I have to chuckle at the word AWARENESS sometimes, especially when it comes to diabetes. If you have diabetes or you live with someone who has diabetes, trust me, you are painfully aware – on so many levels!
The idea is to make those who do not live with diabetes aware of not only the challenges of living a life with diabetes, but also the way we can overcome those challenges with positive thinking, a good support system and of course – insulin!
What am I thankful for today as I live another day with type 2 diabetes? It’s a long list, so fasten your seatbelt and hang on …
1. I can see clearly! Since my diagnosis in 1994, I’ve faithfully seen my eye care specialist once a year. People without diabetes see their eye doctor every other year. I say this with all humility, a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes – every year when my eyes are dilated and I am checked for retinopathy (a common condition with diabetes), my doctor gives me a glowing report! He says, “If I didn’t know you were diabetic, I would not be able to tell from these pictures.”
2. I hear ya! It’s recently been proven that diabetes can cause hearing loss. They think that the small vessels of the ear get plugged up because of excess glucose in the blood. If I could not hear it would not be the end of my life, but I am a musician and have been blessed with perfect pitch. I’m not bragging, just telling the truth. Hearing loss would be a huge loss to be sure.
3. I’m walking on sunshine! I admit there are days when I need a cane to walk better because of neuropathy (another complication of diabetes), but I am on my feet and moving. What a wonderful blessing to still be mobile and able to take a walk anytime I want to. It’s so important that I stay as independent as possible. I do not take my freedom for granted. I thank God for the ability to exercise without much pain. Through the years I have relied on a good Chiropractor and an occasional massage to keep me going. Exercise is a key component in diabetes management.
4. I smile every day! Keeping blood sugar within a healthy range is so important because everything is affected – even my smile! If my gums are not healthy it could lead to tooth loss. Along with brushing and flossing I use Sesame Oil to “pull” bacteria from my teeth and gums every day. Just one Tablespoon of oil once a day really helps my gums stay healthy. Swish for about 5 minutes and spit – (never swallow the oil), then rinse with water and smile!
5. I keep stress at bay! I’m the first to admit that this was not easy a few years ago. Now that I’m retired it is so much easier to manage the stress in my life. God has helped me to re-evaluate priorities and re-examine the things that cause stress to begin with. Sometimes stress just happens, like when there is a health crisis in my family – but these days I really don’t sweat the small stuff. The older I get, the less most things really matter.
Thank You, Lord, for saving my soul. Thank You, Lord, for making me whole. Thank You, Lord, for giving to me Thy great Salvation so rich (full) and free! I do count my blessings and these are just a few of them. Yes, I have diabetes, but diabetes does NOT have me! D stands for dedication to living a healthy lifestyle because God has blessed me so much! ❤