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The Truth About Diabetes

The short version about living with diabetes: it sucks.

But there’s a longer version as well…

Diabetes is a chronic disease that requires constant daily discipline in order to manage it. Basic daily tasks can become a challenge when your diabetes is not in control. The discipline required to say no to sweets and treats, to calculate carbs, fat and protein intake with each meal, and then calculate insulin doses accordingly EVERY SINGLE DAY can seem like an exhausting, never-ending task. But, there’s a way to reframe your approach to daily diabetes management. Instead of viewing it as a task or chore; consider it as an opportunity. A positive spin: you GET to manage your condition independently, with the help of modern-day technology. Look at it this way… a cancer patient may get a break every now and then from chemo, radiation, surgical treatments, and can go a day without having to do any managing of their condition. But cancer patients really do not have much control over their outcome. They’re at the mercy of doctors, drugs with crazy side effects, potentially dangerous surgeries with unknown outcomes, etc. Diabetics on the other hand: yes we have to plan ahead and be disciplined every single day- there are no vacations for us from our disease. BUT we have control over the outcome of our health. Synthetic insulin has given us this opportunity. We can decide to be healthy and not let our disease affect us, which is a gift not given to everyone suffering from a chronic illness. For years, I considered myself a “victim” and I felt sorry for myself because of what I had to do to manage my condition. I enviously watched others eat whatever they wanted without needing to worry about what effect it may have on their blood sugar, and listened to people complain about waking up during the night every so often, whereas I am awakened multiple times every single night due to low or high blood sugars. It used to anger me knowing others could live so carefree, without the constant feeling of impending doom of the short and long-term effects that poor diabetes management can have on one’s body. I have a different outlook now. I feel grateful that my condition is one that the medical field has been able to provide medicines that allow me to live independently, with just one or two check-ups required each year with my doctor. To live as a type one diabetic in this day and age is relatively simple- remain disciplined with small, everyday choices and it can buy you years of health and independence down the road.

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