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Month: September 2012

Kateri: Camp Kid

Kateri: Camp Kid

Bret- I can’t thank you enough for sending Kateri (pronounced: kuh-teer-e) to Camp
Midicha this year. She had so much fun. Reuniting with some friends from last year
and making a bunch of new ones! I know that having Kateri go to camp helps her cope
with the daily crap she puts up with, having this disease. Knowing there are people
who are taking what God handed them and going after everything they want – not
letting it stop them, is truly inspirational for her. The friends she makes now
will be forever…there’s definitely a bond when these young kids totally understand
and support each other. Its amazing to see how close they’ve become when you pick
them up, after just 5 days of being together! And I also want to thank you because
it gives me a much needed break from the midnight checks and constant counting of
carbs. It was FABULOUS!!!!

I have attached 7 pictures for you. The first being her picture when she was
8…this was a couple weeks before she was diagnosed (the sight of her collar
bones sticking out makes me cringe) she was under 50 pounds at the hospital when
she was admitted. The next is happier…just last week, onthe first day of her
7th grade year. The last 5 are from camp, being her goofy self and having as much
fun as she can…especially the picture of her at the dance (the last night at
camp) she was really bustin’ some moves (her face is all red)!! The last one is
what she looked like when I picked her up…rockin her bandana, wearing the shirt
that they tye-dyed themselves and feeling the confidence that camp has given her.

She really wants to thank you in person, so the next time you come to Soaring
Eagle Casino in Mt.Pleasant MI we will be there and would love to have a chance to
come back stage so she can give you a big hug and thank you in person.

You’re making such a difference.

Thank you,

Sarah Tripp

 

Raising Awareness

Raising Awareness

These pictures below were take at the Clay County Fair in Spencer, Iowa. This was a very special concert because I had just started chemo for breast cancer a month earlier. My family and friends decided to go to the concert dressed like Bret so I wouldn’t feel out of place with no hair. We had shirts made that said ‘Bret’s Girls’ and on the back they said ‘Fight Like A Girl’.

October is breast cancer awareness month and I think these pictures are a great way to bring awareness. I have finished a year of treatment which included surgery, chemo, and radiation for herceptin plus a 13 hr. reconstructive surgery. I am very proud to say at my check up last week the results of my PET scan shows I am cancer free!

Sue Logan
Tristan: Camp Kid

Tristan: Camp Kid

We thanked Bret for sending Tristin to camp in June and gave him a thank you letter which I am attaching that also has some pics taken at camp. I will send those as well. Anyway Bret was so touched when he learned that Tristin was able to change his site for the very first time by himself at camp and also change site spots…that he hugged Tristin and asked him if he could send him back to camp a third time!!!! OMG he has to be the most amazing and generous person ever. Just thought I would share what we gave him in case you wanted to use it for anything on any of the websites etc.

Again thank you for all you do. Patrick, I hope to meet you in person someday soon! –

Michelle

Pure Admiration

Pure Admiration

The first attached picture was taken the nite Bret and his band performed at the Wicked Moose in Rochester, MN on 12-26-11. All my co-workers surprised me ( for an early b-day February 11th ) by all chipping-in money so I could purchase a Meet and Greet with Bret that nite. I have attached the link below to view.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1odNr-gBcJg

Everyone knows my Pure Admiration for Bret and how much he Inspires the Very Best in me. Bret’s Determination, Drive and Adrenaline for life is a Forceful Power trip that ignites your Very Soul. Being in Bret’s Heavenly presence is Breathless. Bret is the epitome of God.

The second picture attached picture was from August 2010 @ the Wisconsin State Fair, where I had my First and Greet with Bret and I was telling him about my accident which made our moments together bridge even stronger as he got goose bumps he said and he even went into details about his aneurism.

I was in a car accident leaving the Poison Concert in 2008 @ Jackpot Junction Casino where I was pinned upside down in the car and by the time they were able to cut me outta the car, I stopped breathing and had to be airlifted to North Memorial Hospital in the Twin Cities. I had suffered bruising of the brain, a split open forehead, cuts, bruises and a badly banged up body.

I completely Honor, Respect and Idolize, the infamous – Bret Michaels!

Angie Hinck

Jayme’s Meet and Greets

Jayme’s Meet and Greets

I’m a huge fan of Bret Michaels. I am a physician and the nurses call me “Dr. Bret Michaels” because I saw him in concert 6 times this year. Here are some meet and greet photos from 2010 and 2011. The picture is Jayme Hall, Bret and my cousin Julie Bigelow at Soaring eagle casino Dec 2010. The rest are Jayme Hall and my friend Mindy Kocisky who is battling non hodgkins lymphoma for he second time at Soaring eagle casino dec 2011.

