We think a lot about the physical component of diabetes, but the mental component is just as significant. How does diabetes affect you or your loved one mentally or emotionally? How have you learned to deal with the mental aspect of the condition? Any tips, positive phrases, mantras, or ideas to share on getting out of a diabetes funk?
Psychology is a big thing for me. I’ll openly tell you on here that I have struggled on and off for the past 8 years. I’m a worrier. I’m an anxious one. I can’t help it, it’s who I am. So, yay for today’s theme!
Diabetes is an invisible condition. Broken your leg? You’ll need a cast around that. Come down with chicken pox? I bet those spots are itchy! Been diagnosed with diabetes? Oh, but you look ok…When I was first diagnosed with diabetes, I had people telling me I shouldn’t be diabetic, I’m not fat. I shouldn’t be diabetic, I’m young. Blah blah blah, I’m sure we’ve heard all the stereotypes.
So yes, diabetes is an invisible condition. You can’t tell I have it, except the tattoo on my wrist. But what about the other ‘invisible’ side to the condition –the psychological effects? Diabetes is a lonely condition. Apart from my dad and my grandad, it wasn’t until I did the DAFNE course 2 years after being diagnosed with diabetes, that I met someone who knew what I was going through.
Up until then, I had no idea that it’s totally normal to feel like a failure, because you’re meter tells you you’re 16. I didn’t know it was normal and acceptable to feel like you’re going to be miserable for the rest of your life, because you don’t have hypo awareness. No one told me it was normal to have days where you just didn’t want to have diabetes.
As I got more and more engrossed in the diabetes online community, I realised that it’s ok to not be ok. It’s ok to feel like you’re being punished for something you didn’t do. I didn’t ask to have diabetes, so why me?! It’s ok to want to eat something that isn’t low-carb and low sugar. Guess what? Even with diabetes, we’re allowed the odd treat! In your face, diabetes – I will have the occasional chocolate bar, if I want it!
Most of the time, I feel like I can keep on top of my diabetes and how it affects my mentality. Most of the time. So, those days that diabetes becomes that bully in the playground, and makes me want to hide from the world, and just cry? That’s ok. It’s ok to not be ok. I’ve had plenty of these days. If you have diabetes, you probably already know the effect stress has on the body’s sugar levels. It causes HAVOC.
When I do feel like my diabetes is taking control of me, I find it so comforting just to read the blogs of other people like me. It’s nice to know I’m not the only one out there, who wants to put diabetes in Room 101.