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From my friend, Demarco.

Six year old Demarco and his mother, Kate, read this blog from their home in Australia.  Kate reads the parts outloud to Demarco that are appropriate (apparently he thinks Siah is pretty darn cute) and sometimes he sends me emails that make me laugh out loud, other times they just about break my heart.  Recently, Demarco did his own edition of a "Letter to My Pancreas," that I had to share with you.

Thank you, Kate, for letting me post Demarco's letter.  He's an inspiration, my friend, and his letters always make me smile.  I'm proud to share him with the readers of Six Until Me.  (Hello, Demarco!)

Dear Pancreas,

You and I were good friends before my second birthday. You helped me grow from a little tiny baby into a big boy who could walk. My mum had planned a Bob the Builder Cake for the 23 November, my 2nd birthday. For some reason though, every time I thought of that cake I didn’t want it as much as I used to.

On the 1st November, you stopped being my friend. Mum stopped talking about the Bob the Builder cake. I didn’t know I had a pancreas. I didn’t know what you did, or where you lived. I thought you were going to help me grow into a big man.

Now that I am 6, I know what islet cells are, and I know my body destroyed them by accident. It was a pretty big accident though, Pancreas, I looked at a picture on my Mum’s computer. You look like a bean! A trouble-making bean…

I have learnt lots about you now and why you stopped working. Just like when a car runs out of petrol. I have 4 needles a day now to replace the insulin you can’t make anymore. My mum’s eyes looked so sad (even though she is always happy) whenever she had to give me my medicine, so now I have decided to do it myself. What I just wanted to ask was, I know the doctors’ are helping, I know JDRF are working super hard and I know everyone wants a cure. If one day, please, you could just wake up again, and let a couple of islet cells escape, maybe then you will remember what to do and how to work again.

If you can’t do it though, I understand.  I know how it feels to be different from the other kids. You must be feeling the same way, living so close to the liver and the stomach. I hope they don’t tease you.  One good thing is that, even though you stopped working, I got to go in a plane and see Parliament House and see John Howard!  Not many kids without Type 1 Diabetes could say that. I’m not angry I have Type 1 Diabetes, and I’m not angry at you. I am really patient and have learnt how to wait for scientists to help you work again. I want to be a zoo keeper when I grow up. I have heard that Diabetics can go blind after a long time with no cure…if I went blind, I couldn’t feed the lions or they would eat me!

I believe in you, Pancreas.

Your owner,
Demarco

Demarco

 

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Comments

What a sweet little boy. It makes me cry to read his letter---that he knows as much as he does about his pancreas. I think Demarco and his mom must be extraordinary people and I thank them for sharing this generous and insightful letter.

That kid is only 6? Wow. What a well-written and thoughtful essay. I am touched and impressed.

That was an incredibly articulate letter for his age! He sounds like a very special boy.

Maybe he and Brendon could be pen pals. Would you ask Demarco's mom if she thinks he'd be interested?

Very cute! How old is he now?

Annie - They are incredible people. Truly.

Bob - He's a hot ticket, this kid. His emails make me laugh and cry all at the same time.

Shannon - I'll email Kate and pass that on to her. Can I give her your email?

Scott - He's six. Charmer, that one, eh?

That was beautiful and heart-breaking all at the same time.

Thank you for sharing that Kerri.

And, thank you, Demarco. Your mom is lucky to have you for her little boy.

Yes, you can give my email.

What an amazing kid. Thanks, Kerri.

Wow, what a smart kid and so well able to express himself.

Thank you Demarco for this letter. It was very nice of you to share it with us.

I wish you the very best of good luck with your diabetes.

What a wonderful letter from a very special boy. I read this and wanted to cry. I then went to Overheard in New York which I found through your blog and found this:

Needles Just Aren't Cool Anymore Teen boy #1: Would you do Jane?
Teen boy #2: Well, she's pretty hot... Got nice t*ts and all, but don't you consider diabetes a turn-off?
Teen boy #1: Yeah, dude, totally.

--Metro-North, 125th St stop

Overheard by: Ek CrIsp
I am not sure if I should laugh, cry, or just be glad my husband doesn't feel that way.

Aww now there's an impressive kid! Thanks for sharing this with us! :)

So lovely to hear Demarcos story - I too live in Australia and through JDRF have met this wonderful boy and his gorgeous mother Kate. My daughter, Carrie, 8 also has Type 1. It is quite amazing that these young children, at such a tender age, know SO much about their bodies. They are a constant source of education and inspiration to us all.

