This is a tough one. So many things get me down about diabetes.
It’s really hard when I get a text or phone call from someone saying their loved one was just diagnosed. My heart breaks for them every time. I never know what to say. How do I convey how much it’s going to suck without scaring them? How do I explain to them how strong of a person diabetes has made me? How do I possibly comfort them?
It’s actually really hard for me to relate directly to newly diagnosed people. I don’t remember my diagnosis. I was only three years old. I have some very vague, foggy memories of little things from that time period, but I honestly don’t know what life was like before I had diabetes. There was no shocking moment when the doctor told me what my blood sugar was and told me I’d be diabetic forever. It was just something I always understood (or at least that I remember, I’m sure my parents would say otherwise).
It’s not really my own diabetes that brings me down the most, it’s that other, new people who aren’t lucky enough to forget that moment. I’m so sad for them.
Every time I’m told of a friend of a friend who is now type 1, I cry. Why us? Why are we the unlucky ones? Why hasn’t someone figured out how to stop this yet?
I always feel like I want to say “Welcome to the family,” but I know that would sound completely weird to newly diagnosed people. I often feel like that’s what we are, though. We’re a big group of people with a shared story and the same hopes for the future. We share thoughts and feelings that no one else can relate to.
I hope, that if nothing else, I can offer them this comfort: I understand.