Diabetes Self-Management Blog

Well, it’s finally beginning to feel like not-winter outside. This morning I was able to head out on my 6:30 walk with the dog wearing my fleece pullover. No heavy winter coat. No gloves. No hat. (Of course pants, a shirt, and shoes are a given.)

Yes, there’s still a chill in the air, low 40s, but birds were singing, and daffodils and tulips are several inches above ground, with many of the early crocus already in full bloom.

Spring seems to be moving into Michigan.

We — Ellie (our dog) and I — go on these walks pretty much every weekday morning. Thirty to 45 minutes, rain, snow, or shine. On Thursdays I often spend this time thinking about what I should write about for my weekly blog entry. I leave the house, well before my first cup of coffee, so it takes a bit to get my mind where I can think coherently. After two or three blocks, however, the blood has moved into the appropriate brain places, and I begin thinking about diabetes, about my life and diabetes, reflecting on the past week to see if there’s something, anything, that I can write about.

Today there was nothing of major importance that came to mind. “Diabetes, diabetes, diabetes.” This I say to myself as I pause while Ellie sniffs a pile of leaves. “High blood glucoses, low blood glucose, other incidents, anecdotes, things regarding my pump, infusion site issues, doctor appointments, funny stories. Philosophical musings? Living with. Thinking of myself as…” I run through potential topic areas, and if nothing sticks, I try it once more, often chiding myself for not keeping notes of diabetes-related things that I could write about.

Today, nothing stuck.

Oh, many things bubbled to the surface, but just as quickly dropped back down. Could I make an entry out of elevated glucose that I think is related to wearing an infusion set too long. Probably. What about the Monday high bg reading following a delicious dinner of tapas with friends on Sunday night? Yeah, I could. Or perhaps I’ll reflect on my rather uneventful (thus far) 2011, and how great it is to not be dealing with the worries and issues regarding my health that I’ve endured during new years past.

There’s always something out there. Diabetes, if I spend any time whatsoever thinking about my life with the illness, presents a treasure trove of jumping-off points. I’ve often wondered how, week in and week out, I don’t burn out, grow tired of writing this blog. In fact, this morning as I began my walk, I felt I’d hit a wall. Should I take another hiatus from blogging? Do I bore people? I fret. I worry because I navel gaze rather than write about the latest diabetes news. Me, me, me.

But then I think, nah, what I do is write about my experience living with Type 1 diabetes.

Reset the negative thinking, then, and approach once more. And sure enough, I realized that this week all I needed was to approach the blog from a different angle, write about the writing of. I used to teach creative writing when I was in grad school, and I always told my students that if they were stuck when they were writing to write about being unable to find anything to write about. You’ll write your way out of it.

When I look to the coming months, I see that what may be a mild blog-topic drought will soon hit the rainy season again. In a few weeks I visit my endocrinologist. In six weeks I see my podiatrist. A couple of weeks after that I begin my low-iodine diet in preparation for my one-year follow-up in nuclear medicine because I had my thyroid removed last year because of cancer. All rich with blog material.

And the weather’s changing, which means that in addition to going to the gym — always diabetes-topic gold — working in the yard in warm weather is a wonderful way for me to be alone with my thoughts and come up with topics, as well as providing its own material. Gardening, that great metaphor for life! (I always think of Peter Sellers in Being There).

Sitting in the sun with my hands in the soil, dividing and transplanting perennials and, this year, building raised beds for a vegetable garden…

I look forward to that, and I look forward to finding interesting things to blog about in the coming months. Enjoy your spring!


  1. Ah, spring. Keep up the great work, Eric. You are appreciated by many.

    Posted by Cathy A. |
  2. Why is the dog wearing your fleece pull over?

    Posted by Cathy |
  3. I have noticed that since I am older and have had diabetes for a few years my brain works differently than it did when I was middle aged. Now I perceive things differently than I used to - sometimes it amuses me and sometimes it frustrates me - I try to tell myself that I am not alone but its still frustrating. That’s why when I read your second sentence I was amused and confused at the same time…I worry about Alzheimer’s but hope that its only the new way my brain functions now.

    Posted by Cathy |

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