On this day, exactly six Mother’s Days ago, I was making one hell of a racket in the kitchen. Mum walked into the kitchen in the early hours of the morning, to the sight of me making Orange Juice Granitas with the Snow Cone Machine. I had woken her up, and she was angry.
“The doctor told you to have hot drinks!” She yelled at me, referring to what we believed at the time to be a virus.
Little did I know that when I woke up in a few hours time, I would be taken to hospital. Little did I know that in a few short hours, I would be diagnosed with diabetes. A condition that would change my life forever, yet a condition that would shape the person I am today.
When I think about six years of life with diabetes today, it’s hard to believe that it’s only been six years. In some ways, it feels like it’s been a lot longer than that. I can hardly remember what life was like without the finger pricks, the insulin injections, the 2am alarms and the corrections today.
Yet every time I recall this series of events, it feels like it happened only yesterday.
Nothing else in my life has ever demanded more time and attention. Not a day goes by that I don’t worry about whether I am doing enough to stay on top of my long term health. Despite my family’s best efforts to praise me, and to tell me that I shouldn’t feel this way, diabetes always weighs on my conscience. Nothing else in my life has ever made me feel so guilty.
At the same time, I do feel proud of myself. Everything I have accomplished in the last six years sounds amazing, simply for the fact that I have done it with diabetes.
I’m grateful that I can still live a relatively normal life. I can’t recall anything that I haven’t been able to do because of diabetes. I’m so lucky to live in a country where I have access to everything I need to stay healthy.
Not a year has gone by that I have not been reminded of my diaversary on the 9th of May. But I have never really celebrated it. And after a year and a half in the diabetes community, I’ve been thinking long and hard about what I should do to mark this day.
While my diabetes might have overshadowed Mothers Day all those years ago, today I realise I have two good reasons to celebrate.
Happy Mothers Day to the Mother who continues to make sure that I eat and that I wear my Medic Alert bracelet (with little success).
And cheers to six years of life with diabetes. Toasted yesterday with Lasagne, Wine, Cheesecake, Chocolates, Coffee, and hopefully some Cannoli later this week.
I can’t wait to see what year seven will bring.