When I was first diagnosed with type one diabetes I felt like I was the only one in the world dealing with the ups and downs. At the time there weren’t many groups around me to lend the support that my young, fragile, self needed. The only other diabetic I knew was my elderly aunt. Not quite what I was looking for at the time. I now realize how wrong I was. What I should have done was put myself out there and not been afraid to let others in. I have found, in my older age, that there are people young and old who “get it” In fact Twitter has become my home away from home where a community of others just like me gather to talk about our diabetic fumbling and triumphs. It’s amazing. Something I truly feel blessed to have stumbled upon.
Another thing that makes me feel a little better about being diabetic is that it’s not just us “common” people. Diabetes doesn’t care if you are a girl or a boy, if you’re rich or poor, and it certainly doesn’t care if you are famous or not.
So I thought I would compile a small list of celebrities I didn’t know were diabetic:
(Some were a surprise)
1) Anne Rice, best known for her vampire novels, was diagnosed with Type One Diabetes in 1998. This was surprising to me. She happens to be one of my favorite authors so to find out that someone I admire actually knows what the highs/lows of diabetes feels like, is kind of cool. Not like I would wish this on anyone but it is comforting to know that, through her diagnosis, she has still managed to be such a successful women in the writing world.
2)Mary Tyler Moore is best known for her T.V series The Mary Tyler Moore Show. She was diagnosed with Type One Diabetes at the age of thirty and is very active in promoting diabetes research. Perhaps others were aware, however, I had no idea she was a diabetic. Again, it is exciting to see that this chronic illness has not stopped this strong, independent, woman from making a name for herself.
3)Sonia Sotomayor became supreme court justice in August of 2009. She was diagnosed at the age of seven with type one diabetes and began taking insulin injections right away. After doctors telling her, at the age of nine, that she would never be a detective like Nancy Drew, Justice Sotomayor decided that against the odds, she would still pursue a career in legal justice. Such an inspiring story letting it be known that diabetes was not going to hold her back from her dreams.
Those were just a few “celebrity” diabetics that really stood out for me.
Here’s another list compiled by Web MD if you are interested: diabetes in the stars
With all that said I can admit that what really keeps me going, aside from the love and encouragement from family/friends, is knowing that people out there in the public eye are not hiding, or ashamed and are certainly not defeated by Diabetes. This gives me the strength to move forward in any sort of career I choose. I stay motivated because if they can do it, I know I can.