Jayme Hall

Camp Kids

Camp Kids

In March of 2010 I attended my first Bret Michaels concert in Green Bay Wisconsin. While I grew up in the ‘80s I had only recently become a huge fan of rock music and had especially become a follower of Bret Michaels, not only because of his music but his work on being an advocate for diabetics. It was an amazing show and my husband surprised me with a VIP pass for after the show! I couldn’t believe that I was actually going to meet Bret and I was extremely nervous about what to say to him. While waiting for my turn we visited with Bret’s band members who were so friendly and continued to work hard after the show to make the VIP experience run smoothly! When I finally had my chance to meet Bret I couldn’t believe how genuine and kind he was! I told him how excited we were about his work on Celebrity Apprentice and thanked him for all of the money he was raising for Diabetes Charities. I explained to him how our 13 year old, daughter, Makena, was a type 1 diabetic and that we were so grateful for people like him that proved that anything is possible in spite of diabetes! He immediately asked me if she had ever attended diabetes camp and I said that yes she had. He explained that he would like to pay for her to go to camp! I thought that would be awesome but I didn’t really think it would happen.

Well….2 weeks after that Bret had his health scare. We watched every newscast hoping and praying for the best for him. We had already purchased tickets to see him perform again in August at the Wisconsin State Fair. I was amazed that he not only recovered but was already performing again a couple of months later! My husband again spoiled me with VIP passes and I had brought my picture from the first concert to have Bret sign. I was shocked when he actually remembered me and asked if his company had sent my daughter to camp yet! I said no and he immediately called over his assistant who took my information and contacted me the very next day via email!

And here is where the story gets even better! I happen to be a teacher in a school district that has been hit very hard by the bad economy. There are several diabetic kids both there and in my daughter’s school that have never had the opportunity to go to diabetes camp. So I got up the nerve to ask if Bret would consider sending some of these kids to camp. They asked how many kids I was talking about and I said 10! And he said YES!!!!! So….at the end of July…. 10 kids will be attending a fantastic diabetes camp and they are so excited!!! Things like this just don’t happen in our small town!!

These kids are looking forward to an opportunity that wouldn’t be possible if it weren’t for the generosity of Bret Michaels! Even as I write this I can’t believe that it is actually happening! Thank you to Bret and everyone that works with him! You are truly part of an amazing event and are making a difference in these kid’s lives!

Dawn

Profound Yet Amazing…..

Profound Yet Amazing…..

Grace is 8. She turned 8 last November. Who could have imagined that the normalcy that existed on her 8th birthday would change in such a profound way in just 2 months.

On January 17, 2012, after her Mom made a doctor’s appointment to discuss Grace’s unexpected weight loss, she was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. There were other subtle signs that appeared in the weeks prior to the diagnosis and now all the pieces started to make sense. The thirst, the fatigue, moodiness and finally the weigh loss were all symptoms of diabetes. Grace and her family were still blindsided by the diagnosis. She was immediately admitted to the A.I. Dupont Hospital for Children. When she got to the Emergency Room she was immediately admitted in critical condition. After five days of a learning curve that seemed (and still seems) to never end, Grace was discharged to home with a new life as a Diabetic. The changes that took place that week….Profound.

Grace returned to school on January 23, less than a week after her diagnosis. It was scary for her. Fortunately, (or unfortunately) there were other students at her school who also have T1D, so the school nurse was prepared and very supportive. But her family was still in shock. While her Mom went through the motions of counting carbs, and Grace endured the grueling process of checking her blood sugar and injecting herself with Insulin syringes, they still weren’t prepared for the constant fluctuations in her blood sugar levels, and the way it affected her – or didn’t affect her. Those first few weeks at home…..Profound.

At her first follow-up appointment with her Endocrinology team, the doctor wanted to know if Grace had any questions. She didn’t have questions about her insulin, needles, carbs…..the only thing she wanted to know is when she could start swimming again? Laying around and being sick was just not her style! Amazing.

On January 27th, just 10 days after her diagnosis, Grace returned to her regular swim practice schedule. Uncertain of how her blood sugar would react to such a vigorous physical workout, Grace’s Mom and her coaches kept a very close eye on her and checked her blood sugar before during and after practice. It was tough at first because Grace was experiencing “lows” during her hour long practice, but after a few weeks and lots of conversations with her Diabetes team, Grace was able to figure out what type of uncovered snacks would get her through a vigorous hour long practice (usually a cereal bar or a PB on apple with a 1/2 cup of milk).

Grace excelled, and placed in every race through the end of season. It didn’t seem like she was sick at all. Amazing.

Then, as if Grace wasn’t experiencing enough complexity, in March 2012, Grace was diagnosed with Celiac Disease which meant a gluten-free lifestyle in addition to managing all of the T1D stuff. This, of course, meant a re-evaluation of all her meals and snacks, what was in the pantry, what restaurants we could go to, and what extended family dinners looked like. Most of the snacks that were determined to get her through her swim practices were now off-limits because they weren’t gluten free…….It was like starting all over again. Profound.

While all of this was going on, a family friend reached out to the Bret Michaels organization to tell them about Grace and everything she was going through. In contacting them, her hope was to get an autograph picture and maybe some words of encouragement from Bret Michaels…..but no, no, no……Mr. Michaels didn’t send her an autographed picture. Instead, her very generously offered to let Grace pick out a diabetes camp (sleepover) to go to during the 2012 summer and he would sponsor her for the whole thing. Grace was thrilled. And excited. And relieved…..because after her TD1 diagnosis, going to a sleepover camp was not something she imagined she could do!!!! Amazing!

