A few days ago, I was doing my morning walk, at around 7:30 am, in the freezing cold... (Yes, I am "dumb" enough to endure this every morning. What could ever possess me to get my can out of bed at that hour, before eating a darned thing, and then enduring 23F or lesser temperatures many will never know... but I like to think it makes me feel alive; it helps me understand that I am not just some drone, day in and day out, doing the routine, and pushing some paper around, or stroking some keys, or whatever else I might do or not do with my day... ) When I saw the most interesting thing.
In the downtown area where I often choose to walk, there stands this old Methodist cathedral-like church... It is a tall structure, with a prominent dome with many rods on it (I am sure they are called something else, but I don't know)... And there were a few crows hanging out around it. In our, unfortunately freezing, area of the world we get many many crows during Winter. (If you are not familiar with crows, they are outright annoying black birds that go around cawing loudly, and scavenging for food -- from crops to roadkill. Oh, and they also steal your stuff, if it's shiny. Crows are smart and have interesting behaviors, similar to ravens.) There were about four crows to be exact: One was sitting placidly on one of the lower rods, and three were fighting each other desperately for the top, highest rod.
The crow on the lowest rod was happy. He got to enjoy the view, bask in the cold morning air, and stake out whatever other forms of entertainment a crow might have. The other crows were soooo busy fighting for who got to sit at the top rod, that not one of them got to sit on top of it for more than a few seconds. They didn't get to see, or enjoy a darned thing... and eventually got so tired, they had to settle for a lower tree limb down below.
The image stayed with me for some time this week... Always reminded of how much we are just like animals in many of our behaviors... or is it the other way around? lol This could be a metaphor for many things... not getting along with people... being addicted to substances... not being monogamous... But it occurred to me... that it probably also is a metaphor for Diabetes.
You see, often, as people go... we always tend to want perfection. We want our life to go back to what it was...to be without worries, without issues, without challenges, to be without fears... But we fail to realize that the amount of energy we spend fighting the tides of change, and wanting against all odds to control things we cannot control, robs us of the life, itself, that we so want. It robs us of checking out the scenery, like that happy, free crow. The happy crow embraced that he couldn't have the highest peg... so he didn't kill himself vying others for it.
What kinds of things do we usually do that take away our scenery? That don't let us enjoy life, despite having Diabetes?
1. Obsessing with wanting to eat the same foods regular people eat, and figuring out insane ways of bolusing for them, without regard for the high/low roller coaster that might ensue.
2. Putting things off to do until the day they find a cure. You often see them in the "What would be the first thing you would do if they found a cure" threads, and you see odd replies, sometimes like "Take a trip around the world, and see different countries...." Wha?? lol Seriously??? I guess those people maybe don't like planning ahead, or something, because last I checked the Parthenon was sugar free.
3. Really wanting to pursue friendships or relationships that don't want us because of Diabetes... (How can I get it through such and such's thick skull that my life is hard...? -- You can't, so ignore em, and move on.)
4. Thinking Diabetes treatment is static, and will never change, and thus we don't need advice from other people, ever... so we can do our own thing and accuse others of trying to change us (however awful and unproductive our ways may be...) These are typically threads that start out with "I don't want anyone telling me how to eat... but none of these foods work for me... what should I eat?" lol
5. Worrying about dying, all the time. Yes... I said it. Diabetes shows us our mortality... but the fact of the matter is that none of us can predict our deaths, and that, to me, is far scarier than thinking Diabetes could kill me, or someone I love (which my father died of Diabetes.) People die in their sleep all the time (for no reason, and no illness), or die while jogging (with no history of heart disease), or die in car accidents, or in a MYRIAD of different ways in which we NEVER imagined someone could die. If I focused on that all the time, I might never leave the house, and instead cower in the closet! (Which could have the upper shelf break, and have something heavy crush my skull and kill me!) Why not focus on living, instead? We need to help people through their grief, support them, and help them stand up again... but we also need to have the courage to embrace life, every day. Every day is like para-gliding... Just don't think about it, just jump! Live life.
6. Fighting doctors. You know the old saying of "You can't change someone, in a relationship...?" Well the same thing applies for your medical relationship. They are people, too, also set in their ways... so if they are awful, evil, and don't meet your needs, quit trying to make them be something they are not! Go take wings, and find someone else.
7. Moping around all day about how there isn't a cure. Hey, I want a cure as much as the next person... But I don't have time to waste on moping, and no one does, either. We have a life to live, people to love and hug, and holidays to enjoy... Lots of lots of people in the world with many diseases are also waiting for a cure. Are we somehow, more special than them? Or more deserving? Remember, life is about living... The cure for Diabetes is LIVING. If you kept living your life (however long it may last), despite of Diabetes, than you have beat Diabetes. All Diabetes wants is for you to be scared, cowering in your closet... and not eating a darned thing.
8. Not accepting. Here, it can be many things. Not accepting you have Diabetes, not accepting you have to change, not accepting that other people's Diabetes' types are also challenging to THEM, at whatever point in life they are at, not accepting that we're not 20 anymore, not accepting .... etc, etc.
I could go on and on and on... with what the little crow taught me. But I am sure that you all get the idea. Share with me, though... What things do you think you might be doing that are keeping you from checking out the scenery?