Most, if not all of us, have had the feeling of being left out in a school setting, but what if you felt that way because of your medical diagnosis. A group of nurses in Mesquite ISD are trying to turn a stigma into a learning experience for the entire community.
Jenna Beard, Nadene Minyard and Lisa-Marie Rainwater are all school nurses in the Mesquite ISD. All of them have firsthand experience dealing with Type I Diabetes.
Even during our interview, Beard had to take a break to tend to hers.
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"My blood sugar is dropping while we’re talking about this, so I have to eat or drink something that has a little bit of carbs in it," Beard said.
She is the school nurse at Mackey Elementary in Mesquite. Her Type I Diabetes diagnosis came after she got pregnant.
"We’re all in this together," Beard said. "Whether I’ve had it for five years and you may have had it for five days."
This the reason the three women work with the group "Sweet Talk" started by Nurse Minyard.
Her mission, along with the other two nurses, is to help people understand being diagnosed as a Type-I Diabetic has nothing to do with lifestyle or unhealthy eating, but rather is an autoimmune disease that can be triggered by a variety of things. It started at one school, spread to others and is now a group for the entire community.
"I want our students and community members to live long and healthy lives. I want them to be comfortable with their differences," Minyard said.
Sweet Talk is a safe place for students and their families in the Diabetic community.
"Our hope is that it turns into a very fulfilling experience in that it’s going to affect their health in a very positive way," Rainwater said.