Tuesday, November 9, 2010

My Take on "6 Things You Need to Know About Diabetes"

Today is "D-Blog Day". Started in 2005 during Diabetes Awareness Month it was created to create more awareness for diabetes.

I've watched all my "blog-colleagues" (I wonder if that is in wikipedia yet?) post about the bad things....and the myths and the struggles.

So my take is going to be a little different. Bear with me.

1. Diabetes builds character.
The people I know with diabetes are some of the finest human beings on the planet. Whether they have diabetes, or have a child with diabetes they care deeply about one another. They live their lives to the fullest and teach us about compassion, strength and love.

2. Diabetes makes you do crazy things.

Yes, like creating a documentary when you have no experience in film. Or ride your bike 105 miles through a desert. Or do an Ironman.

3. Diabetes makes you forget about other health problems.
Yes, for instance when Jesse was six months old we discovered he had a congenital birth defect of his left eye (no nerves on the left side so he couldn't look left). Or perfect baby was no longer perfect. With the onset of diabetes and his adaptive nature to learning how to turn his head so no one noticed his eye, we almost completely forgot it existed! Yes, folks, diabetes put perspective on other pain.

4. Diabetes pisses me off so much that other things seem small in comparison.

What? I didn't get a raise? My daughter missed the school bus? Dinner won't be ready until 7 pm? Yes, thank you diabetes for helping me to not sweat the small stuff.

5. Diabetes got me active in politics.

Oh, diabetes, you launched my political career - I mean before you, did I care about embryonic stem cell research or know what the NIH was or meet with legislators?

So you might be sensing hostility at this point. Maybe. But #6 has meaning.

1. I wouldn't be who I am today if it wasn't for diabetes.
When Jesse was diagnosed with diabetes 10 years ago my life path - and career path - was much different. My passion to find a cure led me to working as an executive director for two diabetes organizations and then onto my current position at BRAVA Magazine (I had met the owner of the magazine when her son was diagnosed with diabetes). And I love my job. I love the people in my life. And I am blessed to know all of you.