November 20, 1957 - May 28, 2004
Am I just too rough around the edges?
I have read and looked at a number of articles, blogs and various stories regarding diabetes and a lot either have confused me with all kinds of technical mumbo jumbo or made me say “what were you thinking”?
I’m not a professionally trained writer or a medical professional. I am just a guy that has type 1 diabetes and an athlete with a passion and a desire to share my experiences with others.
I just want to let other type 1 & 2 diabetics’, pre-diabetics and or anyone who is facing an obstacle of their own not to give up!
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again……”you need to control your diabetes, don’t let your diabetes control you”.
KISS –Keep It Simple Stupid
I saw one picture on a website where this type 1 diabetic was going on a trip and had posted a picture of their “medical supplies” that would be needed. There was so much stuff; it was intimidating to say the least. I’m sure that for some situations you might be forced to take more supplies and equipment than most, but if you can try and keep it simple.
I have traveled all over the freaking place and all I take is a test kit and pen. I have a little zip lock baggy with all of my extra stuff like more pens, test strips, needles, and my Lantis. But that’s it. This works for me personally,
Unless you’re going to be somewhere that you will be isolated from civilization, diabetes is pretty much everywhere, which means that most diabetic supplies are readily available. But of course if you are hooked up pump with all kinds of bells and whistles you might not be able to get what you need, so you will have to travel with a small cache of equipment. (Pumps are good, but you don’t have to use them).
I was freaked out when I was diagnosed and was told all kinds of scary stuff by the Doctors and “educators”. I was able to figure it out pretty quickly, as I think (hope) most diabetics do. (Trust me there was some serious trial and error along the way).
But back to this small diabetic supply company this individual was putting together for the vacation. I think as a young person, young adult or even parents with an infant, if they saw all this stuff piled up and thought this is how as a diabetic you have to roll, most would freak out and say “there’s no way”!
There is a way. And please I’m not trying to disrespect anyone. Nor am I trying to minimize the seriousness of diabetes. It has to be dealt with and needs to be attended to properly. But it’s all good and life goes’ on. There is nothing that a type1 or type 2 diabetic can’t do!
Who Dares Wins
Maybe all this, and the way I think and how I deal with my diabetes has to do with my older brother George Zacharias who was born on November 20, 1957 in Kinglynn, England. George was severely deformed and had only one kidney, and a million other things that were wrong with him. The guy never walked a day in his life; he was confined to a wheel chair blah, blah, blah. George eventually lost his kidney and had to have it removed. He spent the last 25 years of his life on dialysis before he passed away May 28, 2004. But he never bitched about anything, not once.
Mind you this was during a time when most of you were either not born yet and don’t know what I’m about to say, or you were and don’t want to remember. Back when my brother George was a kid and for most of his life people referred to him as the “crippled kid”.
There wasn’t any handicapped parking or ramps anywhere when he was a kid and into his young adulthood. Nothing was really accessible to the physically challenge.
George may have been physically disabled but he was absolutely brilliant. Smart as a whip! But for the longest time the schools where we lived would not allow for him to attend with the “regular kids”. He was picked up every morning by a short yellow school bus with a bunch of kids that were mostly mentally challenged. Finally with enough bitching and complaining by my parents George was allowed to attend public school with the other kids.
But remember, this is also when most of America and the world thought it was o.k. to get a sun tan and to drink water out of the garden hose. Kids rode bicycles and skateboards without helmets, and for god’s sake we would climb trees hundreds of feet up into the air and build tree forts.” I cannot even remember the last time I saw a tree fort”? I mean come on now, I see mothers with leashes on their kids, and I think it’s a law here in my town that if you’re under the age of 18 you’re required to wear a helmet when riding a bike or skateboard.
Neither we, nor George ever thought for a minute that he was different. We drug George everywhere and did everything just as if he were absolutely like us. We and George were forced to adapt to the various situations and figure out a way around anything that came up and for the most part it was on!
I could and will probably write more about my oldest brother George. He was and will always be inspiration to me. And I know if he were alive when I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes he’d a said, “shit happens”. And would have never even batted an eye and he wouldn’t have felt sorry for me. I’m sure he would empathize with me, but even that I’m not sure of. The guy was tough as nails I tell you. George had the Special Air Service (S.A.S.) Winged Dagger along with the SAS motto “Who dares wins” tattooed on his forearm.
I guess the whole point to this post is that even though I and a lot of others out there that have type 1 & 2 diabetes or are pre-diabetic or might be facing another type of obstacle in their life? I just want to say even though at times it sucks; it’s going to be o.k. Just remember…….
“If you’re faced with an obstacle in your life don’t let it stop you. If you hit a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to get over the wall, go through the wall or find a way around it.”