This is the third episode of “We Can Do This” – a series of group videos where people with diabetes come together around a common topic and share their diagnosis stories, lessons learned, and advice for others. Launched in 2012, the first video showcased five people who were diagnosed with type 1 diabetes as adults, while the second featured three people who live with diabetes-related anxiety.
Something that many people living with diabetes (of any type) face is the persistence of stereotypes and stigmas. You may have faced some of these inaccurate, and sometimes offensive, comments yourself – that people with diabetes “can’t eat candy”; that all you have to do is just take your medication and it all just works out; that type 1 only happens to kids (and they somehow magically will outgrow it); that type 2 diabetes is somehow “earned” due to obesity or laziness.
The truth is that type 2 diabetes exists on a large spectrum, and there is still much to learn about why and how it occurs, and in whom. Not every person diagnosed with type 2 diabetes fits the stereotypes, and we’d like to introduce you to a few: Phyllisa, Rachel, Joe, and Sue.
Contributor: Cherise; @SweeterCherise/@DiabetesSocMed
Connection: Adult with LADA/type 1 diabetes
Quote: “No matter what anyone says; no matter what a number may read: you are better than diabetes. Do not let diabetes steal your joy.”
Contributor: Colleen; http://dmeanderings.wordpress.com
Connection: Person with type 1/LADA diabetes
Blog post: http://dmeanderings.wordpress.com/2011/06/15/you-can-do-this/
“Finding out you have Type 1 (LADA) Diabetes at the [...] age of 54 (one month before the 55th b’day) really, really stunk. Yes, I cried. Then I cried again at the grocery store trying to read those teeny, tiny nutrition labels. Then I cried again when I tried to eat some awful, cardboardy, “low carb” bread.
It’s been one hell of a struggle. It’s been a whole lot of learning.
But I am doing this because I can do this.
And yes, I still cry sometimes, just not as often…”
Contributor: Chris; tobesugarfree.com
Connection: Adult with type 1 diabetes
Standout Quote: “”[Diabetes] is a very personal disease, but that doesn’t mean it has to be a one man or one woman army fighting this battle. There’s a community that [...] wants to help and offer support, because doing this by yourself is pretty miserable.”
Contributor: Russ; @russellstamets
Connection: Person with LADA diabetes
Standout Quote: “We’re all unique. There’s no one-size-fits-all for type 1, type 2, or anything in between. [...] You really have to take charge of your own health.”
Contributor: Kris Freeman; elite U.S. cross-country skier, member of U.S. Ski Team and Olympic athlete; http://blogs.fasterskier.com/krisfreeman/
Connection: Person with type 1 diabetes
Standout Quote: “Having this disease [...] does not have to get in the way of going after your dreams and aspirations.”
Contributor: Simon; www.diabetesdaily.com/forum/blogs/simon-from-the-70s
Connection: Person with type 1/LADA diabetes
Blog post: http://www.diabetesdaily.com/forum/blogs/simon-from-the-70s/5909-journey-man
“This is how my ten days in hospital with life threatening infections and severe DKA played out. All but blind and with limited mobility, I came face to face not only with insulin dependent diabetes but the reality that those I had long counted friends had abandoned me. I was no ordinary person then and 18 months later I am still no ordinary person.
Still enduring a string of medical appointments and physical pain from complications I am making a go of things. Working consecutive sixty hour weeks I’m sending out a signal to those “friends” who left me lying in ward. It’s a shout out to all of those who said I’d never make it back and it was all my fault…..I can do this and I am doing this.”
Contributor: Amy; www.diabetesmine.com
Connection: Person with LADA/type 1 diabetes
Standout Quote: “I’m not sharing all this to bum you out, but to let you know that you are not alone if you’re dealing with all this stuff every day, or even if you’re just getting started. Sure, it’s a pain; sure, it’s a lot of work, but you know what? You can do this.”
Contributor: Aynzan; http://aynzan.blogspot.com
Connection: Newly diagnosed with type 2 diabetes
Blog post: http://aynzan.blogspot.com/2012/03/where-theres-will-theres-way.html
It took me some time to come to terms regarding my newly detected health issue. After analysing and comprehending the magnitude of the whole problem, I have stepped up with a totally new confidence in me. Like a mantra, I constantly keep repeating that I don’t want the ‘diabetes’ to take control of my life. And that’s when I decided to take the initiative to make amends: for me and for the sake of my dear family.
Introducing “We Can Do This” – a series of group videos where people with diabetes come together around a common topic and share their diagnosis stories, lessons learned and advice for others.
This series kicks off with Volume 1: Diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes as an Adult. Meet Dayle, Brian, Sara, Debra and Chris. They’ll tell you about experiences like being misdiagnosed with type 2, what was hard about adjusting to their “new life”, how diabetes and sex co-exist, and what advice they have for others diagnosed with T1 later in life.
If they can do this, you can do this too.
Have an idea for a topic you’d like to see one of these videos made about? Know someone (like you, maybe?) that would be willing to participate in one? Email me.