Diabetes medal/award?

I have mixed emotions on receiving a medal for “living with Diabetes for 25, 50, 60, 70 or 75 years.” As of last year, I qualified for the Joslin 25 year certificate, but for some reason I can not bring myself to take the next step of obtaining the certificate. Do I deserve a medal for living life (with Diabetes)? Hmm, maybe when (if) I reach my 50 year mark, I might have a different opinion with receiving a medal for my “diabetes achievement.” So, my question is, when (if) you reach your 25, 50, 60, 70 or 75 years with diabetes, will you look to obtain any of the below medals/awards?

1. Joslin Medalist-Have you or a loved one lived with insulin-dependent diabetes for 25, 50, or 75 years or more? If so, Joslin would like to recognize this achievement. This program is open to everyone. You do not have to be a Joslin patient to participate. There are no physical restrictions for these awards, however some form of documentation is required.

2. Have you, or do you know someone who has had diabetes for 50 years? Or even 60 or 70 years? If so, why not nominate them for a Diabetes UK Medal? You can also nominate yourself.

The Alan Nabarro Medal for 50 years of living with diabetes
- The Robert Lawrence Medal for 60 years of living with diabetes
- The John Macleod Medal for 70 years of living with diabetes

4. The Lilly Diabetes Journey Awards program, formerly known as LillyforLife™, recognizes diabetes patients who have successfully managed their disease with the help of insulin for 25, 50, or 75 years or more. Since 1974, Lilly has presented more than 2,000 insulin medals to people affected by diabetes. These individuals serve as an inspiration to all people affected by diabetes, for learning how to manage their disease and adapting to the ever-changing technology of diabetes care throughout their diabetes journey

I did the Joslin one last year after hitting 25 years. Hopefully, I will hit 50 years also!

Lord, no. I mean, so I lived?

I can understand why people want to get them though. It is acknowledgment that it’s harder for us to live 25 (or 50 or 75) years than it is other people. (Actually, I don’t think that’s true. Perhaps we just have different problems. I’m not certain our lives are any harder than anyone else’s.) Maybe there’s some other reason people would want a medal. Basically, though, I don’t think it’s a big deal if I live to be 33 (the age I’ll be when I hit the 25-year mark). Or even 58. (Okay, I’d be shocked if I lived to be 58, but, if I do, I don’t want a medal for it.) I mean, most people live to be 33 and 58, and most of them had their own problems to overcome, and they don’t get medals for life.

No, it is not on display anywhere, but I did scan it & email it to everyone I know when it came.

Danny I don’t want it! I think my medal is just being here with my kids and grandkids.

One reason to participate in the Joslin Medalist program is that Joslin does some interesting research on why some diabetics live longer and have fewer complications than others. Participating would help you contribute to that effort. Yes, you will have some expenses; you have to travel to Boston (if you don’t already live there), and probably stay overnight. The technicians and doctors at Joslin think very highly of the medalists and are exceptionally kind and helpful. You will have some blood drawn for lab tests, probably an eye exam, and have to answer some questions about how you have treated your diabetes in the past. I firmly believe the program is an extremely valuable addition to the research in the causes and treatments of diabetes, and I am very happy to have participated. (I proudly display my 50-year Certificate of Achievement in my office), and if I live long enough to reach the 75-year milestone I will travel to Boston again even if I have to charter a jet. One very minor negative: You will receive regular mail solicitations to help in funding the program.

I wouldn’t seen needing an award I don’t think …but how about a cash prize or an all-paid trip to the Tropics? :slight_smile:

I can understand the whole award thing though - it is tough life to live already and with D even tougher and in a way, yeah, you have accomplish something that not everyone on this planet will so you are unique. D people are strong people. :slight_smile:

Exact words I heard when I was diagnosed 36 years ago! My cousin (bless her soul) had the boiling of the needles I got the newly disposable ones when I took Type 1. That being said I still think myself lucky to have lived to see my kids graduate and now getting to see my grandkids. My father has gotten to see his great grandchildern and my grandmother has gotten to see her great great grandchildern! Though my dad got diagnosed with Type 2 later in life he has finally gotten that boy he wanted for 2 generations thanks to my daughter!


I find it to be a sense of accomplishment. I have been able to survive 38 years T1. No major complications. From onset, all I ever heard or read was, “Your Type1? Your going to die sooner!” :(…Perhaps I will and perhaps I won’t.

I have worked very hard over the years to stay on top of things. Eye Test, Urine Test, regular visits, insulin pump and all the other stuff. I have not always had the best A1c, but I am working hard on it.

