A Letter To The Sibling Of A Type 1 Diabetic

Being Diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes at the age of two meant a life full of site changes, finger pokes, and carb counting. It’s always been a huge part of not only my life, but my family’s life. Today I took the time to stop and think about how this disease has affected my sister over the years. When discussing this with her she had a similar response to mine: I was diagnosed when we were both pretty young, so it just seemed normal. Although it’s always been normal to the both of us, it doesn’t mean that it’s been an easy ride. Between the hospital stays and low blood sugars, the every day responsibilities of being a Diabetic have consumed a lot of our Mom and Dad’s attention over the years. My sister expressed her memories of having to be more cautious around me as a child and getting in extra trouble when she picked on me. My all time favorite story is when my sister used to yell “run Anna, Mom’s got a needle!!” (I can only imagine how fun this made my Mom’s job of trying to give me a shot).  Some children have different experiences than my sister and me. Not everyone is diagnosed at such a young age, and the diagnosis of a sibling can be a traumatic experience. So I’m writing this article to my sister and any other sibling of a Type 1 Diabetic to say thank you. Thank you for understanding when I hogged all of Mom and Dad’s attention, even if I didn’t mean to. Thank you for never looking at me as strange or weird and always just your sister. Thank you for always being my best friend and partner in crime, even when you had to tiptoe around me (even though you still did your fair share of beating me up). The job of looking out for a sibling with Type 1 Diabetes is a big role to take on, and a thank you is well deserved. I would have never made it this far without the love and support of my older, cooler sister.

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