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Surfing the Mammoth Wave

12/10/2015 16:16

Doesn’t it seem like there is a national day of just about something or other every day?  Some of them we ignore, others we may roll our eyes over & then there are the ones that we celebrate.  Today is National Kick Autoimmune Disease’s butt day.  Yes, I am definitely celebrating this!  How about you?  Maybe just maybe you & I do our best to kick autoimmune 365’s every day anyhow.  I am pretty excited to have a national kick butt day for this all the same because I know that today we are all kicking butt big time together.  Keep going.

Have you ever felt like you were or are the holder of a profoundly huge magnifying glass?  For sure if we live with type 1 diabetes we have likely at some point felt like we were under a magnifying glass at times.  Those are the instances where it is A1C time.  What would the story tell this time?  In just under 3 weeks I am due to learn the results of my A1C again (for the 18th time) & as usual I am not much looking forward to that.  It will be a shocker if my A1C starts with anything under 7% & that really ticks me off because I have been working my butt off trying to manage the beast of type 1 diabetes.  It has been much like a boxing match where I keep getting knocked down but keep getting up again.  What is the choice?  Just like the surf, diabetes has this way of allowing the tides to come in & out.  In other words there are times when for the most part my blood sugars are tamed & I can walk along the metaphorical shorelines doing the same things expecting the same in range blood sugars.  Then wham, in comes the tide with dramatics to spare out of nowhere & I am left riding the waves of high & low sugars.  I don’t need to tell you that if you live with type 1 too that it is beyond frustrating, exhausting & the struggle is real.  If we are living with an otherwise invisible 365 like type 1 diabetes are the huge waves invisible too?  Can others tell that we are being picked up by the undertow of wacky blood sugars?  My personal answer is “it depends.”  There are a few people who get it & then so many that just plain don’t get it at all.  Thank goodness for the ones who understand because there are days that I find that I need to be able to describe some of those knock down days with diabetes & have others get it.  It makes a huge difference.  I will add that my heart hurts as I will forever miss a Battle Buddy that  shared the ups and downs of diabetes together in person since she left us too soon last Spring.  There were no subjects that were off limits & that was a gift that I will forever cherish.  I know she is still cheering me on from heaven but I miss her so much.  Love absolutely lasts forever though so the love remains & I get to carry this with me.  Maybe one day I will be like a big sister to another gal living with type one.  That would be one way to pass on the love that my diabetes big sister gave to me. 

You never know what a year is going to hold & 2015 is no different that way.  I have at times felt wiped out emotionally this year & there are still 3 months to go.  Admittedly, I am quite a sensitive person.  As I have shared before diabetes & other 365’s magnifies this within me.  For sure my heart is worn on my sleeve.  That’s ok…it’s a fashion statement because it goes well with the “pancreas” that I wear on my hip.  The surf has come in big time on emotional me.  Finally I realize that this is the way God made me so I am ok with just being sentimental me.  And I am ok with cracking silly jokes & being an outlier in more situations than I can keep track of.  When I learned recently that I have burned out my adrenals it came as no surprise because 2015 has been heavy duty.  The thing is that everyone out there has struggles so this is not a woe is me story.  It is however a time to take back some health or rebuild the parts that I can.  Ironically amongst the ridiculous number of medical appointments for myself & one of my best friends past, present & well into the foreseeable future it is at times difficult to rebuild some of my health.  I decided that I would therefore schedule in things I need to do as if they too are appointments because I don’t want to feel like I am 90 years old.  As I await results from bunches of medical tests yet again & diagnosis there is lots that I can do.  For sure getting on top of the wave & surfing it versus getting thrown around the rocks is a starter.  There is so much gratitude inside me that I live in a small corner of the world that offers so much specialized care. Last week I took one of my best friends to the stroke clinic for a follow up due to the stroke they suffered a month ago.   The clinic is only a short half hours drive from home.  The specialist & nurse & front desk there provided a very human experience.  My friend had a wee joke with a number of them there & I could tell that the staff genuinely cared.  It is the easiest thing in the world to be cranky, cantankerous & a complainer especially when dealing with stressful medical illnesses but that I believe does no one any good.  My friend & I make sure that for all appointments we try on our end to make it a human experience for the people working at the medical facilities.  These are not 2 dimensional people in uniforms but rather people…sons & daughters, moms & dads just like all of us.  My friend & I know we are fortunate to live within an hour of so much specialized care.  We are not however looking to bank up reward miles in visiting too many of them on a lighter note.  I choose to ride the wave of appreciation.  Well isn’t that timely since today is Canadian Thanksgiving.

In waking up today I am thankful for:  the boy that I fell in love with when I was just 16 years old & am blessed & smart enough to have married, 3 treasured sons, a home, a lovely meal to celebrate, extended family that mean the world to me, friendship near & far, our goldie and of course the gift of waking up to be here to be grateful & to live & make more magnified memories today.  It is gut wrenching losing a loved one but I know without a doubt that I carry every single one of these Dear Hearts who left us far too soon in the love that I carry & share.  I am one grateful rascal. 

Not only am I one very thankful rascal but beyond that I am one profoundly fortunate rascal as well.  Last week I was feeling a little bit down although never out.  Half way through the week things just turned the bend.  Dear ones that I had not shared time with for a while got in touch with me as if I had sent out the support Bat signal or something.  As the week went along I found myself sharing precious time with these Dear Hearts in my sunlit kitchen & feeling exactly like enthusiastic me again.  Surprises came in the form of yummy surprises as well last week along with the special time.  Cupcakes, apples, Georgian Bay honey, apples from my Grandma’s orchards, my Mom’s amazing homemade chili sauce along with the hugs & laughs entered my home & heart.  How could you not feel cared about?  I did & I do.  Maybe we each just need to be reminded in some way that others do care.  It makes a huge difference.  It can be as simple as an email, a phone call, a smile, tea together or so many other small yet meaningful moments that act as reminders to us.  Let’s face it & that is that while we are kicking butt whether it be on National kick autoimmune disease butt day or any day in between community makes a gigantic difference.  It has taken me what seems like a zillion years to accept care from others.  I love caring for others but it is an awkward learning curve accepting care in return.   It is a work in progress & that is fine.  On a lighter note I am grateful for the smell of fresh apple  & pumpkin pie baking for the second day in a row in my wee oven in my sunlit kitchen.  I am even thankful for the strong advocation that our sons provided this morning as they explained that they had accidentally eaten the rest of last night’s pies & so needed more made.  How can you argue with that?  How do you accidentally eat pie?  How great to get up from the dinner table on Sunday night & have the biggest decision be whether to watch the Toronto Blue Jays’ game or the Montreal Habs?  Yes, I am one pretty fortunate rascal.  Incidentially both teams won their games so that too was a bonus.  For family & friendships from the very beginning of my life to the very last breath I am big time grateful to & for.  This includes you!

My heart’s hope for you is that if you are going through a particularly big time of struggle that you can look at your list of gratitudes & ride that wave.  If you are having an especially difficult time you may not see me but I am here cheering for you.  Every single day I say a prayer for every single person living with diabetes & other ongoing illnesses.  Whether I have seen your face or not, I consider you a friend.  Do not give up.  Ever.  Reach out if you need to because love multiplies when shared.  When we each give encouragement & kindness it has a beautiful ripple affect.  Bless all my Battle Buddies.  I am cheering for you every single day.  Happy Canadian Thanksgiving & Happy National Kick Butt day!  xoxo