Diabetes Is

I’ve been feeling a bit pessimistic (okay, REALLY pessimistic) about my diabetes lately, dealing with several days of consistent highs, and now consistent lows, so here’s my semi-poetic rant that’s also appropriate because it’s diabetes awareness month.

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Diabetes is NEVER sleeping through the night. My CGM is like a newborn child; it loudly wakes me up every two hours to scream for insulin or sugar, then forces me to stay up, making sure everything returns to normal.

Diabetes is having to stop your workout after 10 minutes because your blood sugar is falling fast- despite eating 50 carbs before you started.

Diabetes is learning how to deal with insurance companies at a much younger age than everyone else.

Diabetes is going into absolute panic mode if someone suggests eating out at someplace where you don’t know the menu. It’s ordering a salad because enjoying the dish you really want isn’t worth twelve hours of inconsistent blood sugars.

Diabetes is suddenly realizing that you prick your fingers and inject insulin many times EVERY DAY- with no immediate reward. Sure, good blood sugars are nice, but that’s nothing special. Non-diabetics have great blood sugars every day.

Diabetes is worrying that every time you tell someone “I have diabetes,” they’ll assume that you’re irresponsible or unhealthy, or (if it’s someone in an authority position) they won’t let you do what you need to do to take care of yourself.

Diabetes is never being able to go anywhere empty-handed, having to carry juice boxes as a childless adult, having to make sure you take everything you could possibly need- or else you could be stuck without insulin.

Diabetes is being forced to eat when you’e not hungry. It’s only drinking juice when you have NOTHING else to treat your low, because you’ve grown to hate it. It’s buying a bag of discount Halloween candy, and wanting to throw it all away two days later because the thought of eating any more sugar after a spate of lows makes you feel sick.

Diabetes is not being able to eat when you ARE hungry because your blood sugar is high and won’t come down.

Diabetes is knowing that no matter how hard things get, there are people around you who support everything you do. It’s knowing that what goes up must come down, and what goes down must come up. It’s knowing that every day is different, that your blood sugars will be better tomorrow. It’s knowing that the technology that keeps you alive will only continue to get better, and that one day, there will be a cure.

(But probably not in 5 years, like everyone always says.)

Stay tuned for a more optimistic “Diabetes Is, Part 2”!

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