“Let’s end our week on a high note and blog about our “Diabetes Hero”. It can be anyone you’d like to recognize or admire, someone you know personally or not, someone with diabetes or maybe a Type 3. It might be a fabulous endo or CDE. It could be a d-celebrity or role-model. It could be another DOC member. It’s up to you – who is your Diabetes Hero??”
Diabetes Hero…Diabetes Blog Week
I have had a hard time thinking about who this would be. I could label many people in my life as my ‘D-Hero’. For starterts, to name a few, my Hubbs…he puts up with me and my ‘D’ duties and always tells me he loves what I do and admires me (to help encourage me along the way). He never gives up on me or gets fed up with me. He knows I take this job seriously, and knows the importance of it. Then I think about ALL the families surrounding us. There are COUNTLESS…literally, we are surrounded by an amazing network of friends and family. To all my church family, you have continued to lift us and be there for us. No one has even had to ask. You are great examples of charity at its finest (too many to name, but I think about you all every day, you have in a major way made getting our D.A.D possible). Friends I went to high school with and had lost a little bit of contact with have totally stepped up with donations, encouragement, and empathy. (Michelle, Angie, Steph, Daniel, Jennifer, Jessica and so many more). I am lucky! (again, helping us on our journey not only into type 1 but on our way to get a D.A.D). My Nursing School family/friends; they were on a long journey with me and become a huge part of my life through school, and our ties didn’t stop there. I couldn’t thank you all enough. My friends all around me, continue to help out, cry with me, laugh with me, and encourage us to do what we need to do. They understand why our life has changed and do not expect us to be exactly life we were before ‘D’. It’s nice not to have that pressure. (Josey, Ethan,Tannah, Sharisa…just to name a few). And the many other friends who have been there with calls, prayers, thoughts, encouragement. Our wonderful medical team, we have been so lucky to have this team of amazing women who really have defined how every healthcare professional should approach their job. They step up to the plate and go above and beyond. I love them, appreciate them, see their hard work and love they put into their jobs. No way I could do what I do without them. I wish every family with a chronic illness has the amazing support network we do. We are the luckiest people in the world.
I have so many people to name…and I KNOW I am leaving out so so so many. I am not doing it on purpose, feel overwhelmed and there are countless of you. So IF I haven’t mentioned you, know, I too, think of you often. I have become closer to so many people in my life in an odd way. Maxwell’s, Wait’s, Finch’s, Manolli’s, Young’s, Lee’s, Tucker’s, (I know there are more…If I had more time to sit and make a list, it would be enormous. So many people deserve a mention insert your name here, you count too); I love you all and you have gone above and beyond helping this mother achieve the impossible. Your support hasn’t gone unnoticed. I love you.
Both Kinzie’s and Jared’s teachers from this year have been so amazing. WOW. You love your job, your kids, and what you do even on the bad days. I cannot thank you enough for loving my children, seeing their struggles and continually thinking of them, encouraging them, giving them an opportunity to be themselves and having a safe place. You set that standard high. I thank you for every day, minute, second you think about my children, what you have taught them, and the examples you have set. We will miss you dearly. Alongside your own struggles, you continued to put the kids first. Thanks, from the bottom of my heart, thank you.
To all of Kinzie’s friends; thank you. Every day I have prayed that she be surrounded by strong, amazing, loving examples; and she has been. There are so many of you, and I am sure I cannot remember all of your names…you know who you are. Rachel, Breanne, Teagan, her dance team-mates, her cousins, Mary, everyone! Since the beginning, she is missed when she is gone and embraced when she is present. You love her for who she is, you do not judge her or make her feel funny when she has to take care of her body. You watch over her and help he stay safe. You have never made fun of her, laughed at her or teased her. What an amazing group of people you are. You surround her and help her live her life and you never hesitate to make her feel better when she is down. I love you all (and your parents, good job on bringing up amazing children). She has countless numbers of friends; and you brighten her life. She misses you when she doesn’t see you.
Kinzie’s dance team…I have to take a few sentences to tell you that you help her. She feel 100% accepted and loved. Dance is Kinzie’s passion and without it, I do not know how she would do it without you all. Every single one of you make a difference. When she is low and sits out, you all embrace it. You ask questions, you want to learn, you love her. I cannot thank you enough. Her coaches…she feels ‘normal’ at dance despite the highs and lows. She is devastated when she cannot go, and she loves you beyond words. You have provided such an amazing positive safe environment. You do what you do because of your passion and it has completely worn off on Kinzie. I can see her entire face light up when she dances and the weight of the world just disappears. Amazing. Leaves me speechless every single time.
My daughter’s best friend, McKinzie…I know I have mentioned the family, but I feel the need to let her know how much we love her. How much we thank you all for being you and accepting our trial as part of your own. I wish every diabetic child has a friend like you and a family behind them like your family. The LATE night play dates, the rescuing, and the loving. We are very blessed indeed. We have loved you McKinzie from day one; but you continue to amaze us. You have so much compassion and love in your tiny body. This isn’t just Kinzie’s disease, you treat it like you share it. You try to carry so much of Kinzie’s load. You lift her up, help her on bad days, you always watch out for her (and when you notice a change you let someone know). You are pretty amazing.
