Someone asked me if he could read my blog.
I have never discussed this blog with anyone, not even my family. They know I have a blog…they know I started it to deal with my frustrations surrounding my diabetes…they know I don’t share it with anyone.
I was a little shocked that someone would want to hear my ramblings, my opinions on this *thing* too many of us live with. It was a sharp reminder that there are other people out there who are struggling, who want to be reminded that there are others who are also struggling.
I am still processing the Unconference. I don’t know how much I want to talk about it here…I have been given an opportunity to share my blog address with the attendees of the conference and I struggle with that choice.
Isn’t it funny? The one thing I thought I wanted was to be heard…to have someone listen to me, to my fears and my struggles, to my frustrations and my pain…and now someone wants to and…
It scares the holy hell out of me.
I sat there at the unconference listening to other people talk about their diabetes for a day and a half. Some of it was amazing…skinny, successful people have actually experienced the same things I have.
I looked back on some of my posts and saw how often I grab things from the internet and complain about them. I point out other people’s failings. I argue against the bias that exists in this community…
I feel left out. I feel like people see me and they see everything they hate about their own struggles with diabetes.
We really aren’t supposed to talk about the specifics of what was said at the unconference…but I just…
Don’t these people know, don’t they realize? These people who grew up type 1, don’t they realize that they are not the only ones who struggle?
Do they think they are the only ones who had family members who gave something up to make sure they had what they needed? That it wasn’t just their moms and dads who went without to make sure their child had insulin? What about my kids? What about my four kids who have had to go without things they wanted–things they deserved–so that Mommy could have her insulin?
Do they think there’s a difference between seeing the anger and fear in their parents’ eyes and hearing my ten year old ask if I really have to do “all that diabetes stuff on my birthday?”
I don’t know if I can really be a voice for the diabetes community while I have this anger–this pain that comes from the guilt people, both knowingly and unwittingly, place on me by calling me a Type 2…
And when I hear the angry, frustrated rantings of a type 1 who suddenly learned she might actually be another type, a type more closely related to type 2 as though it changes her reality somehow…how is that supposed to make me, and others like me, feel?
I’m not in the same place as the other people who were at the unconference.
I can’t listen to their stories and not feel pushed aside…
I can’t obsess over changes in my own body, obsess over my fears of complications, and then listen to a facilitator focus on the complications of type 1 diabetes–as if those are different from the complications I might, one day, face. Or know that those people look at me and think what everyone else thinks: that if I experience complications, it is somehow my fault.
And maybe that is my fault. Maybe I see and hear what I want to see and hear. Maybe I assume they are thinking these dark thoughts when they look at me, but really they’re simply thinking about their own pain, their own frustrations, their own lives. Maybe I’m just not ready to accept that there are some type 1s out there who can see past their own experiences and want to try to empathize with mine.
Or maybe I just need to learn to see past my experience–my pain, my frustrations, my disappointments–and learn to empathize with them.
Maybe I didn’t try hard enough. Maybe I didn’t open myself up enough. Maybe I didn’t try harder to connect.
I don’t know what the answer is. But this anger…it’s not going away any time soon.