Integration

It’s taken me a long time to accept that this is the way it should be.

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Being a PWD – person with diabetes.

For the first four or five years I think I was just in survival mode.

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When you first get diagnosed it’s all carb-counting and finger pricks, learning how to give yourself shots, taking over the job of a pancreas so instantly, something that you took so much for granted that you may have never thought of before. There are so many rules, techniques, methods to learn. Keeping yourself alive becomes priority # 1.

When I was first diagnosed, accepting diabetes as part of who I am was the thing I feared the most.

It’s taken ten years, but now the idea that I can begin to integrate the effects of diabetes into my identity is exciting.

And what have I learned? What am I left with? A lot. But today, I’m thinking about thinking. Something that I do a lot of. Something that diabetes requires me to do a lot of. And I’m wondering how all that thinking affects other parts of my life. 
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Feel free to share your thoughts on how having diabetes has shaped your identity.

Can’t stop thinking about…

Costa Rica right now. It’s cold here in North Carolina! Here are some pics now and then, side by side. It’s crazy how much our climate shapes us. Right now I’m going to the gym or bundling up for walks, down there I was rambling outside and running by the surf.

Diabetes was wild in Costa Rica. It was the first time I’d ever introduced myself to new people as a person with diabetes. Before that it was all about telling people who knew me that I’d been diagnosed. In some ways, it was sort of a relief to not have to explain how I got sick, stayed sick, and was finally diagnosed. To not have to fight people’s expectations of how I would be based on how they knew me before.

It’s nice to have better words to explain diabetes now. It’s taken me ten years – there have been a lot of hard emotions to sort through when it comes to how much to share, how much to ask for help. Being vulnerable with friends though, and there is a lot of interesting research right now about vulnerability that seems to confirm this, in my experience has blessed me with deeper relationships and more trust.

A Question for Omnipod Users

This is a picture of Olympic cross-country skier Kris Freeman that I found on pinterest…so apparently having muscles and wearing the Omnipod is not a problem. 

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It’s a challenge in creativity to figure out how to wear a pump and do physical activities like yoga, dancing and other atypical movements. A friend of mine is hesitant to try to the Omnipod because she does aerial arts and is afraid it might come off. I have been having a lot of trouble finding sites that I can wear the pod lately because my favorite sites seem to be building up some scar tissue or something that is interfering with my absorption.

This is a question for anyone reading who wears an Omnipod:

What are your favorite sites and why?

Submit a comment below and thanks for sharing your ideas!

Good Morning 2016

Even though I know it works, I forget that gratitude is a choice, like a lens you put into your camera to brighten the vibrancy. It always works, sometimes more than others, to heighten our focus on the present and make life something solid to hold on to.

During the two weeks I was traveling over my break between semesters, I slept on 2 different sofas and 6 different beds. The hospitality of my friends and family was heart rendering. I rolled in like a rambler and left full of good food, laughter, and strong coffee. I carried an increasingly buoyant load of love around with me from house to house. I am so exceedingly grateful that in my life I have people who I can feel connected to even when I’m miles away.

These are the people who bring a smile to my face as I’m falling asleep and whose very presence makes me feel healthy and whole. I just wanted to take a moment to celebrate the power of being present with each other, here at the start of this new year.