I can’t believe it! We’ve made it through another year. By all accounts, 2016 wasn’t the best of times but in my opinion, it wasn’t the worst of times either. If any one of us looks back, we can find things to be grateful for. I think this is especially true for those of us living with diabetes. For me, 2016 was all about stepping out more into the DOC (diabetes online community) and exposing to my friends and family, more of what it's like to live day in and out with diabetes which includes blogging for you here at Diabetes Sisters over the next 6 months.
I was diagnosed with Diabetes in 2008 at the age of 42. At first, I thought I had type 2 so I changed my diet, exercised more and worked to reduce my stress. I am the sort of person who puts my all into everything I do. So when my best didn’t work I was beyond frustrated. That’s when I found out it wasn’t type 2. It was type 1 LADA and even though my current levels were in the ballpark, eventually I’d have to go on Insulin.
It wasn’t a stellar moment and to be honest, I turned a blind eye. I’d been practicing Yoga since I was 19 and teaching since I was 26 and thought of myself as ultra-healthy. I mean who ever heard of a Yoga teacher getting diabetes?
It took me 6 years and the beginnings of neuropathy to come to terms with my diagnosis. I started Insulin in October 2014.
Prior to that moment I was convinced that Insulin would be the beginning of the end, but as it turned out it was a whole new start. Insulin has revolutionized my understanding of what it means to live with diabetes. I never thought I’d ever have to walk a tightrope. But surprise, surprise I have excellent balance. This has less to do with my personality and more to do with my yoga practice. When things get crazy I step onto the mat, breathe and let go. It’s helped a lot.
So here it is a brand new year. A fresh start! But how does that work when you live with Diabetes? Management is 24/7 and the challenges never stop. Do new years’ resolutions work? Can I ever be a new me?
For me, my experience as a yogi and yoga teacher has taught me that we can never really change who we are. We can only ever change how we see things. When I get stuck in ideas about my diabetes, i.e. ideal numbers, management strategies and more I try and remind myself that with every new year comes new tech, new insulin’s, new methods of control. And more advocates and change makers coming online to heal and inspire.
Rather than force myself to have a plan of action for the year and make lots of resolutions I like to take a step back and wait, watch and learn. Asking… How can I be more grateful? And in what ways can I make a difference in the diabetes community as a whole?
Living with diabetes is the single most challenging thing I have ever faced. But as every year passes and I get more confident in my diabetes management I’m finding it easier to start the new year afresh.
And my motto for 2017? Stop, Drop, Write and Be Me.