Monday, May 9, 2011
D-Blog Week Day 1: Admiring Our Differences
Happy D-Blog Week, everyone! What better way to stage a mini-comeback than with an entire week of targeted blog topics? Special thanks to Karen at Bittersweet Diabetes for putting this together again in 2011!
Today, we d-bloggers are asked to talk about someone with diabetes who is different from us, someone we've learned something from. Some of us are talking about other bloggers, or the parents of kids with diabetes, but I am going to talk about someone I know in real life. I'm going to tell you a bit about my colleague with type 2 at work. I'm just going to call him Bob for anonymity's sake.
While I don't always think Bob is doing absolutely everything in his power to take care of his diabetes, I have to step back once in a while. I'm not doing all I could possibly do for myself right now either, so I should not hold something like this against him. Bob is a really cool, loudmouthed and funny guy. He has downloaded an entire series of songs to his computer that he will play at random times, sort of a mood ring for the day. There's the "Jeopardy!" Theme Song for waiting around, "One Love" for the really bad days, and most recently, "See You in September" for students who are not making the cut for earlier classes in the summer.
Bob was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in his twenties, but it seems he hasn't let diabetes stop him from doing anything. He's been a broadcaster for ESPN. He's worked in sales for a number of companies. He was even the voice of Barney the Dinosaur in a touring production. He's been married twice, and he's still with his second wife and they have a daughter together. He's an umpire with the local Little League.
I don't know all the details but I know Type 2 has thrown Bob a few curves in his life. He's got nerve damage in his legs, not a lot of feeling left there. He comes in with a cane sometimes. At his worst, he's told me, he was in a wheelchair.
I admire Bob because despite any complications he's had from diabetes, despite how crazy work is right now, and despite the overall busy schedule of his life, he's back in the game. He started seeing a new endocrinologist, the same one I just started seeing. She's put him on an entirely new insulin regimen and taken him off of pills. He's feeling great, and now he's on a mission to lose weight. In the past couple weeks, he's dropped 17 pounds by cutting out some carbs (mostly bread and french fries/chips) and adding more veggies to his daily intake. Of course, he's a guy so the pounds melt right off of him--I usually have to work pretty hard to drop some weight. I'm proud of Bob. He's still fighting the good fight.
This is something I find very realistically inspiring at this time in my life. Maybe my health isn't going to be perfect. Maybe diabetes is going to give me complications, maybe not. I just have to keep living the best life I can, keep doing what I love. It's never too late to take better care of yourself or try something new in terms of managing diabetes. Most of all, though, you have to find your happiness because that's what makes life the most worth living.