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Old School Diabetes: Med ID.

"We bought a new fridge," my dad said to me over lunch.

"Oh yeah?" I said out loud.  "We had that thing forever, right?" (Refrigerators are the cockroaches of kitchen appliances. Things just don't die.)

"Just about.  But when the guys came to deliver the new fridge and take the old one away, this was somehow wound around bars in the back."  

He handed me a medical alert bracelet that I remember wearing, with the red, raised Staff of Asclepius (or, as I called it when i was little, "that snake on a stick") that used to get caught on my pony tail and the pocket of my jeans. The metal links were thick and sturdy, designed for the repeated destruction attempts (and I think I've broken no fewer than seven on the emergency brake in my old car). It was beaten up, from years on my wrist and then a subsequent decade under the old refrigerator. 

I brought it home and put it in my jewelry box, alongside my Clara Barton Camp "Bartonian" pin.  Twenty-five years with diabetes has given rise to some interesting collections of memories, some that live in my jewelry box, some that hide under the fridge for decades, and some that stay tangled up in my heart.

"Thanks, Dad."  


That's an awesome find! I wore one as a necklace when I was a kid and would take it off and twirl/sling it around my finger like mad. One time it flew off and broke a lamp. Another time it flew off and went down a sewer drain. Ah, the good ole days!!

What kind of MA jewelry do you wear now? I've got a sterling silver bangle bracelet that my favorite jeweler customized for me. Been wearing it for almost 7 years now (our first purchase with some of our wedding money). It's time for a replacement, and the same jeweler wants to make a replacement.

Sweet, in the type that doesn't raise your blood sugar

Ha ha!

I still have my similar medic alert bracelet, from 23 yrs ago! AND since I somehow continue to break my "nice" one I've been wearing ol' faithful for the past few months. Gotta get off my butt and get another "nice" one...but this original one just keeps on tickin'

When it's not being used, it too resides in my jewlery box.

Relics of time past...

I remember my first medic alert bracelets had my mom's pager number on them. Just sayin....kind of a big deal :)

Zoe breaks her bracelet like every other day. They don't make them like they used too. :)

I remember our trip to the pharmacy to get my first medic alert bracelet then discovering they were not designed for the slim wrist of a 7 year old. It was constantly falling of my wrist. We soon found a more child friendly bracelet (fabric with a huge plastic clip and adjustable in size)

Your blog makes me smile, cry, and laugh. My daughter, age 9.5, was diagnosed with T1D three weeks ago and your blog has given me great solace and strength. She has two awesome bracelets that she chose and proudly, yet quietly wears. Silly, but I'm holding onto her hospital bracelet sort of starting a collection of her own. Maybe it's more for me, but I need to mark this crazy-ass, life changing milestone somehow. Thank you so much for sharing your experience.

You have such an amazing gift for writing something incredibly touching out of everyday events. I'm always encouraged by your blog. It gives me hope for my dear son.

That looks like one of the off-the-shelf, non-customized ones that just has "DIABETIC" in all caps engraved on the back (this was before the whole PWD movement). Is that it?

I still have my first medical ID, although it is only 9 year old. I didn't know there were "cute" options so it is a big dog tag style necklace. I actually don't think I EVER wore it.

my parents gave me a gold medic alert pendant and chain for my 16th birthday. i wore it for years. it has my parents old phone # on it. the chain is broken and the pendant lives in my jewellery box. i have a diabetic tattoo now, but i sort of miss that old necklace.

funny! I had that very same one now lauren's hope bracelet such night and day!

More than once I have been tempted in my life to just get my Diabetes information tattooed on. I work as a broadcast engineer. Every time I must repair equipment, I must remove that necklace.

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