Those were her last words as she stepped away from the podium.
Truth be told, I stumbled through the slides, fighting back tears (unsuccessfully, might I add) the entire time.
I can’t help it.
Type 1 Diabetes reached inside my chest and squeezed my (candy) heart so hard that nothing but pain, fear, and anxiety could be found running through my veins in the immediate aftermath of her diagnosis. Eventually I got myself on track, but the emotions of the (almost) 10 years since that time continue to range from low to high — practically at the same rate as her glucose levels.
Yes. Sometimes I still cry.
We began our presentation by sharing the camp video recap of The Bionic Pancreas 2013 Summer Camp Study. The video is about 5 minutes long, and I stood off to the side while waiting for it to finish. While standing there, I looked around the room, and realized it was the first time many of the people attending would hear the words “Bionic Pancreas”.
I watched as looks of skepticism turned to interest and faces of exhaustion turned to hope. Fathers inched forward, focusing on every word. Mothers stared at the screen in disbelief. Adults around the room were taking it in, while children and teenagers watched in silent awe. By the end of the video, many tears were falling, and I knew I was in good company.
For the next 40 minutes, we went through our journey to the 2014 Summer Camp Study — from the first time I heard Ed Damiano speak at Friends For Life 2012 to approaching him with my friend, Misty, at the end of 2013. We talked about where diabetes management has been…how Sugar has managed her diabetes with technology…and where it’s all going.
Sugar did a fantastic job. I was nervous that she would freeze in front of the crowd, but speaking about her experience seemed to come naturally for her. She fielded questions with confidence, smiled, and enjoyed the opportunity to share her story.
Thankfully, Sara came to visit for the weekend, and had a clue how to help me stumble through the technological side of things. She had planned to video tape a couple parts, but ended up working behind the scenes, clicking through slides instead. (THANK YOU!!!!) I’m pretty sure I would have cried harder if I had to figure all that stuff out on my own.
Sweet Tink and Tiara sat in the front row, beaming. Without their hard work helping us fundraise, Sugar wouldn’t have made it to camp. Tiara made a little video…check out those mad 8-year-old camera skills…
“I was BIONIC.”
In that moment, my (candy) heart soared.