Brenda Novak's On-Line Diabetes Auction:
2005: we raised$35,000
2006: we raised $62,500!
2007: we raised over $141,700!
2008: we raised over $252,000!
2009: we raised over $270,000!
2010: we broke the million dollar mark by raising over $303,000!
2012 Auction--May 1-May 31: We're on our way!
Brenda Novak, a bestselling romance author I am acquainted with is chairing a major fundraiser/on-line auction for this foundation.
I am donating three tote bags this year: an Otherworld Tote Bag and an Indigo Court Tote Bag, and a Galenorn Audio Tote Bag. The Otherworld and Indigo Court collections contain a KINDLE TOUCH, and the Audio collection contains a SONY WALKMAN MP3 PLAYER!
Galenorn Audio Tote Bag
A thank you to Tantor Audio for providing the audio books.
Why Am I Involved?
Because diabetes is one of the fastest growing diseases today. Because it's a devastating disease. And because it touches my family personally. My husband has Type 1 diabetes, so I know on a very detailed level what strains this disorder puts on the body. While some cases of Type 2 diabetes can be controlled via diet and exercise, juvenile--or Type 1--diabetes is a different matter.
I watch Samwise try to calculate his insulin needs three-four times a day, every single day of his life, and there's no clear formula--everything alters your need for insulin, from working out to not eating enough to eating too much to not enough sleep...so there's a constant balancing act going on trying to reproduce what the body should be doing naturally. I've pulled him out of seizures at night, a few too many times to ever sleep well. I've learned more than I ever wanted to learn about the delicate balance in a diabetic's life between working out, diet, sleep, and stress.
About Type 1 Diabetes
Juvenile diabetes, also known as Type 1 diabetes, is an especially rough condition to cope with. There's no real knowledge of how it begins, though it's thought a virus may be the culprit. Those who have it--including my husband--must rely on several shots of insulin throughout the day to stay alive. Typically, type 1 is developed before the age of 20, although some people (like Samwise) come to it late--he developed it when he was 27. In some cases, babies are born with it.
What is Insulin?
Insulin is a hormone secreted by the islets of Langerhans in the pancreas. Insulin is responsible for regulating the blood glucose levels. When insulin levels are reduced, the body cannot utilize nutrients from food and an undiagnosed Type 1 diabetic will starve to death if left untreated. The lack of insulin causes the blood sugar to soar out of control and prevents the body from absorbing nutrients out of the food, which is why people who contract diabetes show drastic weight loss when they haven't been dieting.
In addition, the inability of the body to produce insulin can cause blindness, neuropathy, gangrene, and a host of horrible problems.
Can Type 1 Diabetes Be Reversed or Cured?
Type 1 diabetes, unlike some cases Type 2 diabetes, cannot be reversed or cured at this time. This is a serious condition that debilitates so many people, and we need to find out why it happens, and how to prevent it, and with a little luck--how to cure it, or at least make it more liveable.
Potentials For Better Lives
There are research trials going on right now that could make life so much more bearable. They're testing the injection of insulin cells into the pancreas. Once every six months or so, the diabetic would get a shot...while the cells would slowly die off (because Type 1 is an autoimmune reaction of the body and often leads--as in my husband's case--to autoimmune disorders like the thyroid quitting, and in some people, the adrenal glands shutting down), they would do so over a period of about six months, meaning the diabetic would no longer need daily shots, but only a shot every six months or so. That would be such a blessing.
Stem cell research is very close to several major breakthroughs that would--if not outright cure--make life much more bearable for those who have type 1 diabetes. We NEED government funded research--don't let the big drug companies' lobbyists win out--vote for stem cell research, encourage your congress person to support it.
Together, we can find a cure. Be part of the solution. Make a difference.
I've donated to this auction since 2005, the first year it was out. And I will continue to donate to them until we find a cure.