I think he is a roll model for her and a lot of other kids with type 1. I don’t expect many of those kids to have an interest in becoming Indy Car drivers. That isn’t what a roll model is about. Charlie is a roll model because he is living his dream and bringing diabetes along kicking and screaming whether it likes it or not.
Diabetes is a rat bastard. It doesn't want kids with type 1 to dream. It wants to limit and define the lives it touches. Charlie shows that with hard work, character and a Dexcom screwed on the high tech steering wheel of life they can chase down their dream at a few hundred miles an hour. Chasing dreams is more than simply good.
At some commercial break during the race I saw a tweet that MTV is casting a reality bit with someone with diabetes. They are looking for a bad diabetic. Here in part is their casting call:
Does your diabetes hold you back from living the life the way you want? Do you have an extreme form of the disease which requires you to constantly inject yourself with insulin? Does it make you feel different from your peers? How is your situation more difficult than your friends' at school? Are you embarrassed by your diabetes?It sure seems like they are looking to help that rat bastard diabetes limit and define lives. That my friends is just another case of the ugly.
In reality, we have a choice. We can tune into MTV and wallow in diabetes or what ever the find that limits and defins lives. On the other hand Indy Car has races trough the fall. We can watch Charlie strap the Dexcom to the steering wheel and take diabetes where no one has taken it before. Where fast matters and diabetes doesn't.
Charlie is a rookie in the professional big league of his sport. He is a dedicated, hard working and pleasant. Those traits are the reality of what makes him a roll model.
I am looking forward to the next race. I'll be watching. As for MTV well I will maintain my perfect record of tuning them out. Diabetes isn’t the only thing that wants to limit and define the lives it touches. Unlike being diagnosed with diabetes we have a choice as to what we get on TV.
Use the powers of your remote only for good.