Tuesday, December 8, 2015

On Food

Living with diabetes means living with food demons. Whether we like it or not, we are always going to be faced with internal dilemmas of "should I? Shouldn't I? Is it worth it?"

More often than not, my personal philosophy in life is I am a person first, my diabetes comes second. I strongly believe in peoples' choices in their diet should be what they feel comfortable and happy with-not just what nutritionists and others say.

There's nothing worse than food police, truly...except people who loudly police themselves. Dismissive comments about someone who eats high carb, low carb, carb free etc. are the equivalent of bottom feeders in my life. I genuinely do not care what you eat, or how you eat it if it is not giving you any personal difficulties.

Diabetes is setting us up for a life with struggles with food, and there are a lot of people out there making sure that we are totally, and royally confused as to what we should be eating.

I am always welcoming to people who do different experiments and report back. I find Adam at Diatribe  has been level headed when taking on the massive task of switching up his diet, and reporting back. He has been very clear that what works for him doesn't necessarily work for everyone. He has made clear statements that you shouldn't take his word for gospel.

I am thankful for that.

I think we need to take a step back and understand that an individual will know more about his or her own body and how it uses the fuel we feed it than anyone else. Once we open up about this without fear of repercussion to our medical team, we are closer to being on the right track.

So basically everyone just give a big group hug and bring whatever snack you feel like having.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

December, December

November has come and gone, taking the waves of world diabetes month posts and comments with it.

Yet somehow, I still have diabetes. Funny thing, that.

I have been feeling a little bit like a negative nancy towards diabetes lately, and I think it's battling off a round of burn out. I am trying to stay engaged.

The ignorant comments just don't stop. I feel like they never will. Maybe it's the long dark evenings, short daylight and limited number of sunny days that are influencing how I feel towards my work and advocacy lately.

It's still burning in my brain that as our society moves ahead, we (and I mean..I use the royal we here..) are lacking empathy. People just do not stop to think about what they post on the Internet, or what they say may actually negatively effect someone else. We are quickly losing sight that we should be helping other people feel good instead of revelling in the fact that we feel better than others.

I posted about my strongly worded opinion in response to an article that was at the surface helping people, but when you read between the lines it was shaming people. It seems to be so...accepted to imply that another person doesn't know enough about their bodies or their chronic illness that they need a stranger's advice. The writer of the article I criticised did email me after my letter was run as an opinion column in the newspaper. I will hand it to her, she handled the heat I gave her with great poise. She was very friendly in her clarifications to me, and we have agreed to disagree....I guess. I did send her research from diatribe and the DAWN2 study about the stigmatisation people living with diabetes feel because of articles like hers. I do hope that maybe my strongly worded letter helps her think about her posts. However, I doubt they will change a lot. This particular writer and lots like her make a lot of money of the stigmatization of diabetes-whether they see it like that or not.

I make it my personal goal to try and educate people when they are spreading misconceptions and medical mis-informations about obesity and diabetes. Probably because these things really do hit home for me. Maybe it's a selfish thing that I focus my advocacy efforts like that.

Anyway, I have been feeling a little hopeless towards people caring about the people with diabetes instead of the disease itself. Maybe it's because I work in fundraising and dollars are hard to come by, maybe it's because I hate the winter and I have literally nothing else to complain about?