Without going into too much personal detail, I’ll offhandedly mention I’m talking to a new guy. Late night phone conversations during Diabetes Awareness Month and during my own campaign to tame my 200+ blood sugars would inevitably lead the conversation to the diabetes topic.
Last night, I became very frustrated. It wasn’t that he wasn’t being understanding, he was. It was that I was having trouble finding the way to put into words how handling diabetes affects me mentally, how it’s more than just taking medication and watching your diet, how it’s every hour every minute every second of the day thinking about how I’m feeling, what my meter says, how much insulin is left in my pump, what I’m eating, how each and every activity will affect my blood sugar, am I drinking enough water? Do I have ketones? Do I need some glucose tabs? Is that stomach ache because my blood sugar is rapidly falling or because I am headed in the direction of DKA?
Needless to say, getting on the topic of Things that Frustrate me About Diabetes made me, well, angry.
I know I’m not the only person who has been there. The thoughts of, “Why me? Why is MY pancreas broken? How is this fair? How is this even right?” began flooding my mind and I started crying. Crying, on the phone! I silently prayed that it would all be taken away from me, knowing my prayers were in vain. At least, for now.
I can’t express the anger and frustration I felt last night, that I feel anytime I think about the “bigger picture.” Fact is, anger and frustration are typical parts of living with any type of chronic or terminal illness. And while I can’t understand how people with cancer feel, last night I was feeling like Diabetes is terminal. You can do everything right and still wind up with complications, still wind up dying prematurely. I can’t get these thoughts out of my head sometimes. I want kids. I want a family. I want to grow old with my future husband. I want to live to see my grandchildren. Most people want these things, but most people take it for granted that they will happen – I can only pray every day that they will happen.
I’m sorry to write such a downer post during Diabetes Awareness Month. But awareness- awareness means bringing more people to understanding about the disease. This disease can be killer physically – both in the “Oh, that workout was killer” “oh, that high blood sugar was killer” sense and the literal, “you’re dead from diabetes” sense. But it also takes its toll emotionally and physically. Sometimes I doubt God made me strong enough to be able to handle it, especially when bouts of “the other D” are thrown in with it.
All I can do, being as I’m not a scientist, is ask for your support and support from my own means as much as I can. Today I want to do that by urging you, again, to be a part of Diabetes Research Internationals’ “Be a Part of the Cure” program. Have ten bucks? You can support an organization largely believed to be our best hope for a cure AND upload a photo of yourself or someone you love with diabetes to the “CURE” collage. It’s an awesome project. I hope every letter gets filled with tiny photos. And I hope one of them is yours.