Sunday, June 30, 2013

Those on the outside will never understand

You have seen on T.V. and in the movies when someone goes to an AA meeting for the first time.  
Joining the DOC and these groups is so similar isn't it?

We introduce ourselves, "Hi, my name is Laura.  I am a diabetic." And the group shouts "Hi Laura"

Then we sit back and observe everyone, just listening, not ready to chime in yet.  Not ready to divulge our struggles and emotions, afraid to ask any questions, still a little shy about putting ourselves "out there".  Not really sure if we fit into the group and hesitant to be there. As time progresses we either feel comfortable or we don't.  Some stay and some go.

The solace is that we know we are not alone.   We may be shy and hide our emotions and struggles, or bold and just put them put there and share for everyone to see.  However we go through our lives with diabetes, we are not alone and that gives us comfort.

For the outer world looking into our circle they look at us at times with pity, judgement, criticism and sometimes sympathy but never empathy.  Those on the outside will never understand our struggles, hurdles and emotions.  Only another PWD (person with diabetes) can understand the joy of when after that meal when you test that bg is right where it should be and we want to yell "YES!"  That feeling of disappointment when you have done everything right and your blood sugar skyrockets. Those days of wanting to give up and crawl back into bed, cover your head and scream "DIABETES GO AWAY!!!"  Days of feeling lost, hopeless, in pain.  Those on the outside will never understand.  

Having to choose and account for every morsel of food that goes into your mouth.  Choosing every meal carefully, trying to get that carb count just right.  Making sure you did get it right so the insulin matches your carb count.  Fearing that next unexpected low.  Hoping you don't have a low in the middle of the night or while driving.  Planning for everything you do, even to go to the grocery store.  Taking with you your bag of supplies, your posse.  Pricking your fingers multiple times daily, wondering if it will ever be painless.  Wanting to have that small slice of pie that everyone else is having not wanting to hear "you know you can't eat that" and then you hear it and those mixed feeling of mad and shame appear.  Mad at the person who said it, mad at diabetes, and the shame and disgust that goes with it.  Those on the outside will never understand.  

On the inside of this Diabetes circle we are not alone.  We may be at different stages of our diabetes, a different "type", on a different path, but we are all thrown into this circle together and we will make it.  

          I am Strong and I am Weak.
          I am Fearless but I am Afraid.
          I have Happiness and I have Sadness.
          I am Wise but I am not Perfect.
          I can Laugh but sometimes Cry.
          I may feel like I am on top of the world and then I am slapped down by 
                 that diabetes monster and thrown down into that pit and feel weak, 
                 afraid, sad, imperfect, and cry.
          I climb out, dust myself off and become strong, fearless, happy, wise and 
             laugh once more. 

          Hi, my name is Laura and I have Diabetes. 

Thursday, June 27, 2013

What? You have diabetes you can't eat Ice Cream !!

Well it has been awhile since I wrote -- it's about time I get back at it.  I have a whole list of topics but can only cover one at a time.  I was trying to decide what to start off with from my long list.  When across my Facebook newsfeed came the reminder of The Diabetic Ice Cream Social.  So I thought I would start back with a blog on the topic.

We are constantly reminded daily of what we can't do and what we should do because we have Diabetes.  People, our loved ones, friends and co-workers that do not have Diabetes really have no idea what our struggles and issues are.  Every morsel of food that goes into our mouths has our heads spinning with:

     Can I?
     Should I?
     How many carbs?
     How much are my blood sugar levels going to rise?
     Did I get the carb count right?
     Did I get the insulin to carb ratio right?
     How much exercise will I need to do to cover this?

We have Diabetes but that does not mean that we can NEVER have a treat -- we can as long as we do it responsibly and it doesn't become a habit. 

My good friend Liz (I hope she doesn't mind that I call her a good friend) started The Diabetic Ice Cream Social in 2011 with it being the first.  She has gotten a lot of unfair criticism for her efforts, but the overwhelming support for her efforts has been far greater.  I hope that we can again this year grow in leaps and bounds with the people that participate.

I fully support the cause and effort that Liz puts into this.  We are responsible for what we do, all of us.  There are times that we that have Diabetes can choose to have a treat or something out of our daily eating plan as long as we do it responsibly.  That is what this is all about.  We as diabetics (I know some of you don't like that term) can come together once a year and unite together with all the types of diabetics and show our family, loved ones, friends, co-workers, THE WORLD, that we can live, have fun and enjoy some ice cream.

This is a chance for fellow diabetics in the DOC (diabetic online community) to help the newbies, type 1's can help type 2's, type 2's can show the others how difficult it is to allow themselves a little treat and do it responsibly without going high.  D moms and D dads if you are new at this ask for some help from the others, we want your kiddos to be able to enjoy and understand why we are participating.  We can all learn from one other and help each other.

You do not have to eat Ice Cream, it can be something totally different.  Maybe it is a small slice of cake, pie, cookie, or frozen yogurt maybe some fruit. Whatever the choice, make sure you do not do too much.  Choose a good time of the day for you to do this when your bg is in good range and possibly before your exercise regimen or a group of you can get together and do this.  Have an Ice Cream Social party.

I truly hope that you will all join in and learn, if you haven't already, to live, love and laugh.  Diabetes does not have to be hum drum and boring.

Looking forward to seeing you all there!!

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