My name is Tricia. I have been a fan of Bret Michaels since he started. In March of 2000 I was diagnosed with type 2 Diabetes. I was having a difficult time coming to terms with everything. In June of 2000 I was lucky enough to meet Bret backstage in Toronto,ON Canada. We got to talking about Diabetes and I told him that I had just recently been diagnosed. He had so many encouraging things to say and told me he would make a deal with me, every time he came to town he wanted to check up with me to see how things were going. Bret is truly an inspiration and a wonderful human! Thank you again for everything you have done for me, and the things you do for everyone.
Sam’s friend Cat Greenleaf invited Sam to come meet Bret recently when he was a
guest on her show, Talk Stoop. Sam has had type 1 diabetes since he was 21 months
old, he’s now a healthy, active, creative eight-year-old who’s learning to play
electric guitar. Bret and Sam talked about a number of things – school, music, and,
of course, living with diabetes. Sam showed Bret his continuous glucose monitor and
insulin pump. Bret and Sam, like all who live with type 1 diabetes every minute of
every day, know the challenges brought by this disease, and for Sam to meet adults
like Bret only further teaches him that diabetes is not an obstacle to achieving
success and fulfilling dreams. Bret also offered to send Sam to diabetes camp this summer!
Jon and Rachel Dickinson
Life has blessed me with a wonderful family. My wife Starr has been my
rock for over 20 years now. We’ve been through some difficult times over the years
but she’s never given up on me. We have 4 incredible kids, Orion is 14 and starting
High School next year, they grow up fast. Caelum is our special boy. He 12 and was
diagnosed with Autism at age 5. He’s a great kid but has had many challenges in his
short life and has many more to follow. He’s currently in a clinical education
environment in Mechanicsburg, PA that he has thrived in. Phoenix, our youngest boy,
is wise beyond his years. He know just when to go give you a hug and tell you he
loves you and make everything go into perspective. Our little princess Lyra is a
fireball. She was born on the same day of the year as Phoenix, August 26, and has so
many of his traits. My wife’s mom, Sa, lives with us. She requires dialysis 5 days
a week due to complications from heart issues and diabetes. My wife being the
giving person she recieved training to due this in our home so her mother would be
more comfortable. She spends an average of 4 hours, 5 days a week dedicated to
taking care of her mothers medical needs. I’m Chris and I also suffer from
diabetes but haven’t had the complications of my mom in law. We have lived in
Carlisle, PA for about 6 year now. We are an average family and our lives revolve
our kids. Finances don’t allow for alot of things I would like to provide for my
family. The one source of entertainment that we have focused on is RVing. We
purchased a fixer upper travel trailer that is a work in progress. We head out to
campgrounds around PA as often as we can. It gives us all an escape into nature
that feeds the soul. We’re limited to a couple days due to the dialysis treatment
but make the best of it. The message I would like to convey to all is always focus
on family and make the best of the situation you have been dealt.
– Chris Smart
I have had diabetes since I was five years old. The doctors told my
parents that I probably wouldn’t live past 30 years old. Diabetes is a constant
struggle for me because my blood sugars go up and down so quickly, but I made it to
30, and past that, and I am still going strong. I rock-climb, bike, kayak and I got
my motorcycle license a few years ago. I will not let this disease stop me. I would
like to thank Bret for putting a face to this disease and showing that no matter how
devastating it can be, you have to keep fighting. I am not a quitter. I look forward
to seeing Bret perform in Milwaukee, WI on May 29. Thanks again, Bret, for your work
and for never giving up.
Antonio’s story from June of 2012 ~
My Diabetes Story
In November, I was diagnosed with full blown Type 2 diabetes. For those of you who don’t know what that is, it means my body does not know how to use the sugar that it body needs to run properly. I guess I should have known to be careful with my health. My dad has diabetes. That doesn’t mean I was guaranteed to get it, but my chances were better than average.
