Has anyone else fallen into the tangled and twisted web of internet advice and theories that seem to surround just about any medical condition?
I recently found myself bounding down a rabbit hole of a super strict diabetic eating plan which included a long list of absolutely “never ever” foods and a short list of “diabetic safe” foods. It was presented as an all or nothing way of life and I rapidly let my mind wander to family holidays, traditions, and days that just don’t always go according to plan and thought how can I possibly do this without any exceptions?
Then comes the guilt and fear. “But if I don’t do this then my diabetes will get worse or I will be allowing myself to be less healthy than I could be.” And ultimately to the giant diabetic guilt trip fear “If you don’t follow this exactly and succeed, you are killing yourself.” Yes my brain lets me get that extreme.
All these thoughts as well as a million others are screaming through my brain, meanwhile every time my blood sugar meter shows I am out of this plan’s “recommended” range I instantly take it as a personal defeat which shakes my confidence and makes me just a horribly irritable and consumed person to be around.
Somewhere in all this noise there is that tiny little voice that has been with me since my diagnosis and it is calmly waiting for the chaos and dust to settle, for a time when it can once again be heard. It is the consistent voice that reminds me that this disease is mine and belongs to no one else. There is no diabetic like me and what works for me may be outrageous for someone else.
It is this little voice that tries to remind me to tread lightly when reading about new treatments, diets, and “the best things ever for Type 1 Diabetics”. There is no road map and there is no “right” answer. There is only the best thing for me at this point in time.
I have found it is more important to focus on the small successes each day then to try to figure out my entire future diabetic life while driving my kids to school. I am a diabetic, but that is only a part of my total picture. I’m also a mom, wife, doggie mom, daughter, hotel marketing consultant, runner, swimmer, cook, and so much more.
So I will not allow my entire life to revolve around this disease, and I will not allow it to steal the joy of life by getting lost in diabetes thinking marathons. So for today I will practice self-kindness and grant myself grace for the things that may not be perfect, diabetic and non-diabetic alike.