I am so excited to be participating in DBlog Week 2016! This is my first time writing for DBlog Week, and also my first post as a new college graduate (hooray!). Today’s topic asked us to reflect on why we blog, and what message we are trying to send.
I started blogging almost a year ago, after attending a student leaders’ retreat with the College Diabetes Network. I had never gotten to interact with so many people my age with diabetes before- I didn’t know anyone growing up, and my university’s chapter of CDN was very small. Being around 30 other people who were all checking their blood sugars and giving insulin at the same time I was had a much greater effect on me than I expected: I had never felt out-of-place doing these things before, but being surrounded by others doing the same things I was gave me a profound sense of “belonging” to the group, and to the diabetes community as a whole.
After I went home, I knew I wanted to get more involved in the diabetes community; several people I met at the retreat wrote their own blogs, and I decided it was something I’d like to try. Originally, my focus was to reach as many people as I could with my writing, to contribute to the DOC, but writing for my blog has slowly shifted to become something therapeutic for me, especially since I decided to expand my focus to my experiences dealing with social anxiety and relationships in college.
Making the decision to blog, in itself, demonstrated how much my self confidence has grown over the past few years. I often joke that I was “scared of my own shadow” during freshman year of college, but it’s not far from the truth. Expressing my thoughts and feelings on such a public platform is something I never would have considered even a few months before I started this blog- but here I am, putting my writing on the internet!
I want people who read my blog to know that diabetes (or any life circumstance) shouldn’t stop you from doing something you want to do, while also conveying that everyone manages and reacts to their diabetes/other challenges differently. No one experiences EVERYTHING about it in the same way, but we all share enough to feel connected to each other.