Anyhow, my doctor told me my diabetes was full blown, meaning I depend on regular insulin shots, take meds twice a day, watch my diet carefully, and exercise daily. Now these are all things I should have been doing regularly, but just didn’t. Why not, you ask? That is an excellent question. I guess I felt like there would always be time in the future.That future is now.
Having diabetes isn’t a curse. It does mean I have to be careful with myself. I have to limit the amount of sugar I eat. I need to exercise daily for 30 minutes. I have to check my blood sugars at least twice a day. I have to take insulin, the stuff your body uses to make sugar do its job, once a day. But I am healthier for it. I am losing weight. I have gone from being morbidly obese (more than 100 pounds over my ideal weight) to overweight. But that is getting better. My blood sugars are stabilized. My health is returning. As I continue to improve my health, I may eventually be able to stop taking meds and insulin. Will I be cured? No. There is no cure for diabetes – yet.
So what can happen if I ignore my diabetes? I could develop glaucoma and lose my eyesight. I could have heart problems brought on by diabetes. I could develop infections that might end in loss of life or limb. I could not live to see my children grow old. None of those options sound appealing to me.
Many people live with diabetes (up to three years before it symptoms show up in some cases). Many more people each day are diagnosed. But not much is being done in the public sector to raise the alarm. It is becoming a silent epidemic. In fact, according to American Diabetes Associated, more people die of diabetes and related complications than die of breast cancer and AIDS combined. To that end, I choose not to stay silent. I am choosing to be part of the solution.
My name is Summer. I am 6 years old and on Feb 4, 2013 I found out that I
had Type 1 diabetes and hypothyroidism. I think that is the same age as Bret when he
found out. My Grandpa has had Type 1 for the last 25 years so myself and my mom were very familiar with diabetes. (My mom says thats why I was so brave in the hospital.)
The doctors told my family that I had it only 3 weeks before I was admitted.
Luckly my mom knew the signs. I was complaining of a headache, drinking a ton of
water, going to the bathroom more than normal, and was very irratable. The doctors
told my mom that most kids enter the hospital with diabetes in a coma, but because
of her knowledge I am truly grateful that she caught it that early. I am writing
this to let people know that there are signs to watch out for and it could save
someones life. Maybe in my lifetime there will be a cure and I could be a normal
healthy kid again.
Over the past 2-3 years, I have been diagnosed as being ‘borderline’ type 2 diabetes. Although I know I should be exercising and eating more healthy foods, I can’t seem to get started. I know that the longer I wait, the more risk I have of becoming diabetic, and thereby having to get on meds. Any advice as to how I can get off my butt & start doing instead of ‘wishing’?
I met Bret Michaels by chance at the half marathon in Philadelphia on September 18, 2011. I knew about Bret Michaels, because of his music and because we shared something in common, we both had a Cerebral Hemorrhage. I was very excited to meet with him! I looked up to Bret for the courage it took to pick right back up from where he left off and continue his work after his hemorrhage. After our meeting, I started to learn more and more about how Bret is making so much of a difference in the lives he is able to touch with his fame. Here is a man that has been dealt many challenges in his life and yet he chooses to take those challenges and affect the world in such a positive way! One of the things I didn’t know was that we also shared something else in common and that is Diabetes, in 2004 I learned that I have type 2 Diabetes and I have been fighting it ever since.
I’m Debbie, 44 years old from Texas. I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in 2007 while in the hospital recovering from major abdominal surgery. I was completely shocked by the news, and it was very hard for me to accept. I was a mixture of emotions, and it’s been an up and down hill battle for me. I take only oral medication right now, but have needed insulin several times since being diagnosed. Diabetes is a constant battle, and I never know from one moment to the next how I’m going to feel. I get frustrated at times, especially when I feel like no one, (particularly my family) understands what I’m going through, but then I think how could they understand when they’ve never had to go through it. I do a lot of research about diabetes on-line, and Bret has been a big inspiration to me. I pray for a cure and will continue to fight.