetes Association encourages people to take the Diabetes Risk Test and find out if they are at risk for developing diabetes. Sounding the Alert, is critical as sixty million Americans are unaware they have diabetes or are at risk for developing the disease.
The disease is increasing in the worldwide at an alarming rate. Diabetes, caused by the body’s inability to produce or utilize insulin effectively to prevent a buildup of sugar in the blood, now affects 21 million Americans and roughly 250 million worldwide. It is projected by 2025; these numbers will more than double with 50 million Americans having diabetes. It is the fastest-growing disease in America –faster than heart disease, cancer or HIV/AIDS.
The soaring rate of people with diabetes threatens to overwhelm health systems and undermine economies. This challenge had mobilized world health leaders, who marked November 14, 2007, “World Diabetes Day”. For the first time, the United Nations passed a resolution for member states to develop national policies to prevent and treat diabetes.
The International Diabetes Federation, which tracks global diabetes, says the disease will cause 3.8 million deaths world wide this year, nearly equal to HIV/AIDS and malaria combined.
The diabetes epidemic has no bounds – even here in Tulsa. Children, co-workers, caregivers, minorities, and the elderly are some of the many faces of diabetes in our community. Could you be one of these faces?
For many, diagnosis may come seven to ten years after the onset of the disease. Therefore, early diagnosis is critical to successful treatment and delaying or preventing some of its complications such as heart disease, blindness, kidney disease, stroke, amputation and death.
What can the people of Tulsa, Oklahoma do to help stop it in its tracks?
I encourage you to take the Diabetes Risk Test and then get involved with the American Diabetes Association. Participate in an event or educational program. Volunteer. Be a Diabetes Advocate and write our state and federal government representatives urging them to support diabetes-related legislation.
Oklahomans cannot afford to wait – especially since the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate 1 in 2 Oklahoma children will develop Diabetes in their lifetime.
The future of our community is at risk. What are you going to do to help the many faces of diabetes?
For more information, call 1-888-DIABETES or visit www.diabetes.org/advocacy
American Diabetes Association
National Advocacy Committee