March 12, 2006

Ruminations, month 18

Well, I'm trying to think about coming back here. It's not feeling great.

I'm bored and angry and eye-rollingly apathetic, almost simultaneously (though I realize that isn't quite possible), with having diabetes. Somehow the idea of participating in my online D-existence feels like acquiescence--which is in another person's parlance simply "healthy adjustment" to reality, but there you are. I'd like a few months or a year of denial, thanks.

The zillion finger sticks a day: mind-numbing. The set changes, hauling crap around everywhere I go, crunching tablets on the subway, feeling guilty about keeping shoddy records: yawn, yawn, ennui. I don't mean to sound pathetic or self-pitying: what I'd really like to feel is neither, but just normal.

That said, I also know I should be grateful for a little boredom. Nonboredom for the diabetic typically means loss of control, complications, hypo unawareness, or some charming combination thereof. Boredom means your life is not currently, immediately threatened. Huzzah.

Another reason I'm cranky, a perhaps less boring one, is that I'm getting ready to go overseas for the first time--for business, alas, rather than pleasure--and I'm more than a little anxious about the D ramifications of the six-time-zone change combined with an intense work schedule. My new endo, Dr. Reassurance (she's a separate post), says all I need to do is reset the pump's clock and expect a bad day while I adjust. Um. Okay. That seems weird somehow. I need to research this further during the next, eek, 12 days. I'm so sick of diabetes that for the first time since dx I am entirely behind the curve in researching how to take of it and myself. Normally I am all over this kind of shit.

Anyhow, the tests and suchlike (hmm, I initially typed "sucklike," heh heh) from January turned out mostly okay, and the follow-ups to the not-quite-okay one turned out okay too. So I still don't really know what's been up, but the meds are continuing to help me overall. This is a good thing.

I feel like I've veered off the trajectory of the hegemonic narrative, to borrow some English grad student BS lingo, of the adult-onset diabetic. Shouldn't I be well on my way, at this point, to sunshiney gratitude for the gifts my disease has brought, as dissected in numerous posts across the blogosphere a few months back? Shouldn't I be philosophically wry, in a charming, admiration-invoking way, about how much worse off I could be, and also how if I'd been born a century ago I would already be dead? Well: I do have times when I feel philosophical in a positive sense, but right now it seems mainly clear that the whole business of having a chronic disease Just Never Goes Away and is Terminally Tiresome. Which makes inhabiting this online world, as full of grace and support as it often is, in some ways very sad for me. I would like to be less centered on diabetes, not more, and I don't know how to balance that with the positive aspects of writing here and allowing myself to care about others who are writing their stories as well.


  1. Oh Violet, welcome back :)

    Perhaps you've got "Spring Fever"? Everyone seems a bit weary, or just plain sick of the diabetes thing.

    I think it's time we let our hair down, and stop being charming, philosophical, supportive.

    Let's just say "Diabetes sucks the big one" and leave it at that.

  2. Violet,

    Yes, I know.

    I've been tempted to take a blogging hiatus, myself. Just because it's been feeling so damn relentless of late.

    Maybe there's something about that second year after diagnosis. You research and learn so much the first year, and then after that it's just you and the D. You've gotten to know one another, and sure D will surprise you every now and again. But for the most part, it's just what it is.

    And you feel ready to move on to something new.

    But you can't.

    I don't know. I'm rambling here... because I'm tired (Evan is really sick-- was up all night). And because I'd rather think about anything but Joseph's endo visit in two hours.

    Just don't look forward to these appointments the way I used to, I guess.

    What I'm trying to say is I'm glad to see you post something, though I completely understand your reluctance to do so.

  3. Do you feel obligated to post only about D? Is it blogging in general or blogging about D that's got you ennervated?

    In theory, I have a D blog. In actuality, it's a rambling pile of...erm...ramblings. I just go on and on and hope I don't piss off the avid D-bloggers too much with my witterings. I guess at this point, D has just become a part of my life. It comes up when it's causing us grief, but most of the time, it's in the background.

  4. Dealing with diabetes is a very personal challenge, that each one of us handles (or tries to) in our own way.

    Most of all, for me, diabetes makes me tired. It's like this big heavy load that I carry around all the damn time. I get tired of it. It wears me down.

    But - I have to figure out a way to carry that load and move on with my life, and to try to do so in a positive and uplifting way.

    For me, the blogging has become theraputic - there are so many caring people out there. Many people's comments have helped me a great deal - even if just to say "hey Scott - we're out here and we feel you".

    With that being said, I say just blog whenever it feels right. There is no obligation to this thing, and if it is not helpful to you, don't worry about it.

    We're all here for you, whether you are actively blogging or not.

  5. Mmm, yeah, Scott has a good point. Blogging should be fun, not a chore. If it's become a pain in the ass, then stop. Take a break or just stop altogether. Don't get stressed out over it. I say this with the best intentions as a certified imaginary internet weirdo friend.

  6. julia--
    I normally like to be super positive as I've been doing the D thing for along time, but it's been a tough, tough day. About blogging, I have mixed emotions. Blogging has caused me to think more about my diabetes than probably any other time in my life. Most of it, I must admit has been positive, but sometimes it just brings me down.

    I've been encouraged to keep better records, this is something I did for years but let myself slip out of the habit. I do think it helps. I'm also encouraged by those good A1c's I see around the D community, even though mine is mediocre. I've also been inspired by johnboy's 100 days of fitness and have implemented the same in my own life.

    The bad, is all the worry of complications and justified I guess. Although I would bet bloggers have a lower complication rate than others just because they're concerned, staying informed and trying to do a good job of control.

    I don't think you'll have trouble pumping overseas. I don't have a bunch of variable basal rates going on and you may be different but I just bolused as normal for meals and made it fine. Actually I think my control may have improved a little while I was there. The worst part for me is security... trying to explain what a pump is to security personel. Do carry all the papers recommended by your Dr, however I was never asked for mine or felt like I neede to present them. The absolute worst part was leaving Budapest and was frisked ALL over because I set off the alarm.

    Good luck, take a few precautions and you'll be fine.

  7. Violet,

    I'm so pleased to see you post something, but I'm also dismayed for you.

    My sugars have been taking me on a rollercoaster ride for nearly this whole month -- and it hasn't been a pleasurable ride. It's got me in a knot, really.

    Research the overseas business -- your endo's answer doesn't seem quite right to me... But I've only been overseas once with my diabetes and it was during one of my "I don't really care" phases -- and, I was on injections -- which, as we all know is a different -- though not altogether different -- ball game.

    Anyway... Back to work I go.

  8. Hello,
    In briefly reading your story I have two comments, one flying with diabetes supplies. The worst airport experiences have been at
    Boston Logan airport in regards to
    my insulin pump(s). They do not like it when you travel with a spare pump that is not hooked up to you. Second item is look at
    Celiac Disease, may solve many problems.

  9. Hi Violet,
    I find your negativity quite healthy and cathartic, really. Now me, I'm FREAKIN' OBSESSED with blogging -- like it's part of my care, like I'll get the complications if I stop it. Yikes!!

    And that comment about celiac disease, wtf? You can definitely feel cheery that you don't have that convenient little extra to deal with, believe me...

    Anyway, hugs from Frustrated PWD-Land.

    - Amy