Gravity: It’s pretty important. It keeps us all from floating off into the unknown. According to Google it is:
The natural force of attraction exerted by a celestial body, such as Earth, upon objects near it, tending to draw them toward the center of the body.
And while the Earth has been doing a real good job at keeping me from floating off in the physical sense, I’d have to give the blue ribbon to my diabetes for grounding me down pretty hard and keeping me from floating off in the more existential sense.
It’s no big surprise that T1 can be a drag. It’s been weighing me down for the past 13 years. It’s always been that one thing that I can never forget but always wish I could. Those spontaneous road trips that were ruined because I had forgotten needles or insulin. The mini heart attacks I get when I hear high pitched tones because they sound so much like when my pump dies. The shitty days when I don’t want to do anything because I wake up with my sugar so high that just laying in bed physically hurts let alone actually trying to get out of it. It’s ALWAYS nagging me and always reminding me of just how fragile I really am.
That last part was the worst for me. I was diagnosed two months shy of my 13th birthday. So while the rest of the teenage world got to go through that immortality phase that they are constantly getting themselves in trouble with, I was stuck with being bitch slapped by my T1D and the reminder that death, or going blind, or losing a foot, or seizing out and breaking my brain, or destroying my kidneys because I wanted cake that one time, and ALL that other crap endos scare us with was a very real and present danger. Yes, yes I know teens are never REALLY invincible. According to my psychology degree that whole phase is really just caused by an underdeveloped frontal lobe…or something. But just because I got T1D, why did my frontal lobe have to grow up so much faster than everybody else’s! Much like life itself, it just wasn’t fair.
I guess I’m just jealous that I wasn’t able to have that feeling of being untouchable. Of being able to just do whatever the hell I wanted without having to think ahead, or remember something, or worry about something else. Instead, that gravitational pull of my T1D always managed to pull me right back down to the real world. It’d be nice to get rid of that dull tense feeling that’s always in the back of my head, just waiting for something T1D related to go wrong. But since that is most likely never going away (these findings will lead to a cure in the next ten years my ass!!!!) I have decided to just run with it, (My T1D be damned!) AND to do something kind of epic.
If you’ve been following me (or ya know just checked back and read a couple of my earlier posts) you will be familiar with my affinity for epic experiences. So in an effort to add to my list of epic shit I’ve done and give my T1D a very firm middle finger I decided to join the 4k for Cancer/Ulman Cancer Center for Young Adults and their 2014 Team Portland!!! Okay that probably doesn’t mean anything to any of you so allow me to elaborate:
The 4k for Cancer is an amazing program put together by the people at the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults. What the program does is organize groups of young people into teams which then complete cycling tours across the United States to raise money for the Ulman Cancer Fund which supports young adults with and survivors of cancer with support programs, information, and scholarships. Team Portland (that would be the team I am on) will spend 70 days CYCLING from Baltimore, Maryland to Portland, Oregon. That’s 4400 miles people!!!! (Yes, yes geography nerds; I know the US is really only like 3,300 miles across. We’re taking the VERY scenic route obvi). The trip is scheduled to start sometime in June so clearly I’ve got a couple days till it starts or whatever but I am excited about it!!!!
It’ll be a challenge. And yes the T1D center of my brain (i.e. my entire brain) is going through a small melt down running through the endless lists of what could go wrong. But this time I’m choosing to ignore it. I’m doing this because I want to and I know I can. My T1D will make it harder but I will not let it make me think it is impossible. It’ll take some planning and fore thought on my part but I think the pay-off of riding into Portland, OR on a bike that I pedaled 4400 miles on to get there will be well worth it. My T1D isn’t going to pull me away from this one.
WISH ME LUCK…but like in June.