#DBlogWeek 2014 – Change the World

“Let’s kick off Diabetes Blog Week by talking about the diabetes causes and issues that really get us fired up. Are you passionate about 504 plans and school safety? Do diabetes misconceptions irk you? Do you fight for CGM coverage for Medicare patients, SDP funding, or test strip accuracy? Do you work hard at creating diabetes connections and bringing support? Whether or not you “formally” advocate for any cause, share the issues that are important to you. (Thanks go out to Kim of Texting my Pancreas for inspiring this topic.)”

The issue that has been consistently important to me across the years is emotional health.  I continue to volunteer to pay it forward to the programs and people who I believe have helped me maintain exceptional emotional health while living with diabetes throughout my life stages.  My current focus is managing and operating the Oz Diabetes Online Community.  We chat once a week at the same time, (Tuesday 8:30pm AEST) and at the same place, (via Twitter from @OzDiabetesOC using #OzDOC as our hash tag).  The topics vary from week to week but I aim to achieve the same thing each week, and that is a place where people can reduce the burden they feel diabetes can add to their lives.  It’s an hour each week when you know people “just get it”… a concept I have summed up in a hash tag, #dlove.  I was reminded of this very concept only four days ago when I found time to participate in the weekly Diabetes Social Media Advocates chat after a long period of absence.  I remembered just how important it is to my emotional health to feel part of a community built on #dlove.

My husband and I went to a Boy and Bear gig on the weekend.  They are at the top of our playlist not only because they are exceptional Australian musicians, but because the lead vocalist and guitarist is a lyrical genius.  Dave Hoskings spoke about writing a song for his brother when he learnt of his hardships while away on tour.  The song is called, “Back Down the Black” and the following lines illustrate why I do what I do for the diabetes community;

“Oh my legs don’t work and my limbs all hurt
As my body aches to take the weight that’s been thrown down on top of you
Like you would do too”

You can listen to this soul-stirring song here;

You hurt, I help.  I hurt; you help.

I’ve toyed with a fairy tale idea of what life, and the world, would be like if you removed the emotional burden which resulted from living with a chronic condition.  Imagine if we just didn’t feel anything associated with our diagnosis, our management requirements, or how our lives were simply different.  Imagine if we remained purely objective.  No emotion.  Just doing what we were able to do to keep soldiering on.  No feelings about which chronic condition deserves a cure first.  No anger associated with the onset of complications.  No fear about our offspring developing diabetes.

But until then, OzDOC will do the trick…

14 thoughts on “#DBlogWeek 2014 – Change the World

  1. Thanks for the great post! This is such a huge topic, and one that doesn’t get enough attention in the actual medical world. I’ve been the same way, getting most of my emotional and mental health “boosts” from the Diabetes Online Community. Am happy to see more doctors talk about this and realize it’s a “thing” they need to put attention on, but we do still have a long way. In the meantime, here’s to the DOC!!

  2. Meagan says:

    Bring on the #dlove, Kim! And may even more be returned to you! Great post.

  3. Kim says:

    It’s sort of mind-boggling to even contemplate!

  4. nldiabetic says:

    Thank you for highlighting the mental burdens that this disease can place on us. It too often gets ignored. I think it’s pretty telling when my endo has no issues asking me if I’ve noticed any impotency creeping up, but won’t ask me how I’m doing mentally. Crazy!

    The DOC has been a boon for me. Your right, it empowers us all! The mental booth I get from uplifting diabetics and a good old fashioned D-rant are amazing.

    Thanks for writing this.

    • 1type1 says:

      My pleasure! I have no doubt in my mind that clinical requirements & mental health requirements are intertwined when living with diabetes. Docs are starting to catch up… :)

  5. Colleen says:

    I think I’d be locked away if it wasn’t for the DOC. It can be so overwhelming until you discover that you’re not the only one.

  6. t1dme says:

    I am sorry for the somewhat cliche response, but keep up the good work! As PWDs know all too well, diabetes is a mentally strenuous condition. People such as yourself are making things just a little easier. Thanks :)

    • 1type1 says:

      LOL! Thanks :) I often fear sounding like a cliche when I bang on about emotional wellbeing & living with diabetes. Then I come across a person who thought they were alone in their thoughts & feelings, so I keep banging on!

  7. Karen says:

    Thank you for all that you do!!!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s