Type 2 Diabetes Makes me Resilient
Last updated: March 2022
Not long ago I wrote a piece 'I Can’t Do Diabetes Right Now.' In it, I explained some of the many life events that had been affecting my life in the last year. All of those things had an impact on me looking after, or more accurately, not looking after my diabetes. In the past year, my daughter repeatedly had health events, my dad passed away, I missed a recertification exam when dad passed, and work was a major challenge daily. Shortly after I wrote that article, my husband had a health event. I got home from work, took him to the hospital and found out quickly he would be okay over a period of a number of weeks. Thankfully.
Can't care for my diabetes
Even though my husband was going to be ok and recover, I realized I couldn’t breathe. Physically I could; mentally, not at all. In the front of my mind was looking after my family and to keep pushing through it all. In the back of my mind was my lack of energy to care for my diabetes and the questions: Am I going to crash now? What happens to my diabetes if I do? Will my diabetes be so far gone that I will end up in the hospital and need substantial treatment to bring it under control? I was spinning. I spoke to a friend at work who in her direct but caring way, told me to call our Employee Assistance Program (EAP). I had already been thinking about it but I guess that was the push I needed. I contacted them, and of course, with my luck, the process was not smooth. There were errors on EAP’s end. My friend was still at me to try again. I’m glad I did.
I am resilient and strong
I met the counselor. Nice lady. She liked to interrupt quite a bit to quote a book or source or reference for me. I guess she thought that was helpful. I didn't have a lot of patience to start with so I just tried to listen when she tried to be helpful. I told my long story in great detail. I also mentioned that I was diabetic and my worry about that. To my surprise and my irk at the same time, she had advice for me. I shut her down pretty quickly. The last thing I needed from a non-diabetic was advice on what I should be doing. As I told my story, I could feel my stress level increasing. With stress, I knew my blood sugar was also increasing. I managed to get through my long tale of woe of the last year. What came out of this counseling session was one very clear and positive message. I am resilient. The counselor told me I am one of the most resilient people she has ever met. That surprised me. No, shocked me. I sure didn’t feel resilient and strong. I felt like a puddle.
Then it dawned on me. The one thing every one of us who lives with diabetes has is resiliency. You cannot possibly live every day with a chronic illness like this and not be. There are days we just want to give up and give in to this disease. But we don’t. We keep pushing back and fighting it. We will not let diabetes have control.
I hope my family will be well this year. I hope I can get some time to focus on me and get my diabetes back under control. Whatever 2019 throws at me, I will remain resilient and get through it.
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