Prior to today, I didn’t know anything about type 2 diabetes or the fact that it is one of the fastest growing diseases in the world. But after reading I Got This, I learned that it’s a very serious life-long illness that requires immediate and ongoing treatment. And, I believe it’s important for us to spread the word to increase people’s awareness of type 2 diabetes.
In this story, you will be following Emily’s life in a first-person perspective. Things are not looking good for her, as she feels tired even though she has had a full eight hours of sleep. She picks up her usual breakfast — pancakes and bacon — and head straight for the school bus, which is always stuck in traffic.
At school, Emily isn’t exactly in a fit condition. Her friends try to chat with her, but she gets distracted by her constant urge to pee. She notices that she feels the need to use the restroom more frequently than usual. She also finds it difficult to listen to her math teacher in the classroom, even though math is her favorite subject. Instead, she falls asleep throughout the class.
By lunch, Emily is starving. As always, she chooses pizza and soda over vegetarian sandwich and fruits. But after finishing her lunch, she still feels very hungry. And during her basketball practice, she gets dizzy and faints.
Meet the Doctor
The doctor runs some tests on Emily and finds out that Emily has type 2 diabetes, an insulin-resistant illness. The body is unable to turn sugar into energy, so the sugar builds up in the bloodstream instead. It’s also why Emily is always hungry and tired. The doctor also explains how a person may be more likely to get type 2 diabetes based on family history or ethnicity.
Fortunately, there are ways to combat the illness: exercise, healthy diet, and medicine. The doctor asks Emily to follow a healthy, low-sugar diet and monitor her blood sugar levels. She reminds Emily that diabetes can cause long-term problems, such as heart disease and nerve and kidney damage.
Meet the Family
Fortunately, Emily has a supportive family. Her mom decides to change their family diet into a more healthy one as her way of supporting Emily in managing her type 2 diabetes.
Emily’s father also encourages her to overcome her illness. He reminds Emily that she can keep her blood sugar levels under control if she works hard on it.
Parents Need to Know
The story continues with a second act that shows what’s going to happen to Emily three months after. There are significant changes in her diet, and she walks to school in the morning. Her energy level is stable throughout the day, and she maintains excellent academic grades. It’s a great ending to her story.
I Got This was created by UC Berkeley’s The Lawrence Hall of Science in collaboration with the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland, and advised by the curriculum developers at the Hall and Tufts University. It is funded by the National Institutes of Health.
The app aims to raise awareness of type 2 diabetes in young teenagers. It has no third-party ads, in-app purchases, nor links to social networks. It works great without any internet connection.
Things I Like
I find it easy to relate to the story. In a real-world setting, it’s actually possible for a teenager to have a type 2 diabetes without her knowing anything about it. Instead of going to the doctor for tests and treatments, she may think that the symptoms are caused by unrelated reasons. That’s why I believe it’s important for teenagers to read this story.
A great thing about the story is that it provides easy-to-understand information. It describes biological terms clearly, and uses interesting visuals to illustrate what happens in the body of a person with type 2 diabetes. Thus, it’s easier for kids to understand and remember these information.
I Got This is a unique storybook that takes us to a journey inside Emily’s life. You will play Emily’s role and witness her fight against type 2 diabetes. Along the way, you will learn about type 2 diabetes, its symptoms and causes, and how to treat it. If you really want to know about type 2 diabetes, I really recommend this book for you.