Fellow Grinder – The Diabetes Advocate, Dave Thomas

Dave Thomas

The DDG recently met Dave Thomas, a T2D who raised a ton of cash for the American Diabetes Association, Tour de Cure.  He was a total hoot and fulfilled the DDG mission of Real Support For The Diabetic Life, by honestly answering the questions we presented.

1. What would you like to tell all of those people who don’t understand the type 2 diabetes diagnosis?  All the people that I run into who don’t understand diabetes have never taken the time to look into it or someone with diabetes hasn’t taken the time to explain it to them.   There are a lot of stereotypes associated with being diabetic.  I would like for them to ask me about it when they see me checking my sugar, or in my case taking some insulin.  It would open up a great conversation about my diabetes and an opportunity to educate them.  If it’s someone I know pretty well I could share what to look for if I am high or low.  Just about everybody in my office knows now that I have diabetes.  It didn’t always used to be that way.   I still get the occasional remark,  “you can’t eat that, you’re diabetic”.  I just smile and talk to them later.

2. You’ve been a diabetes activist and fundraiser for a few diabetes organizations. What advice could you give them in order to get more people involved?  You have to be passionate about it.  Sharing about diabetes and educating people whenever and wherever you can.   You can wait to raise money at the time of the event but then that’s is all you do.  If you want to bring awareness to the facts and the effects of diabetes then you have to be an advocate year round.

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Fellow Grinder – Meet a T2D Who Flipped the Switch

The DDG wants to share the stories of fellow diabetic warriors.  Meet John B., a Type 2 diabetic who used the diagnosis as a catalyst to transform his life.

DDG: Dude, what are you all about?
JB: I have type 2 diabetes. It is a disease of choice and I choose not to live with the symptoms anymore. I will work hard, play outside in God’s playground, be present and I choose life! That is what I’m about.

DDG: Tell us about your diagnosis day.    

JB: I was diagnosed November 30, 2011.  I hadn’t been feeling well and I suspected diabetes, so I went in for some blood work.  Dr. Ratliff called to tell me that my A1c was critically high and my blood sugar was 434.  I have Type 2 diabetes and had apparently had it for quite some time. That was the most important date in my life because it allowed me to move forward with purpose, and live my life by my rules. I just had to learn what those rules would be.  I decided the minute I hung-up the phone that I was going to live, not only live, I was going to thrive!   As Andy Dufresne (Shawshank Redemption) said,  “Get busy living, or get busy dying”. (more…)