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Advice for people with diabetes and their families

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Hayley's story: I'm walking to give my son the future he deserves

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Hayley

Son diagnosed age 5.

It’s us together that will raise awareness and the well needed pennies to find a cure.

Hayley is taking part in our London Bridges Challenge with her son, Raife, 8, who has type 1 diabetes. It's been a tough few years for the whole family, so they're walking the London Bridges Challenge with friends to raise money for a better future for people with diabetes.

Journey with diabetes

Hayley's experience with diabetes

My 8-year-old son, Raife, myself and many, many family and friends will be walking the London Bridges Challenge on 30th September.

Raife was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of five with no history of diabetes in our family and with no prior warnings. He became unwell, literally overnight, so when you are rushed to hospital with your child very poorly to be told “your son has diabetes”, your world completely caves in. Completely dumbstruck, and while spending that first night in the hospital, I was reading anything and everything to do with the illness while my child screamed the ward down as he was being pricked and prodded by the most caring, wonderful nurses and doctors. But when it’s your child you step up to the mark, with no sleep. You have to deal with it. 

To inflict pain on your child is wrong but it’s also right, you are the one they trust. I tell Raife "I have to do this to you baby" but to explain to someone so very little this is what we have to do to go back home breaks you in two. But it’s essential. This is our new life.

We muddled through the next few days in the hospital, and they let us home for an afternoon. Then an evening, and later for the night. The first night was terrifying. Sitting, watching, finger-pricking to see whether my child was still alive was the worst night of my life. And to then see the red line pop up. That night and the stomach-churning feeling is something I will never forget. I went through the procedure of dextrose, bloods, more dextrose ... something that now three years later is so normal. There isn't a night that goes by that I am not up and around at 2 or 3 am. Right now it’s 2.15am, and I am wide awake! Everyone that deals with this cruel and hurtful disease is affected.

Fundraising

Walking the London Bridges Challenge

To walk at my son's side at the London Bridges Challenge, and that of so many others who walk in our shoes every day and night, will be an honour and a privilege to say the least.

This changed our lives drastically as it has done for the millions of others worldwide. We need to work together to deal with this head on, just like we deal with the disease, we need to deal with a cure!

Our son Raife has, and still is, learning to deal with this daily. But diabetes has made Raife the strongest, most courageous, funny boy with a 'not a care in the world' attitude. He’s one tough boy and the older he gets he will become even more so. He's now found the courage and strength to put his energy into sports, as he knows that being fit and healthy is what will help him take on the world and his diabetes. He won't let his diabetes control his life.

It’s us together that will raise awareness and the well-needed pennies to find a cure. A cure to help everyone affected by diabetes. And to give my son the future he needs and deserves.

We love you Raife - our very own Superhero!

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