Health care is a basic human right, not a privilege. For some reason, we’ve allowed ourselves as Americans to be fooled into accepting that one must be blessed with “means” to actuate appropriate health care. As a nation we have failed to realize that our health care system is a barometer of our society’s value for human life.


Thursday, September 14, 2006

All You Need Is Sonar and Nerves of Steel....

So at some point during this week I reached, or will reach, my fifteenth year anniversary with my pal diabetes mellitus type 1……I don’t remember the exact date, and honestly, this date has never been all that important to me.

Perhaps I am more conscious of this date because I am getting a little older (EGADS CLOSER TO 30 THAN 20!), or perhaps because in the past few years I am paying much closer attention to those diabetes numbers than ever before, or perhaps it is because 15 years feels like a long relationship with diabetes and I have turned my inner headlights on to help spot complications more quickly…..

The other day while driving the kids home from school, I got to thinking about my life “back then.” I wasn’t really thinking about what happened at diagnosis, as that was pretty uneventful. My mom is a type 1 diabetic and thanks to her good eye, we caught my blood sugars at an even 347…..So it is safe to say that my diagnosis blood sugar has not been the highest sugar in my life! I was thinking more about the months that preceded my diagnosis and wondering if they played a part in my body’s autoimmune attack.

In April of that year, while running, I was attacked, beaten, and molested. Pretty traumatizing stuff. It has been fifteen years, I don’t think about this much anymore, but it just seems so odd that only a few months following such a traumatizing event I would be diagnosed with diabetes. Perhaps it was just coincidence…..I have heard about certain events “triggering” the attack of beta cells in the pancreas, usually a virus. I wonder if the devastating effects of my assault could have “triggered” my own autoimmune attack.


art-sweet said...

I wouldn't be surprised if that attack didn't trip off your immune system in strange ways.

What a scary thing to survive.

kassie said...

There's been some research around trauma/stress and the development of T1.

Like art-sweet said, how unimaginably scary.

Anonymous said...

What a awful thing. I'm sorry it happened to you.
Since I have such a huge # of type 1's in my extended family, I'm going to send a few emails tonight to see if anybody had anything they'd consider a "triggering event".
I can't recall anything with myself (although it was such a long time ago I barely remember), but the whole auto-immune scenario is an interesting concept.
I never feel comfortable saying "happy anniversary" when someone passes their dx date.
But rather, I guess I'd offer "an acknowledgement of 15 victorious years of living alongside the big D". And that, deserves congratulations.

Sarah said...

I didn't know that there has been research on trauma/stress and the development of type 1. Id be really interested in reading more on that!

The whole assault thing really isn't as painful and scary to think as it has been in the past. It has been a long time and the more time that passes, the more it works its magical healing. Maybe the fact that the assault was close in time proximity to the assault means that I more often think of the assault when I think of this time period in my life than my diagnosis.