Everyone and anyone can develop diabetes. Doesn’t matter how old you are, your ethnicity, nor what you do for a living. Although food is a key element in controlling our diabetes, it is NOT the sole cause of our disease. One thing that really frustrates me about the medical community, is that they have taken the use of labels, and has used them in such a manner, that eventually caused the world to see diabetics as a stereotype. What makes us a Type 1, 2, LADA, or gestational diabetic, isn’t how we “look”, but what happens in our individual bodies that make us the type of diabetic we are. There are heavy type 1′s, as well as slim; It is also true that their are skinny type 2′s, as well as there are heavy. Unfortunately, newly diagnosed diabetics are often caught-up in the middle of this, therefore indirectly making learning extremely difficult. To my awareness, never have I heard any other disease were labels are used so frequently.
Millions more are continuously being diagnosed each year around the globe. This was never just an “American Disease”. Yet, our communities know even less now about diabetes than we did before. Why is this? Are doctors up to par with the latest diabetic information? Is it that diabetics are not motivated? Are we scared? Or does there still exist a distrust for doctors in general? I think in this day in age, it is even more imperative that diabetics emotionally support each other. Diabetes is a 24 hour job, most of us can’t live life one day without thinking something diabetic; be it counting carbs, or the financial strain of being able to afford our diabetic supplies.
I realize that it’s important for diabetics to have role models, which is part of the reason why I started this blog. Particularly in the poorer communities, we only hear the bad stuff about diabetes. You almost never hear about people such as myself, who at a young age developed full blown cataracts, and successfully came out of both surgeries with flying colors!! You’d never hear how people like me (at the final stages of cataracts (before my surgeries)) used shapes, sounds, kindness of strangers, and pure determination to find were I needed to go. You don’t hear about diabetics being well informed enough to challenge their doctor’s methods. You don’t hear about people literally reversing their diabetic complications. You don’t hear about people eating what they want (responsibly) and still manage to control their sugars. You do not hear about diabetics successfully controlling their blood pressure. You don’t hear about diabetics who are getting up and walking to literally save their lives. This is why I personally believe that so many of us lost our battles to this disease, in addition to the fact that so many of us can’t break out of our comfort zones. Comfort zones destroy any chances of self motivation.
I’ve gone through great lengths to share pieces of my life to the world, because I want people to know they can do it. Diabetes is not the doom and gloom we all thought once was. I am a living, fresh and blood proof that you can overcome with just a tiny bit of motivation. The goal is not to be a perfect diabetic, but simply make better choices; but you can’t make better choices, if your not informed about YOUR particular, and very individual diabetes. Controlling your diabetes takes a lot of personal soul searching, a lot of reading, a lot of listening, and a lot of discerning. People would ask me all the time “how do you know this”? or “how do you know that”? My answer to this has always been, “diabetic information is not esoteric!” In other words, diabetic knowledge is not sacred text locked away somewhere so that only great scholars can read it. Diabetic information is everywhere!! If you really wanted to know something about diabetes, you can easily find it with a click of the mouse, a phone call, a book, a magazine, a support group, a nurse, a doctor, a CDE, a nutritionist, the list goes on. It’s not anyone’s responsibility to tell you, YOU have to seek it for yourself!!!
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