Wednesday, February 18, 2009
I was in Starbucks today reading a book, taking notes, listening to music and watching the world go by when it struck me how many different communities I am a part of. Every day I am part of my local town community, part of Rio Mesa High School Alumni, part of the racing world, part of the diabetes community worldwide. That last one has had the single biggest impact on my life in the last 18 months. Yes, racing is what I live for and it makes my world go around. Having said that, without the support of the diabetes community, I may not have gotten back into the race car after my diagnosis October 2007. I think that my endocrinologist (who walks on water as far as I’m concerned), Dr. Anne Peters, explained it best one day as we talked about diabetes, life, racing and everything in between. She said to me, “treating diabetes involves a lot of love and discipline. We don’t rush in last minute like cardiologists, crack chests, start hearts, save lives! We fight the good fight, day in, day out against a problem that is almost impossible to see and yet can lead to complications worse than a lot of diseases.” To me, that hit the nail on the head. And it has truly manifested itself in the outreach of the diabetes community when I was first diagnosed, then when I got back into the car, and now as I start to work as an advocate for people with diabetes all over the world. Without that, I am not sure I would have had the determination and belief to be able to get back in the car and continue to pursue my dream. And so as I sat there enjoying my skinny Caramel Macchiato (after carb counting it!), being an active and passive piece in a lot of communities, I wanted to thank everyone who is involved in the diabetes community- if you have reached out to me directly, inspired me, or even just been there to listen.