I do not have this disease, nor am I in fear of getting it.  I should be, but I am not.  My mom’s sister got it about 20 years ago, my cousin right after that.  My aunt died back in 2001, I think, due to complications.  Highlight, not taking care of herself. My grandmother died of complications as well.  As I grew older, it stuck in the back of my mind constantly, but was never a priority.  I saw my ex-husband’s father get it.  He seems to have it controlled.  I read about how horrible it is, and then I read about how most people could prevent it.  Then I get damn mad.

Several years ago, I had my blood drawn on a whim by a doctor.  She found really really low B12 levels.  She put me on supplements and monitors it once or twice a year, unless something comes up to suspect it has dropped again.  Over the years, there have been blood tests, usually when I was not aware of having said test drawn.  Typically about 20 minutes after having had breakfast, I find out they want blood drawn.  This last year I decided that we likely needed a resting blood sugar level to base off of.  So I had it drawn. It came back in range and o worries.  Funny, how my doctor never talks to me about my weight.  I feel about 40 lbs too much, but she has never said a word.

A few months ago my mother informs me that all of her sisters suffer from diabetes as well. I recently had another blood draw.  Strangely enough, not only was my blood sugar stellar, my cholesterol was actually too low.  I have not heard of anyone being told their cholesterol was too low before.  So now I have to work on adding fat into my diet.

Last week my cousin went into a hospital here in Seattle.  He lost his leg to diabetes several years ago, and I have not seen him in nearly 12 years.  Well, since he is nearby, like a 15 minute bike ride, it would just be wrong not to go visit him.  When I saw him my heart sank.  Not only is he missing his leg, he looks terrible.  I tried to keep upbeat about it, but I kept thinking he looked so unhealthy.

I look down on my body and I realize that I am very lucky.  I am healthy and I have no diseases.  It is not just luck but it is about educating myself.  I guess, having that idea that I could get diabetes in my head the whole time, I did take steps to change my life.  I cannot say for certain it was intentional, but the results are definitely there.

By taking motivations that were not directed at the current issue, I have been able to avoid the same path my whole family seems to have fallen into.  Having seen my cousin has made me appreciate my life, and my personal struggles and the strength of my own spirit.

From the ashes the Phoenix rises.  I am that Phoenix, you can be too.  Discarding those things that drag us down and endangers us is a form of renewal.  I just hope that one day more people realize that.  I cannot say I was actually in danger of getting diabetes, but I can tell you that I have derailed that medical train.  At this point in my life, I am 41 and sometimes feel it, but mostly I feel like conquering the World.  My cousin is also 41 and he looked like he was 60, defeated and broken.  I am sad that he was never given the opportunity to learn how to conquer life.  I wish him the best, but I also realize the worst.  He will go home, and live out his life the best that he can, because that is all he knows.  I will move on and travel the World, because I was told I couldn’t do that.  I know better, I am my biggest roadblock to my dreams, once I beat myself anything is possible.  I just hope others will realize this truth before they bury themselves in despair.


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