I met Lena Simmons' family through the JDRF walk that is put on every February at Crossroads Mall in Waterloo. Through her, I have learned so much about diabetes and the struggles of those who have it. I didn't realize prior to helping with the JDRF walk that so many kids are affected by it. At almost 30 years old, I still hate needles, and these kids have to get 'pokes' everyday, several times a day, likely for the rest of their lives. Major reality check for me. Not to mention the medical expenses that go along with it. Really good friends of mine (husband and wife) both have diabetes and work 3 jobs just to help pay for it. It's seriously crazy the amount of money they have to spend, literally, just to stay alive. :/ Also, JDRF's focus is on type 1 diabetes -- not affected by weight or diet. Type 1 is an autoimmune disorder where their pancreas doesn't produce the insulin that needed to get glucose from the bloodstream to the cells of the body.
I could go on, but the gist of it is, I have a whole new respect for those who have diabetes, and I owe it all to this family and the fundraiser they help put together every year. They are seriously an amazing family and so fun to be around.
To learn more about JDRF or get involved, click here.
Click here to view their full gallery.