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Stars in the night sky swirl behind the profile of a man whose face billows with storm clouds; a flash of lightning emanates from the back of his head, with rain pouring from his cheek to his neck.

What I Feel When I Think About Diabetes

Diabetes. Just that word evokes a reaction. A visceral reaction. A reaction in my brain that I can't control because it's happened before I even realize it.

Emotions because of type 2 diabetes

It makes me think about things I don’t want to think about. It makes me feel things I don’t want to feel.


I feel sad when I think of diabetes. A sadness that some days I can't describe. It fills my heart, I tear up and I just want it to go away. Sometimes the sadness is related to knowing my loved ones may be affected by it someday. Other times it is for the people I have met that have challenges they can’t overcome because of diabetes. Sometimes I just feel sad for myself.


I feel anger when I think of diabetes. Why me? Why didn’t I pay attention to my risk factors before the diagnosis? Why did it happen to you too? Why did it happen to that little child? Doesn’t diabetes know that life is hard enough without this extra challenge? Why hasn’t a cure been found? I feel like I could explode when I think about diabetes.


I feel fear when I think of diabetes. What if I can’t manage it? Will I need scary treatments? Will it change my life? Will I have complications from it? Will I die from it?


I feel tired when I think of diabetes. It’s emotional tiredness; not a “I didn't get enough sleep” tiredness. Sometimes I feel exhausted right down to the bone where I don’t want to do anything. I’m too tired to talk to anyone; too tired to be with anyone. Too tired to exercise. Too tired to pay attention to what I am eating.


I feel resignation when I think of diabetes. Resignation sets in because diabetes wins. I do everything right but the numbers are wrong. Ding, ding, ding! “Diabetes wins again.” Some days I don’t even want to try to get good numbers. What for? Diabetes will only win once more.


I feel stress when I think of diabetes. There is life stress, work stress, personal stress and other sources of stress that just add to the stress of having diabetes. It’s easy to say find ways to manage your stress but can we really? The stress diabetes creates becomes a part of us so after a while, we don’t even realize just how stressed we really are.

Hope and determination

Then the sun shines. I feel the warmth. The warmth infiltrates my body and my mind. It warms my heart. I realize it's a new day and I have another chance to live my life in a new way and I am grateful for that. I start over because, well, isn’t that what the new day is for? I tell diabetes to get back in line, I’m in charge. Diabetes, you may influence my thoughts and my heart some days but I am stronger than you are. Oh yes, you will be able to get ahead of me at times but I will not let you win. Not now. Not ever.

I live peacefully, most days, in spite of diabetes and the feelings it creates.

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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