Celebrating the little things

Diabetes challenges us in varying ways. In how we deal with such challenges we differ.

Although celebrating the little victories helps many, doing so is not universally beneficial.

I have tried celebrating my little victories, and have had mixed results. As a result, I motivate myself in other ways.

Do what works for you
Respect what works for others

The many faces of diabetes

Diabetes is bland. It is a set of routines that evoke no emotional response. It is just there, tagging along as I continue living.

Diabetes is irritating. It stirs up trouble at inopportune moments. Life is complicated by its machinations.

Diabetes is a hospital bed.

What is this blog?

This blog centers on an individuals life.

It is an artists’ gallery, with a multitude of paintings adorning
its walls. In interpreting them you are active.

This individual is wandering in a forest, between two extremes. In this we are united.

With words the artist makes strokes upon the canvass:
a creature of his creativity is created.

Throughout his wanderings, experiences are had – in infinite variety.

What results is placed upon the wall for all to see.
Come in and observe them!

In trying to re-present this variety he repeatedly falls short. Words fail to support him.

“What will they think?” the artist wonders.
In interpretation they are free.

Outline: What will be my message?

The following is a rough outline of the message I intend to send. It is only a starting point. My message is apt to change. Some of this will be discarded. Other parts will be explicated.

My message has congealed. My message is congealing.

Gritty realism and hope. Positives and negatives. Individuality and community. Freedom and fate. Ignore none of these.

Acknowledge the shit life happens to throw at you; however, do not let it weigh you down.

Aim for self-development, aim for growth. Connect goals with this ideal.

The connection between diabetes and life as a whole. What does diabetes have to teach us about life?

Mindfulness, diabetes, and life. Mindfulness of ones BG patterns, the impact of various foods and activities = essential part of diabetes management. Emphasize its value in life as a whole.

Focus on focus. Emphasize it.

Acknowledge limitations. Focus on freedom.

Acknowledge X, focus on Y.

Focus on the power we already posses. Focusing just on empowerment = one sided.

Focus on what you can control. Avoid focusing on things that depend on other factors.

Focus on behavior.

Focus on habits.

Focus on perspective.

Obsessing over circumstance is not the most beneficial option.

Above all else, make it about eudaimonia.

Top 5 things about #DBlogWeek

Before proceeding I would like to thank Karen Graffeo for organizing DBlogWeek and everyone who participated.

I began blogging in late December 2013, so this is my first DBlogWeek.

Initially I was hesitant about joining this event. A week or two before I had published posts on 6 consecutive days – my personal record. Would I be able to do it again?

Obviously I did join, and, as it turned out, my initial fears were unfounded. With that said, it wasn’t easy.

Attempting to keep up with other people’s posts was difficult. I fell behind. Although I failed to keep up, in the upcoming days I will make sure to read the ones that I missed.

Anyway…

Here is what made #DBlogWeek a great experience:

  1. It fosters a greater sense of community in the dblog solar system;
  2. It exposes one to different perspectives;
  3. One makes connections with formerly unknown people;
  4. It eliminates the need to find something to write about;
  5. It gives you an excuse to spam your followers with blog posts :p

May good blood sugars be with you all until next time!

Diabetes Life Hacks – #DBlogWeek

Know what amuses me? Of all the DBlogWeek prompts, this one is the most challenging! We have discussed changing the world, mental health, our personal mantras. I have written about these with ease, only to have this ease obstructed by a pebble. It’s absurd! I love absurdities! For this I am grateful…

Confession: I am not, by any stretch of the imagination, a “neat diabetes tricks” kind of guy.

If your pump clip breaks, put it in your pocket. That’s my most marvelous trick. Call me Mozart! My creativity knows no bounds, and I am prolific in my output.

In all honesty, I am the Justin Bieber of diabetes tricks…

Does that analogy work?

Nah… I don’t share my “neat” tricks, so I can’t be hated for doing so.

