Said one of my trusted councils; that’s what diabetes should be. A multiple times a day reminder to check in with yourself, to come back to center. In the groups I lead at work we talk about how you can use gratitude and mantras to help you make taking pills or other medications less of chore, and remind yourself as you do that you are ‘staying well’ or ‘prioritizing your body’ or remind yourself why, such as ‘for my grandkids.’
The funny thing about diabetes, is it’s not just 12 times a day. It’s not every hour on the hour, “Oh what a pain, I have to step outside of myself and address this thing,” it’s always. It’s not everything, and it’s not all of your awareness, but living with diabetes means that (for me) about 15% – 65% of myself is engaged with survival, with managing my physical condition, and it varies depending on my external and internal circumstances. So I never set diabetes down and let it go, having to cajole myself into picking it back up. More, it’s just hard to realize how tired your arms are when you’re still toting something around.
So I tote diabetes or it herds me along or some combination of the two. And I’ve been trying to let it speak more to me lately. To integrate diabetes (and when I say that, I mean my entire internal functioning and state of being in relation to my self-management) with my intuition…the seat of confident decision making and self-validation on my path. And you know, diabetes is proving a handy tool. It’s bizarre, but my blood sugar knows how I feel before I do sometimes, at least concretely. And my body lets me know if I’ve come along way, traversed a hard path, used my mind to an extent that might require some real rest, maybe a lot sooner than someone’s body might who wasn’t as in touch with the moment to moment state of it. Daily lessons with diabetes, I could claim, are what I have access to.
Which reminds me of another conversation I had with the same wise friend – a conversation out of which came my current personal mantra, “I’m learning.” The diabetes lesson of today, and maybe we’ll continue these everyday, is: It’s not always the time to make a decision, to move forward. It may be necessary first, to rest, to absorb, to recover.