Monday, February 15, 2010

Meeting up in Mammoth

I have been very remiss in blogging recently. I have been busy, but that is not a good enough excuse! Here is a blog I wrote about a week and a half ago from a snowboarding trip to Mammoth.

A couple of weekends ago, a few friends and I went up to Mammoth Mountain for a few days of snowboarding and skiing. One of my high school friends is working as a lift operator at June Mountain and since the schedules worked out, I was looking forward to hanging out with him. The first of California’s ‘El Nino’ storms had come through the week before and Mammoth got a lot of snow. Like 10 feet of fresh powder! It was a lot of fun and I thoroughly enjoyed the three days on the mountain. I thoroughly enjoyed some time ‘disconnected’ from the racing world especially as we get towards the busy time of year.

There was however a really interesting chance encounter at lunch on the first day of skiing. Two friends and I headed to Main Lodge to grab some food, warm up and check the score of the AFC Championship game. I had just gotten my food and was sitting down to eat when I grabbed my blood glucose meter to check my blood sugar after a morning of riding and before lunch. As soon as I tested, I heard from a little boy, “do you have diabetes?” I responded with an affirmative and he said he did as well. Then his mom came up and we started a conversation. Turns out they are from the LA area as well and she is head of the local JDRF chapter. He was the coolest little boy, wears a pump and was getting a medal for a competition in the snowboard half pipe school. In the course of the conversation with his mother, it came up that she had heard my endocrinologist, Dr. Anne Peters, speak at a conference. We talked about what I do for a living to which she replied, “wait, you are her racing driver with your CGM on your steering wheel?! What are the odds!”

There are times when I feel very alone with diabetes and it can be a real struggle. Remembering conversations like that one with the little boy in the Main Lodge of Mammoth really helps remind me that I am not alone. Having diabetes makes me a part of a great community full of amazing people. It is a great way to remind myself that while I am racing because it is what I love to do, it is also a great inspiration to a lot of people.

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