Every spring since 1999, the Diabetes Education and Camping Association (DECA) has distributed our publication to their young campers. In honor of their youthful enthusiasm, our springtime issue always focuses on people who inspire us, from the young to the old. In this issue, we bring you the stories of people who refuse to let their diabetes limit them, people whose example re-ignites our determination to live our very best and healthiest lives. As a publisher, I am always seeking inspiration, and each of these individuals is a fresh reminder of what we can do if we put our minds to it.
In this issue, you’ll read about Edward Danielson, a diabetes icon who has successfully lived with type 1 for eight decades. Insulin was discovered only ten years before his diagnosis in 1931, and his story of a long and happy life is truly an inspiration to us all. You’ll also hear from young Tyler Stevenson, who describes the challenges that he encountered when he left home for college and how he learned to take care of his diabetes despite the distractions and temptations of college life. Finally, we profile three phenomenal athletes–Chris, a 12-year-old karate star, Emily, an amazing 12-year-old gymnast, and Tony, a sensational 14-year-old trampolinist–in our story about youngsters who inspire us with their determination and discipline.
Admittedly, Nick Jonas’s diabetes has already received a lot of media coverage, but his story has inspired multitudes of our future leaders, our youth. Recently, I received an email from a pediatrician who found herself in the uncomfortable position of having to tell a distraught mother that her ten-year-old daughter had diabetes. As the mother struggled to hold back her tears, her daughter turned to face her and said consolingly, “Don’t worry, Mom, Nick Jonas has diabetes. I’ll be fine.”
We are all cheering one another on. As the saying goes, it takes a village. That village includes our publication, everyday people with inspiring stories, dedicated diabetes camp staff, the healthcare professionals who treat diabetes, the kids, and their parents. The diabetes community inspires me every day with its overflowing humanity and dedication to one another. I have the good fortune of meeting passionate individuals every day.
In our next issue, we will be ushering in the summer with diet and exercise information that should keep you steady on your wellness track. In the meantime, please let this issue inspire you to be your very best, every day.