Just think! The Type 1’s that survive today are really the first group that has received treatments with perfected insulin, insulin pumps, glucose monitors, better education on self managment. Type 1’s before us never had a chance for a long survival. These tools have given us an opportunity to live a good life.

So…your question was, “Would I like to receive a Metal for my achievement”. HELL YA! I have busted my as&%$ for 38 years. And I deserve it.

Therefore, I would like to accept my “METAL OF HONOR” for managing my Diabetes and still be living a great life. I would also like to thank all the scientists and Doctors who developed and created the tools that helped me with self management.

I agree with Danny. When I was diagnosed, doctors didn’t think people would live much longer than 20 years. Things have changed a lot the past 26 years. We have much better insulin. My doctor had to fight my insurance to get a meter for me and now they are handed out like candy. I have a CGMS that tells me what my BS is every minute of the day and alerts me when I get out of range. If people before me had the tools today, then their life expectancy would have been a lot longer than 20 years. My certificate might not mean anything to anyone else, but I am proud of having earned it.

Thought provoking question, Danny.

I personally wouldn’t want a medal, though my husband deserves one:) Acknowledgement of what it takes to deal with diabetes successfully for decades is a positive thing & role modeling for others. The testing Richard & others went through at Joslin as recipients may yield inportant data to help others. I’d gladly participate in that part.

My only T1 friend (diagnosed over 33 years ago) took terrible care of himself for years because he grew up hearing how he wasn’t going to live.

Diabetes is a horrible disease. I was poking fun at one of the doctors who had survived cancer. He was outraged that I would make fun of him. I told him I would swap my diabetes for his cancer any day of the week.

He laughed and said not in a million years.

If you can make it through 25+ years of diabetes,particularly without problems, you derserve a pat on the back. It also gives hope to alot of people that think their going to be blind, on dialysis, and without feet.

I once read that the worst a parent can do to a kid is reward for outcome instead of effort.

At first I thought: What nonsense! An A+ without putting in much effort should be worth more than a B with a lot of effort.

Only on second thought I realized that rewarding for outcome instead of effort creates anxiety because I cannot control outcome. I can control effort.

I take that back. I cannot even control effort. I went through an episode when I had problems getting out of bed. How many people think of getting out of bed as an achievement?

Bottom line: I am grateful that I have the strength to take care of myself, including my diabetes. I don’t want an award because I don’t want to separate myself from people that don’t get an award. I don’t want to separate myself from people that had a harder time dealing with the challenge.

Very well put, HelmOOOOOt.

I bet the good doctor would change his mind if the cancer came back. A loved one had a reoccurrence while undergoing chemo. The only way out was a bone marrow transplant. 50% of all bone marrow transplant patients die within the first 5 years. There is no good disease. But diabetes is definitely not the worst.

i qualify for the 50 year award but i won’t participate. i understand there’s a (small) research component, but it seems more self-glorification than anything else. plus … i would have to waive my non-D-disclosure policy and i’m not willing to do that. after going 50 years without publicly disclosing my condition'' it doesn't seem wise to do it now. i know this makes me sound like a grump old man, but i'm not. (i certainly don't begrudge those who win them. it's a personal choice and there's no wrong answer.) i just don't see any value in it. myaward’’ is presented each day – a good, happy, 100 percent healthy life punctuated by two great kids and a lovely wife. honestly, what else do you need?

You are entitled to finding diabetes or perfect attendance awards bizarre. However, I don’t think this is an award given to someone’s immune system.

Diabetes awards after 25, 50, 60, 70 or 75 years with diabetes, in my humble opinion, acknowledge a conscious effort on the part of the person with diabetes (and his/her support network). One does not get to live that long with diabetes w/o complications simply by coincidence.

I am trying not to get hooked by comments here about " dying of one disease , cancer , compared to living with , dying of diabetes " …and I do get hooked , maybe because I had cancer and I am living with diabetes almost 30 years. . And really , Danny’s discussion is not about that , the way I read it .
Anyone, who likes to receive a medal/medals should do what ever it takes to get one or two or many more and live life to the fullest as medals are obtained .
Anyone, who does not like to receive a medal /medals may have their reasons and so be it and live life to the fullest .
PS I am a medal gal …

i like the way you stated yourself nel!!! and best wishes to your health!!!

Actually, there is no requirement that you don’t’ have complications - you just basically have to be alive and have proof that you have been diabetic & on insulin for that long. I have neuropathy and was able to get it. My goal for the next 25 years is to prove that neuropathy can be reversed.