Throwback Thursday – A Post from the Past #HAWMC

So today we are to share a post from the past. I am going to post the link here and then just explain the post and why I would reshare it again in the future. 

You Chatted, Now It’s Time To Act – 5 Things to Do Today to Take Action

This article was posted after a Twitter chat occurred about taking action to create change within diabetes related policies. This post can be used for any chronic condition, or anything in general that you are advocating for, or against.

The most important part of this post is to just act. Just do something to act.

Hope you enjoy.

Read More

Wisdom Wednesday: My Advice to Other Activists #HAWMC

Today’s prompt is to provide some advice to an activist who is just starting out. Well, this advice is pretty simple.

Just start.

Stop thinking about it. Stop talking about how you would like to do something. Stop saying, I wish I had a blog. Stop, stop, stop all that crap and just start, start, start.

Tomorrow’s prompt is about a post from the past, well, I wrote a post about how to do something now to start advocating, so I’m not going to re-write that whole post now because it will be getting re-posted tomorrow.

But, for now, just start advocating. Here are a few things to do to get started in case you don’t know what to do.

1. Figure out what your cause is. Find a niche within your cause that you are the most passionate about. For example, there is no way that I can advocate for every single diabetes issue out there. I will spread my self way too thin and not get anything accomplished. So, I have decided a couple of years ago to focus strictly on policy issues that effect people with diabetes.

2. Where do you want to advocate? You don’t need a blog in order to be an advocate. You can do a lot with Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, etc. You can even use Medium to write long form content if you want to (and Medium makes it a lot easier to go ‘viral’). If you are familiar with a certain platform, stick to that and master it before branching out to every platform.

3. What’s stopping you? What’s stopping you is most likely an excuse. “I don’t have time” Yea.. how much do you know about The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones or binge watching Gilmore Girls on Netflix? “I’m not tech savvy”…. Write letters, do local in person support groups / meet ups, etc.

4. Now go…. seriously, go right now. And come back tomorrow to read the throwback post.

Read More

Case of the Mondays #HAWMC

Case of the Mondays…. hmm, I might have a different opinion on Monday’s than most people. A lot of people hate Monday’s and always complain about Monday. Why?

I don’t get it.

I go to sleep Sunday night with excitement and anticipation for it to be Monday.

Why?

I freakin love what I do for a living. I love running a business. I love advocating. I love engaging with people online. I love taking advantage of people being lazy and woe is me on a Monday and dominate when people are sluggish.

So, here is something that bothers me. Why people seem to hate 1/7 of their week. For me, being someone with type 1 diabetes, my emotional state has a big effect on my blood glucose levels. So, if I’m feeling down, lazy, stressed out by a Monday, it’s most likely going to cause my blood sugars to be out of whack which is going to make me feel like crap even more.

So, it’s a lose-lose situation.

So, instead, I take Monday by the horns and dominate the hell out of it. And guess what Tuesday?

You’re next!

Read More

Best Thing That’s Happened to Me This Week #HAWMC

I know this is a bit of a cop out, but I always answer this question the same way and there’s really no way for me to elaborate in length about it.

I woke up this morning and so did everyone in my family. That’s the best thing that can happen to me every week.

Sure, having a few hours of in-range blood sugars was nice, but the best thing is always going to be the same, as long as it’s happening.

Read More

Letter to the Best or Worst Healthcare Professional #HAWMC

Dear D (keeping name confidential),

I wanted to write this letter to you today to show my appreciation for everything that you have done to help shape my future and how I manage my diabetes. Before I had begin seeing you as a patient, I was so used to being told what to do and change this and change that and felt like I didn’t have much control over my own diabetes. You were open to discussion with me and hearing out my opinions about my diabetes and what I thought was working and what wasn’t working.

This allowed me to become a much more empowered patient and allowed me to manage my diabetes that much better.

To do this day, our appointments together are more of discussions to brainstorm ideas to solve the problem of diabetes. Whether this is morning time highs, late night lows, or after lunch spikes that I just can’t seem to figure out.

I’ve heard nightmare stories from other people about their relationship with their healthcare team and I am just so thankful to have one that is absolutely amazing.

Thank you, again.

-Chris

Read More

Friday Must Follow List in Diabetes Community

There are a lot of people in the diabetes community that you will want to follow. I’ve added these people because they are all connectors. By following these people and these groups, you will find additional people to follow and read.

Tweeters

Cherise Shockley

Mike Lawson

Bennet Dunlap

#DSMA

#DCDE

Blogs

Six Until Me

Arden’s Day

Diabetes Mine

Diabetesaliciousness

The Perfect D

Facebook Pages

CGM in the Cloud

Medtronic Diabetes

Diabetes Patient Advocacy Coalition (DPAC)

 

 

Read More

If I Were to Ask a Yahoo Question and Also Answer It

Today’s prompt, we are asked to pose a Yahoo Question and also provide an answer to it (as silly as it may be).

 Question: Is Diabetes Contagious?

Answer:

Yes. Yes it is. Diabetes is extremely contagious. Although it is not an airborne disease, it can only be contracted in 1 of 2 ways. The first way is the worst way to contract diabetes. Think of it as an apacolyptic afterworld where zombies have taken over, except these zombies are actually people with diabetes. What most people don’t know is that if you actually get bitten by someone with diabetes, you will actually become diabetic yourself within 12-36 hours.

