I talked with a lady by chance before the holidays. I’ve never met her before, but she is a CDE in Canada, and was here visiting relatives. She happened to see my bracelet (medi-alert) in the coffee shop and sat down to talk. Very pleasant, very nice conversation…actually. We talked about how hard the holidays were on diabetics and parties, and families, and what priorities, limits do you set for yourself and others. I’ve been struggling with the “I hate this diabetic stuff for about a month, and I don’t care anymore” and shared that with her. She had an interesting take on it, and thought I’d share it with you, and with me, so that if and when this mood strikes me again, I can look back on it.
She said, that EVERYONE goes through the "I don’t care’ stage every once in awhile. You can be an alcoholic and not drink, a drug user and not use, but with diabetes, you have to eat, and it does you no good, and let’s face it, it can be a 24/7 ordeal. But she didn’t use the word ordeal, she said it’s like having a child that has a disability, you have to take care of it 24/7 and there are no helpers around to give you a hand. There is no respite, except not to care. Which can cause you and your disabled child problems. So what she does is she gets a respite care person for herself (and her patients)
she gathers tools that will help her to do what needs to be done, and then doesn’t feel guilty about it. She assembles a weeks worth of meals that are diabetic friendly, yet a little different than what she has been eating, and freezes them. I guess there are sites you can order specialty foods for people with diabetes, hmmmm, or you can make them yourself.
She also assembles a care package of treats that might include one or two things that normally she wouldn’t eat at all…maybe a small snicker’s bar, a couple of real cookies…she puts them in plastic bags, marks them with a day of the week, and then puts those in the freezer also. She has a special picnic basket that she puts some magazines that she hasn’t read yet, a book that she’s been meaning to read, a movie, some other special items that she’s been meaning to give herself. She schedules with a friend time to have a meal or coffee with; at the beginning of her week, and then she schedules a massage or a beauty treatment for herself for the end. These are all things that make her feel good, and make her feel what she says not the “person with diabetes”. Yes, she could do all of these things all the times, but she makes these times special for herself. Oh, and being a type II and on meds, she sets her cellphone or watch to buzz for a meter check, and med time…and then doesn’t do it any other time during the day. She is taking care of herself, physically, mentally, and emotionally all week. She is giving herself a respite from her diabetes, all the while taking care of herself.
She’s not fooling anyone, not even herself, but it’s not as demanding as her normal routine of taking care. Instead of the high intensity exercise she normally does, she takes long walks and enjoys the exercise. She told me her numbers maybe a little higher, no more than 10 points, but she and her doc, have figured that this helps her be better to herself and to her patients.
I found it interesting, and plan on adapting some of it to meet my needs and desires.
Please, share any of your “tricks” or changes that help you feel better when you just can’t be diabetic one more minute.