When I hear folks refer to life as a roller coaster ride, I can’t agree more.
Don’t get me wrong, I love roller coasters. FREAKING LOVE roller coasters. (I actually haven’t been on one in quite a while, but I’m fairly certain that I still like them A LOT.)
The only roller coaster I’m not crazy about lately is the one that my blood sugars sometimes ride. I had one day last week where I would be high, and we’re talking like 250+ high, here, then 2-3 hours later would have a low somewhere between 65-75. This happened no less than three times. Just another reminder that no matter how much I may think I have “control” of this disease and my body, I am clearly not the one making the choices.
On the other side of what “low” means in my life, a dear friend of mine has been going through some really tough times. She’s about my age, and just found out that she has Type 1 diabetes. It’s very surreal to watch this from the other side, because I think this must be how my family felt when I was diagnosed. Helpless. She keeps reaching out to me for support, and I am incredibly happy to give it, but it just feels so strange to be the one doing most of the giving in the support department. A part of me is pretty sure that this may be one of the reasons why my body decided to do whatever it did that caused my diabetes: I’m supposed to help others.
I can’t help, however, feeling a little sad for her sake because I know what’s coming. I know the frustration that goes along with “making it work.” I know what it’s like to have people that you care deeply about walk out of your life because they “can’t date you and the diabetes.” (That one really hurt.) I know what it’s like to have to tell your whole life story to your employer/coworkers because you’re paranoid that no one will know what’s going on if you have an extreme high or low, and I definitely know what it’s like to field ridiculous questions and have others give you tips about how to manage a disease they don’t have themselves.
But I do know something else, as well, and I hope I can impart it in some way: I know the incredible joy that comes with just living. It’s so easy to take everything for granted, and I know I did once upon a time, so much so that you can lose that sense of joy or forget to appreciate the things you have. I have so many “giving up would be so much easier” moments, but I have twice as many “boy, am I glad it’s today” moments as well.
Sometimes, the promise of a new day is just what you need. A new beginning. A chance to make it better. To be a better you.