Annie Alesia-12th Grade, Grand Prize

Heights, spiders, and clowns – they all scare me. But when it comes to needles, I’m fearless. I see them every day, I feel them every day. I can’t escape them. Seven times a day, every day, for eight years I have felt the twinge of the needle’s point connecting with my skin. It is the only way I can survive, make it to tomorrow.

No, I am not addicted, I am sick. I am sick of the needles, the pain, and the hurt. I am also strong, determined. I am a fighter and will make it through. I have been blessed with many things, like my faith, a supportive family, encouraging friends and a clear mind. It’s because of these blessings that I know I can overcome Rogue Type 1 Diabetes and be all I aspire to be.

When it all started, I was slowly becoming weaker and weaker, but I didn’t know why. I remember being constantly thirsty. No matter how much I drank, I needed more. I looked like death. After a few weeks of tribulation, we finally got an answer.

Mama took me to get my blood glucose level checked by a close friend who suggested it be done. Sure enough, that was the problem. The meter read 428. I didn’t know what that meant; all I knew was that we were headed for the emergency room.

I did my best to get back to my life before, but it sure was difficult. All of a sudden when all my friends got ice cream, I got a flavorless sugar-free Popsicle. When everyone went running around barefoot, I had to sit on a blanket. I didn’t like being different. I didn’t like being treated differently, but I had to accept it and move on.

That’s what I did, I moved on. Was it hard? Of course it was, but that’s why I am a stronger person. It took a while, but I finally realized I had been given a gift. I will take this horrid event and turn it into a blessing.

It is amazing how much people are willing to listen. I can help them understand how life can drastically change in the blink of an eye, but that it’s not what happens that matters but how you react to it. Now, eight and a half years later, I have a career goal.

My goal is to be a pediatric diabetes nurse. I feel like it is my destiny to help kids who are going through what I did. I can relate. I can feel their pain. We have a bond that no one else can experience unless they are Type 1 Diabetics. An obstacle was placed in front of me, one I will have to deal with for the rest of my life. But I will never let it get the best of me.

Related Stories