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Joslin Medalists.

I would love one of these one day.To be a Joslin Medalist, you need to mark 25, 50, or 75 years with diabetes.  (Well, technically, you get a certificate at the 25 year mark, but it's definitely a milestone to celebrate.)  And over the weekend, I had the opportunity to spend the day with Joslin's medalists who have spent over 50 years with type 1 diabetes. 

I was invited as a member of the "media," but it was a strange experience, being "one of them," but only halfway there.  ("You're a nice kid, but you're still a rookie in this crowd," one woman said, flashing her medal and her smile at the same time.)  These generous medalists allowed me to listen to their stories, and offered a few sage words of advice into my video camera.

(Best response that didn't end up on camera:  "That's a video recorder? I have glucose meters bigger than that!")

While I compile my notes, let this video suffice as evidence that we can do this.  And seeing living, breathing, laughing proof of that is an amazing thing.


OMG I know like five of them! Martin Drilling sponsors our walk team! he' a great guy -- he called us out of the blue shortly after lauren was dx'd to tell us how good her life will be!!

kerri wow. WOW. i so loved this. thank you from the bottom of my heart. what a mighty thing you have done in introducing all of us to all of them. we CAN do it! hurrah ....

This is so beautiful and inspiring. And I love their parting words! ;) Thank you for this. We all need to watch this video every once in a while, I think, to remember that life with diabetes can be good, and long, and healthy.

Thank you.

Such an inspirational video! My only goal in this physical life is to live long enough to celebrate 50 years of marriage with Trey. That means I'll have lived with diabetes 52 years and be 73-years-old. I hope I look as good as some of the folks on that video. =)

Very inspiring Kerri! I needed a boost this morning after suffer a round of self-pity. thanks for attending and posting.

"insulin and a sense of humor"- LOVE IT

Thank you so very much for this Kerri. It's so inspiring as a mom to a Type 1 daughter to hear these words and see these people. To see you. To see people who tell her she CAN. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

This is an amazing video. Three years ago I came to the google world and found your site. My intial search was "how long will I be able to live with Type 1?" I had fears and anxiety of survival.

I have lived with Diabetes for almost 39 years. I looking forward to the continue survival........Yes we can do it.

Such inspirations! Thank you for sharing! I posted link to my FB page: https://www.facebook.com/PODBirmingham

So beautiful and inspiring. Thank you Kerri, and thank you to the medalists for sharing with you.

Thanks for producing this video ... it's great!

I loved seeing this. For some reason it made me cry. I guess I always assumed diabetes at the elderly stage of my life would be a miserable/complicated time... I loved seeing how genuinely happy/healthy these people are. :)

Words fail me except one - hope!

After a rough weekend which actually had me doubting my (far in the future) entrance into "old age" I am rejuvenated by these testimonies and ever so grateful that you posted them . Thank you and may we live long enough to all collect our gold medals...

This is just awesome. I think i have some new heroes in that crowd, too :-).

I wanna give them all a hug and a high-five!

Great video, Kerri. Thanks for putting it together. Makes me reflect a little more on the post I wrote today about my mom and her 50+ years of T1, and one coming up later in the week. All of these medal-recipients are inspiring and it's great to hear what they have to say. Thanks for this, Kerri!

This made my whole effing day. Just sayin.

You got me crying, Kerri...

You are so amazing for putting this together. We will ALL live to get many Joslin medals... that is, unless they find a cure BEFORE we get to live long enough with diabetes. If that is the case, I will be happy without one! ;)

Read a pretty neat excerpt about Diabetic medalists.
Re-iterates what you said, manage,manage, manage

I got my medal this past year for going over 50 years. Wonder where this video was made, at Joslin?

For you newbees, I'm now 66 years old and just won two trophies for bodybuilding in the Masters and light weight classes.

You CAN do it!

Wow. How inspirational. These people prove the doomsayers we've heard through the years so wrong. These PWD look and sound just like everyone else...no big stamp with a number on their forehead that makes them different. This video should be shown to everyone who is newly diagnosed so that they can see there is more than just promises. There is living proof of hope!

Also, great job in editing the video, Kerri. It made the powerful message even more powerful.

This is so inspiring, thank you for putting this together.


Amazing Video!! Thank you for sharing this.

What an awesome testimony to what living well with diabetes looks like. Thanks for sharing this inspiring video!

I'm not a crier. But you've made me cry. That is so AMAZING!

What a beautiful thing to see as a mother!! My baby girl has been T1 for 11 years. WOW...these people are amazing!

This makes me cry. And eat bananas. And ride my bike. But mostly, it gives me hope and relief. Thank you :)

This is so inspiring and hopeful. Thank you!

So very inspiring and amazing...Thank you for sharing it with us Kerri!

Thanks, Kerri!! Nice to hear that we CAN do this!

Thank you Kerri as a mommy to a naturally sweet little 4 year old boy that has had the disease since he was 2 it gives me hope that he's going to live a long and healthy life just like those medalist!

What an inspiring video. Made me feel like I was talking to my grandparents! :) They all looked 'drop-dead-gorgeous' in my opinion!!!! ....also, I just realized I'm only 19 short years away from my 50th anniversary of "D". :O

Aw, you made me tear up again. I want Tom Beatson (sp???) to ride with the Pancremaniacs next year!

