April 26, 2011, a day I will never forget. A day that changed my life forever. A day that looking back at it, I remember every single part of it. This is the day I was diagnosed with type one diabetes. It’s crazy to think that I practically spent half my life living with this disease. Some days, it feels like I’ve had diabetes my whole life, while others, it feels like I was just diagnosed yesterday. I remember being in the hospital room, squeezing my mom’s hand so very tight, asking her, will I come out alive? Little did I know that from that day on, not only mine, but my whole family’s life, would never be the same.
Everyday, there is a new challenge for me to face. But these challenges have helped me grow and mature having to deal with this disease every single day of my life. There is no break, no days where I can just forget about diabetes. No days where I can just eat without having to worry about my insulin. It’s a part of me, and will always be, until the magical day that I will be cured.
Throughout the constant ups and downs, lows and highs, diabetes was and is always a pain to deal with. It’s an everyday battle I don’t want to live with anymore. But for now, it’s a battle that I am living, and must live with, every day of my life. But it’s a battle that I must fight. It’s a battle that I know will one day, when I am cured, will not be a battle anymore.
13 000 needles, 17 000 finger pokes, the average number of times I’ve had to prick and inject myself. But I am sure that one day, that number will disappear.
When I think of diabetes, I think frustrating. But when I think of a cure, I think freedom. But until the day that I will no longer have to poke and prick myself, I must remain hopeful and positive. Despite the ups and downs, I must live life to the fullest, I must live life with endless possibilities to a brighter and insulin-free future. I must be grateful for all of the support that my family and friends provide me with everyday through every struggle that I face. I must most importantly thank my siblings, for always being there for me, and for my parents, for guiding me through every step I take; for being the reason I still, and will always believe, in a cure. My parents have always shown me the positive and beautiful side of life and have always cared and most importantly, believed in me. Without them, I don’t know how I would be able to handle my disease or even who I would be without their constant support throughout every step of the way living with this disease.
I know diabetes sucks and I know that the injections, finger pokes, and monitoring of blood sugars is a headache. But what I also know for sure is that I will never give up hope and that my family and I will never stop believing and praying for this cure. I am 100% sure that one day, I will no longer have to eat, breath, speak and inhale the word diabetes. I will no longer have to poke my finger or inject myself. I will no longer have to drink juices when my blood sugar is low or give insulin when it’s high. I will no longer characterize myself as living with diabetes. Instead, I will be characterized as the strong girl who is cured from this disease.
Being diagnosed with an illness can be overwhelming for anyone, especially a child. Liana was diagnosed with T1D at the age of seven and ever since her diagnoses, she has been exceptionally brave. When Liana was diagnosed, her teddy bears provided her with a sense of comfort and served as a reminder of all of the love and support she had throughout this tough time. It is for this reason that we’ve decided to make the teddy bear our symbol; in hope of providing a sense of comfort to all those suffering with T1D.