Grace Chamberlain awalnya bingung dengan tubuhnya. Di usia 7 tahun, ia masih mengompol di celana, bau mulut yang berlebih, dan kadang linglung mirip hilang ingatan. “Ketika dokter memvonis penyakit diabetes militus tipe 1, aku belum tahu penyakit apa itu dan gejala-gejala anehnya,” ujar Grace.

Grace Chamberlain was initially confused with her body. At 7 years old, she was wetting her pants, she had excessive mouth odor, and she would oftentimes lost track of herself. “When the doctors declared I had type 1 diabetes, I didn’t know what disease it was and its strange symptoms,” says Grace.

 

Sabuk Insulin

Insulin Belt

Belakangan, Grace paham bahwa penyakit ini timbul karena tubuh tak mampu menghasilkan insulin akibat kerusakan pada pankreas. Padahal insulin sangat penting bagi tubuh karena berfungsi untuk mengendalikan kadar gula darah.

Recently, Grace understood that the disease is caused by the body’s inability to produce insulin because of pancreatic damages. Insulin is very important for the body to allow it to control the blood sugar level.

Nah, agar tubuhnya bisa memperoleh insulin, Grace harus memakai sabuk yang melingkar di pinggangnya. Sabuk ini berguna sebagai perantara saat menyuntikkan insulin ke dalam tubuh Grace. Awalnya, ketika ditanya teman-temannya, ia terpaksa berbohong supaya tak malu. Grace berkilah sabuk itu adalah sejenis telepon.

Well, in order for her body to receive insulin, Grace must wear a belt around her waist. This belt acts as a medium to inject insulin into her body. At first, when she was asked by her friends, she lied about it over fear of shaming. Grace would say that it was a kind of telephone.

 

5.552 Kali Suntikan Insulin

5,552 Insulin Shots

Setiap hari, Grace harus menusuk jari sebanyak 6-12 kali untuk memeriksa kadar gula darahnya. Saat tertidur pun, sang Ibu, Patricia Chamberlain tetap memeriksa kadar gula darah Grace pada jam 3 dan 6 pagi. Di sekolah, Grace kerap bolak-balik ke ruang kesehatan untuk disuntik insulin. Bertahun–tahun, rutinitas itu dilakukan Grace dibantu keluarganya. Hingga usia 15 tahun, ia sudah memeriksa kadar gula darah sebanyak 34 ribu kali ditambah 5.552 suntikan insulin. Mmm… Kasihan Grace ya, Kids!

Every day, Grace must poke her finger around 6-12 times to check her blood sugar level. Even when she is asleep, her mother, Patricia Chamberlain would still check her blood sugar level at 3 and 6 in the morning. In school, Grace would often go to the infirmary for an insulin shot. For years, the routine was done by Grace with help of her family. By the age of 15, she has checked her blood sugar level over 34 thousand times with around 5,552 shots of insulin. Hmmm… poor Grace, right Kids!

 

Ditemani Anjing Kesayangan

Accompanied by her loyal Dog

Untuk membantu menjaga kondisi Grace, hadirlah seekor anjing bernama Jackie. “Penciuman Jackie sudah terlatih saat kadar gula darahku tidak stabil. Ia akan mengingatkan dengan mencakar, merengek atau mengaruk-garuk lantai rumahku. Bahkan saat aku tidur pun, Jackie akan menarik-narik selimutku,” cerita Grace. Jadi, jangan heran bila melihat selimut milik Grace yang dihiasi banyak lubang akibat cakaran Jackie.

To help maintain Grace’s condition, a dog named Jackie is around. “Jackie is trained to sniff my high blood sugar level. He would remind me by scratching, whining, or scraping my house’s floor. Even when I am asleep he would tug my blanket,” Grace tells. So, no wonder Grace’s blanket is adorned by many holes from Jackie’s scratching.

Grace bersama keluarga dan temannya, Joana, juga melakukan perjalanan dengan bersepeda dari Fort Worth, Texas, ke California. Ia mengayuh sepeda sejauh 105 mil atau 168 km untuk menggalang dana penelitian diabetes militus tipe 1. Semangat terus ya, Grace!

Grace along with her family and friend, Joana, is doing a road trip on bicycle from Fort Worth, Texas, to California. She pedaled 105 miles or 168 kilometers to raise funds for the research of type 1 diabetes. Keep the spirit, Grace!

 

 

Teks: JFK       Foto: Istimewa

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