Monday, November 25, 2013

Sticking My Neck Out

Back in September, the health care company I work for asked employees to share their diabetes stories in ~150 words or less.  To acknowledge Diabetes Awareness Month, selected stories would be published on the company's intranet site throughout the month of November.  

The first draft of my story clocked in at well over 600 words.  This was going to be harder than I thought.  After a few days it dawned on me that I needed to just pick one aspect of diabetes and write about that.  After a few more days I had decided that, at least in the last few years, finding other diabetics has been the most important part of my diabetes story.  So with my meager ~150 words, I tried to express what living with diabetes means to me while also raising awareness of the Diabetes Online Community (DOC).  My company wouldn't let me list specific sites, but they agreed to make the "contact me" a hyperlink to my work email.  Here's hoping that by telling my story, others are able to discover and connect to the community that single-handedly changed the trajectory of my diabetes, and ultimately, my life.

I was honored today when, along with my picture and name, my company posted my story:

My greatest achievement in life will be that I lived a full and happy life, despite having Type 1 diabetes. Nothing has ever required more work, more mental and emotional strength, or more perseverance than living with diabetes. For the past 18 years, diabetes has continued to make me stronger and braver than I ever imagined. Diabetes is invisible, which has its benefits, but this also means that no one sees the physical, mental or emotional burdens you carry every day.

If you are reading this and feel alone in your life with diabetes — reach out. There is a large diabetes online community comprised of hundreds of people who blog about the disease, share treatment recommendations, and much more. You can find a safe community where you don’t have to answer, “I’m fine,” when someone asks how you are doing.

If you would like help connecting with the diabetes online community, please contact me directly. I will help you connect and find resources.

4 comments:

  1. You are truly a diabetic advocate. Whenever I'm asked how I am, I always say "I'm fine." Usually I am, but you're right that sometimes I'm not. Yeah for the DOC!

    Hope to see you soon. We missed you on Saturday. Happy Thanksgiving!

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  2. How wonderful that your company shared your story! Those are a powerful 150 words. I'm thankful for the DOC too :)

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  3. Wow, that is awesome!! Summing up diabetes in only 150 words sounds impossible, but you completely nailed it.

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  4. Holy Crapy you are awesome. Wish I seen this when I was nominating Best Betes Blogs. So inspiring. I love what you wrote. You inspire me.

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