Filling Your Glass

A lot of people write to me explaining how they sometimes feel so blindingly angry about having diabetes. They’re just pissed off, and I can’t blame them. Living with this thing is inconvenient and aggravating, to say the very least.

So I spent some time recently taking stock of what helps me the most when I just get down and out. There are lots small things that help the diabetes seem less daunting, and if you add them up, the sum can be greater than the parts — if only you’re willing to take a “glass half-full” look at your life. Glasswaterlime

Check out this month’s Straight Up column over at dLife for my personal list of 9 Things that Help the Most. This includes everything from my favorite BG testing devices to carb counting aids to where to find a good laugh (required).

I noticed there’s a new meme going around about “Five Things You Won’t Find in a Book.” I’d wager to say you won’t any of my “9 favorite little diabetes helpers” in any book either (not even ours).

Really: we all know that the best D-advice we ever got wasn’t from some book or institution, but mainly from each other. So have a look my column, and take a minute to jot down a half-dozen things that help YOU when you’re diabetes is really getting to you. I’d love to see us all share some great lists.

btw, the one thing I forgot to mention was the magical power of music to energize and soothe. Somewhere in the back annals of my iPod I just rediscovered Freddie Mercury’s Miracle and These Are the Days of Our Lives, and Beth Hirsch’s You Make It Easy, for example.

Those help. And you won’t find that in a book.

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4 Responses

  1. Diane J Standiford
    Diane J Standiford May 6, 2008 at 1:10 pm | | Reply

    Music also helps stave off dementia. A brain healthy activity at any age, any illness. Your blog is highlighted today on my blog. Vit D–good for MS too.

  2. Lauren
    Lauren May 6, 2008 at 7:56 pm | | Reply

    I second the above comment regarding the importance of vitamin D!

    Regarding the list — I don’t think patients should view their doctor as a friend. Sometimes doctors have to deliver bad news, or say things patients don’t want to hear. Professional distance is a good thing for doctors AND patients. I see my doctor for medical advice; I rely on my friends for friendship.

  3. Auntly H
    Auntly H May 6, 2008 at 8:43 pm | | Reply

    that reminds me… i owe you a post about why I think my endo is so fab!

  4. Dana C
    Dana C May 7, 2008 at 8:24 am | | Reply

    Hi Amy: I’ve recently discovered your site through TuDiabetes.com and finally realizing there is an entire supportive community out there. Where have I been? What’s my deal?! After being diagnosed at 25, and now being 38 and NO ONE around me having diabetes (work and family)- I’ve sort of been used to doing it all on my own. Here is what I have to add to your “9 things which help me the most” article……..and what helps me stay happy and healthy.

    1. Support team- kids, husband, family, doctors, nutritionist, and (finally) online community! I’m not alone! I have never been alone with this disease! Talk about the ups and downs and what is going on. People will listen and love you for who you are. My kids will always give me the biggest hugs and love me – regardless…

    2. The “new” Skinny ME! (Achieving and working on a goal) – It’s taken 2 years but I’ve finally lost the baby weight and am down 22 lbs. It’s like- “I’m BAAACK!!!” I feel good about myself- no more “Fluffy Old Me”. Losing weight with Diabetes is tough, hard and sometimes near impossible. With the same discipline I apply to diabetes I was able to do it for ME.

    3. Cute Bag/Accessories- I agree with you… Stick Me Designs has super cute stuff. I just upgraded from the ugly black bag and now I’m ultra-fab and modern now. And it goes with my Coach purse quite well!

    4. Lead by Example and Be Proud- I’m out there with my diabetes- it’s a part of me. I educate people, talk about it, do shots in public, whatever I have to do.

    5. Talk and Discuss- It’s okay to let people know if you are having a good day, bad day, so-so day, challenging day, feeling not-so-great day, I hate-this-disease day or I feel fabulous day! The worse thing you could do is keep all of the up and down emotions that come with this disease to yourself.

    6. Guilty pleasures (A MUST!)- Good book, celebrity magazine, hot bath, pedicure, go to a movie, watch my reality shows. It’s MY TIME for ME… and it keeps my sanity.

    7. Brush Teeth, Test, Take a Shot- Daily do a dedicated regime and hard work = we can all live with this disease!

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