In all seriousness, seriousness has been lacking in my tone thus far. Really though… in all seriousness, that last sentence was stating the obvious.

Mantras and Reminders – #DBlogWeek

I planned on creating a collage of quotes to express my mantras. Sometimes plans change.

Re-viewing my recent posts, I observed a budding fear of hypoglycemia. I am no stranger to this. I once let this fear fatigue me.

Moving forward, I am not willing to allow the past to repeat. Therefore, I have tailored my plan.

Without further ado, here are some of my mantras in my words:

  • Change is the law of life. The lows won’t last forever;
  • That is how I feel, this is how I act;
  • I may stumble, but I won’t fall;
  • Perseverance is perfection;
  • I won’t flee from my reflection;
  • A dark sense of humor is a diabetics best friend;
  • I am alive. I have emotions. I accept them;
  • This Is Sisyphus!

I will repeat these throughout the upcoming months. They have assisted me; may they assist me again!

What you do is up to you; the doc is here to help.

Speaking of diabetes and mental health…

The events of last year left a mark.

I fear going low. My blood sugar was 215 an hour or two ago – perhaps three. Now it is 132, which seems great. I assure you, it isn’t!

I have noticed this before…my blood sugar dropping elicits fear. I do not want last year to repeat itself. I don’t want to go low every fucking day all summer! That is no way to live on earth. It is befitting of hell…

I fear that I will get burned out again, just like last year. I fear that I will have to repeat the difficult process of overcoming diabetes burnout. I fear this… I fear that… I am anxious.

I dread…Dread…DREAD summer.

Lows elicit anxiety. The thought of lows elicits anxiety.

Although I don’t enjoy this inescapable vulnerability, I, in a sense, accept it. I accept that this is how I feel. I am not – not right now at least – running from myself. It is what it is,  even if what is sucks.

It is one thing to feel this way, quite another to let it master you.

Do you know why diabetes sucks? It can make you feel helpless. You feel like a child. Vulnerable. At the mercy of chance. Awful. Weak. Unraveled.

Writing this post has been cathartic. Hopefully, in the long term, it will help assuage some of my diabetes related fears.

I can feel this way… I can admit to feeling this way… But I need to, for my own well being, remember to keep soldiering on.

#DBlogWeek – A novel approach to discussing mental health

Diabetes and mental health – more specifically the connection between the two – fascinates me. I am excited. I am also concerned. Will I be able to have a narrow focus? Will I ramble on? Heck…will this post even make sense?!

The gods had condemned Sisyphus to ceaselessly rolling a rock to the top of a mountain, whence the stone would fall back of its own weight. They had thought with some reason that there is no more dreadful punishment than futile and hopeless labor.
~ Albert Camus

We all have rocks to roll. Blood glucose levels are one of mine.

By unfamiliar forces condemned, I roll this rock up the hill of perfection, only to fail…repeatedly.

Now I stand face to face with my own humanity.

Smacked by the futility of the task, consciousness of my predicament arises. Responsibility drops on my shoulders. The moment of decision has arrived.

A book of options is presented. I am free to look it over, free to choose.

Human agency makes its entrance.

My reaction is not predestined.

Inclined towards my habits, the familiar option is chosen. All others are ignored.

For one reason among many, with a spirit of adventure I’m filled, and I decide to forsake my habits. I choose a novel option.

Both of these paths I have traversed.

Which course will I follow?

————

Implicit herein lies most of the mental health difficulties I have faced whilst living with diabetes for the last 12 years.

I hope that some beams of light shine through as well.

————

In the past, I have described in greater specificity some of the psychological challenges that I have faced. In the future I will likely divulge more.

A broad approach for a broad topic. That is the approach I have taken here.

————

Update: I experienced diabetes-related anxiety after publishing this post, which you can read about here:
https://t1dme.wordpress.com/2014/05/14/speaking-of-diabetes-and-mental-health/

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