6.12.17

A Love(ish) Letter To Diabetes

 
Dear Diabetes,
Lets get something straight – I don’t like you one bit. I wouldn’t wish you on my worst enemy, and my heart breaks every time I hear of a newly diagnosed kid. Most days I really wish you’d just disappear, but it’s been 28 years now… you don’t seem to be going anywhere, and frankly hating you is getting boring.
Since you like to change things up on me ALL THE FREAKING TIME, I thought I’d shake it up a bit and tell you why I love(ish) you. I bet you didn’t see this coming.

Here we go:
  • I love(isn) you because you taught me resilience in so many ways. I truly believe the ability to have a good time (or at least appear to) with a BG of 350 is high on my list of lifetime achievements.
  • I love(isn) you because you’re my constant answer to “will I ever use math in real life?” Case in point: Q: Your current blood sugar is 180, your correction factor is 1:40, and you’re about to eat 20 grams of carbohydrates and have an insulin:carb ration of 1:10. If your target blood sugar is 100, how many units of insulin will you need to bolus? A: FOUR. BAM. I didn’t even need to ask Siri. 😉
  • I love(isn) you because you taught me a secret language few people understand. Its like being part of an exclusive club  only a few people know the password to.
  • I love(isn) you because – JUICE BOXES. Nothing says, ‘young at heart‘ like a night stand and purse full of juice boxes.
  • I love(ish) you because without you, I would never know the incredible pride that is correctly guesstimating the grams of carbohydrates at a wedding buffet. My pancreatically unchallenged friends will never know the joy.
  • I love(ish) you because in a culture obsessed with thin and tight and “how does my butt look in these”, I’ve had the luxury of the “What the heck is that on her arm?” to help distract attention from (all the) cellulite.
  • I love(ish) you because the fanny pack full of lifesavers candy I wore when I was newly diagnosed definitely made me the coolest kid on the block (right mom?).
  • I love(ish) you because I didn’t have to drink that god-awful glucose drink that all the pregnant ladies complain about for their gestational diabetes test. Lucky me.
  • I love(isn) you because you taught me to fight hard for things I want, and not to let you get in my way.
  • I love(ish) you because you taught me to weather storms and still find gratitude in the lessons.
  • I love(isn) you because you introduced me to an amazing and inspirational community of people with Type 1 that I would otherwise never have known. Their stories continually inspire me, and push me to use my voice to advocate for us all.
Type 1, I love you (but get lost).
Love,
Sarah

Sarah Swanberg is a board certified acupuncturist and Chinese herbalist practicing in Stamford, CT. She was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes in June 1989. Her love for Chinese medicine started when she realized the profound affect that acupuncture was having on her blood sugar control and general well-being. When not busy building her practice and educating people about the benefits of acupuncture, she loves to cook, hike, and hang out with her husband and two small daughters.

One thought on “A Love(ish) Letter To Diabetes

  1. I love this post Sarah! It makes me want to look on the bright side of diabetes! I don’t think I am by any means a Debbie downer but I definitely don’t search out the positive aspects! Thanks for the attitude adjustment! Laurie Hollingsworth

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