Last week, I got a letter from Diabetes Ireland telling me that I have been nominated, along with 3 other people, for the Diabetes Ireland Volunteer of the Year award. I was quite taken aback and found myself getting a bit weepy.
I don't know who took the time to nominate me but I'm deeply grateful and humbled that you did.
I have so many emotions surrounding this nomination that it's taken me some time to identify them and to be able to articulate them.
Firstly, I'm overwhelmed that someone out there thinks kindly of me AND went to the effort of putting together a short essay on me!
I also feel a wee bit guilty for being nominated because I the personal reward for me has already been so great. Through volunteering, I have become a more confident person, very unlike the little mouse who sat at the back of the classroom hoping the teacher wouldn't notice me. I've learned that I'm capable of anything; all I need is an idea that I believe in, time and google.
I also feel a wee bit guilty because I originally got involved with Diabetes Ireland for selfish reasons. I wanted a diabetes support group for myself. The benefit of hearing other peoples diabetes stories has been ten-fold for me. They are my role models.
I'm a bit embarrassed because some of the things I've done in diabetes I only did because they needed to be done; kind of like emptying the dishwasher.
I think most people who volunteer don't do it to win awards, myself included, but every now and again it's nice to hear a "thank you". I look forward to meeting the other 3 nominees and hearing their diabetes stories.
The winner will be announced at Diabetes Ireland's Annual General Meeting which will be held in the Burlington Hotel, Dublin on Sunday 11th November at 12.15pm.
P.S. There are a lot of others in Ireland who volunteer to raise awareness about diabetes, fight for a better health service for us and who fund-raise like mad to make sure that Diabetes Ireland can keep up the fight. I thank you for your work.