Every month I read Between the Lines, which highlights the courageous women who battle every minute of every day to keep their blood sugars "between the lines." One of those women is my wife Keena, whose story was highlighted last month in the DiabetesSisters eNewsletter.
I am not a person with type 1 diabetes. I am not a person with type 2 diabetes. Certainly, I am not a person with gestational diabetes. I am, however, the proud husband of a very special woman who lives with type 1, diagnosed at eighteen months old.
I have witnessed thousands of finger sticks, hundreds of new insulin sets, and dozens of continuous glucose monitor (CGM) starts. I see the frustration after struggling with a high blood glucose that won't get lower and a low blood glucose that won't get higher. I see the sleep-interrupted nights. I see the struggle to concentrate and do routine things during the onset of a low blood sugar. I see the disappointment in missing a planned event because of less-than-cooperative blood sugars. I see the frustration and the dejection from never having a vacation from that stupid disease. These are the heart-breaking things I see.
I see her ability to focus on a thousand different things while still having to focus on the one thing she must manage most - diabetes. I see confidence in her ability to manage blood sugars that don't want to be managed. I see her defining herself in spite of diabetes and not because of it. I see her doing things that I could never do. I see a smart, very attractive woman who has succeeded in her personal and professional life. I see a person who overcomes the adversity that those of us with a working pancreas could hardly fathom. These are the amazing and beautiful things I see.
Thank you, Keena, and all the other DiabetesSisters, who teach us very important life lessons every single day. Your daily example helps me to stay "between the lines" too.
David M. Warren was appointed to the US Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina in February 2014. Judge Warren received his Bachelor of Arts degree, cum laud, from Wake Forest University and his Juris Doctorate degree from the Wake Forest University School of Law. He serves as Treasurer for DiabetesSisters Board of Directors.
Judge Warren is married to Keena Bartley, who was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at 18 months of age. They have a daughter, Ashley, age 27, and a son, McLean, age 24. He proudly professes himself to be a person with type 3 diabetes as Keena's diabetes management partner.