Saturday, November 13, 2010

Define yourself through Stregth and Perseverance - not your difficulties!

We drove to N. Oxford, MA last night to drop Katie off at the Clara Barton diabetes camp, which has become an annual event for us. This is her 3rd year going there on a fall weekend they call, Wacky Weekend. This is a camp for children with Juvenille Diabetes to get together and relax, play, learn more about their disease and also to learn that they are not the only ones suffering from it. I think that remembering that you are not the only child is the best part of camp - a camp where having an insulin pump is almost required and where everyone needs to test their blood sugars every few hours. Where they can take a time out for a low or high blood sugar and not feel isolated, as each camper there knows what those things feel like and you aren't considered to be interrupting the activity at hand.

I know this weekend each year has helped me a lot. As it also reminds me that we aren't isolated in what we deal with as a family. A weekend, where as a mother, I get a break from diabetes..... and if you don't deal with it --- I can assure you that it is a 24/7 battle. A weekend off, I must admit, although I worry about her, it feels like a mini vacation.

Then I realize she doesn't get that vacation.... ever. It is 24/7. It makes me so sad.

That being said - we are grateful. Juvenile diabetes is manageable. Yes, there are long term complications, but we manage daily and Katie is HEALTHY! There are much worse things than that. I look to Katie as an example. She is the definition of strength and resiliency. She has never let her struggles impact her - her grades at school never slipped and if your blood sugar is high, it is impossible to concentrate or take a test. But somehow she does. She wears her pump and doesn't hide it - she is who she is. She never looks for an exception or a break. She has never backed off physical activities that can make the blood sugar go low. She just ran her first 5k and is currently playing on a travel basketball team. Watching Katie train for the 5k was the most inspiring thing I have ever witnessed. Now... I am not saying that she didn't complain, because she did --- BUT who doesn't complain when they are running?! I know I do constantly. As Katie trained almost every single training run involved a low or an asthma attack or both. Yet she would treat, wait and then GO! I know a lot of runs, I think most of us would have used that as an excuse to not complete the distance planned. Katie completed every training run!

Katie is the example of not letting a struggle define you and it has certainly made her a much stronger person. I think she will be a better person for having this disease and I think we should all look to not let our struggles define us and learn how to rise above. I guess that old saying what doesn't kill you makes you STRONGER!!!

Most people never run far enough on their first wind to find out they've got a second. ~William James


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Taking a moment to be grateful and an update on 2011 Tough Warrior Priness Team

TEAM TOUGH WARRRIOR PRINCESS 2011 is Forming! We had our first 2011 team meeting to begin preparing for fundraising and being ready for the 60 miles. It was very touching. We have 17 registered members thus far, and more that are very interested in joining. It is stunning to me the good that comes out of each person we add to the team. We also have people volunteering who just want to work behind the scenes to help us fundraise or help us with ideas and networking. It is humbling. It seems like absolute magic in action some days. Each person brings something new and teaches the group something different. We are working on lots of fundraising ideas and also a website. There is lots to do!

I would also like to take a moment to mention a wonderful event if you are local to the Amesbury area. It is the 2nd Annual "A Charitable Christmas"
Get your Christmas shopping started while supporting many different charities. 100% of all proceeds are donated and there are some wonderful crafters and vendors attending. There will also be raffles, music and h'ors d'oeuvres! The event is being held on Saturday, November 20th at 3 Palis Drive in Salisbury from Noon to 7 p.m hosted by Danielle Dahn. Please come check it out if you can!

In preparation for Thanksgiving I am spending some time reflecting on what I am grateful for and my gratitude always comes back to the people in my life - not just the obvious people such as my family and closest friends, but ALL of the people who touch my life.

There are certain people that come into our lives that really make an impact. Sometimes one interaction can alter the course of your life or change your belief systems and have you going in a whole new direction. It is interesting, too, the way people seem to pop into and out of our lives. I truly believe that each interaction serves a purpose and everyone around you is there for a reason.

When you touch someone's life, you may never know the impact or the chain reaction of impacts that it may have.

I challenge you to try to touch someone's life today in a positive way. You may be having the worst day or have a lot of problems in front of you, but know that you can make a difference to someone else - there is a lot of power in that. Once you have taken on the challenge and touched someone however small - please leave a comment here and see how collectively we are changing the world!