Measures of Success
As far as we can tell, the only person to have appeared on the cover of Diabetes Forecast three times in our more than 60 years in print is Bret Michaels. Does this mean the magazine's staff members are all closet Poison groupies? Not quite, although I did have one of his songs in my head fairly constantly during the production of this issue ("Every Rose Has Its Thorn," if you must know).
What Bret—and, yes, even those of us who haven't met him feel as if we are on a first-name basis by now—represents to us is not so much success despite diabetes, but success with diabetes. That was true when he was first featured in September 1989, and is even more so today. Diabetes was the driving force earlier this year when he won Celebrity Apprentice, creating a new sugar-free Snapple drink (and raising money for the American Diabetes Association). More recently, he joined forces with ADA in November as a spokesperson for American Diabetes Month. And he's still raising money to send kids to diabetes camp, and talking to fans who also have diabetes. Helping others is central to how he defines his work.
It also happens to be what Bret has in common with the 12 people featured in the story "Doing Well and Doing Good". All of them have figured out how to manage their own diabetes while making it their business to help others with this disease, whether it's getting out the word, caring for patients, or creating communities of support.
It's not a requirement that people with diabetes work in the world of diabetes, but the more of us who do, the better.