Freaky Friday – Diabetes Blog Week – Day 5
Just like in the movie, today we’re doing a swap. If you could switch chronic diseases, which one would you choose to deal with instead of diabetes? And while we’re considering other chronic conditions, do you think your participation in the DOC has affected how you treat friends and acquaintances with other medical conditions?
Ick! The thought of this gives me the heebie jeebies! I wouldn’t choose ANY other chronic illness other than diabetes. Now that I know the difficulty of dealing with an invisible illness, I wouldn’t wish it on ANYONE – not my worst enemy. Not even people who have done REALLY bad things. Because it’s awful. And it’s frustrating. And it’s not fair. And most days, it doesn’t even make any sense. But diabetes is MINE. Every day is an opportunity to learn something new about diabetes and how best to manage it.
In the span of only 6 years, my life was torn apart and put back together again several times over thanks to diabetes. But I know what I face. And I know what I can do to make daily life manageable. The first few months of trying to figure out diabetes (with the amazing support of incredible medical staff and a family who did everything they could to help but without the DOC because I didn’t even know about it) was hell. It was confusing. I was going through a lot of other “life stuff” at the moment. But I learned. And I grew emotionally. And now I OWN my diabetes. I take responsibility for it every day. And for that reason, the thought of another chronic illness rearing its head scares the crap out of me. I know it’s a possibility since I already have an auto immune disorder that another one could strike without warning and with nothing to do prevention wise, but I wouldn’t choose anything else if I had the choice.
I have friends who fight against chronic illnesses every day – friends with Celiac, friends battling infertility and of course, my little brother who smiles in the face of adversity every day. I don’t think my inclusion as a member of the DOC has made me treat anyone differently but I think my diagnosis alone added a new dimension to my ability to sympathize (perhaps empathize would be a better word?). I know everyone I meet is fighting their own battle their own way and it’s not up to me to judge those or compare our fates or difficulties. Instead, I just remind myself to smile and be gracious to everyone that crosses my path – you never know who might need it! xo