Double D

Diabetes + Depression. It’s a constant, double struggle. You need motivation to get your life and health in order, and there’s this extra weight on your shoulders pulling you down. Been there, done that… still deal with it every single day because my depression seems to be as chronic as my diabetes. It makes things harder in every sense with the lack of energy, the low self-esteem that comes with it and the feeling that it doesn’t matter what I do things will never get better. So why bother?

Sometimes I wonder if I’m just lazy with my diabetes, but then I figure I’m not the only one who wakes up some days wishing it’s all gone so I don’t have to work on it because it’s darn annoying. I look at myself in the mirror and I see (I know!) I have to do so much better than this and stop using excuses. But for me, it’s not only about food choices, exercise and taking my medication… I struggle very hard to keep my sanity as well. I know that if I forget to take my happy pills everything else will fall apart. Then it becomes a vicious cycle: my diabetes and my weight issues make me depressed, and my depression takes away my motivation. It’s so much fun… NOT!

During the Roche Social Media Summit I had the chance to listen to Dr. William Polonsky from the Diabetes Behavioral Institute. He basically said we need to take a vacation from diabetes from time to time and do it smartly. I wrote some about it in my previous post. At the end of the session people started sharing personal stories and I was afraid to talk. First because I’m stupidly conscious about my accent, and second because I avoid public speaking like the plague, especially when it’s about feelings and personal trials and tribulations. But then I gathered some courage and I told everyone in that room how I feel: Sometimes I think I’m not worth it. Sometimes I think it wouldn’t  be a big loss if I wasn’t around. I heard all kinds of “What are you talking about? I’d miss you! You’re wonderful!” — I technically know all that, but my depression speaks too loud sometimes.

After I was approached by several people to thank me for saying what they feel but are never able to express, I felt like some of that weight was lifted off my shoulders. I’ve always know I’m not the only one dealing with depression and diabetes. But knowing that I can openly talk about it and ask for help and support certainly makes things easier. Especially when I can related to those who have to fight the diabetes dude every day.

I know that my health will greatly improve when I start making the right choices, not just for a day but for a life. But in order to achieve that I need my mental checkout from time to time. And happy pills it is.

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3 thoughts on “Double D

  1. You’re very correct, Bea. Depression adds an extra layer of burden to our lives. I’ve written about my own “why bother?” attitude and it can be so difficult to get past those feelings of low self-esteem and feeling like it really doesn’t matter.

    It’s very brave of you to speak up in front of a lot of people you may not know well and even braver to throw those feelings out on the internet!

    Big hugs!

  2. Bea –
    D&D go hand in hand and you are not alone in your struggle, but one of many.
    The fact that you shared your struggle with us was not only very brave, it was incredibly giving because by doing so you allowed others to realize that they were not alone!
    We love you and we love how interesting and more wonderous/wondrous a place the world is with you in it!
    Kelly K

  3. After we got back from Roche, I asked for your email address – and I’m so so sorry I never did actually get around to emailing!! I had also thought about going over to speak to you after the Dr. Polonsky session, but didn’t because I was afraid of making you uncomfortable. Now I’m so regretting both that I didn’t email and that I didn’t talk to you.

    What I wanted to say is that you are amazing and so so strong to tell us everything you told us. I have so many of the same feelings. I sometimes tell my husband he would be so much better off if I was gone – he could find a wife that isn’t “broken” and such a burden and be happy. I feel like nothing I do matters and that I’m such a drain on society. And to hear you speak made me so sad that you feel some of these feelings too, but also it was oddly comforting to know I’m not so alone. Thank you so much!!

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