“Rosie Becomes a Warrior” Cares for Your Child and Your Inner-Child
I remember when I was in the fifth grade. It was less than a year after my type 1 diabetes diagnosis at 10-years-old. We were assigned to write a book about anything we wanted. These were short books, considering we were fifth-graders, and sadly, I believe mine is lost somewhere in a pile of cardboard boxes in my garage. We had to write and illustrate the books. (I enjoyed the assignment, if that’s not obvious.)
Despite its currently unknown location, I vividly remember describing my type 1 diabetes diagnosis in that piece of elementary literature. “It was my own personal ‘Fear Factor’,” I wrote, attributing the experience to the Joe Rogan-hosted television series of the time. I thought myself clever with that line.
Now I think of “Fear Factor” in reference to type 1 diabetes and consider how many gruesome bugs I’d eat to be cured. (I’m willing to bargain. I imagine you are too if you’ve tasted even a few weeks of type 1 diabetes yourself or with your child.)
This childhood experience felt like a bit of a nightmare at the time, and that feeling mostly stemmed out of fear of the unknown. I didn’t fully understand why I was feeling so poorly, nor what the road ahead would lead to. Then again, do any of us ever know what the road ahead has in store?
That was then, this is now
Many years later, I am 27-years-old and am in a relatively good place in my life. I went through a rough time as a teenager where I didn’t want to accept type 1 diabetes as a lifelong sentence. I was resentful and disappointed at times that I hated a part of my body I could never change.
I remember this thought that a 15 or 16-year-old Julia had and wish I could go back and hug her. I wish I could tell her things got better, not because they changed, but because I learned how to handle it better. I learned my worth. Age is kind with wisdom to those who are willing to develop. I learned how to look at life better as I grew and immersed myself in different experiences. I learned that everyone has problems, but it’s how we manage them that makes a difference in our overall quality of life.
Rosie Becomes a Warrior
“Rosie Becomes a Warrior” is a childhood “nightmare” that I’ve turned into a dream. Having type 1 diabetes isn’t a dreamy experience. It can be frightening, overwhelming, and difficult to grasp.
Just because you have type 1 diabetes doesn’t mean you have to lead a poor life. “Rosie Becomes a Warrior” is a new children’s story that I created to spread hope and a feeling of care among the community. I hope it serves as a support mechanism to parents who have children with type 1 diabetes, educational resource for friends and family members that love someone with type 1 diabetes, and source of empowerment for all children with type 1 diabetes.
I hope reading “Rosie Becomes a Warrior” fills you with joy and gives you the same feeling that a hug with your favorite human does. “Rosie” is about healing. Her story is about helping children with type 1 diabetes craft their own story into a positive and uplifting one.
And, until there is a cure, I aspire to tell more lighthearted and uplifting stories to help you and your child navigate every phase of this life with type 1 diabetes (T1D) realistically and hands-on. There is an authentic and wonderfully unparalleled sense of community, friendship and support among the type 1 diabetes community. I dedicate myself to being a driving factor of that mantra through expanding the “Rosie Becomes a Warrior” series as I go and grow for everyone managing type 1 diabetes who is looking for more support and comfort.
For now, there is book one, and I can’t wait to connect with you through “Rosie Becomes a Warrior.”
About the Author
Julia Flaherty is an award-winning digital marketer, type 1 diabetes advocate, writer, content creator and Beyond Type 1 Leadership Council member. “Rosie Becomes a Warrior” is her most recent creative endeavor, which she aspires to turn into a larger series and experience for children navigating type 1 diabetes with their families and friends. As a person with type 1 diabetes of almost 20 years herself, Flaherty’s personal experience with T1D allows her to speak about the experience in impactful, realistic and positive ways. Flaherty believes that perception means everything when it comes to handling life’s challenges. Everyone has problems. It’s how we handle them that makes the difference in our overall quality of life. Learn more about Flaherty’s passion for creating, storytelling and advocating for people with type 1 diabetes at https://www.rosiethet1dwarrior.com/about-the-author.
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