(This originally posted in my blog at GreatBG.com)
Am I really different now? Did diabetes cause me to become a different person than I was
before I had it? For me, the answer is no, but yes.
After all, diabetes did change my relationship with food. It has caused me to make huge
changes in how I approach my day, every day. It has placed me in a position to
consider things I would never have considered in the past. The complications
that it bestowed on me have changed how I interact with everything in my world
and the world at large. For a time, it caused the extrovert that I am to become
a hermit. And, for a time, it stole my confidence. But, not my determination.
So no, it did not change who I really am. It has, however, taken some time to realize
this. All the things that did become different, as mentioned above, took some
time to adjust to. I really did feel like this disease had changed me. That I
was no longer the person I used to be.
But as I have begun to write about these experiences and changes I’ve come to realize
something. And that is the fact that I am indeed still me. It has been quite a
challenge to get to the point where I could see this. All of these adjustments
I’ve had to make have not changed the essence of who I am. They have just
changed the reality of how I “do” many things.
This sort of thing happens to us naturally from the day we are born. As a baby and small
child we go through multiple changes that affect the way we interact with our
world and those around us. Each stage of life carries with it the need for
similar adjustments. Throughout our entire lives we are continually adapting to
new realities and knowledge. It is just a natural part of growing as a human
These changes add to the fabric of our lives and, hopefully, with this growth our
lives are enriched. But we are still the same person with the same integrity,
soul and personality. Really, diabetes is just another one of these life
changes. It may be unwelcome, but it is not really all that different. If you
think back to puberty it may not even be all that much more challenging for
some of us.
It really did feel strangely uplifting when I realized that I was beginning to feel like
myself again. I had not realized how far away I had gotten from who I really am.
It was one of those instances when it felt that a weight had been lifted. Now,
I am beginning to rebuild my old self with my new realities in place. I don’t
have to fight anymore. I just have to be me.