Monday, May 10, 2010

Damn You, Diabetes!!!

That's the new tag line in our house. Often said with fist waving and mock anguish that is trying to chip away at the very real grief and fear this wretched disease invokes. Truthfully, we are holding up well here, and doing what we do best, which is to smile through our tears.

You know, I've spent years now listening to people tell me their stories about so-and-so, a friend of their mother-brother-father-aunt-cousin-firstgradeteacher who drank some magical fruit juice and cured whatever condition their mother-brother-father-aunt-cousin-firstgradeteacher had that I also have...And I thought I was frustrated with it before, but I've reached new depths of frustrations with the ignorance with which some people go through life, the way they repeat every insipid little snippet they ever hear. I've heard all the misinformation about my health issues and learned to smile and nod, but the mama bear in me has a hard time letting it go when someone insists they know what caused the midget's diabetes or that they heard of a "cure." And the one that gets me angriest is that she simply needs to cut out sugar and become more active and the diabetes will go away.

Now, admittedly, a month ago I didn't know a third or even a hundredth of what I know now, but I also knew that I didn't know it and would never presume to tell a parent of a child with a life threatening illness how to care for the disease, but some people think that a thirty second segment they half-assedly remember from a news program a month ago gives them the right to tell me that my daughter will be "fine." And that shit makes me want to stab them.

Let's get something clear here. Yes, I am aware that compared to even just 10 years ago, the treatment options for type 1 diabetes have improved exponentially. I know that the midget's prognosis is good, especially because we do understand the severity of the disease and all that it takes to treat it. But just because there are effective treatments, just because diabetes treatments have improved so much doesn't mean that it isn't scary as fuck to know that your child has a disease that can kill them. When you hold that tiny vial of insulin in your hand and realize that the smallest of mistakes can be fatal...that's scary, and no amount of patting me on my head changes that.

Still...I am grateful that she is doing as well as she is, that we caught things before it got so bad that her kidneys were damaged. I am grateful for my family who listens to me rant and rave about how unfair this all is. I am grateful for the doctors and nurses that have taught me so much in such a short time. And I'm grateful that my midget is strong and resilient and brave.

Gratitude aside...the fact is diabetes sucks...

2 comments:

Lou Ann said...

Damn You, Diabetes!! and KUDOS to our wonderfully brave, amazingly strong granddaughter and daughter!

Osbasso said...

As a recently diagnosed diabetic, I concur. In my case though, I'm the one that I have to pacify, not my child. What I'm finding out is that it's not the death sentence I was brought up to believe it was. It can be controlled. I can live a "normal" life, whatever that is. But I agree completely--it sucks.