The positive side of my diabetes diagnosis

Disclaimer:

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Diabetes makes life harder.

The day to day work of treating diabetes is tiring.  Anyone dealing with diabetes knows how much careful work it takes every day.

Yet, when I look at my own personal diabetes story and how getting it has changed me life, it’s not all bad.  There are positive things about it, that I’d like to share with you.

A strong motivator for a job search and career change

First, when I got diagnosed with diabetes, I didn’t have a regular full time job.  I was self-employed and wasn’t making much money.  I didn’t have health insurance.  Knowing the likelihood of needing insulin in the future was high, I felt that I needed to get a job with health insurance.  Getting health insurance from your employer is the common way to get it in the United States.  I was already thinking about how I needed a better job — and this diabetes diagnosis was one more thing that made this a priority.

I ended up getting a great job that is bringing me a lot of happiness.  I have a career that I love now and also I have health insurance.  I was able to move to a better location and buy a house, as well.   Would I have done all of this without the diabetes?  Maybe, but the diabetes was definitely a strong motivator.

Self care in all areas of my life

Quite simply, the self care that I started doing for my diabetes became a principle of self care.

I don’t just take care of my diabetes.  I take care of myself.

This mentality of self care has spread into all other areas of my life.  I take care of myself.  It’s amazing what strong self care can do.

I love myself.  I monitor my blood glucose and treat my diabetes because I want to live a long, healthy life.

Putting myself first, I am a happier person.  I don’t feel guilt for treating my diabetes and I don’t feel guilt for taking the alone time that I need.  (Or for doing anything else that I need to do for self care.)

Improved knowledge of myself

Why do I want to eat?  What’s going on?

Why is my blood sugar high?  Did I do something different?  (Sometimes the answer is that I didn’t do anything different and my body is just being different, but even that is more knowledge than I would have had before.)

I have to monitor myself closely.  This self-monitoring around food and insulin has spread into a general increased self awareness of myself.

I know myself in ways I never did before.

Long term thinking

Why am I spending so much time and money on treating my diabetes?  Because I want to live a long, healthy life.  It’s about the future.  I don’t want eye damage, kidney failure, heart problems, or nerve pain.

This long term thinking affects other decisions I make, as well.

Community

The diabetes community is a strong one!  I am part of a community of people because of my diabetes.  I love that.

This site

Obviously, I wouldn’t have created this website if I didn’t have diabetes.  I don’t know yet on what positive outcomes that could have, as this is still very early on, but at a minimum I am sharing knowledge that will help others.

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