My sister Crystal, you are always at my side. You have never left it. You have refused for this journey not to include you. You go above and beyond. You have asked to learn about T1D from day 1 so you could properly care for Kinzie…you are the busiest person…and yet, you continue to learn with us and keep up with our changes so that Kinzie has someone who knows what to do (like, REALLY knows) when I cannot be there. Do you know how amazing that is? You see the small things Kinzie achieves and get what HUGE milestones they are. You love her. You were there for the rescue and stayed for the journey. I love you. You have always been my best friend since I was born (lucky you!) and I know it is for a reason. Your family right there as well. I love you all. My sister Lacie, oh, this change in our life has made the miles between us seem so much longer. I miss you so much. Some days I wish you were next door like everyone else. You are always there, even though you are so far away. I can’t thank you enough for the phone calls when you know we are struggling or when you know Kinz is having a rough/sick day. You are always there, I can call you, write you, text you, and you are always there. You have completely stepped up and helped me carry a lot of this trial, and you didn’t have to. I love you, and I am so thankful to have you as a sister, and wonder why we waited so many years to get this close…we missed out on some great years! Your continuous thoughts, how you help fight this with me, you continue to inspire me and encourage me. No matter how ridiculous my thoughts and ideas are, you support me/us. You help carry our pain, you laugh when we do and celebrate the small steps with us. My little sister Carmen, my how much you have grown-up. I love you so much and the example you are to my children. Kinzie has adored you from day one, and with her diagnosis, you stepped up. Always loving, awesome, fun, you accept her for it and help her keep going. You are young, newly married with so many changes in your life you have to adjust to…and yet, you continue to think about Kinz. You can see beyond your own struggles and life changes. You are simply amazing. My parents, you cry when I cry, you laugh when I laugh…hasn’t been the easiest thing to watch I am sure. You know when we are in pain, when we celebrate. I couldn’t imagine (well, I can, I have to) watching your family and not being able to do the role you have done for years as parents and grandparents…you cannot ‘fix’ the hurt or destruction you see. I am surrounded by amazing family/parents/siblings. All of you are great! You have all helped in specific ways that were needed even when we couldn’t tell you what it was we needed. My aunts, you have all been pretty supportive, excited when we meet milestones, and put on a brave face when I need one…Brenda, Sheri, Jeri, Nae. Thank you.
Most of all in this post I want to talk about my children. You are my heroes on a daily basis. Oh, if I could only fix everything I would in a heart beat. I love you beyond the capacity of love; I can never tell you how much I love you and how much I wish I could give you a better life…one without pain, troubles, or even just give you back life before T1D. I can’t, so know every day that I strive to do the best for you all. I think about you every single minute of every single day and what I can do better, what more I can do to take your burden or carry the load. You are my heroes because you are simply magnificent. The way you handle everything is inspiring. Chloe and Mason, you make us smile during the scary moments, you help us celebrate during our triumphs and make this family a complete whole always knowing our needs and being amazing little kids. Jared, your life has changed so much and yet you refuse to stand still and let everyone around you worry. You are your sister’s keeper and the most amazing steadfast job at that task. Kinzie could never ask for a more amazing brother and I could never ask for a more amazing son. You have a heart of gold. You make me smile. I am sorry that some days you do not know how to deal with everything. I am sorry you have to watch your sister go through this and you do not know how to process it at times. I am sorry that you have to grow up so fast and be a part of a reality that many people do not even as adults. Remember, you are the most amazing young man. You are wise beyond your years. Kinzie. You. Are. Simply. Awe-Inspiring. If I could give you my pancreas and take this disease from you, I would in a heartbeat. I have cried so many tears (good and bad) watching what you do, worrying about you, and how you refuse to quit. You have such a light about you. Every morning you wake up, well, I cannot describe it, but those are the most amazing moments…making through even one more night. You are strong, you are smart, you are life-loving, you are special. I see the fight you put on every single day and am completely amazed at everything you do and how you do it. You can take care of yourself, from day one, you took on that task. You deal with such grown-up emotions and I am sorry you have to. You fight this epic battle and in the end, I KNOW you will win. The small battles you win make me completely speechless. The things you tackle and the strength and endurance you have are beyond humanly possible. You have become this force of energy refusing not to try to you push yourself. Some days I step back and wonder how lucky I am to have such strong, beautiful, amazing, brilliant spirits as children (well, everyday). I cannot take the credit for who you are, there is no way that came from me. I see everything that you do, and know that every day you are all my heroes. You do it all so gracefully and without hesitation. Never has there been a more proud mom. You make me want to be a better mother, example, human. I love you so much. I know this journey is happening for a reason, and perhaps part of that reason is because of the power you have within yourselves and you can do great things here on earth. Today, and all other days, know that you are the most amazing heroes that were ever to exist. You are my Super Heroes, better than the movies. What you do is real; how you do it is beyond impressive. You are pillars of lights, balls of energy and in every way I think you are amazing.