As you all know, there is a lot of stuff we have to live and deal with on a daily basis living with diabetes. Before I was diagnosed with diabetes I had fears that I had not been able to overcome at that point. After diagnosis, I began to deal with a lot more fears. After taking an injection from a syringe the other day, I realized, damn I have overcame a lot and began thinking about some of the biggest fears or challenges that I have overcame since being diagnosed with diabetes.
Seriously, who isn’t afraid needles? Before diabetes, I couldn’t stand to take a shot. I actually remember when I was 18 and had to get some shots before heading off to play football in college, I almost cried at the doctors office. I just couldn’t take the pain of some other person stabbing me with a sharp object and injecting me with who knows what.
Well, obviously I have gotten over that little fear. And it really didn’t take me too long either. After the first or second injection I realized that I didn’t really have a choice. Either learn to give yourself a shot and deal with it, or you’re not going to live. That was a pretty easy decision.
Owning a Business
For a long time I was always told that it is difficult for someone with diabetes to own their own business because of the health insurance issue. Sure, if you have enough employees you can get company insurance or just live off of your wife’s health insurance plan. Well, at the time that I decided to start my business, I was not married, so that wasn’t a choice. Also, I knew my business would start out as a freelance style business before I was able to grow it to include employees (if I ever wanted to have full time employees).
So, the fear of going out on my own and not knowing if I would have enough money to pay for my medical expenses was growing in my head. But what would I rather do? Go to work everyday miserable just so I had a paycheck every two weeks and health insurance or take the chance and go work for myself and do what I always wanted to know and have the risk of not being able to afford insurance?
It caused many sleepless nights, but I chose the second option. I then spent a lot of time second guessing myself because unfortunately, I lost my COBRA health insurance just a few months after leaving the company I was working for and was living without insurance and paying cash for everything (and receiving a lot of help from the DOC). But, I overcame that fear and am still living that dream of owning and running my own company.
Getting Blood Drawn
Ok, so this one I am not 100% over yet, but I am able to do it as needed. I still cannot look in the direction of the arm where the blood is being drawn from, but I have no hesitation in getting the blood drawn. When I was first diagnosed my grandmother worked in the hospital and she drew blood for over 30 years, so when I needed bloodwork done, she was the only one that I would let do it. 1 year after diagnosis she actually retired and came in and drew my blood when I had to get it done.
When I moved to south Florida to finish school, I would only get bloodwork done up in PA when I would visit by my grandfather. Unfortunately, I live full time in south Florida now and have to get my bloodwork done down here by random people at Lab Corp.
So, technically, I have overcame half of the fear, but I’m not sure that I will ever overcome the other fear.
Growing up, I was never really a shy person, but I did not just vent my life stories to anybody, not even really my closest friends. I was never great at sharing personal things that may have upset me or made me mad, but I was very outgoing. As you can obviously tell by this blog, I have overcame that fear of letting other people get to know me and letting out some of my fears and sad moments of my life.
I still have some more work to do when it comes to face to face communication with people, but I am getting better. Diabetes has allowed me the opportunity to connect with a lot more people from the DOC than if I wasn’t ever diagnosed. Sharing my life’s journey is part of my life now and communicating with people I’ve never met has become a reality.
What specific fears have you overcome since being diagnosed with diabetes?