Age: 26 State: WI
Experience: Iron Woman
Age: 46 State: NY
Age: 29 State: NY
Age: 22 State: CO
Age: 26 State: CO
Age: 25 State: WI
Age: 34 State: WI
Age: 32 State: WI
I have a confession: I’m a sweet girl. Too sweet, in fact. I have Type 1 Diabetes and that means that my body has lost the ability to process sugar (think carbs) when I eat. Because of this I have to take insulin all day, every day, for all the days of my life. I wear an insulin pump that looks like a little pager attached to my body with a tiny tube that goes just underneath my skin to deliver insulin.
My days are a series of word problems, which is a funny predicament to be in when you’re as terrible at math as I am. For example: If Kelli eats
As if this math wasn’t enough to keep me busy, I decided to sign up for the Dirty Girl Colorado run three months ago. Training for a run has taken me from Math 101 to Advanced Calculus. Now, instead of keeping my blood sugar readings in normal numbers (90-110), my sugars have to be higher (150-180), depending on how far or how hard I want to work out. Then it’s a careful balancing game after the workout to make sure I don’t plummet into dizzying, heart-racing, shaky hands, incoherent low blood sugars or nauseating, headachy, dry-mouthed high sugar. Training and Diabetes are not a match made in heaven – getting it right requires hard work and constant attention. It’s like giving the monkey on your back a squirmy pet kitten that you have to carry around too. So why do it?
After the birth of my daughter 10 months ago, I felt inspired. Being a Diabetic, coupled with my health history, there are many things (pregnancy included) that were not or should not have been very realistic for me. The pregnancy was a few minor hiccups short of flawless, and my baby girl turns a happy, completely healthy, totally amazing 10 months old this week. So why not see what else I can do?
I am always inspired by other people’s stories of why they chose to conquer an obstacle in their life. I have loved reading the Facebook posts and blogs from the Dirty Girl website because they make me feel like I’m a part of something that’s changing women’s lives. We all have our reasons – for some it’s to support a friend or loved one who has been diagnosed with breast cancer. For others, it’s a mountain to climb or goal to conquer in other aspects of life. We’re using the event to redefine, reinvent, remake, remember or rediscover ourselves. For some women like me its to prove that as Mr. Swayze said best in Dirty Dancing, “Nobody puts Baby in a corner.” Not cancer, or diabetes, nerve damage, surgery, disease, age, gender or time – nobody. We do it for our babies, our mothers, our best friends or lovers. We do it for ourselves. We may not have the same reasons for doing something like Dirty Girl, but we all have the drive to better ourselves and challenge one another.
I’m running this race in September to cross the finish line and feel a sense of accomplishment I don’t know that I’ve ever felt. I’m training for this race so that when my baby grows up and someone tells her that because you are “x” you cannot/should not do “y”, she can look them straight in the eyes and say “watch me” with her sassy little crooked grin painted across her face.
Diabetes sucks but I am not made weaker because of it. I am stronger in ways most will never even get to experience. Training for Dirty Girl has taught me that. What has it taught you?
See you soon, Dirty Girls!!
September 14th, 2011
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