Diabetes Blog Week, Day 6 – Topic: Favorites and Motivations. If you have been blogging for a while, what is your favorite sentence or blog post that you have ever written? Is it diabetes related or just life related? If you are a new blogger and don’t have a favorite yet, tell us what motivated you to start sharing your story by writing a blog?
You know, picking a favorite blog post from among the 445 that I’ve written over the last 6 years is no small task. That’s a lot of material to review and think about. As I’ve looked back through the archives, more than a dozen stand out as worthy of being considered favorites. And wouldn’t you know it, most of those posts were written during previous Diabetes Blog Weeks. But how can I choose just one? Well, I can’t.
I have, however, narrowed the list down to three favorites. One motivational, One sentimental call to action, and One hilarious letter. I’ve included all three below. So grab some popcorn and a diet coke, then sit back, relax, and enjoy!
For Our Families and Ourselves – Diabetes Blog Week 2013, Petitions.
There’s More to Life
When living with chronic health issues that require constant attention, it is easy to become so consumed by those thoughts that we lose sight of the fact that there’s more to life that just those health issues. Sure, they are always with us, but they should not be the center of attention all the time.
I much prefer to devote my time and attention to the people and things in my life that are the most important to me. Like April and the time we get to spend together.
For the past few years, April has talked about the idea spending a day at a local park, just lying under a tree and enjoying being out in the beautiful weather. Maybe take the camera along and take pictures of the blossoms on some of the trees. For one reason or another, though, that never happened. Well, not until last Sunday afternoon, anyway.
The idea came up in conversation that morning and since the weather was beautiful that day, we decided to jump at the opportunity to go. So, we grabbed a blanket, our cameras, and a sandwich to share from Subway, and went to the park for an impromptu picnic. As you can see, we found a nice place on a hill beneath a couple of trees to pitch our blanket.
Oh sure, I checked my blood sugar and took my dinner time injection of Byetta before I started eating, but as soon as that was out of the way, my diabetes was pushed to the back burner and my attention returned to what was really important at the moment, April and our time together.
We had our meal and spent a while just laying on the blanket, taking in the view of our surroundings. And before we left the park, we took pictures of the blossoms on the trees and managed to snap some shots of each other in the process. It was a lot of fun.
It’s so important to remember that our loved ones also endure a lot of grief because of the health issues with which we are diagnosed. I’m quite thankful that I’ve had April by my side through my battle with congestive heart failure. I know that it has been every bit as scary for her as it has me. And, like all spouses of PWDs, April has dealt with the crap that goes along with that role, too. The highs, the lows, and the god awful mood swings, too.
So, anytime there’s an opportunity to do something fun that allows us to think beyond those other things, we jump on it. And we do our best to enjoy every minute we have during those times.
April finally got the day in the park that she’s wanted for so long and I got a souvenir of that day. My new favorite photo of her.
We, the undersigned, acknowledge and understand that we, as PWD’s, are not the only people affected by the disease with which we have been diagnosed. That our loved ones endure the struggles of this diagnosis along side us. We pledge to remember this, to show appreciation for their support, and to support them in return.
We, the undersigned acknowledge and understand that there is much more to life than diabetes and that it is important to take every opportunity to enjoy life in the moment. We pledge to stop and smell the roses and make memories, like the one above, as often as possible.
We, the undersigned, pledge to always remember the importance of making time for our families, and for ourselves.
Mike Durbin. (And hopefully everyone who reads this. 🙂 )
Mantras, Reminders, and Walks in the Woods – Diabetes Blog Week 2014, Mantras and more.
On my worst days with diabetes and congestive heart failure, when everything seems to be going wrong and I’m ready to give up, I try to remember how far I’ve come since I started on this journey. I try to remember the struggles I’ve overcome this far and the strength and determination it took to do so. I try to use that as assurance that I can get through the difficulties before me. I say try because some days it works, and other days it makes no difference at all.
Some days, looking back through my blog archives for inspirational quotes that I’ve shared helps. This quote from a post in 2012 has become something of a mantra or motto. It’s certainly fitting.
“A little heart can do big things.” – me
Some times, though, I really just have to take the time to remember who I am. I have to look inside myself and reconnect with the person that I know I am.
I am a strong, confident, caring, loving, and passionate man. I have a sound mind, and a strong spirit. I am well educated; possessing the knowledge and abilities needed to make it in this world. I am strong willed; filled with a sense of determination and endurance that will carry me through all situations. I am filled with respect, not only for others, but more importantly, for myself.
I’ve had more than my share of those days recently. And I’ve spent a great deal of time trying to reconnect and thinking things through. I’m making progress. Slowly but surely.
Over the last few months, I’ve found that the absolute best thing for helping my mood and clearing my mind is spending time hiking the trails at the many nature preserves in the area. And now that the weather is nicer, that’s how most of my days off from work are being spent. I take my nature and trail guides, camera, notebook, walking stick and water, and hit the trails. I stay out for hours at a time. And it helps a lot.
And taking my camera along on my walks in the woods has provided plenty of material for a new photo blog that I’ve been working on lately. Check out SparrowTreePhotography.com when you have a minute. I’d love feedback on my work there.
One last quote. It’s one of my favorites.
“Life is not a journey to the grave with intentions of arriving safely in a pretty well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out and loudly proclaiming … WOW! What a ride!” ~ Author Unknown
An Angry Letter to D Pig – Diabetes Blog Week 2011, Letters.
Recently, last night in fact, I returned home from work to discover that a secret meetup of epic proportions was taking place under my own roof. Little G, that stealthy diabetes ninja warrior, and his high flying superhero friends, the Angry BirDies, had gathered to plot the demise of their evil green nemesis, D Pig!
At the conclusion of the secret conclave, the fuzzy little bad asses issued a warning letter for their enemy. They granted permission for the letter to be published in its entirety.