|Me, Ben, Laura, Danika, Liz, and Paige at the blue party!|
"People won't remember how long it took you to get to your dream, but they will remember if you quit. Don't give up."
"One day you wake up and there is a dude called diabetes in your room and you realize you have to get along."
The first one is comforting in that it inspires not to ever give up. No matter how big of a dream you might have, as long as you keep working towards it and one day finish it. However, if you give up everyone will remember the failure. The latter statement is a rather more comical way of remembering that diabetes is not going anywhere so you might as well coexist with it peacefully instead of trying to "beat" it.
|My new friend Alicia|
The next morning we got to hear from Dr. Bill Polonsky about diabetes and relationships. He talked about the "diabetes police" which we all know someone who asks like they are our diabetes police officer. He speech was not with out such humorous things as the blood glucose fairy, who we can blame all of our odd BG's on and calling "cheating" on certain rules "vacationing." One of the last things he said I thought was clever and a very necessary thing to do. When dealing with hypoglycemia you should "do the the opposite of what Obi-Wan said to Luke: Don't trust your feelings, trust the numbers." Often when deal with low BG's you don't really know how you feel, but your meter can give you a number and you should always know at what point you should be treating for a low. Never just go by how you feel, when the numbers can tell a more accurate story.
|The entire group at the Blue Party|
After lunch we had Tom Boyer talk to us about advocacy. I learned some surprising statistics, such as the fact that diabetes funding has dropped 20% in the last 4 years. He showed just how important it is to get out there and advocate for more funding for diabetes research and advocate for other things for diabetes.
Finally we were at the "star" presentation of the weekend. It was Dr. Aaron Kowalksi's turn to talk about the Artificial Pancreas Project. The first step towards this would be an insulin pump that would automatically turn of due to low BG. This is actually already available in Europe but the FDA is dragging their feet on it here. The next step would be a pump that would reduce it's basal rate as you got close to low BG. Logically from that you would next want it to increase the basal rate as you got close to high BG. He also talked about some other projects being worked on, including an insulin that you would be able to give at the beginning of the day and you would be good for the rest of the day.
|Jmiah's cardboard cutout|
At the luau we had Sonny's chicken and baked beans and other delicious foods. Unfortunately we didn't get to stay long because there was a thunderstorm threatening nearby. However, it was still great because I got to hang out with my new diabetic friends and for a few minutes got to geek out with one of them over Doctor Who. We went back to the hotel and hung out for the rest of the night. It was awesome to get the opportunity to get to know some of these people better because everyone has a different story to tell and while we all share a common disease, we are all still truly like snowflakes: each one of us different -- and with a very interesting story. And then Ava, Nicole's daughter, brought the bedazzles out for everyone to bedazzle their pumps and meters. I ended up throwing a bunch of the ones that didn't stick to anything at Alicia instead of bedazzling anything - whoops! After a bunch of us spent the next few hours just talking it was time to call it a night.
|Some of the group from last year!|
It was time for a few last pictures and then to say our goodbyes - until next year, of course!
I feel like I learned so much this weekend and I would not trade this experience for the world. I feel rejuvenated and ready to live with that dude diabetes for another year. I also feel ready to go advocate and bring more awareness to T1Ds.
- Keep flying steady
Edit: Also, I swear something must have been in the bacon because every morning my BG levels skyrocketed.
(So I am posting a bit out of order for events, but I really wanted to talk about this past weekend. However, I will have a post about Quidditch World Cup VI soon! Also, if I made typos, sorry. I'm very tired right now but I wanted to write this.)