This is a continuation of “My Story“, my life’s journey towards becoming who I am today. Since it is rather long, I have broken it into sections, so you can read it at your leisure. Each step along the way has had its own particular relevance to me today. This is the third. Please click here to read the first section –My Story, and the second section- The Catalyst
In short, my motivation is the preservation of life.
In 2007, I was 7 months pregnant with my daughter. I guess you can say the hormones kicked in, and I had a maternal need to protect and provide for my child. I had seen that diabetes could destroy and devastate families. I felt that it was my responsibility to do something to protect my own.
For the first time, our generation is in danger of outliving our children. This is not okay with me. We are supposed to protect our children from the things that can harm them. WHY not diabetes? So in 2008, I started the Skinny Gene Project, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that is dedicated to helping others prevent diabetes.
My daughter is my inspiration and my motivation for living a healthy lifestyle. As her mother, the best way for me to teach her is to lead by example. I want her to grow up thinking that Saturday morning hikes are normal, desserts are for special occasions (the not so healthy ones anyway), and that life should be lived- not taken for granted.
For the first 3 years of life, my daughter suffered from a severe case of pediatric G.E.R.D. We struggled to manage her pain levels and to find the underlying cause that was contributing to her condition. As doctors searched for a diagnosis to explain her symptoms, they would first have to rule out a few life-threatening diseases. The “what if game” became a constant reminder of the uncertainty of tomorrow.
Anyone who is a parent and has watched their child suffer, knows that when you finally get through it, you’ll be face to face with a new perspective at the other end. Mine was this…
“There are things, that no matter how hard I try, I can’t prevent my daughter from battling. Type 2 diabetes is NOT going to be one of them.”
Since she is a minority, she already has a 50% likelihood of developing diabetes in her lifetime. Fortunately, genetics alone will not predetermine a person for having type 2 diabetes.
Environment and lifestyle choices will also affect her outcome. My job, as her mother, is to give her the best possible opportunity to live a long and healthy life.
In essence, I’m living life with the intention of saving hers.