Part 1: Complacency From Doctor Can Equal Complacency From Patient
I prefer to write blogs that empower readers, so they have faith in what they can do for themselves if armed with good information and a strategy. My format is usually not to bore people with too much personal information, but sum up the ingredients I've found successful. But lately, I've had a number of reasons to share what catapulted me to become a voice for living with diabetes. Some of them are your stories and some of them are the stories I run into when I am wearing my outreach hat for JDRF.
When I was a kid, I had the good fortune to have a pediatrician, Dr. Wade, who offered me tools to empower my decision making for my diabetes. He used to say to me, "It's your body, you tell me how you feel?" He was right. Most of the time, I knew better than he did how I was feeling. Our relationship was that I would share with him how I felt and he in turn would share with me information to improve or explain. Sometimes, it was new technology and sometimes it was a management approach to allow me to do more.
My confidence in Dr. Wade was such that I was easily swayed into feeling safe and secure with my medical team. Over the years, it never occurred to me that my team changed. I never thought to ask myself, did they have the interest in my health that Dr. Wade had bestowed upon me for 13 years? Would they suggest reading information on new drugs, recommend fun and cool people to educate me on new management of diabetes. It never occurred to me. I always thought it would just be offered, because it was part of their job.
I think for many of us, there are times when we lapse into complacency. For example, needing a break from routine. So we rely on our doctors, spouses, family or friends to pull the cart and inevitably you end up with the Diabetes Police. Or you withdraw and do just the basics, like insulin and no testing just to get by. You argue with those who care. For me, I never shared my responsibility with anyone, so my M.O was relying on my doctor, followed by minimal management. As my medical team became less interested, I became less interested too. I never challenged them. They never had a recommendation for reading a great book and I never bothered to look. My A1C was ok, so why bother.