What is a “professional diabetic” and who can be one?
I’m coining the term and I’m defining it as a diabetic who has a thorough understanding of diabetes and the management of it.
Anyone can be one. Well, not just anyone. This has to be a person who is willing to learn about how their insulin works, how it works in relation to food and exercise, and how their body responds to food, exercise, and other factors such as stress.
I’m not a diabetes educator nor do I pretend to be. BUT, I consider myself a “professional diabetic”.
Why? Because I have read the diabetes books written by medical personnel and asked many doctors many questions (most are very willing to email you answers to your questions if you simply ask) and I have taken lots of notes so as to track how MY body reacts to different things. I have managed to maintain a blood sugar average which is similar to that of a person without diabetes (the truly challenging part of all this) and I have figured out how to deal with the challenges of being completely open to people about my diabetes. In other words, never hiding it.
All of these things have given me the power to best control this very serious disease. I’m FAR from perfect but, look and feel so much better than I used to because of my much improved glucose numbers and state of mind.
I think all diabetics deserve this empowerment. All diabetics deserve to feel confident in their knowledge about diabetes so that they will maintain a high level of motivation when dealing with their disease.
Let me ask you something. When you are in the driver’s seat as opposed to the passenger seat, do you not pay more attention to the road and signals and the other vehicles around you? Well, you need to be in the driver’s seat with your diabetes so that you pay close attention to how you feel, what your glucose numbers are, and how your actions are affecting those numbers.
I’m not advocating you not communicate with your doctor. I’m saying you need to play the major role in your diabetes management. You need to pay such attention that when you talk to your doctor, you give him or her sufficient details for them to properly help you and to know that you are not some ignorant diabetic who doesn’t know anything. You need their medical expertise and guidance. It should be, as I have said before, a partnership.
You don’t need a degree or formal training to be a professional diabetic. You need to be competent in what you do. What you do is masterfully control your diabetes. That is the goal and what will ultimately guide your entire life’s direction because diabetes is serious and we need to treat it that way. So we need to upgrade from “so-so” diabetics to “professional” ones.
I’ll continue soon. Please stay tuned for more information on this.
Your fellow diabetic,