The Art of Living with Diabetes

The Art of Living with Diabetes

No, it is not related to ‘The Art of Living’.

It’s related to my journey with Diabetes and how I have finally accepted to live with it.

It was September 2013. No, it was not when I was diagnosed with Diabetes. I was told I had PCOS and that I will have trouble conceiving. My then gynecologist told me I should get pregnant immediately as soon as my period starts. My periods were really irregular and the hormone pills that she gave me were making me fat. I was so bloated and no exercise was helping. I walked 5 miles everyday for 2 months, and it didn’t help. I kept gaining weight and was at my lowest. VJ and I discussed though it wasn’t financially feasible for us, we decided to go with it. She asked us to come back when my period came back. So we waited and it didn’t come until January 2014. The first week after New Year’s I was in the ER with a ruptured cyst. I had two more around 14cm in diameter. I was asked to rest as much as I can and I couldn’t. In February 2014, ina yearly full body checkup, I was diagnosed with Diabetes.

When the nurse told me, I blanked out for a few minutes. I was so upset, I was in class and I couldn’t concentrate. I think I got the lowest score in that class too. From then on started my friendship with Metformin. My then gynecologist thought they are both unrelated and that I should get on Clomid. And then started more weight gain with Clomid and depression. In April VJ thought I should take a break and go to India to my parents for a bit. I did have fun there, but the constant worry about my sugar levels wasn’t helping. I stopped testing and didn’t bother about it. Finally, a friend suggested me to change my gynecologist. So in November I finally went to another gynec. She thought my infertility and my sugars are related and sent me to an endocrinologist. It wasn’t until February that I got an appointment with him. He and a dietician helped me control my sugars.

The entire walk was incredibly hard. The thought of having diabetes at twenty-six was depressing. I have to live with it forever, even if I have it under control I still have to live with it forever. Even if my A1C drops to a really good value and I’m not even in the pre-diabetic range, I still have to live on my medicines forever. The worst part was during my pregnancy. I had all these cravings and was hungry all the time, and I couldn’t eat anything. I literally starved myself in the last few weeks, because there wasn’t much that I could eat. I literally hated eating¬†paneer every night. I sometimes cried while taking a shower because I didn’t want VJ to know that I was crying. Pregnancy was such a wonderful thing for me. Every time Arlo kicked me I felt so ecstatic and kept telling myself it is all worth it, but I don’t think I will put my body through it again. I know I could have eaten eggs or tofu or string cheese, but they weren’t appetizing to me and they gave me severe nausea.

Even a few months back, I still kept questioning why me. Why should I of all people, who loves sweets and chocolate so much get diabetes? Every time I look at a muffin or a cupcake something inside me dies a bit. And now it doesn’t bother me that much, sure once in a while, I do give in and eat. But, I don’t want to eat ice cream anymore. I haven’t eaten ice cream in over a month and I’m okay with it. I’ve been trying to give up rice since 2014 and it hasn’t happened. I have tried quinoa and brown rice and if anyone says they are tasty, they are absolutely lying. They are disgusting (well to me). So I’ve learned to do portion controls, something like Weight Watchers does. I do eat carbs, but when I eat I make sure I eat less. I have been watching my portions. Some days I eat more, especially during my AF time. The days I eat more I try to get more steps (I track them on FitBit). I eat roasted veggies with a tortilla, veggie-filled pasta, soup or sometimes beans with¬†roti. Being a vegetarian my protein options are quite less. Beans and lentils have protein but they have a higher carb count.

I have realized it’s all about eating healthy and getting some steps in. In winter it is always tough. It was incredibly tough to sneak even an extra cookie in the winter since we barely head out to get my steps. Now that the weather is getting better again, Arlo and I take a nice walk to the trail behind our home. We sit there for a while and I give him his snack. He loves watching the kids play and the various dogs that are out there for a walk. It has a huge soccer and a baseball field between so he loves to see them play. We walk around for an hour or so, I get my steps, Arlo gets his dose of fresh air and I get to eat that cookie if I want in that week. When I want to eat something sweet, I eat a few dark chocolate goji berries that I bought at Costco. I eat 4 or 5 at a time and don’t eat more than that in a day. Somedays when I’m upset or my anxiety is acting up all this gets thrown out of the window, but most of the times I’ve got it under control. I still wish I didn’t have it and question why I should have it. I’m terrified of having kidney failure or liver failure. I don’t want to have an early heart attack because of my Diabetes, or have something go wrong with my eyes because of my ‘condition’.

Despite learning how to deal and live with diabetes, I still wish there is a cure for Diabetes. I really wish that one day I stop taking medicines and stop worrying about my future health. I really wish that one day i can eat that sugary ice cream that I so badly want to eat out of the tub. Here’s to those silent sufferers and my hope for a cure.


2 Replies to “The Art of Living with Diabetes”

  1. Are you sure that it is diabetes? Because, it is Insulin Resistance that arises while the condition is PCOS / PCOD. And Metformin is prescribed. And Insulin Resistance is said to be temporary.

    1. Yes I’m sure… It started as Insulin Resistance, if my first gynecologist had caught my PCOS sooner and treated me I probably wouldn’t have had it. But once my A1C increased, even if my A1C comes back to a very low number, I’m still diabetic. Type II is usually when a person becomes Insulin Resistant (at least that’s what my endo told me).

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