One thing that many of us can often take for granted is our health. We are lucky to live our lives without the many daily struggles and challenges that those living with a condition have to endure. Now and again, we all need a reminder that we cannot take our health for granted. For me, that reminder came in the shape of a brave young lad called Jamie.
Jamie Thomson is not your average nine-year-old boy. He was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at eight-years-old and now has daily routines in place to keep him well. It’s a lot for someone so young to have to deal with, but Jamie appears to take it all in his stride.
It was a diagnosis that would impact his whole family. Amanda and Neil, Jamie’s mum and dad, have had to learn quickly about their son’s condition while little sister, Abbie, is keen to help out wherever she can. Amanda can still remember the day that they got the news and how it was Jamie who helped her to deal with it.
“It was a big shock. We weren’t sure what was wrong with Jamie, but he seemed to have very little energy and didn’t really want to do anything. It’s like night and day to what he’s like now! He got poorly and that’s when we were given the diagnosis.
It changes everything! All of a sudden, we were coming out of the hospital with all these tools. Jamie was brilliant and he had mastered all of the devices and how to use them before he’d even left the hospital!
He was the rock. While we were in the hospital, he was the one saying to me that everything was going to be okay. He was very positive.”
That positivity is evident when you speak to Jamie. He is currently fundraising for Diabetes UK by coming together with friends and his sister as ‘Team Jamie!’ and swimming a total of 22 miles over a 12 week period – a fundraiser he is thoroughly enjoying because of his love of the water.
Jamie has also been nominated for the Diabetes UK Inspire Awards 2017 for his efforts, something he is extremely proud of.
“My favourite thing about this fundraiser is that I get to swim a lot! I really enjoy swimming. I love raising money for diabetes because I want to help others that have to go through the same things I do, and one day I want to find a cure.
I’ve been nominated for an award with Diabetes UK too and that makes me really happy. I enjoy raising money and I have lots more events planned in the future!”
Jamie has some career aspirations for when he is older – and the current goalkeepers at McDiarmid Park had better watch their backs!
“I love football. I play as a goalie for Fair City and I love Saints! My favourite player is Alan Mannus! When I’m older, I really want to be a footballer… or a WWE referee!”
Fundraising for Diabetes UK has been going well and Amanda has been grateful for the help provided by local businesses in Perth.
“I can’t speak highly enough about them (local businesses). The Co-op on Rannoch Road has been excellent and they’ve got a number of collection buckets at their tills. There are also buckets at the Cherrybank Inn and China China, and we will be at the St. Johnstone vs Aberdeen match on April 15th with buckets too.”
The swim will conclude on May 21st, when Perth Leisure Pool will provide ‘Team Jamie!’ with a lane to complete the final stages between 2PM and 4PM.
Jamie has already raised over £1,400 for Diabetes UK thanks to his Christmas Fair last year, and is well on his way to smashing that sum with his 22 mile swim!
We’re all behind you here at Small City, Jamie. Keep up the good work!
If you would like to help Jamie’s fundraising efforts for Diabetes UK, click here to go to his JustGiving page.
Friday 20th October is 'Wear it Pink' day, raising money in the fight against breast cancer. The event was first started by Breast Cancer Now - the UK's biggest breast cancer charity - in 2002 and has raised over £30million to date.