Sunday, April 09, 2006

It's a sunny April day and I just got back from a nice walk with my sweetie of 9 months. Exercise is definitely better when it's a shared activity. But before I get rambling I should tell a little about myself and what inspired me to start a blog.
I've had diabetes for most of my life and although I've never let it stop me from pursuing my dreams or being what I wanted to be, it inevitably influenced who I've become to this point. I was even able to go to camp as a kid, and my parents found one of the best places in this world, The Barton Center for Diabetes Education. Not only was I able to stay overnight for almost two weeks away from home, but I met a whole new family of people who knew what living with diabetes was like. We'd have a blast together, learning new things, giggling at Camp Joslin/Camp Barton dances, and yet we'd instinctively know when to ask if one of our cabinmates was having a low blood sugar. And my favorite time- singing camp songs after meals. Some of my favorite memories are of the times I've spent there, as a child and now as an adult volunteer. It just so happens that a few of my fellow alumni from camp also have blogs, which is part of why I became interested in having one of my own.

One of the dreams I was inspired to pursue was becoming a Registered Nurse. As a kid, I soon figured out that nurses, not doctors, knew how to deal with stubborn patients like me:) My school nurses became my buddies,and later mentors, as I saw them every day at lunch to check my bloodsugar.
Through my experiences I learned that the medical community has trouble thinking outside the box when it came to diabetes management. My body didn't always respond to things the way the textbooks said it should, but they would still treat it as though it did. I learned how to be an advocate and educator, and these are still my favorite roles as a nurse. And I wear many other hats, which I'll write about during another post.
One piece of my "quest" is to find a way to effectively educate both people with diabetes and the medical community that serves them in order to make diabetes more manageable for everyone. I've begun working on this at my current job, but I know it will take time and effort picking away at set ways to see change happen. While this may put my perserverence to the test, I'm up for the challenge!


Mom said...

I have no doubt you can do anything you set your mind on! I'm so proud that you've taken what some perceive as a disabiity and made it into a positive for yourself and for others! Can't wait to read more.....get writing.

"Sweetie" said...

Yay I got honorable mention in the introductory post! Good work getting this blog off the ground and running. While I'm sure you're beaming with the influences of the medical professionals that have been experiencing aspects of your life throughout the spectrum of age, maturity, and mindset, don't forget your family; notably your parents, grandparents, and lil sister that have experienced almost every waking (and sleeping) moment of your life as a diabetic. Their teachings, suggestions, and yes, maybe even a little nagging have shaped you into the incredible person you are today and like your mother already said, turned what some see as a disability, into an opportunity. One of many reasons that I look up to you as such an incredible human being. I can't wait to help spread the joy later this month!

Kate said...

Mom, I hope you know that if it weren't for the positive way you and Dad helped me handle the diabetes I wouldn't be where I am today. Like my "sweetie" pointed out, my family has been key in who I am today also. And don't worry- I'm really getting into the writing so you'll have plenty more to read soon:)

Rachel said...

it is so awesome that you have used your personal knowledge and nursing background to get to a place to help others as "an expert".