Hi all, I'm Kate, Demarco's Mum. Thank you all so much for your lovely comments, and to Kerri, who gave Demarco's story a chance to be published on the acclaimed SUM. Demarco has heard me educate others about Type 1 for such a long time now. Even now when various members of the public say," Aw you don't have anything to complain about. You will grow out of it won't ya? My aunty did." ( you know the drill.)he smiles and
has now taken it upon himself to explain the situation, which leaves people even MORE stunned than if I were to "do the speech".
It was just amazing how on one afternoon just before Xmas, he ran into the house and said that he had some good ideas for a story, he was inspired after me reading bits and pieces from Kerri's "Open Letter to my Pancreas,"and it just grew from there. Everyday he added a few more sentences, and when it was completed, I had to blink away tears to think that my little boy has soaked up so much through his role as a Youth Ambassador,about the way HIS body works. After I read it aloud, I was gobsmacked at how good it really was. (It looks even cuter in his own handwriting though.) Thanks again!

Absolutely adorable, and what a well spoken, mature young man. I can;t wait to hear about his adventures with the lions.

Mature beyond his years. What a neat guy!

Thanks for sharing!

Wow. What a fantastic letter. He sounds like a great kid. Thanks for sharing that Kerri, and Kate.

So precious & honest, yet so difficult to read. Thank you for sharing it.

I am in tears. That is the best thing I have read in a long time.

Thank you Kerri, KAte and especially Demarco! You are awesome bud!

Hello to my friends in the US.

My Kerri did this for me. Mum just read all the nice things you have said about me. I'm a little shocked but I feel really special in my heart. Even more special than when I went to Parliament House. My blood sugar was 22mmol when I was there and I was terrible to my Mum. She always tells me that it isnt my fault, but I can't stop it. As soon as I have my Novorapid,I feel back to normal again, but I feel really bad in my heart and give Mum butterfly kisses to say sorry, and I wish that my blood sugar would not make me cranky.
I want Kerri's work to send her to Australia. Mum printed her picture for me and I carry it in my Spiderman wallet. She is so brave to have Diabetes for 20 years.
Mum said that there is another boy who might like to be my penpal? I would love that. I am having corn cakes with peanut butter for supper tonight, and Milo stirred up in milk. I bet you don't know what Milo is. It is like Ovaltine, and strong men like Ian Thorpe drink it for energy.
I love how kind you have all been to me. Sometimes, I don't mind having Diabetes because I have had some pretty lucky things happen for me. I still want to have a cure though, I wonder when in will be my turn? I wonder what it looks like and what colour it will be? I watched Night in the Museum today. I try and copy the way people in America speak, but I'm an Aussie kid, and I can't do it too well. I like the way you say " can't" and we say "carn't. That makes me laugh.
Bye America! I love you Kerri..Demarco xxxooo.

Kerri:
Thanks for printing this letter, some out there don't realize just how fast these kids have to grow up. It's almost like they lose their childhood. My son was dxd right after his 7th birthday, he is now 11. He has refused to let the big D get in his way, playing ice hockey, little league and basketball.

What a little sweetheart. Thank you, Kerri, for sharing that with us.

Man, this little guy is awesome. :o) Kerri, thanks for sharing this with us.

Man, I'm crying again just from the comments. Demarco is one special little boy.

Go Demarco GO!!! :D I read your letter to my son he has diabetes1 too! He said you did an AWESOME job. How old are you now? He is 9 and said to say "Whats up matey?" ~ My son would LOVE a pen pal ~ he has no good guy friends with diabetes. Check out My (newish) blog in progress....LOL! above PS Kerri thanks for checking out my blog! OF COURSE you can link us :D I am STILL 100% impressed w/all the wonderful people on line whom deal w/this disease and have such a wonderful connection! Being alone is the worst! I have more diabetes blog links too!!! Check back later ~ will link ya too!

Thank you Demarco and God Bless you for being who you are. I'm sure you will not only grow up to take care of lions but of other people along the way as well. Thank you for your honesty sweetheart.

Hey Kerri,
Thanks for posting this!

It inspired me to write my own today at http://www.diabetesmine.com/2007/02/dear_pancreas_m.html

This is the most incredible, sweetest, honest and astonishing thing I've read in a long time !!!
This comes so purely from the heart, I'm really moved :))

Amazing !!!

As so many have said-- Amazing!

An inspiration, that one.

What a sweetie!

Fifty years ago my brother in law was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at the age of two. When I think of all the progress made in glucose control and monitoring, I have a feeling that Demarco is going to have a much better life because he understands his disease early and will have the tools for control.

In the meantime - the cure is on the way, I have no doubt.

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