Our Diabetes/365 Community IS our cuppa!
No, It's Not a Tug of War
It has been 5 years & 9 months since I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. November 29, 2007 is a date that my memory has kept in its storage banks. If you have diabetes or another 365 health challenge, you too may find that you continue to remember the exact date that you were diagnosed. Over the years, I have found that I look at November 29th through a strength-filled mindset. While I personally do not believe that time in & of itself heals all wounds, I sure do believe that time coupled with positive action does lead to a form of healing. It is not a reference to physical healing but rather emotional and or spiritual healing.
The choices that I make surrounding my diabetes I believe can result in an accumulation of victimhood or victory. Do you know anyone who claims to have either perfect days or perfect choices every single minute of the day? We simply do our very best & when we stumble, we dust ourselves off & get back up with determination. A “bad day” here & there decision wise does not need to define us. Take baseball for instance. When you see the batting averages, what do you realize? We realize that there were plenty of “strike outs” yet the determination, practice, and winning spirit define the baseball player as a victor.
When we think about what choices are all about, we soon realize that choices are about intention. If we are living our lives by making intentional positive choices & actions, then that sounds like a life defined as courageous. It is easy to fall prey to victimhood. Consider if we have a problem yet choose to do nothing about it but rather just take a “wait & see what happens” approach. The situation may turn out okay yet chances are that if we take this approach to life continuously that our “batting average” with this strategy working out will diminish. If we agree that Albert Einstein was a highly intelligent thinker, then his quote stating that “you cannot solve the problems of today with the same level of thinking that they were caused by” is a priceless guidepost.
You may share the view that life feels like it is going by at lightning speed. The past 5 years have gone by in the blink of an eye since that initial diagnosis. Vividly, I remember feelings of loss when I learned that type 1 was now part of my life & the lives of my family. The whole rainbow of emotions was experienced especially in the first year. Frustration & exasperation were especially in abundance during 2008. The learning curve was steep & I felt as though I was not learning fast enough & not doing well enough. I was at that point giving myself a failing grade on my blood sugar results, how I was feeling, energy levels, how I was measuring up to what I was like prior to diabetes & an array of other measurements. While the learning that first year was steep, I was determined to be an A+ type 1 diabetic. My method was that I would be a super achiever. My spirit for myself is to avoid becoming a victim. That first year though, I went too far on the other side of the spectrum in an effort to avoid victimhood in any form. Man, was I angry with diabetes big time that first year. Throwing something harder at a moving target does not lead to greater accuracy I soon learned. I had to learn to be patient with my efforts with diabetes care & the results that often were not indicative of my profound efforts. I had to ease up on the over achieving & get “real” with myself. I had a stern talking with myself so to speak & then a gentler one. The stern one went kind of like this, “this is not working so cut it out!” The gentler one following that one went along the lines of “find some peace with the new normal.”
There is a saying in project planning of, “you have to slow down to speed up.” At the end of 2008, I began to experiment with that concept regarding the diabetes. Although I had learned so much in the first year, the learning was slowing down going into the second year. That is textbook learning curve. Somehow though, I had thought that I would will myself into having an A1C of a non-diabetic. I did achieve that once however I had to live like a robot to achieve that. It is a little like a fad diet…it will not be sustainable. That is where I began the long process of telling myself that I was going to need to “slow down” in order to speed up in understanding what was happening. Some of my hypers were hypos “gone bad” overnight. I had to take a breath & assess the glucose data so that I could correct those situations. If you are a gal who is on insulin, you soon find out that blood sugars ride the hormone waves. You talk about a moving target! 2008 turned into 2009, 2010 & then I finally intentionally began to commit myself to learning & practicing more patience with diabetes & life in general.
Aha moments in life are precious. One that “hit” me in 2012 was that I don’t have to understand everything about living with diabetes to go ahead & accept that I have type 1. Oh boy, I finally let go of the rope…the rope of tug of war. That was a peace filled aha moment. It has stayed with me since. I had been resisting each day that it was going to be another day with type 1 in it on some level. There lies the liberating choice & that was to accept that this is the new normal until there is a cure. It did not lead to victimhood, this choice. The choice instead led to greater hope and more excitement about everything. One of my favourite sayings that I love to say when I am super excited while talking with my husband is this, “do you know what I am excited about…everything.” Then I will go on to say what it is that I am specifically excited about. Letting go of the tug of war rope with diabetes has provided more energy to devote to people & things that truly matter.
When we realize that we are doing our very best & really giving something our all & that our efforts are not only acceptable but that they are pretty awesome, that is a “top drawer” feeling.
My heart’s hope is that your choices, attitudes & feelings about your life, diabetes or no diabetes, lead you to proclaiming that you are excited about everything!
Smiles, Saundie :)
May this week ahead be one that you are "excited about everything" every day & next Monday's sharing is, "The Quarterback Who Knows Nothing About Football!" :)