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Entries in Roche (3)


I was 'Just Talking' with Chris Snider


The best aspect of the Roche Social Media Summit was meeting other members of the DOC, like Chris Snider. Chris has a fantastic podcast called, 'Just Talking' and he was kind enough to ask me to appear on it along with a bunch of other summit attendees. 

The entire episode is a great listen with familiar DOC names (in order of appearance) like Cherise Shockley (who shares some exciting news about DSMA), Stacey Divone, George Simmons, Scott Johnson, Lee Ann Thill, Wendy Rose, Sara Nicastro, Kim Vlasnik and Kerri Sparling. My bit comes last at 41:00 where I announce the title of my upcoming book, smart mouth a bit about minor league baseball and talk about being the parent of a child with type I diabetes. It's a light conversation until Chris asks me about how I view my role in the DOC, then things "get real".

So if you are interested to hear how I think about type I blogging, want a spoiler about my book title (that isn't happening on this site until tomorrow) or are just interested in hearing my voice... check out 'Just Talking' by clicking on the image at the top of this post or by following this link.

Much of this episode is recorded at a baseball game so there is wind noise, however my interview happens indoors so it is very easy to listen to.


Roche Social Media Summit 2012

The 2012 Roche Social Media Summit was a great example of the old adage that says, "patience is a virtue". Though I had never attended any of the previous summits with Roche it was easy to feel the earnest nature of the people that I was sitting with and that spirit was clearly being fostered by our hosts from Roche.

I bring up patience because the feeling in that room was due in large part to the extended nature of the relationship that Roche and the DOC have been nurturing for these many years. I was partially sad that I hadn't experienced the prior summits so that I could more personally appreciate the journey that this summit has been on. On the other hand, it was exhilarating to show up as the main act was coming on stage so to speak.

As always, when it come to things like this, if you want a detailed who said what or step by step breakdown of the day you are reading the wrong blog but if you would like to feel what I did during the time we spent together, read on.

I can't list every person that attended but I do want to say that they all fit together like a puzzle. Each one brought a specific perspective and when combined, the voices in the room had every aspect of diabetes advocacy covered. A number of things stand out in my mind that I'd like to share. The group is passionate, motivated and please forgive me for reusing a word but, earnest. The countless people that read diabetes blogs in search of support, advice and community are reaching into a very deep pool of knowledge that is being presented by people just like them who want to give back to the community. The diabetes knowledge that I saw was staggering. I count myself as a reasonably intelligent person but there were moments when people spoke extemporaneously about the health, political, and socioeco'nomically sides of diabetes in a way that made me feel like I wasn't operating on the same level as they are. Gathered were so many truly brilliant minds that I found myself wondering if thoughtfulness can be a side effect of insulin use. I'll have to check the package insert next time I open a box.

When guest speaker Josh Bleill spoke about his struggle to recover his will to live after loosing both of his legs while serving in the military, I thought the room couldn't get more silent. Then Josh compared the sharing of his story to our diabetes blogs and everyone in the room seemed to stop breathing for a moment. I remember that as Josh spoke I was struck by how amazing his story was but I didn't quite understand what it had to do with diabetes advocacy. When he connected the dots for us, I immediately felt pride. So many of you have written to say thank you for Arden's Day and I guess that I knew on an intellectual level how much my sharing meant to others but wow do it hit my square in the chest when Josh thanked us for telling our stories. He wasn't saying thank you because he has diabetes, he was saying it because he knows what sharing with such transparency means to others. He was thanking us for our service to the community when all we wanted to do was thank him for his sacrifice for all of us. Please know that every time you share your story with someone else about your life with diabetes, you are helping all of us to move forward.

During the day and a half summit everyone shared thoughts about their life with diabetes while we were discussing multiple issues. Once and a while someone would say something that actually served as a learning experience to the other people in the room. It was eye opening for me to see long-time veterans of life with diabetes make the face that said, "huh, I didn't know that". The moment that stuck with me the most, being a parent of a child with type I, was this...

Steve Richert from Living Vertical spoke to us on day two about Project 365 which is Steve's effort to empower people with type I diabetes through rock climbing. After Steve spoke for a while it became clear that he sometimes climbs by himself. One of the parents in the room began asking questions about how he stays in touch with family and wondered about his safety protocols. She was legitimately worried about Steve but as she spoke her concern manifested into the fear she has about her children and before anyone knew what happened, she was visibly upset. She must have put herself in Steve's mother's position and became overwhelmed by the concern that she feels for her type I children. The room got serious and in one of the silences I leaned into my table and told the people I was sitting with, "she just showed you what it feels like to be a parent of a child with type I...". There was no way to guess that Steve's talk aimed at helping PWD to feel like there isn't anything that they can't do would teach such an unintended lesson. 

The balance of my brief time in Indianapolis was spent getting to better know the other bloggers in attendance, we saw the manufacturing process that yields test strips, talked about products and spoke about how to improve our already wonderful community. It was time very well spent indeed and the experience has definitely helped me to further define the direction I want to take my advocacy and Arden's Day.

I don't pretend to know why the first Roche Summit came to be and I can't vouch for what's in others minds but the two men that plan and oversee this gathering definitely have the DOC in their hearts. I'm hopeful that I represented you all in a way that you could be proud of. 

If you are interested in a very detailed account of the summit I suggest Mike's at Diabetes Mine and David's at Diabetes Daily. Mike takes the best notes that I've ever seen and David types like a madman.



Disclosure: I attended an event hosted by Roche, who paid for my airfare, travel, hotel and meals while I was in Indianapolis with the exception of a bottle of water and bagel that I lost the receipt for.  


I'm off to Indy for the Roche #dsummit12

I'm pushing 'publish' on this post and then leaving for the airport to attend the fourth annual Roche Social Media Summit in Indianapolis, Indiana. This is my first Roche summit so I don't know for sure what to expect. If I had to guess, I imagine that not unlike the Lilly summit that I attended recently, I and some of my favorite DOC bloggers will be asking questions, making suggestions and advocating loudly for all people living with diabetes and their families. When I get back, you can be sure that I'll share my thoughts on the summit as soon as I am able.

If you have any questions, concerns or suggestions that you would like me to pass on to Roche or the other diabetes advocates present, please leave them in the comment section of this post and I'll be happy to bring them up.

Those of you on Twitter can follow any live summit tweeting that may come from me or the other attendees by tracking hashtag #rds12. If you aren't on Twitter, c'mon, get on Twitter. It's a fantastic social media hub that connects people just like you to others with similar interests, concerns and thoughts. I have found Twitter to be an indispensable tool in my journey with diabetes. The ability to connect, support and learn with other people that live the same life as I do continues to be a great source of strength and joy for me and I think you'd benefit from it as well. You can find me on Twitter @ArdensDay.

Okay enough of this, I have to get to the airport and fly to Indianapolis for a busy few days of diabetes advocacy! #excited #proud #humbled

disclaimer. Roche will be covering my travel, lodging and meal expenses related to the summit. Roche has not asked me to blog about the summit or in any way made me feel like I had to react positively to this trip or their statements and I don't expect that they will. Even if they did, Arden's Day and my thoughts have never and will never be for sale or trade.