August 26, 2009

I'm pleased to introduce you to the next contestant in the Ms. Chronic Disease of America Pageant...

MS. TYPE 1 DIABETES!!!!


(Still shot of Ms. Diabetes flashes across the big screen)

Uh, sadly, Ms. Diabetes can’t be here in person at the moment. Her blood sugars are “off” and she is backstage “shooting up.”

(no one chuckles at my hilarious joke)

Um, while we are waiting for her return, let’s take a look at Ms. Diabetes’ submission letter.

(the following letter, composed by Ms. Diabetes, appears on the screen)

To: The Ms. Chronic Disease Pageant Committee

Attn: Judges

August 2009

Dear Judges:

As you stated in your call for pageant entrants, there is so much more to the world of pageantry than beauty, swimsuits, and a great smile. The essay submission, is, I feel, the defining moment of a truly worthy winner. It's not just for college applications anymore! Here is a glimpse into my charmed life.....


As a young lady--age 16, to be exact--I had the fortunate experience of being diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. While other girls my age were dreaming of boys, clothes, and makeup, I was hiding in the bathroom, checking my blood sugar and giving myself insulin injections!!!!


(insert high cheer kick and spirit fingers)

Now, before you say that it wouldn’t be fair for me to win this pageant because I’ve already won the Diabetes lottery, let me tell you why my disease is so amazingly, unbelievably, and undeniably sexy.

In addition to being blessed with circulation problems that will probably cause me to lose one or more extremities during my life, I’ve also been fortunate enough to acquire several disease-related food allergies!!! My friends and family love LOVE love going out to eat with me because I’m super easy to accommodate. Included on the long list of foods that my body can’t tolerate (cookies, cakes, candy, soda, fruit juice) are super weird things like nuts, berries, and RICE. Basically, the only things I can eat without throwing my body into a diabetic coma or anaphalytic shock are cheese whiz and white bread…It’s a good thing both of those things are so healthy for you!!!!


Shortly after being diagnosed with Diabetes, I also acquired another autoimmune disease—Eczema!!! Having scaly bumps all over your body is really fun (and attractive) and what’s more, makes for good dinner party conversation.


Overhead at a recent party at my husband’s work:


“Uh…Bob, Did you see those oozing bumps on that woman’s hands?”


Leprosy rocks.


In addition to Diabetes, I also suffer from INFERTILITY! After spending several years getting my diabetes under control so that we could start trying to have a family, I went to a fertility specialist, where I got some awesome news. The doctor told me that under “no circumstances would I ever be able to conceive!!!”


I was, of course, elated to hear this news.


Infertility NEVER goes away and it is a constant thorn in my side and ache in my heart. If it’s not a chronic disease, I don't know what is!

Yours, with all the hope of winning this glorious award,

Ms. Diabetes

(AKA Rochelle)

18 comments

Anonymous said...

Bless her heart! The food allergies alone are enough to drive you insane. My 6 year old has a potentially deadly peanut allergy among other things. We carry around two big epipens everywhere we go and pray that he will not touch anything that some other kid has touched that ate peanut butter that day. :-( Karen in NC

Martha said...

I've had sugar issues for years and now can't hardly eat out without having problems... it's so hard. And fertility too! My husband and I have dealt with that for sometime now. It's hard stuff for sure. I'm amazed how many women there are who suffer every day and have so much to worry about. My heart goes out to all the "sexy illness holders" out there.

Stephanie said...

OK, at first I thought this pageant was brilliant and funny, but now I'm slowly becoming more and more heartbroken and sympathetic to the plights of these women! Hang in there girls! The fact that you can laugh at things I would be sobbing over is a true measure of your awesomeness.

brittany said...

I'm waiting on Ms. Lupus and Hashimoto's.
Autoimmune disorders are HOT.
I know my husband just looooves watching me pop pill after pill in the futile effort to get my immune system under control.

Christa said...

I have Eczema too! On my fingers is where it's the worst..why is that?! I actually got hospitalized for a week because of it in high school...people thought I got liposuction when I went back to school because all the swelling had gone down.
Being an autoimmune disease it has it's day. One day it's nearly gone, then I fall asleep to only wake up covered in a scaley rash and oozy blisters on my hands and in and joint that sweats.
Ain't it great!

Jessica Bjorn said...

With my experience with T1 diabetes, one can eat whatever they want, and control it with insulin intake... if they want a nice gut!

Renny said...

Man, these posts make me grateful that all I have is rheumatoid arthritis...
Seriously, I never thought I'd say that.

Scrapingirl said...

I agree with Renny. I've never been so happy to have the unknown disease that I have. I don't mind never going out at night, or getting sick anytime of the day, for no reason at all. I will try not to complain.
You ladies ROCK!!

friea said...

Have to agree with Stephanie ... my heart is going out to all these ladies and while its great that they can laugh at their illnesses, it's not funny that they have to deal with this. :(

A said...

I hope Ms Diabetes will seek a second opinion on the infertility diagnosis. Last year, a doctor told me it was highly unlikely I'd ever get pregnant. I went to a different doctor, and a few weeks ago gave birth to twins.

Jessica Bjorn said...

Pumps have helped many women maintain their blood sugars so that they can conceive and carry healthily! They are wonderful!

Maranie said...

Best of luck to Rochelle, who makes my PCOS/fibromyalgia combo look sissy in comparison. Seriously, I am loving this "contest" because it brings to light so many women who are out there every day just struggling with every day life, and helps those of us who do not have these conditions understand the plight of those who do...with a little Jana Matthews humor on the side, just to lighten it up.

metaphase said...

I have to say I high-five all you contestants. I am healthy (a little too, healthy, if you know what I mean- size 12, ok 14..) but that's the most I have to worry about now. Though I'm sure I'll have heart disease and alzheimer's when I'm older since like my whole family does! But right now, I see that I am truly lucky. I also must say, I adopted a son, not b/c of infertility, just b/c we thought it was right for our family, and that has been one of the biggest blessing of my life! Hang in there. There may be a different journey to being a parent that what you first thought:)

Anonymous said...

To Christa: I have something similar...If I use antibacterial soap or anything like that-touch aloe, baby wipes, etc, etc...I break out in tiny itchy fluid filled blisters all over my fingers. Mmmm, sexy, I know! I finally found a doctor that gave me a steroid cream Fluocinonide or something like that... knocks it right out within a couple of days. When I have a flare up of it I put it all over my hands and fingers, put on gloves and sleep with it on. Two nights (sometimes even one night) and it's gone! :-) Karen in NC

Lisa said...

I have been blog hopping tonight and found you from conversations with a cupcake. Before that I was on another site by a girl who just wrote a book about how she cured herself of crohns naturally...hmmm...the address is http://meghantelpnerblog.com/the-healthy-cookie-unbaked/ if you are interested.Hope it helps!

Kamity said...

She gets my vote.

Dang, I have no allergies and no weird diseases.

But I have two bug bites on my left foot and they ITCH.

Anonymous said...

Ms. Diabetes gets my vote!

BASSakward Tales said...

i am so glad to see someone taking on these issues...i am a type 1 diabetic and anm on an inuslin pump..one cannot enjoy anything or be sad about anything bc of your blood sugar...many people don't understand the trials of having a chronic disease....thanks for opening this world up to others...i found your blog on fivemockingbirds...we were college roommates...