I work for a diabetes organisation in Australia and I always say that the best part of my job is meeting Kellion Medalists - our version of Joslin Medalists. Inspired doesn't even touch the sides! My favourite quote from a man who'd lived with type 1 for 75 years is "I don't consider diabetes a disease. It's an inconvenience". How's that for a great attitude! I want it printed on a t-shirt.

My daughter Grace has been a Joslin patient for just over two years (and a Barton Girl!). A teacher at her elementary school received his 50 year medal last year. He was in the hospital for his 8th birthday and remembers the nurses bringing in a cake and singing Happy Birthday to him, then telling him he couldn't eat it! Other than being hypoglycemic unaware, which he's learned to adjust for, he has no diabetes-related complications. Thank you, Kerri, for sharing these stories, and reminding us parents of diabetics that our children's future can be anything they want it to be.

Thank you for making this video Kerri - as a (going on) 43 year T1, it gives me courage, inspiration, determination, and hope. I can do it!

What an amazing experience for you. I cant even begin to imagine what stories you were told.

'tis me again. Just wondering... Were any of those people pumping??

Diabetes has come a looooooong way baby! I used to have some of the 'antique' diabetic supplies (glass syringes) from when my great-aunt was first diagnosed. I bet some of those people had to use glass syringes back in the day...

After a few weeks of dealing with crazy blood sugars due to stress, time changes, and swimming (aka instantaneous low blood sugars), this video is exactly what I needed. Thanks so much. It gives me the renewed hope to know I CAN do this, and 26 years from now I'll be standing side by side with these Joslin medalists, celebrating 50 years of living with diabetes.

Not just surviving, but thriving! I'm going to be taking to heart what Pat says: "If you're diagnosed with diabetes … good health is the thing you will enjoy, because you're eating right and you're exercising!" A stunning testament to the benefits of a good attitude.

Great video, Kerri!

Thanks for the video, it was great. I was in Boston, May 17, at Joslin to particpate in the fifty year medalist study. The people at Joslin were great. I am now in my 51st year. You can do it.

I'm showing this video to my 3 and a half year old DD tomorrow. And the next day. She'll get it. Thanks for doing what you do, Kerri.

Hi Kerri! You did a very good thing showing up at the Joslin meet-up. the replies here make it so obvious that you help so many people with what you do for diabetics online, and elsewhere. It was wonderful meeting you at Joslin. I have been T1 for 65 years, and am very healthy. I am looking forward to receiving my 75 year medal in a little more than 9 years.

That was awesome!!!! Okay, a little over 18 more years for me, and then I'm gonna get my medal too. :)

Just what I needed :) I want all of you with me in 22 years when I get to 50 myself...and again in 2058 when I hope to be 87 :) (Bring the hearing aids!)

I loved this post. But more importantly, so did my six-year-old T1d boy. His eyes lit up and he asked so many questions. He even giggled a bit. You are the BEST, girl.

So encouraging for my mother's heart right now!!

Wow! Thanks for the video - words can't express the hope I feel!

Oh, the tears are streaming down my face as I just finished watching this video. How amazing these d-heroes are. Love them, love you for posting this, and love the DOC. We ARE doing this, every last one of us. (31 yrs. on Monday for me--I'll be very excited in another 19 yrs. to have my big 5-0! ;) Thanks, Kerri. Mwah.

Jenn yes many of we 50 year medalists are on the insulin pumps..me about a decade now and the addition of a CGMS is brilliant. Indeed we go back to the 1940's 50's the barbaric days of big glass syringe [one] and 'a' stainless steel needle that our mum or dad could sharpen..used the same one for years. That must be what made us so tough and resilient! None of we medalist knew anyone else with J/D we had no peers.. just ourselves. The medal made each of us cry when we opened the velvet cranberry coloured box and saw..... the medal :)

Hi Annette... thanks for your side of the story. Now I'm tearing up. WTG on 50 years. You've come a looooooong way, baby!! ;)

Wow! All I can say is...WOW. So amazing and inspiring to see these people! Thank you for sharing:)

My aunt Mary Jane Hoffman of VA is a Joslin Medalist (50+ yrs) with type 1D. She is my inspiration and a big reason why I keep pushing for more dollars and better research. I'm in my 14th yr. I want solutions and hope for the future. The video is awesome and these medalists are drop dead gorgeous. Thanks Kerri!

this is priceless for us mama's of babes with t1d and as a wife of the man of my dreams whom has t1d, too. Thank you for sharing this.

Wow! How did I miss this wonderful post of yours Kerri! If I was an American - I would try to apply for my 50 year award - this is all new to me - the Joslin Institute (I know - I've been living in a cave all these past 44 years - time to get out and smell the roses).
Like others have said - you can't tell the difference between a PWD and a nonD - though I think we D's have a better attitude to life and I've been told by my nonD friends that I'll outlive them (hope not - it'll be too lonely).

Thanks Kerri. I showed your vedio to my daughter who is type1 since three years.

I'm happy to be included in the 50 year club! No doubt it's in large part of the group I founded in 1997: www.type1diabeteslounge.org.

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