D Blog Week 2017: Diabetes and the Unexpected

"Diabetes can sometimes seem to play by a rulebook that makes no sense, tossing out unexpected challenges at random.  What are your best tips for being prepared when the unexpected happens?  Or, take this topic another way and tell us about some good things diabetes has brought into your, or your loved one’s, life that you never could have expected?"


Happy DBlog Week! Thank you once again to Karen at Bittersweet Diabetes for running the show. I can't believe I've made it to my 5th blog week, it seems like just yesterday I started my blog in 2013, right before blog week. I was so nervous entering it as a brand new blogger. But here we are, 5 years later and I can call many of my fellow bloggers my friends. 

On to the topic. I've decided to tackle this topic using the second interpretation- what good has diabetes brought to my life? 

I saw this topic and went back to my old blog posts to see what I've said in the past about silver linings. I used to talk about them a lot and my blog posts usually had that feel good vibe by the end. I've noticed that's wavered lately, so this topic comes at a good time.

My diabetes has given me a multitude of job opportunities I never imagined, let alone expected to enter. I've had the privilege of being a youth representative for a variety of organisations. I've spoken at events and conferences about my experience as a patient. I've spoken to other young people with chronic conditions. I've had the opportunity to receive formal training to be a health consumer representative. These are all fantastic opportunities that I never would have received without my diagnosis. 

I'm also of the belief that my diabetes has done wonders for my personality. Sadly it hasn't improved everything, but it has made me more assertive. I'm far more comfortable in and of myself, and to be that way I've had to learn to accept my diabetes diagnosis. It's an ongoing process (even after 7 years!) but I think that having a condition like this has enabled me to show more of my personality and speak up for my needs. You need a little assertiveness to break the ice when you check your sugar in front of someone new. 

But most importantly it has brought me this incredible sense of community. I've met so many wonderful people through our shared condition. From blogging to weekly twitter chats I've met so many people with so many different stories. I've even been able to start a blog series T1 Talk with Frank at type1writes. I've even met people on the street with t1 or connected to it in some way. There's an instant friendship that forms, an understanding that like has met like. You could be completely different people but it doesn't matter. You both have t1. Of all the things that were unexpected, these friendships have been the best part of a difficult circumstance. 

Even though it's a rotten thing to have at times, I can't deny that a bad situation can have its silver linings. Have you gained something from your diabetes? That is, other than sleepless nights and fingertips of steel? 

Comments

  1. Community is the best part of having diabetes. Well community and of course my refined sense of adventure.

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  2. Lovely post Bec... I'm glad you've been able to do this for FIVE YEARS!

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  3. Agree with all your points. I feel the same about community & the way it has shaped my personality.

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  4. Its so true community for me is the best part! I've made so many likeminded friends and I feel so supported!

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    1. Definitely is. I need to check out your blog again, about to get back into yoga!

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  5. community has been the biggest thing for me over the past 16 years, as well as so many opportunities, but most definitely the people - looking forward to connecting and reading

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  6. Yes, the community is a great silver lining!

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    1. For sure! Glad you feel the same

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  7. It's been a pleasure having a friend like you to message, and sharing T1Talk with you. I hope that we will get to meet each other one day. Happy #5!

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    1. For sure. Next time you're in Sydney give us a buzz :)

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  8. I agree, silver linings and lifelines ;).

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  9. I love this post and all of your wonderful silver linings!! And each one is so well deserved!

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  10. The instant friendships are a beautiful thing!

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    1. They really are! I wish we could all connect like that

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  11. I love that you've highlighted the silver linings. So much power to that!

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    1. Absolutely, and it's good to remind myself of them too!

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  12. Fab post, lovely to see you back again =) I often see your FB posts and enjoy a read x

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  13. With all that's going in the dWorld right now - it's nice to hear a positive spin! Thanks for sharing!

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  14. Everyone talks about the community and friendships they make with other diabetics. I have yet to find that. Maybe it's because I think so differently than most. I don't refer to myself as a t1 but a juvenile onset because that is what I was diagnosed as back in 1965. I tell people that juvenile onset=type 1 diabetes. I don't personally have any friends who are diabetics, none at all. I don't understand why having a diabetic as a friend is better than a non-diabetic. I'm glad you've been doing this for 5 years.

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    1. Thanks for your comment. I don't think there's any issue referring to t1 in whatever way you see fit

      I certainly don't think friends with t1 are better than non diabetic friends. My closest friends and family are all non diabetic. What IS nice is having someone there who understands what t1 feels like. Sharing tips or just having someone to listen is lovely. If you seek community then I hope you find it :)

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