When I sit down at a table for dinner with my family, I pull out my blood glucose machine, fire the lancing device into a finger, squeeze out some blood, watch the count down, bolus accordingly, and go about the rest of the meal.
This is nothing that would shock you at all. Am I right? Did anything sound strange or not right? No, this is normal for us.
But if no one at the table had ever seen a diabetic test their blood, take insulin, and count carbs it would be very strange and not normal at all. They would probably wonder what the heck was going on if they even continued to sit there with you.
This is what I think. I do not think humans were made to hurt themselves. I do not think we are supposed to cut our fingers and make ourselves bleed several times a day. It's not in our make up to stick needles into our stomach, thighs, and arms. These acts are not normal.
But they are to us. We have no choice. We have to make this life filled with sharps containers, and vials of medicine our normal. To survive we have to accept this "normal" that is not normal at all.
It pains me to think back when I had to accept that this was going to be my new normal. What about the fear of needles or what if I felt faint at the sight of blood? Then what? What could I do? Get over it? "Hey kid, get over it or die." Is that how I get introduced to my new normal? How normal is that?
That's the thing, it's not normal. Not one bit of it. But still we do it day in and day out.
So to those of you who identify with this strange "normal" and who make yourself bleed every single day just to be able to live. Those who plunge needles into their body just to eat a meal. I want to congratulate you on being stronger then most people in the world. You are amazing and resilient. The battle you face everyday is one worth fighting and you know it even when you wish more than anything to take a day off.
I wish I could hug every one of you.
To those that love those of us with this "normal" life I hope you know how much we love you right back. Your ability to shift your "normal" to meet ours is just about the greatest gift you can give us. Thank you.
And to those of you that do not understand this "normal" I would say, be thankful you don't.