It doesn’t seem possible. In this day and age, with all the innovative medicines and devices, the meticulous attention so many people pay to our glucose control and our diabetic kids… How can a healthy, happy kid with diabetes, seemingly in such excellent control, simply pass away in her sleep without a peep or a warning signal that may have alerted her loved ones that something was wrong?
But it did occur, into a 13-year-old girl, earlier this week: dead-in-bed syndrome, they predict it. (Read passionate responses from fellow D-bloggers here and here and also here.) I’ve a 13-year-old girl, for God’s sake. And I was driving one of my other kids on a school field trip once I heard about this catastrophe. My stomach is in knots. Because what do we do? We do our best to educate and cheerlead and pour our hearts out on the internet, network — however in the light of unexpected passing it all appears so flat and unworthy. I can not stop thinking about these parents…
I’d intended to write a post today about some of the upcoming campaigns and competitions for National Diabetes Awareness Month (November) and World Diabetes Day (Nov. 14). But now I feel absurd. What are the actual chances for this advocacy to prevent the worst of what this ailment can do? Words, words, words… and still young men and women die senselessly…
But I read over the words of Sherry, mom of a type 1 diabetic kid in Canada (you can easily substitute “we PWDs” for “our kids” here):
“When we hear of a family who is suffering the worst loss imaginable, Most of Us know it could happen to some people. It is what bonds us strangers — in a very real and profound manner. We know one another and what we go through every day. The reality of what we face.
What we need to do is find a Means of sharing this reality. We need to Determine how to impress upon the people the urgent need for a cure. Since our kids don’t look sick. They look like every other kid. Most days folks would know that our kids are usually sensing the tiring effects of erratic blood sugars. People would never assume that they are constantly at risk of overdosing on insulin. People don’t consider the long-term complications that our kids face because of type 1 diabetes such as neuropathy, hypertension, peripheral vascular disease, vision loss, limb amputation, heart disease and the list goes on.
And people are not aware of just what is entailed in managing type 1 diabetes and the observation required, from minute to minute to keep our children safe.
Blog. Talk. Write. Answer questions. Encourage discussions. Be out there. Test in people. Don’t hide the minutia of diabetes management. Encourage your kids to answer inquiries. Suggest speech topics that involve diabetes.
Raise money. Raise awareness.
Don’t be quiet about this disease…
My voice feels. But I believe Sherry is right. The best we can do — notably us wordsmith types — is to keep “sounding the alarm” as loudly as you can through various advocacy campaigns.
On this note, I bring to you some of the attempts being put together by enthusiastic advocates as we approach National Diabetes Awareness Month and World Diabetes Day:
Of course, advocates the world over are working to light up different monuments in blue on Nov. 14. Here in San Francisco, the team in Close Concerns has set its sights on the Metreon building. Fantastic stuff.
ADA is pushing hard in their high-profile Stop Diabetes effort. Rockstar Bret Michaels is the face of this one! (They’ve also found a new site by the title of DiabetesStopsHere, btw.) Here is the description of the video competition they are running through the month of November:
This fall, inspire the country to stay up and fight a disease that kills more people than breast cancer and AIDS combined.
Produce a 30-second movie saying why you want to Stop Diabetes once and for all. After that, input the “Share Your Vision to Stop Diabetes” video competition between today and November 30 on . Be sure to check out sample videos supplied by VSP® Vision Care, the sponsor of this competition.
Once the movie entries are complete, the general public will have the ability to vote for the most persuasive video early next year . The three finalists will get an Apple iPad. The Grand Prize winner also will be part of a Stop Diabetes public service announcement.
The small but enabled DiabetesSisters community is starting its own national effort constructed around the colour orange:
“strawberry:will … can help establish a better comprehension of their unique challenges faced by women with diabetes. It represents the absolute will and determination required for women to handle their diabetes successfully. It represents the idea that orange will enable us, orange will engage us , and orange will combine us! Orange WILL do lots of important things for women with diabetes!”
“The goal of orange:will is for orange to bring focus on our disease and enable us much like pink has done for breast cancer and red has done for heart disease. Rest assured that we don’t wish to take attention away from other diabetes moves (such as World Diabetes Day), but we do want to emphasize women and their special challenges with diabetes”
To take part, you just need to go to www.orangewill.org and follow the directions for uploading images.
And last but not a little least, the Diabetes Hands Foundation is collaborating with the DRI (Diabetes Research Institute) to bring us two excellent campaigns for November:
The Big Blue Test will once more be a global “glucose-test-in” on Nov. 14 where PWDs will use the #bigbluetest hashtag on Twitter to discuss their BG testing experiences around the globe.
Along with a new video will be unveiled Nov. 1; Roche Diabetes has committed to donating $75,000 divide between the International Diabetes Federation’s Life for a Child app and Insulin For Life, in proportion to the amount of views the movie captures between Nov. 1 and Nov. 14. So as to acquire the $ 75,000, the community should reach 100,000 perspectives, so please be a part of that!
As we approach 15, I intend to bring you more about each these attempts. Words, words, words — I know. But producing this urgency, getting the word out, and working together is what it’s all about, right?
Think about the possibilities…
Disclaimer: Content created by the Diabetes Mine team. For more details click here.
This content is created for Diabetes Mine, a consumer health blog. The content does not stick to Healthline instructions and is not medically reviewed. To learn more regarding Healthline’s venture with Diabetes Mine, please click here.
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