Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Real World

Real life is not perfect. It isn't at all like the oxymoronic "reality" TV shows.

The past is defined. The future is never without risk. The only certainty is that nothing we do will ever be as dangerous as living. So we should always be aware.

These beautiful peach Angel Trumpet flowers. When they first fall to the ground, they are slippery like a banana peel.

I found that out looking up for bees dancing inside them when I should have been watching where I was going. What a metaphor for modern life- obsessed by physical beauty- moving too quickly on our path with no awareness of obvious practical details. Woops!

I landed hard on the only flat piece of open cement in my garden. I was winded. Shook up. Hurt. A week later, listening to the squishy sound when I probed the knee cap , it was time to have my doctor check it out.

The knee will be fine. But my blood work was not.

I have diabetes. It is the enemy in my maturity.

Do not pity me. This is not my first battle with health. One thing I know for certain is that neither circumstance nor genetic predisposition can force a contrary result without my personal permission.

Diabetes is not the first enemy to be my companion. Depression was the unseen companion of my youth. I am certain- just as I beat depression into submission before I married over three decades ago, the diabetes will not be given permission to get in the way of living a good life.

Having a goal is helpful. When I die, I have always wished it to be in old age, lying quietly in the arms of the man I love. To have any chance at that, I must be careful of what companions I keep- depression and diabetes are Barbarian acquaintances- absolutely not found on the guest list.

I respect the diabetes as a powerful opponent, which if I am complacent, it can win. The battle plan consists of diet and exercise. To defeat this scourge, the strategy involves seriously training my muscles to be activated troops. I am working out five days a week. I am relearning to cook, eat and celebrate. It is too soon to declare victory- but in less than a month I’ve dropped 9.5 pounds and have been able to post pretty darned perfect blood glucose readings already.

The rewards have been fast-coming. Facts relegated to GOAB (getting old is a bitch) disease are noticeably improved. The mind is again nimble. Energy is activated. My hair shinier and my skin clearer. Not to mention, my clothes are fitting more the way I like them to.

Dear readers, I raise a glass to your good health! Never take it for granted. And when it is threatened- fight for it. Your life depends on it.


Anonymous said...

Later this afternoon I will raise a glass to your continued effort to fight for good health! You are an inspiration to us all. So far, I have been blessed with good health and for that I thank God. Just in case something creeps up on me, and no doubt it will in my very old age, I will remember your words and your fighting spirit!

With love and good wishes and prayers go out to you!

Anonymous said...

Dear Lydia,

Well I've not formally been told that I have diabetes, yet, I was told nearly 2 weeks ago that my blood sugar was 184 after 2 hours of eating. Not great news. As my dad was on insulin and my mother was on pills and my brother currently is on pills for the monster, I know it's arrived to try and consume me as well.

I'm currently researching endocrinologists that are board certified and are in a decent travel distance from my home. I'm sure when I find one, the first thing will be the glucose test. In the meantime, I've been trying to do what I know I should do: eliminate all possible sugar and try to avoid anything white! I've lost a few pounds, but still feel very tired most of the time.

Your article has stimulated my copy cat response, though. I'm motivated to at least go take a walk. I know how important the exercise is. Just haven't been disciplined because of the pain factor I endure every day. But, again, I'm motivated and will now get up and go out and take a walk for a couple of blocks at least.

Hopefully, we can help keep one another honest in our combined battle.

Wishing you (and I) every success.

Judy Duvall
Seal Beach, CA

Lydia said...

Trisha- Thank you for using me as an excuse to raise a glass! Your goodwill means everything to me.

Judy- You CAN do it. You have the smarts to have started adjusting to your new reality without waiting to see the doctor. The gym has been a huge help for me. Today I ate- then worked out- and my blood sugar was even better after a little sweat than before. Since you mention pain issues- find one with good trainers- ask your doctor if a physical therapist might be a good idea. They can help you get a good start without getting hurt.

OldLady Of The Hills said...

What a wonderful inspiring post, Lydia. I LOVE your attitude and look at the results you have had...Brava to you, my dear!