“You should be making your appointments outside of work hours” is something that I was recently told.
What a lot of people in my life don’t realise is that I have diabetes. There is a lot of work that goes on behind the scenes that you don’t see. Insulin injections, piles and piles of used test strips stuffed into the pocket of my meter, and countless bags of jellybeans that have been begrudgingly stuffed into my mouth over the years (except for the black ones).
I see specialists who assist me to manage my condition. Endocrinologists, diabetes educators, and dieticians to name a few. Then there are other issues that must be closely monitored by professionals including optometrists and podiatrists. All of these specialists are in short supply. These specialists have long waiting lists of patients, often spanning several clinics or places of work.
Which brings me to last week. I found myself in need of a consultation with my diabetes educator. Factoring in her volume of patients, Christmas break, and her annual leave that will not be replaced at the clinic, the earliest appointment available was February. Possibly even March. That’s an extremely long wait for an issue that I am dealing with right now. An issue that I want to work through and get past as soon as possible.
I wish managing diabetes was as easy as ringing the doctor to make an appointment after work. I wish that I was able to select the most convenient time of my day or night to see one of these specialists. But it’s not that simple.
I actively chased up a cancellation appointment with my diabetes educator this week, so I could have this issue sorted as soon as possible. I was not thinking about how it would interfere with my other commitments. Because getting this issue sorted is what will ensure that I will continue to be able to manage the other commitments around me to the best of my ability.
I am very proud of the fact that for the better part, I don’t let diabetes interfere with the other commitments in my life. I don’t make diabetes anyone else’s problem. Many people don’t realise, or remember that I have diabetes when I bring it up. That just shows how good I am at it.
I think that all of the benefits that come from my continued, healthy existence far outweighs an occasional inconvenience. Just saying.