Hello. Remember us?
We are the children with diabetes.
For some of us, this was known as "juvenile diabetes". Others remember "sugar diabetes" or "brittle diabetes" as the words that left their doctors' lips.
Now we're all people with "type 1 diabetes". But no matter the name, our disease hasn't changed.
We're all grown up now. And no, we didn't outgrow our diabetes. It's still here, with us, every day, every hour, every minute.
Some of us take shots, some use pen needles, some use pumps. All of us use insulin. Insulin is life. Without it, we'd die. We would go back to the awful days when all we knew was thirst, endless, insatiable thirst. Hunger. Fatigue. Weight loss. Sleepiness, tempting us like a siren. Oh, no. Not that, ever again.
We're still here. We climb the same mountain every day, just to be "normal". We all hold hands and hang on when someone slips and falls. We all know the frightened look, the feeling of ground slipping out beneath our feet, when blood sugar dips too low. The intense overwhelming tiredness when levels soar high, higher than we admit. We know.
We are stronger than we ever imagined we could be. We survive. We are smart, tough, organized. Multi-taskers by nature. Honest. Courageous. Talented. Funny. Even a little OCD. Each of us is an inspiration, a hero. Some of us do amazing things. All of us are amazing beings.
Don't forget about us. We're still here, you see. Waiting patiently for a cure. For something to stop the daily assault. The bloodletting doesn't really bother us, and most of the time, neither do the insulin shots or site changes. No, it's not the pain. It's the lack of it. The not-knowing. The wondering. The panic rat, gnawing at our minds. Blindness. Numbness. Death. Or a life worse than death. No one knows how, or when, it will start. Or if.
But we are healthy, living, alive. We try, every day, to be just like everyone else.
We are the children with diabetes. We're still here. We matter.