She attending Camp Setabaid in Central Pennsylvaia for a week in June 2012. learned so much more about her diabetes then she ever would have learned at home. And the value of having Grace be with this unbelievable group of kids that she could relate so closely to…….The camp experience definitely boosted Grace’s confidence and made her more committed to controlling her diabetes and keeping up her extremely active lifestyle. Amazing!

During the short break between winter & summer swim team practices, Grace began training for her first youth triathlon. She ran her first event on June 9th and finished 38th out of 90 participants (aged 8-14). In July she participated in her second youth triathlon and placed 3rd in her age group. And in August she ran her 3rd triathlon, and again placed 3rd in her age group. (Grace was the only athlete that had skittles and glucose tabs in her transition area!!!) And then she finished in 1st place at League Championships for 8 & under backstroke. Amazing!

Grace starts 3rd grade in September. She will also be starting on her insulin pump in September. Although her Endocrinology team told her it would be at least a year before she could start with an insulin pump, Grace learned about the pump at Diabetes Camp, she got to wear a pump for 24 hours (with saline running through it) when she was at camp and several of her friends with TD1 convinced her that there was nothing to be afraid of. Persistence pays…..because the Endocrinology team did finally agree that she was ready and she will be on the pump less than 8 months from her diagnosis. (She tackled the UPS driver when her pump arrived last week!)

WOW – what a crazy few months – profound & amazing!

Jill and Jason’s Story

Jill and Jason’s Story

My wife Jill was told on 9-13-2011 that she had breast cancer. She is only 39 years old and from that point until now she has had two surgeries, six treatments of chemo and was getting ready for radiation when we were told that the cancer was still there.

It was recommended that we go to the Ohio State breast cancer center which is three hours away, we make that trip once or twice a week. Now she has to have another surgery to see if they can get more of the cancer. Through all of this she has not complained, she is fighter and will never give up, even through chemo she would not miss our two kids activities which are many. I bought her third row tickets to Mr. Michaels concert July 5 in Syvania, OH and wanted to do something for her that she will always remember. I just want her to here some good news for once.

Thank you so much for your time,

Jason

Crystal’s Story

Crystal’s Story

The middle of my 8th grade school year I went to the doctor’s office for a checkup or so I thought. They ran a few tests and the doctor left and came back with the test results. She told my parents and I to go home and pack my bags there was a room waiting on me at the hospital and to go straight there. When I got to the hospital the nurse showed me where my room was they ran more tests and the doctors told me I had Type 1 diabetes and they explained to me what it was and they said sadly there
is no cure for it.

I now take 3 shots a day of insulin to keep me alive and I denied I had diabetes at first and it took me a while to get use to it. I realize you can die from it so there I was going from a normal teenage girl to a sick girl with a disease that can’t be cured. I spent 4 days in the hospital with doctors explaining to me what to do and what not to do, what to eat and what not to eat, waking me up at all hours of the night which I did not like that because I needed my sleep. I also have to check my blood sugar 4 times a day.

The day the doctors told me I could go home I was so happy, but I was not going home to what I was use to. I have a new normal now and it will be normal until a cure for diabetes is found. Before I went home the child life specialist gave me a Rufus the diabetic bear. It is so cute I thought to myself the day I got out of the hospital I went to school. The next day my Dad said you just got out of the hospital are you sure you want to go to school. I told him I sure do miss my friends and I have a lot of work to catch up on.

Truth is I also did not want to fail, he said ok. My friends started acting different around me, but they got use to it. I have passed out several times from a low blood sugar. The scariest thing my Dad says I become unresponsive and when I wake up I can’t remember anything. That is very scary. I’m afraid to go to sleep at night,what if I do not wake up it always pops into my head. My Dad had to give me sugar to wake me up when I entered high school all my new friends were like why do you have to leave class early everyday before lunch to go to the nurse and eat lunch early so I told them living with diabetes is not easy nowhere close to easy but I have to live with it.

There will be a cure found one day I have hope and I will never stop fighting and never give up hope. On a good note I just graduated from airport high school June 1st. This is what I would say to people with diabetes, never give up, fight until a cure is found because one day there will be a cure and when there is we can scream yes no more shots, no more pricking ourselves. Just recently. on June 5, 2012 I received some bad news. I got a nerve test on on my feet at the foot doctor and I had issues with my feet from the disease. One foot is mild the other is severe and I’m only 19, as you can see I live a complicated life.

When I got diagnosed my blood sugar was in the 600’s. It was a week before my 13th birthday, even more bad news as my health insurance just cut me off and I can’t afford my medicine or supplies and I was really hoping to get an insulin pump but they cost way to much. I love inspiring others, I wish I could share my story more, don’t worry about me I am going to make it.

Crystal Phillips