A play about diabetes and family
| By Benjamin Hubbert
PLAYWRIGHT GARRETT DAVIS’S NEWEST production,
Mama’s Girls 2: Sugar Ain’t Sweet, opens with Baby
Girl, the adult protagonist, rushing to the hospital
with sudden blurred vision. Her startling diagnosis:
type; 2 diabetes.
And so begins Baby Girl’s poignant journey as she
navigates life with ;nger sticks, new eating patterns, and
well-meaning but uninformed relatives who do things like
rearrange her kitchen and bake her half a cake because “it
only has half the sugar.” Baby Girl’s eventual acceptance of
her diabetes and understanding that she can live a good life
is an empowering and inspiring message for the audience.
Davis consulted with the American Diabetes Association
(ADA) to produce the dramedy, show how diabetes
disproportionally a;ects African Americans, and reveal
how this diagnosis transforms families. He also worked
with the Association to arrange for sponsored events
around each play so audiences can learn more about
For instance, ADA representatives are on hand at the
For Davis, channeling his passion to raise consciousness
theater to answer questions, provide educational material,
and host cooking demonstrations. Also on site: local
government o;cials, hospital personnel, and religious
groups, all of whom discuss how people with diabetes can
seek help and support in their communities.
through the arts is nothing new. He wrote the original
Mama’s Girls in partnership with AARP, an organization
diabetes in 2015, saw Sugar Ain’t Sweet last year when it
that advocates for older adults, to raise awareness around
the issues of caregiving. “If you can entertain [people],” he
says, “you can educate them.”
Rashawn Moore, 28, who was diagnosed with type; 2
toured in his hometown of Fayetteville, North Carolina.
“When [Baby Girl] found out, it was the same way I found
“I thought that was great,” says Moore. “I got to see the
out. She was thinking, ‘Oh my God—my family! What am I
going to do?’ ” Moore says. “It was so relatable. This was
The ADA presence a;er the show was an added bonus.
things I still can eat [and] the things I still can do.”
Mama’s Girls 2: Sugar Ain’t Sweet is scheduled to play
around the United States in 2017. Go to mamasgirls.net for
Add small amounts of fresh fruit to meals so you don’t miss having the sweetness.
—Jackie Newgent, RDN, CDN