I think so many times, I focus on the negatives with diabetes. Which is INCREDIBLY easy to do. It's a tough disease. We have to do math every time we eat just to make sure our blood sugars are regulated. We perform surgery on ourselves every 3-4 days, some times more, to keep our pancreas hooked up. And it hurts some times. We prick our fingers upwards of 12 times daily to figure out what our bodies are doing.
At my last job, I was seen as weak almost because some times the diabetes took over. Whether I was in the hospital, or I had to stop and eat, or I'd get confused, a few select people would say things about it, not understanding what I was going through. Which I get. They don't understand.
I have met so many people this past week and a half at my new job. They are very particular about how we appear, so I clip my pump under my arm, right to the side of my bra. But, I am doing taste testing every day, so I find myself digging it out. I try to be as discreet as possible, but it's not easy.
My boss walked past me the other day and asked what I was doing. I explained it to her and the first words out of her mouth were, "It's that bad that you'll never get off the pump?" Trying to be respectful, I explained the differences in the types of diabetes. I had done taste plate in the morning, which is our way of tasting everything in the restaurant to make sure it's good enough to go out for the guests. She asked, "How did you deal with Taste Plate?" I explained to her that I guessed the carbohydrates, and i did pretty well because two hours later, my blood sugar was within range. She was truly excited for me!
"How awesome! It must feel like a personal triumph and victory every time you have to just guess, and it works!"
It's totally true. And I had never had a non-diabetic think of it like that. It was just nice to hear someone really get it. For a moment, I felt like she was empathetic. And that's not a feeling I get very much.
It's these kind of people that make it so much easier to go through this. It's the people that root for us that make us realize, we can do this.