How do you avoid getting bitten by someon with diabetes may you ask? Simple. There are a few things that you should never do. That will easily trigger an attack.

First, do not ask someone with diabetes “can you eat that?” By asking this question, you are in fact, pissing someone with diabetes off and they will bite you in the face. After this bite, you will begin experiencing a short temper, constantly needing to urinate, constant thirst (no matter how much you drink, you’re still thirsty), you’re going to lose your appetite, and you’re going to lose weight. Don’t worry, all these symptoms are clear signs that you are turning into becoming someone with diabetes.

Also, if you tell someone that they can cure their diabetes by eating healthier and exercising because you read an article in Good Housekeeping, then you are more likely to be bitten in the neck by someone with diabetes. Why the neck? Well, that’s the part that has a lot of sweetness to it, and people with diabetes love sweets.

Once you fully turn into someone with diabetes, once again, don’t worry. There is an amazing community of people that will help you to ensure that you don’t go out and bite other people’s faces and necks.

Read More

My Ideal Day #HAWMC

Today’s prompt is based on what would my ideal day look like? Who would I spend it with? Would I go somewhere? Has this day actually happened?

Well, unfortunately, this day has never happened for me. Because my ideal day would not be about what it included, rather what it didn’t include.

My ideal day would be waking up without having an insulin pump attached to me, so that when I roll out of bed, it doesn’t fall off the bed and yank down on my skin because it is almost ripping out the infusion set.

My ideal day would also not require me to stab my fingers 6-10 times a day to check my blood sugar. I would have beautiful, non-tingly hands on this ideal day. Speaking about stabbing, I wouldn’t have to take a shot with a syringe on this day either because of my insulin pump acting up and needing to take a manual shot.

I also wouldn’t need to scurry to the kitchen and search through the fridge looking for some orange juice or anything else that seems like it has sugar. And while making this decision to find something with sugar, I would prefer to not have to be feeling lightheaded, dizzy and sweating profusely.

Who would I spend this ideal day with? It really doesn’t matter. My wife and daughter could be there, that would be nice. It would be nice to not have to say to my daughter, “Ok, go play with mommy while daddy tests his blood sugar. Again. You know, since the last time I checked it was really low and daddy had to drink your juice box.”

That’s what my ideal day would be like.

How about you?

Read More

I Think I Can, I Know I Can #HAWMC

Today’s prompt is the Little Engine post. List out 10 lines of “I Think I Can” and 5 lines of “I Know I Can”

I Think I Can be a catalyst for change in diabetes policy.

I Think I Can lose 50 pounds.

I Think I Can wear my CGM more often. I have access to the tech, use it!

I Think I Can speak in person at 5 events in 2017

I Think I Can do everything I can everyday to reach my goals

I Think I Can, therefore I Know I Can

I Think I Can review my diabetes data and make better decisions.

I Think I Can think of 2 more I Think I Can’s

I Think I Can set more achievable diabetes goals.

I Think I Can accomplish said diabetes goals.

I Know I Can blog every day for 30 days straight.

I Know I Can be positive every day and see the positive in people and situations

I Know I Can take the high road in every situation, because there’s a lot less people on that road.

I Know I Can run a successful business as a person with type 1 diabetes.

I Know I Can do everything that I listed in the I Think I Can and I Know I can lists.

Read More

My Advocacy Journey #HAWMC

Today’s prompt is about my advocacy journey. Was it hard? Why did I decide to start?

The journey is the most excited part. End results are always great, but the journey and the story behind it, to me, is the most exciting part. My advocacy journey was something that was not planned. It sort of just fell into my lap and then I participated in one advocacy effort and that was it. I was hooked.

My journey pretty much started when I decided to start my blog. The first time that I received a comment on a post was when I knew that I could actually do something to make a difference. And that’s when the bulb went off.

I first sat down and thought about things that were important to me in the diabetes world. Back then, it was education. I was shocked that there were 20+ million Americans with diabetes and only thousands of diabetes educators. Who was educating all these people? Well, I find out, they weren’t being educated. So, back then I took part in providing an opportunity for diabetes educators to use my site to write their own guest posts because they didn’t have their own websites at the time. This allowed them to reach out to the public to let them know that this lack of education is a big issue.

It still is a really big issue!

After that, I realized that I could use the voice that I created with the site to share others’ advocacy efforts. That is when I hit a roadblock.

I started sharing too many efforts. So many that I couldn’t even keep track of them anymore. I couldn’t put any effort into anything because my time and effort was being spread so thin.

That was one area that was difficult. I didn’t want to not share ideas and advocacy efforts from other people. But, I knew that I had to. I couldn’t help spread everyone’s idea.

A few years later, I began to have more and more conversations with Bennet Dunlap, who those in the diabetes community know is one of the best advocators out there. Through Bennet, I was able to learn more about Christel Aprigliano and her advocacy efforts and the Diabetes Patient Advocacy Coalition. And wow, my advocacy thoughts completely changed. I remember thinking to myself, “Dude, you’re advocacy efforts are whack compared to these two, it’s time to step up your game!”

That is exactly what I did. I stepped up my game. I started to advocate more. I also started to help others figure out how to advocate more. I started to become less shy and speak up in person and meet with people that could influence the lives of people living with diabetes.

Over the last 3-6 months, my advocacy efforts have fallen off the map again. But, what else than a month long writing challenge to help spark that advocacy fire again.

And boy, is there a lot to advocate for.

Read More