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Why I’m Celebrating, not Mourning, One Year with Diabetes

May 8, 2011

Coming up to a year since my diabetes diagnosis – I am celebrating my diaversary this Saturday – it is safe to say that I am stronger, healthier, and happier than ever. Spiritually, this disease has taught me so much. It has ushered me into a truth with my own body, and given me a groundedness in this world that one year after the fact is truly measurable. Physically, it has brought me to new levels of fitness and balance. I pummeled out a 18k in two hours on Thursday, and will be running my first half-marathon on May 29th.

What I lack in autonomous insulin production, I’ve made up for in perseverance, patience and respect towards this ever changing organism that houses my soul for this brief sojourn on earth. And all this damn gratitude and mindfulness has been spilling over into my work with kids over the past few months, as I’ve continued to conduct and direct various community music groups, musical theatre productions, special-needs choirs, and a capella ensembles. As I prepare to move out of my beloved apartment here in Montreal to go work at a diabetes camp for the summer as a counselor supervisor, and then, in the fall, to commence my master’s in music therapy in Ontario, it is with the mindfulness that my disease has guided me to a more honest and compassionate place.

Spring has sprung and flowers appearest on the earth. My heart is bursting with joy and gratitude, and my voice is lifting in song.

It is in that spirit that I am organizing this very special, very joyous event coming up on Saturday night. To mark the one year of my life with diabetes, I am throwing a benefit concert at one of my favorite local cafés. With friends and colleagues performing – from the acclaimed Bagg Street Klezmer Band to the accomplished Liederwolfe Opera Collective, from my sisters in Concerto Della Donna to my dear friends Ainsley McNeany and Eleanore Altman (two award-winning singer-songwriters), and not to mention my very own a capella choir GhettoPella.

I’m throwing this benefit concert to celebrate a year of health and growth, of humility and perseverance. I will be putting all the money raised towards my Team Diabetes account, money that will go to support the millions of children, families and adults living with this disease. My fundraising and marathon-raining has stopped being about my own healing. It’s really become about supporting my fellow diabetics. I’m certainly figuring out ways to make this damn disease a positive experience – join me on Saturday night, in body or spirit, to help others find their way through this challenging, heartbreaking disease, to find the truth in their own struggle, the strength in their own pain, the beauty in their own physical imperfections.

Benefit Soirée at EM Café

Team Diabetes Canada
Saturday, May 14th 2011
EM Café: 5718 Avenue du Parc
Featuring live performances by
Liederwolfe Opera Collective
Eleanore Altman
The Bagg Street Klezmer Band
Ainsley McNeaney
…and many more!
Suggested Donation: $5-20
Appetizers served, cash bar

Celebrate health!
for more information, or to make a donation, please visit:
4 Comments leave one →
  1. Andrea Stuart permalink
    May 8, 2011 6:05 pm

    What a lovely post! I wish I could be there—count me as there in spirit 🙂 have a great time

  2. Joyce Arsenault permalink
    May 13, 2011 11:18 am

    Hi Sarah,
    I hope to be there, just trying to get a sitter for my son.
    Cheers, Joyce

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