The D-Word

5,110 finger pricks, 2, 160 shots of insulin, 60 insulin pump injection sites, 3 ER visits, 3 blood gas tests, numerous bruises, 300 glucose tabs, and one terrible, unforgettable gusher (see here   That’s what 2 years of diabetes looks like in numbers.

This week marks two years since I’ve been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.  In October of 2011, this skeletor girl (seriously, I weighed like 105, as a result of the diabetes I didn’t know I had, in this picture…and home girl normally has some curves she’s working with) …

The weekend before I was diagnosed with diabetes
The weekend before I was diagnosed with diabetes

Couldn’t read the power points in her Corporations class (sorry Professor Gulinello for blaming my lack of sight on your power points, but I still think you need to change the contrast on your power points…yellow font, really?), eating a ton, thirsty all the time, and waking up 3 times a night to use the restroom.  One WebMd search later and I was in the doctor’s office having my blood glucose checked.

It’s been two years since that very scary and confusing week.  Honestly, I cannot remember what life was like before diabetes. I don’t know if that’s good or bad, ha!  Last year on my one year diaversary (yea, that’s what we call our diabetes diagnosis anniversary date), a very kind friend created a website where my friends, family, etc. could leave me encouraging words (here’s the link if you want to check it out, thanks AM!).  You don’t know how many times I’ve gone back and read your sweet messages…they’ve kept me going on some really hard days.

I have typed and backspaced (and cried, ha!) at least 10 times while writing this post.  I very rarely dedicate a whole post to my diabetic life.  Self-psychoanalysis…probably because I try so hard to integrate my diabetes into my normal life that I sometimes forget I’m not totally normal (well, who really is normal?!? But, I forget my silly pancreas isn’t normal 🙂

Since last year, I celebrated with the sweet words of encouragement you all left me…I decided this year I would give you all some sweet words of encouragement.

If you know me well, you know that I am fiercely independent and stubborn.  One of the biggest life changes I’ve been forced to make because of diabetes is the loss of independence.  I’ve had to rely on people more often than I’d ever imagined.  This is has been such a blessing in disguise.  I’ve had to open up and ask for help from my family, friends and co-workers.  I want to very briefly try to thank all of you for the things you do everyday that mean so much to me.

A Brief Thank You List

  1. For stopping what you’re doing to wait while I check my blood sugar
  2. Making sure I have a snack when I’m low or waiting for me to give an injection when I’m high
  3. Texting, calling, or stopping by during my hospital visits
  4. Eating cheeseburgers with me in the hospital or spending a weekend in Nashville celebrating my one year diaversary
  5. Praying for me
  6. Supporting the JDRF
  7. Raising money at work to help me find cure
  8. Listening to my fears, whines, or complaints
  9. Seeing beyond the diabetes and treating me like the same person
  10. Texting me late at night when you know my blood sugar is low
  11. Asking for me to prick your fingers so you know what it feels like—Katie and Anna—I’m looking at you
  12. Leaving a sporting event to take care of me when I have the flu and my blood sugar keeps dropping.
  13. Accommodating all of my crazy diabetic needs.
  14. Loving me

In two years, I’ve learned a lot about myself…but I’ve also learned a lot about you all! You all are far more kind, supportive, and loving than I could have ever asked or hoped for.  This verse really sums you all up “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. (1 Thessalonians 5:11 NIV).  Because the most important thing I’ve learned about the people in my life….You all are strong when I am weak.

Words cannot express how appreciative I am for your strength on my behalf.  I would love to write a specialized thank you for each and every one of you, but I think wordpress has a word limit! I hope that one day I can be strong for you when you are weak.

And a very special shout out to my wonderful parents who deal with the brunt of my diabetic craziness.   You two are angels. Thank you for showing me grace and loving me like Jesus does. You’re the bomb. God must definitely spent a little more time on you all 🙂

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