Emily and Evie
Emily and Evie are very close sisters; in fact they share more in common than a lot of siblings do.
In late 2013, at the age of four, Emily became unwell and started losing weight. Luckily, her GP knew the signs and did a very quick blood sugar test that indicated Emily likely had the autoimmune disease, type 1 diabetes. She was rushed to hospital where the presence of type 1 diabetes antibodies was confirmed. Emily stayed in hospital with her Mum while she and her family came to terms with this shock diagnosis (there was no history of this in the family). Blood tests every few hours and insulin at every meal became the norm for Emily. It was really tough but Emily’s smile never strayed far and because it had been picked up early by her GP, Emily didn’t get as sick as some children can before the diagnosis of type 1 diabetes is confirmed. With the support of incredible specialists, family, teachers and friends, Emily was soon back into kindy, dancing, swimming and gym. At school now, Emily’s friends and committed staff work hard to keep her safe. Emily is an avid reader of adventure stories and loves drawing and writing poems.
The family’s support network stepped up again when, in April 2016, her little sister Evie, then four, started to show the tell-tale signs of type 1 diabetes – extreme thirst, frequent urination, irritability and very high blood sugar levels. Because Evie’s family knew what to do, she didn’t have to stay in hospital and even made it to a little friend’s birthday party the day after diagnosis. Evie has continued to love her dancing, ballet, gym, scootering and trampolining. She also loves to draw princesses, help in the kitchen and write stories.
Emily and Evie support each other through thick and thin and help each other when one is having a low or high blood sugar. They really get each other; and they show a lot of empathy for other children living with health challenges.
Type 1 diabetes is life-threatening and it takes 24 hour management to keep safe. It is a lot for anyone, let alone a child, to live with. Emily and Evie don’t let their diabetes get in the way of living their lives to the full and are so grateful for the support they get from all those who have learned to help manage their diabetes so they can get on with being kids.