Today, roughly 415 million individuals are diagnosed globally and is expected to reach 592 Million in 2035. Isn’t it time we retire the stigma of diabetes and adopt
new levels of awareness?
I was diagnosed with diabetes at 33, I would have never imagined that in 5 years time I’d see this auto-immune disease as a gift rather than a curse.
Ten months before my diagnosis I lived in fear, unwilling to admit my fate with diabetes. With each passing month, my life slipped from underneath me. I began to lose weight rapidly, a feeling of fatigue followed each action, endless thirst and blurred vision with momentary blindness; I was fighting to stay alive and ironically knew the solution and chose to ignore it.
The night I was hospitalized my Hemoglobin A1C was 11.2 percent, the optimal level is below 5.6. Having such an elevated hemoglobin coated in glucose is rather dangerous – as at this point the glucose has attached to your hemoglobin. Regularly your blood is supposed to be thin so that it can travel to your blood vessels. At this point the heart must place additional effort to carry this thick blood to and from your heart. With such an increased level I was at risk of kidney failure, blindness, stroke, and/or a heart attack.
While I waited in a stage of unawareness of what surrounded me, besides the laboratory equipment and IVs which pierced my veins, the ER doctor on duty entered the room to share my long-awaited laboratory results. Laying their helpless feeling a state-of-defeat I clearly remember staring at the cold white wall of the emergency room – while he shared my diagnosis saying to myself with determination,
“I will find a cure, this is not my ending”.
“Diabetes has given me the mindset that every setback is the setup for the glamour in life. If I must be diagnosed with such a life fluctuating condition, I find no better way to live life itself than with a fearless approach in glamour.”
The next day, as anyone could guess, was just as challenging as the night previous. How does anyone find the courage to face the daunting reality of living with an auto-immune disease? I found the answer from within, above and through conscious empowerment. Diabetes has allowed me to create the world I desire, not the world I currently live in. When I was diagnosed, I didn’t want to wear a pump or go on an impractical diet plan, instead I thrive to create a lifestyle that is authentic as myself, something of substance which in return would only enrich my life and those that surround me.
A question we often find ourselves avoiding is, what is on the other side? The other side of where you stand, your current habits and potential. It’s as simple as this phrase, what you want, wants you. We forget that our actions, daily behavior, and spoken words carry enormous weight in creating our reality. “Death and life are in the power of the tongue,” King Solomon once said. Whether we realize it or not, we are shaping our future by the words we use every day.
Change is inevitable. Nothing stays still. Life is in constant motion shifting you through positivity and setbacks, but if you take a closer look at those hardships, you’ll find a hint of glamour, I did with the mindset to not allow my diagnosis to define my existence. Now, with a footing in what my true purpose in life is, I wake each morning with gratitude for another day to inspire others with glamour, inspiration, authenticity, and an unbinding courage to never give up despite what my day or diabetes may bring.
Try and remember that each day; you become what you think of most. Rather than registering difficult thoughts, look around you and make note of what you appreciate most in life. There is hidden treasure filled with fortune if you do, because we must all know we are rich in love.
Photography c/o T1D Exposed Nude Diabetes Advocacy Project