Sunday, February 6, 2011

What does a "cure" mean to me?

Up until a couple of days ago I thought this was the stupidest question I had ever heard. Honestly? A cure? A cure means that my daughter has a fully functioning pancreas, capable of self-regulating her body's insulin needs. Duh.

But then I read through some of the thread at CWD about JDRFs new direction for the future, and I realized how many different things a cure can mean to different people.

To be truthful, and it's hard to put this out there, I don't believe there will be a cure for Type 1 Diabetes, by MY definition, in Grace's lifetime. I see her, at some point, using some future incarnation of a closed loop system, where one machine will constantly check her blood sugar and regulate the amount of insulin she receives. An alarm would sound when she's going low and needs glucose. But to me, this is not a cure. This is one generation beyond how we treat Grace now. Treatment, not cure.


Maybe I'm wrong, and a true cure will someday be found for Grace.


Maybe a cure will come in the form of prevention for those not yet diagnosed.


Maybe Grace's children won't have to worry that they are at higher risk because their mother is a T1D.


Maybe it will come from stem cells or encapsulated pig islets.


I don't know what the future will bring. I only know what I can do now.

I will continue to support the JDRF, and will continue to Walk For A Cure. Because that closed loop system will hopefully make it easier for Grace to maintain a low A1C. And one day Grace won't be a CWD (child with diabetes), she'll be a PWD (person with diabetes). She will move into adulthood, and will need a support system around her other than me.


And for us, the JDRF walks aren't just about raising money to find a cure. They're about community and love and support. I am amazed at the amount of friends and family who drop everything to walk with us. And the outpouring of financial support is astounding. People care. The walk is one day to show how much you care.


I don't think about a cure that much. We were all told at diagnosis that a cure is only about 10 years away. Kelly was told that. A teacher at Grace's school was told that 50 years ago. I believed it for a while. I don't any more.


But I do believe in technology making life easier.


I believe in research.


I believe in prevention saving millions from being diagnosed.


I believe in support.


I believe in community.

12 comments:

  1. Bravo and so well said Pam, I totally agree.

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  2. I agree 100% and then some! Thank you for saying this so beautifully.

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  3. A great post Pam..I agree with everything!

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  4. I believe, too. Perfect post. JDRF is more than raising money. Thank you for putting that thought in my head!

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  5. WE WILL WALK TOO! You stated everything I had been thinking about the whole "incident". Thank you for putting my thoughts into words Pam.

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  6. I believe in community, too, Pam. Soooooooo happy and grateful to be a part of it :)

    Nice post, my lady.

    Oh! I was checking out your 365 . . . . nice! Um, the rabbit, however, . . . . really?!

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  7. Well written. This is how I feel, though I do think a cure will be available, just twenty years away, or more. Can't wait on new advances in technology and research into prevention and cure of complications until then. Our kids will have to be kept healthy until the cure is found, and, yes, that includes when our kids become adults and all the adults who have long suffered from Type 1.

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