The Holidays. I love them, I love family gatherings, I feel blessed to be able to share so many holidays with so many of the people I love.
I also dread family gatherings but not for the most typical reasons.
My broken pancreas.
It rules the choices I make in my life because I choose to live a long life with less diabetes complications and hopefully less blood sugar swings. The ups and downs are what are doing the damage. I want to try as hard as I can to mitigate the swings. The only way to do that with today's tools and medications is to avoid the things that make my and every other type 1 Diabetics' blood sugars spike or go up. The higher I am away from a non-diabetics blood sugar levels the more damage I am doing. If I want to prevent complications later on in my life from type 1 Diabetes I need to try to keep my blood sugar as close to the levels of someone without type 1 Diabetes.
A normal persons blood sugar stays around 60-85. 90 is my goal. I'm not there yet and I am trying hard to nail down my pump settings. Its hard, Diabetes is hard. Being a woman with Diabetes and menstruating is even harder. Hormones mess with everything including your insulin resistance levels.
All grains, starch, real sugar and fruit all give me a blood sugar spike that is nearly impossible to avoid. A person can use low carb substitutes for everything, it just has to be made from scratch and most people will make every excuse under the sun to not cook from scratch even though it is MUCH healthier than eating something out of a box or bag full of added stuff.
Almond flour, coconut flour, stevia, erythritol are all things you can use instead of grains and sugar. These low carb versions taste just as good if not better than the ones full of blood sugar spiking ingredients.
Lack of support from those around me. Choosing to eat low carb is for the most part repulsing to most people I have found because they too are completely carb and sugar addicted. Carb and sugar addiction is real...go through withdrawal once and you will believe it too. The first month I went low carb was pure hell. I felt like death.
Now, I feel great and empowered that I am not buying the garbage that the food manufacturers are shoving down our throats. God only knows what all the additives they make millions off of are actually doing to our bodies.
Family gatherings for the most part are hugely centered around food. Very very unhealthy food. This year will be my first year not eating this carb and grain loaded food. I am very anxious about the comments I will be on the receiving end of.
If you happen to be one of my family members reading my blog, please support me and the way I have chosen to live my life with this disease. My skin is as thin as yours and the harsh, rude comments still hurt me even if you are only "worried" about my Diabetes. I am worried too, that's why I have chosen to eat low carb, not because your food doesn't appeal to me. Trust me it APPEALS to me a lot but my life matters more. I am "worried" about the ways you eat your food too, you shouldn't eat so much sugary, carb loaded food, you too are stressing your pancreas even if you don't know it. You can develop type 2 Diabetes which is a progressive disease if you don't manage it and you too can end up on insulin. I am just saying this as a general statement, not aimed at any one person in particular.
The comments that hurt me the worst are the ones regarding my child and if I am worried about her becoming Diabetic. I try not to worry, I try HARD to TRUST in God and that he knows what is best for her all the time. I do worry though, I don't suppose I would be a good parent if I didn't worry. I pray for her daily, do you? Don't push your worries onto me, I have enough worry for the miracle that grew inside me and makes me cry at times, I love her so much. I pray so so hard that she never has to endure what I have with type 1 diabetes.
Then the comments on the food I choose to eat or not eat and my weight. I am just perplexed as to why it is ok to comment on my weight because I have Diabetes, but it is socially unacceptable for me to comment on your weight. Just because you say I look too thin to you, is ok for me to say you look too fat for me? I mean what, why, how...huh, did you just say that? I'm not too thin, I still have body fat, my bones are NOT poking out of every direction, I'm pretty sure I am ok. Do you want me to pull my shirt up and show you my body fat to prove it to you, do you want to see all the scars I have from Diabetes?
This year my hopes are that I can attend all family gatherings without wanting to go hide in the bathroom and cry or get in my vehicle and leave. I may act tough at times and my skin may seem thick because of all I have endured but my feelings are like anyone else's. Please don't forget that just because you feel entitled to comment on a disease that I have every second of every day and it never leaves my mind, E-V-E-R, doesn't mean you really should. Family gatherings are times when I want to drown myself in so much commotion and fun and conversation that I can feel somewhat normal for a while, forget that I have this stupid disease.
Instead of critical comments I need supportive comments or comments wanting to learn and know more about my life with Diabetes.