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Yes or No, yet Never Maybe
Most of us at some point in our lives have watched Star Wars. Do you have a favourite character from this series? I do & that is definitively Yoda. When someone can be both humourous as well as wise all wrapped together, I am pretty much an admirer of that. A line that I have quoted as a parent especially when speaking with our oldest son is by Yoda, “do or do not, there is no try.” Not for a minute am I suggesting that trying is a bad thing if we each are giving to the best of our abilities in any given situation. It is more in reference to this kind of non commitment type answer that can be out there in the world. It is a lot like saying, maybe I will do this or that if I feel like it or it is convenient. Hmm, that is not okay with this gal. I was raised within a family that taught that if we gave our word then it is as good as done. Also, putting others first & the golden rule were solid & life lasting principles taught to me as I grew up. Whether I felt like it or not, if I gave my word, the expectation was I would follow through. As an adult it makes it easy to make decisions based upon those principles. A yes means yes & a no means no.
You know something, I don’t remember my parents giving the answer, “maybe” during my growing up years. We may have a budding debater contained in our second born son. The word no to Brian is an instant challenge. When he hears the word no, he really must be hearing the phrase, “now let’s have an argument.” He challenges every” no “that he receives. When I flip the situation & look at it from a slightly different angle I realize that Brian is already showing signs that he is not going to “cart blanche” follow the crowd. I have never met anyone who asks more questions than he does. He wants to understand how things work & why things are happening. He likes to know what is going to happen well in advance even with his inevitable question while heading off to school of “what’s for dinner tonight Mom?” Even though it is exhausting & frankly a wee bit exasperating, at the end of the debate or what seems like a drill of questions in the defendant’s box, a “no” means exactly that. Our sons know that when my husband & I give an answer that we take the time to think about their requests. They also know that they will receive the “if you need an answer right now it will have to be no but if you give me some time then it may be yes or no.” The boys know though that when they receive a yes to something that it will happen. A yes is a yes. It is a yes whether we feel like doing it or it is convenient or if we need to jump through extra hoops or if the type 1 beast is misbehaving. As much as possible, I try to keep a flexible date approach to our “yeses”. In other words, if something is going on that causes my blood sugars to spiral or roller coaster then the yes is still a yes however as a family we try to choose 2 or 3 possible dates to do these activities on. Frankly the majority of the time I just “suck it up princess” with myself & keep going whether I feel well or not. I am more than the beast called type 1 diabetes & my family means the absolute world to me & it is so true that our sons are growing up profoundly quickly. I remember meeting each of our sons for the first time. Matt liked drama from before he was born with an “I am going to be born early” & yet in the end having to be brought into the world kicking & screaming 2 weeks after his due date. We joke that there must have been a tv that he was watching before he entered the world because he was just too comfortable to go ahead & be welcomed to the world. When Matt was born, my husband & I cried tears of joy to finally meet this wee love. I stayed up all night with Matt his first full day & night of life & just cuddled him & watched him against the advice of the disapproving nurse who was on duty. Then the tears turned into tears of exhaustion as Matt had colic for over a month & was just inconsolable. When Brian was born, it was a well planned out birth by Brian himself on a humourous note. Brian had mathematically come up with the day & time to be born with organization. Matt just happened to have a play date already scheduled & had been dropped off by 8:30am. My husband had left for work & I had my quiet day planned out with our golden retriever. At 8:35am, I felt unmistakable contractions & called my husband who was supposed to be doing a presentation to the president of the company he worked for. Oh well, Brian had other plans. My husband had been at work a whole 15 minutes however he could tell by my voice that that was the total of his work day for that day. Driving to the hospital was a bit of a scare when we found construction & Brian was on his own tight schedule to be born he had obviously decided. We barely made it to the hospital got into an exam room, the doctor arrived in time to see Brian being born & said, “could he not wait for the doctor or a delivery room!” Then she laughed. By 11am we were holding our second love. Big brother Matt came by the hospital in the afternoon to meet his wee brother & simply said, “he’s cute but he sure could use a bath!” Brian knew the meaning of a definitive yes from birth since he decided yes, I am going to be born right now even if it is on the way to the hospital & now “chop, chop Mom & Dad!” Alex is a helper, is considerate & has a wee smile that he quietly gives away. He waited until grandma & grandpa came to stay with us before making his first appearance. My Mom & Dad had been at our place for just a few hours when I realized that I needed to make a speedy getaway to the hospital to meet our third little love. Alex was born in the middle of winter at 1am on my Grandpa’s birthday. Like my grandpa, Alex’s favourite thing to do is get out in nature. Fishing especially is a passion that links my grandpa to Alex. Alex has always had profound patience in nature & has a gentleness when he is outside that he was just born with. When Alex’s big brothers met him, Brian said he was “just okay” & Matt proclaimed that “he will be my lawyer” (whatever that means right?)
Type 1 diabetes also reinforces how I feel about the words yes & no. Some of the things I have learned in the past 6 years living with type 1 include: being profoundly aware of my big yeses, not sacrificing bigger yeses for no’s because I have made choices that are not the best ones for me, that just because I have diabetes, I don’t have to say no to anything,& that some of the best yeses are yet to be in the form of new friendships. Life is about choices so I realize that if I say yes to things that are not really meant for me that I will find myself saying no to things that matter most. That goes against everything inside me so I really don’t want to do that. And I am not interested in saying maybe about passions or enthusiasm either. A yes means yes big time in bold colour with two exclamation marks & highlighted in life to me. As a lighter aside, when I am out for lunch with a group of girlfriends & the server asks whether anyone wants dessert, I don’t need to check with anyone at the table to see what they are doing. It is as easy as just deciding yes or no mostly based on how heavenly the dessert choices are & whether I would not attempt to make the dessert at home in a million years. It is kind of a laugh when as the only person with type 1 at the lunches, I declare that for sure, yes big time, I am having cheesecake or chocolate torte or some other yummy treat. Then everyone’s dessert police goes away & a whole round of desserts come out guilt & drama free! I don’t say no to dessert just because of type 1 diabetes. I enjoy every single tasty bite. I may at times choose to say no to the calories like anyone else. I say yes big time to occasional decadent desserts though & turn the dial up on my attached friend, my insulin pump. The coolest & most unexpected thing that I have learned about yes & no in relation to type 1 over the past 6 years is that there are a lot of friends to say a big yes to. The yes is to meeting other people with type 1 as well, supporting one another on this journey with encouragement, humour & understanding & letting all of this turn into friendships. I love that! This past year, many people have become new friends who also live with type 1. We did not meet by chance. We became friends because each one of us said yes to ourselves & one another…yes, we would like to meet & become friends & find one another. How cool is that! A maybe did not lead to these friendships, but rather an active yes. And I am learning so much from these new friends. I love that.
My heart’s hope for you is that you say a big yes to what you are most passionate about in life & a huge yes to welcoming new friends into your life that you can laugh with, cry with, learn from & grow with. Yes, we are in this journey together & I am honoured to call you a friend.
Smiles, Saundie :)
May all your "yeses" this week lead to brand new big time beautiful friendships & next Monday's sharing is "Karma, Guardian Angels, Indifference" :)