A Wonderful Community

I finished my second week of work at JDRF on Friday.  While it was a little slower than my first week, it was still a pretty great week.

I’m still working on T1D in the News everyday, which is really fun because it keeps me up to date on all things diabetes.  It’s pretty awesome.

I’ve also been helping with a presentation for the One Walk kick-off conference for all the chapters that are piloting the JDRF One Walk.  I’m gathering photos from each chapter along with their “We’re the _____ type” catchphrase.  Each chapter fills in the blank with a phrase that captures who their chapter is and what the Walk means to them.  For example, “We’re the won’t stop at anything type,” or “We’re the every step matters type.”  It’s been fun to see all the photos from all the different Walks held in different cities across the country, in addition to reading all the creative catchphrases the chapters come up with!  It reminds me that there’s people all over the country fighting for a cure for type 1 diabetes.  There are so many chapters across the United States, and they’re all working towards the same goal: a cure.  Even just working for JDRF is making me want a cure more badly than I have ever wanted one before.  Because I see all the work that is being put into one!!

One highlight of my work week was attending my first communications department meeting.  I had been told about these department meetings.  These meetings where Anne has a folder full of paperwork for each person.  A folder which you know nothing of what it contains.  A folder that Anne uses to fire questions to you about what you’re working on and what progress you’ve made and what more you need from her.  So it’s safe to say I was a little apprehensive.  Kady and Paige were chatting with me about the meetings, wondering if I’d even have my own folder.  They encouraged me that it’s intimidating at first, because you don’t know what she will ask you, but Anne is very thorough and not at all mean.  Just intimidatingly thorough apparently.

So I walked into the meeting and sat down with my pen and steno pad, ready to take notes and make a good impression.  Sure enough, Anne pulled out her stack of folders and began to ask each employee questions about their projects.  To most of these questions I felt absolutely clueless.  Everybody talked so fast and replied so quickly, it was hard to keep up and pretend I knew what everyone was talking about.  BUT!  When it came to the questions to Paige about T1D in the News and updating the Q&A document, I finally heard something that sounded familiar!  Paige mentioned that I had taken over T1D in the News and have been doing a good job with it,and that I did a fantastic job cleaning up the Q&A document.  AHHH!  And Jessica mentioned that I had been tracking down and organizing all the One Walk photos and catchphrases.  And Kady mentioned the survey I created for TON summit feedback.  I began to feel like a genuine part of the team 🙂

As Anne made her way through her stack of folders, I was patiently waiting to see if she would have one for me.  Alas, she did not.  When she reached the bottom of her stack she looked up, found me, and simply said, “Well Amy!  I do not have a folder for you, but it sounds like you are doing a lot of great work for us!  I hear little bits of you in every one else’s reports, so I’m happy you’re with us!”

I beamed and said, “Thank you!  It’s been so much fun getting to be a part of this!”

I left the meeting very happy 🙂

I feel like I’m part of the team!  Not just while I’m at work, but in a social way, too.  Paige is organizing a get-together for the comm department after work sometime soon.  Brian invited me to a weekly Ultimate Frisbee game.  Paige gave me info about the NYC pools opening this weekend.  It’s starting to feel like I have real friends that I’m working with!

And with that, my second week concluded.  But my sense of community didn’t!

My new friend,Marisa, came to visit me.  I met Marisa at the Students with Diabetes conference. We exchanged numbers and have talked just briefly since the conference, but she texted me awhile ago saying she would be in NYC this weekend visiting her brother.  So we made plans to see each other!

On Saturday morning, we spent some time at Union Square.  We walked around the market, looked at artwork, tasted some free samples, but eventually just sat down in a grassy spot to hang out and talk.  We talked about a lot things from diabetes to school to jobs to boys.  We complained about diabetes but we also were grateful for the community it has offered us.  How so many people can have the same thing in common, and that makes it so much easier.  Take us, for example!  We met a month ago in Florida of all places, and now we’re catching up in New York and are able to talk about the things that annoy us about diabetes, the things we learned from diabetes, and the people we have met because of diabetes.  It’s all pretty valuable.

From there, we went to Brooklyn Bridge, where we walked halfway, took some pictures, then turned back around.  It was hot, okay?  🙂
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All in all it was a slow week but a good week.  Full of good people and good friends.

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One thought on “A Wonderful Community

  1. What fun (to read about your life and a new beginning). Going personally now: it reminded me of a scene form “Going On 30”. 🙂 Communities are special when they are geared around a positive goal. Keep going, “press on” and enjoy ultimate frisbee! (Awesome picture of you, two, and The Brooklyn Bridge). It sounds like NYC is becoming too small for you. (Just kidding).

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