Yes. The DOC. The Diabetes Online Community.
You know how we all talk about how we aren’t diabetics, but PEOPLE with diabetes? How diabetes doesn’t define us? (thanks, Kerri) How we’ve got kids and parents, wives and girlfriends, husbands and boyfriends … though probably not all six at the same time?
Well, how is there time for a life if all we do is eat, sleep, breathe diabetes? How can we complain that diabetes consumes all our free time when we choose to dedicate our free time talking about it? Yes, it’s a big thing, but it’s not the only thing.
Look, I’m not saying anything bad about the DOC, not at all. Everyone whose been a part of it has been better off for it. Nothing epitomizes it more than Amy T’s Wednesday article on Diabetes Mine (which I got around to reading Thursday). If I may excerpt just a short piece:
Anyhow he tweets something along the lines of: At a restaurant. Low #bgnow + blind date = (insert curse word).
And within minutes, guess what came back, from internet friend @iamsquee? Two words: Sugar packets?
“There it was. The solution to my problem was just 6 inches from my elbow!” Mike exclaims. “But somebody across the country had to point it out, and using the internet they could — instantly!”
The Diabetes Online Community is powerful, and is always there when we need it. Thankfully. But it shouldn’t come at the expense of the communities in which we live. The people we love and see every day. For some fortunate people, the two communities are closely woven together, but for me they are quite distinct. And I can’t neglect one at the expense of another. My wife and kids deserve my attention. (My job doesn’t deserve it, but I kinda have to give it my attention anyway).
When I first got involved in talking about diabetes online, it was through TuDiabetes. It was a lifesaver for me. It gave me the confidence to start on an insulin pump while playing hockey (even three prior endo’s couldn’t do that!) – with a link to this video finally convincing me to take the plunge (e-media alert: Toby Petersen, the NHLer who is featured in that video, will be featured on dLife TV this Sunday!). And it got me past the biggest psychological hurdle of all, which is that giving a correction-bolus doesn’t mean I failed to handle my meal right. By the way, TuDiabetes is celebrating it’s sixth anniversary (Ning-aversary?), and the operating nonprofit Diabetes Hands Foundation is accepting contributions to help carry it through it’s seventh.
I’ll be honest, though. After awhile, the “novelty” of talking about diabetes non-stop wore off, and took a long break. Diabetes is a disease that I manage, but it’s not fun. So in my spare time, I preferred “fun stuff” instead of overtime D-talk.
Why am I saying this? Well, I don’t think that’s where I am right now (and as I write this, I’m remembering how much I enjoy writing, even as I’ve taken over a week off on this blog). I love that the Diabetes Online Community has grown into real friendships, beyond the lazy pancreas commonality. I often say that the key part of the DOC is the C, not the D.
But I’ve got writers block. I’ve started a couple of blog posts but never finished them. I figure that if I try to force myself to write it, than how can anyone possibly want to read it? So I don’t force myself to publish stuff anymore, I do it when the inspiration strikes me.
Hopefully I’ll get inspired to write something meaningful, inspirational, or funny within the next week or so. For now, I can still rely on Google Reader to tell you when I do. But until then, there’s plenty of other great blogs out there to read.
Thanks for hanging in there with me.
Oh, and sorry for making your mouth salivate with that picture up there. The remedy is at the corner of 9th and Passyunk in South Philadelphia. It’s totally bolus-worthy (but don’t ask me to help with the carb counts).