It's frustrating to me how little the general public knows about Diabetes and the difference between the two major types.
The other day, I was abnormally baffled by Michael's blood sugar numbers. We were trying out a new carb to insulin ratio for lunch. He was receiving more insulin at lunch in the last two days than he had in a long, long while. His numbers were actually dropping into the lower range of normal when he was checked after waking from his afternoon nap. I was uncertain that we had chosen the right insulin dose at lunchtime and I was afraid that he would drop too low during nap time. I got up from my desk to go to the bathroom just to get a change of pace and wash my hands in very hot water hoping to distract myself as I was counting down the minutes before Michael could be checked. I must have had a look of worry on my face because two co-workers standing outside the door of the bathroom looked at me and one said "Are you all right?" I looked up and just said "I'm battling diabetes today," and I pushed open the door to the bathroom. Both said "Awww" and one said "Feel better." I gave a sympathy smile and turned back to face them. "It's not me. It's my two year old son." They both chorused "Awww" again and I headed into the bathroom.
Tears stung my eyes. They just didn't get it. You don't get better from diabetes. They just didn't understand this disease. They didn't have any idea of its relentlessness. They just didn't know and I found that to be sad. They meant well, but they had no clue that their words could be so piercing because it signaled that they knew nothing about the disease from which they were hoping I'd "feel better."
And I feel the sting inside when a well-meaning friend is telling me about her decision not to attend a craft event with her young son this past weekend for a number of reasons, but when she said "And it's probably a good thing that we didn't go because there would be a lot of straight pins everywhere." My heart felt a little pinch and a lump started to grow in my throat. I nonchalantly said "Oh, he could have just practiced being a diabetic."
I know she meant well. And I know she didn't think about how her words might affect me. And I promise I'm not even the least bit mad. But I am sad. Michael doesn't get a choice. His fingers get pricked every day, multiple times a day. I still ache for normalcy. I miss the carefree days when I could worry about Michael picking up a stray straight-pin at a craft event. Those days are gone. Now we carry around medical straight pins called lancets with us at all times.
Most days, diabetes definitely makes its presence known in our day-to-day life. But, then there are moments like this when diabetes doesn't win, and when my heart is utterly filled with joy:
The other day I saw a Facebook post from a friend stating that she had participated in a local JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes. I commented on her post and told her that it meant so much to me that she had walked. She responded that she was inspired by Michael and by reading about our experiences with this awful disease. So, if you're reading this today, thank-you. My heart still wells with joy when I think that someone was inspired to get out and DO SOMETHING about this. That brings me to tears in the best way.
Until next time,
Much love, Reba