I recently received an e-mail regarding the “JDRF Funded Researchers Talk about Listening”. The main point of the article focuses on helping children and young adults with T1D. As a tech guy, I understand and appreciate the importance of data and information to assist in the analysis of a challenge. The JDRF blog of 2016/06/15 is entitled; At ADA, JDRF-Funded Researchers Talk About Listening. Here is the link. The children and young adults are sharing concerns they have about their individual T1D.
One particular management approach is the question of what is being measured. What improved outcomes have been demonstrated which facilitates success by young T1Ds? My position is based upon fifty years as a type 1 diabetic, T1D. Small improvements over time assist each of us in confidence building and success in the management of our diabetes. We cannot give up and need to continue to improve our outcomes. In this case, how can each of us, as senior T1Ds, help children and young adults with T1D? This is a very important and noble cause. I am suggesting a new direction to this issue.
As a 50 year T1D Joslin Medal recipient, I am suggesting the following: Link 50 year Joslin medal winners with children and young adults with T1D. This shared listening and communication is very similar to the communications between a grandparent and a grandchild. Another example of this model is the use of sponsors in Alcoholics Anonymous. This direction can mitigate and reduce the fear in a medical facility with other T1Ds. In an interesting turn of events, I observed my grandmother measuring food on a scale and give my dad’s father, my grandfather daily shots when I was about 10 – 12 years old. I was diagnosed in April 1966, one month prior to my seventeenth birthday. It was my ethic grandmother who modified her approach with me. She changed the conversational actions regarding food. How? By her actions! As an ethic Grandmother, she no longer measured my love for her based upon how much of her great dishes and recipes of food, which I should have eaten to demonstrate my love for her. Sound familiar?!#
Fifty year Joslin metal winners have accomplished something relative to the challenges facing young T1D patients. We are numerous examples of everyday people, besides famous people in the media. We are everyday examples that the opportunity exists for T1D children to live a long fulfilling life with diabetes.