The Other Half of Diabetes
If you’ve followed my blog for any length of time, you’re likely aware that I’ve made no secret of my struggles with anxiety, depression, and PTSD. I’ve shared some pretty dark stuff on those topics over the last couple of years. When I wrote the Confessions of a Broken Man at the end of 2014, I was in such a bad place mentally that I was ready to end it. Obviously, I didn’t, but the possibility was real. A few months after that I shared about The Ah Ha Moment I had that led to my diagnosis with PTSD and that I was working to get back on the wagon. I’ve had success with that. Though I’m still struggling with some things, I’m in a much better place today. Life gets messy at times. And it’s OK to need help with cleaning things up. We just have to ask. I’m glad I finally did.
Mantras, Reminders, and Walks in the Woods
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. And I’ve spent a great deal of time trying to reconnect and thinking things through. I’ve made progress. Slowly but surely.
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 when the weather is cooperative, 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 photos for sharing with friends. Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness.
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
Diabetes Blog Week – Day 2 The Other Half of Diabetes Link List.
We think a lot about the physical component of diabetes, but the mental component is just as significant. How does diabetes affect you or your loved one mentally or emotionally? How have you learned to deal with the mental aspect of the condition? Any tips, positive phrases, mantras, or ideas to share on getting out of a diabetes funk? (If you are a caregiver to a person with diabetes, write about yourself or your loved one or both!)
I have those little sayings that I go back to also.
I love your statement of who you are. I know people who have those statements about themselves carved in granite and therefore can never be erased away.
I’m so glad you take your camera with you! You know that I really enjoy your photos.
Slow progress is better than no progress.
Consider yourself hugged.
I love your quotes and that is a beautiful photo you took. Thanks for sharing!
Hahaha, clean up on aisle life. I love that Mike.
I referred your blog to the TUDiabetes blog page for the week of May 16, 2016.
Fresh air works wonders on the mindset. Glad to hear that you are making inroads with your mental health.
I don’t know you personally Mike, but your photos are beautiful and I imagine you are too. I love the last quote you shared about skidding in broadside totally used up. What a fantastic notion. I think much of the secret to life is being in the moment as much as we can. Then there is nothing to fight.