Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Diabetes: The Invisible Disease

This weekend was a long weekend for me. I left work early on Thursday and took Friday off. It was like a min-vacation. I really needed a break, so it was very nice. A friend and I went to Savannah, Tennessee to go to Darryl Worley's Tennessee River Run. Basically it was a festival-like concert on the Tennessee River at Pickwick State Park. It featured Savannah local Darryl Worley, the legendary Charlie Daniels, Trick Pony, and Jason Michael Carroll.

We spend the weekend at Pickwick State Park at their Inn, which was beautiful, clean, and had a wonderful view of the water from our fifth flood balcony. Just having those relaxing few days was very nice.

I have lived fairly close (about 45 minutes) to a lake most of my life. It has given me a love of the water. It is so peaceful and seems to bring a wonderful spirit to my heart. Even on the worst of days I can spend a few hours sitting on the edge of the water and the world seems to fall back into perspective.

Diabetes wise, I had a relatively easy weekend. Nothing about 180 and very few lows. The interesting thing that I discovered is how very invisible diabetes can be...except to other diabetics. I've always known that people don't realize I have diabetes most of the time. I've known people for months and them say, "I didn't know you were diabetic!" Others find out in a very short time. It just seems like it comes up sooner in conversation with some people than with other people.

While I was at the concert on Saturday night I was looking around at the people. I tend to be a people watcher at times. I think it is part of my inverted nature. There was a couple sitting about 15 feet away from me. They were probably in their early to mid 40's. The man got up and went to get something and I looked at the woman. She wasn't looking at me, but I saw her, very discretely, open a small cooler and get out a glucose monitor and some insulin. She was so good at hiding what she was doing, I didn't catch the brand names of either product, but I could tell that she checked her blood sugar. Then she drew up insulin in a syringe and gave herself an injection through her jeans. Unless you were really paying attention, you would never have known what was going on. Unless you were another diabetic, I would venture to say, you wouldn't have noticed it at all.

I didn't say anything to the lady. I don't know who she was, what type of diabetes she has, or anything else about her. But I know that we share a bond. She may never know about it, but I do.

So diabetes can be invisible. Almost. Us diabetics can almost always pick up on it.

1 comment:

Donna said...

Sounds like a great weekend! Darryl Worley! Jason Michael Carroll! Charlie Daniels! Wow! I am jealous! (Trick Pony has a new lead singer, don't they?) My son saw Charlie Daniels at Rib Fest in Indianapolis a few years ago & stood in the front row for the show. He was simply in awe. Charlie Daniels is the greatest!

It's really cool that you noticed the lady taking care of her diabetes needs. I always try to be discreet when we eat out so I don't gross people out - especially when checking my BG. Programming my pump doesn't seem to be such a big deal anymore. But some people look at me pretty weird if they notice any blood. It's a good thing we don't think it's weird, huh? You gotta do what you gotta do.

Glad you had a good time! Everyone needs a little time off once in a while.