Wednesday of Diabetes Blog Week brings us this prompt:
Yesterday we kept stuff in, so today let’s clear stuff out. What is in your diabetic closet that needs to be cleaned out? This can be an actual physical belonging, or it can be something you’re mentally or emotionally hanging on to. Why are you keeping it and why do you need to get rid of it? (Thank you Rick of RA Diabetes for this topic suggestion.)
I’m airing a potentially unpopular opinion here.
Many people join the DOC flock because they find a group of people who “just get it.” People who understand the difficulties of diabetes. People who don’t judge you for your problems with it.
It’s an essential function for the mental and emotional well-being of many. I can’t tell you how many testimonies I’ve seen of people who feel renewed, accepted, understood, and embraced wholeheartedly when they start talking to other PWDs. I felt that way too when I first found online and in-person support around 2010.
Sometimes I wonder if it goes too far.
Sometimes I cringe when I see comments saying, “It’s TOTALLY okay that you skipped a workout because of a low!” or “Go you for eating that giant fudge sundae!”
Sometimes I think we’re too quick to say, “Diabetes just doesn’t make sense!” when really…..we just made a mistake that we can’t figure out.
Can we all ‘clear out’ our ability to talk about D-mistakes honestly? All things being equal, a diabetic has way more decisions to make on a daily basis than a non-diabetic. With all those pathways just in the course of a typical lunch, of course we have a higher chance of borking something. It happens.
Can we ‘clear out’ our tendency to blame the mysteries of D? I do this an awful lot, but Marcus at Sweet Victory got me thinking. “What you’re dealing with is fourth grade math and eighth grade chemistry,” he says. Ginger Vieira, in her book Your Diabetes Science Experiment, is a big proponent of this too, and outlines various exercises for that eighth grade chemistry in her book. I know if I put in more effort, I can figure things out better.
Can we ‘clear out’ our lackadaisical side and be more supportive….by way of positive accountability? Look, if you really want that hot fudge sundae and you accept the resulting blood glucose atrocity, dig in. If you’re intimidated by starting a Couch to 5K program, I would be too if I had never run before. I wonder if we as a community can both accept people wholeheartedly as they are AND help each other be better. I know I’m inspired by PWDs who are kicking ass at life. I could do better at a lot of things, from doing planks to changing my pen needles to giving more cash to Spare a Rose.
Now that I have ‘cleaned out’ this thing that has been bugging me for a while, time to change my lancet, floss my teeth for the first time in two weeks, and actually get eight hours of sleep. And then log my BG response to all that tomorrow.
Read more “Clean It Out” posts here.