I’m not handicapped

Diabetes is Just a Word

Loved ones like to point out often how awesome science is and how close we are to finding a cure for Type 1 Diabetes. I’m pretty skeptical, however. It’s pretty obvious that despite the glamorous titles to these articles, my life isn’t changing. What I’m excited for is getting my gear to improve and make me more healthy! I think it’s healthier to have realistic excitement rather than having this staring contest with these miracle claims that you will inevitably lose. “But, Rachel, they’re making so much improvement! You’ll probably see the end of Type 1 Diabetes in your lifetime!” Sure, I guess, but I reckon that it won’t happen till I’m at least 60. So who will win this staring contest?

Should I live the majority of my life wincing every year in disappointment as yet another year passes without my life significantly changing? No. I won’t. I am way more excited to think about my CGM and pump getting a little slimmer and better. It’s far more realistic and obtainable in the next few years. I think it’s worth relishing these tiny miracles! I sigh a breath of relief knowing that they’re taking steps to get Type 1 more manageable and less painful. That is more valuable to me than getting excited over nothing.

Another thing that’s been bothering me are those dogs that can smell when you have low blood sugar and alert you. My family love to bring them up. Sure, I guess some people desperately need help, and a dog is the perfect solution. But as for me, I’ll stick with my Dexcom. I don’t need a dog to save me when I’m low. It feels almost demeaning to assume that a dog can help me more than I can help myself. Besides, I have my Dex to chime at me when I’m running on the low or high side. And I might add, I usually can tell I’m low or high before it goes off.

Even if I don’t need a science update, or a dog, or a bombarding ad about how “Diabetics” need a special diet cookbook, I get it anyway. I will not forget that my disease is hard, and I have lots of options to help me. I mean can’t we just forget the crap-talk? Success stories are great, but at the end of the day I don’t need to know about how someone’s aunt uses a diabetic dog and is doing great. I don’t want to hear yet again that the cure is just around the corner. It’s really just exhausting to keep up with these self-help conversations. I don’t need special cookbooks that use Splenda exclusively to help me live a delicious, diabetic life! I’m just trying to survive as painlessly as possible. I’m just trying to feel like I’m living a normal life.

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