Tag Archives: DOC

D-Blog Day 2011

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The blog topic for this year is: Why you feel the Diabetes Online Community is so important? especially to you personally? Give examples of other diabetes involvement may you have, on or offline, how it helped you etc… How do you think “we” as an online community can band together to reach broader audiences to help even more people living with or affected by diabetes.

Diabetes is a disease that requires more management from the patient, than the doctor.  It would be impossible for me to call my doctor 15 times a day and have him help me make decisions on how and what to eat and how much insulin to give and when to give it.  I have to be able to do all that.  Because of this fact, diabetes puts an immense amount of responsibilities on the person who has it.  Out in the workforce, jobs with more responsibility typically pay more.  Diabetes doesn’t pay and it doesn’t necessarily play fair.  One can keep rather good diabetes control and still succumb to complications.

So due to all the above, a long term stress management solution and support system is in order.  One important aspect to that would be a community of people who listen to and support each other through their unique struggle.  The Diabetes Online Community gives people with diabetes a place to constantly connect and relate and get support and feedback.

For me personally, the DOC has been an amazing learning experience.  When other people share what works for them, I pay attention.  Every time I get feedback on a post, I am educated.  When others express different opinions, my mind is opened.  When it comes to my thirst to always learn more, the DOC is priceless and irreplaceable.

And then there are the people with diabetes I’ve had the pleasure to get to know.  It’s been so great to find friends who I can relate to AND who get what I’m going through.  I only wish we all lived closer to each other.  If computers died, I’d snail mail you all.

I think that we as an online community can reach more people by doing a lot of what we have been doing.  I think we need to walk the walk as much as possible.  We need to try and keep an open mind and avoid assumptions about each other.  We need to be bold and step out into our communities if we can.  Something I plan to do when my children are older is get involved offline and help those who are perhaps unable to get online much.  We can all do something to help, it just means recognizing our individual gifts and using them.  So many people in the DOC do just that, and it’s incredibly inspiring.

What the DOC is to Me

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So to start with I want to say I tremendously appreciate the connections, sharing, and activities having to do with the DOC.  I wish I had been able to experience this many years ago as a teenager.  I really do.  Since “connecting” with all of you I have learned countless of practical things.  I have learned lots in the realm of philosophy and have broadened my ideas having to do with diabetes.  I have felt more validated and whole.  I have also been tested and challenged as a result of coming into contact with so many different thoughts and opinions.  It’s all good, albeit sometimes complicated and twisty.

Relationships are challenging, we all know that.  They help us grow.  Growth isn’t easy but it’s very useful because it is assumed we become better human beings in the process and it also provides a sense of fulfillment in life. I think that growth is a big part of being human.

The DOC is like any other relationship.  Have you ever read something on a blog that inspired you to be a better person?  I have.  Have you ever read something on a blog that reached out and poured salt on a wound?   Was it on purpose?  Probably not.  Most likely, a vulnerable area was stirred in you and a challenge to face a truth or face a fear was moved in you and what you experienced was your reaction.

When these reactions happen to me I have tried to learn to think about them.  Instead of come to assumptions, I have to reflect first.  Why did something affect me so?  Why was I touchy or emotional?  Why did those words make me cry?  Why do I agree with someone?  Why do I disagree?  Where is that person coming from?

To me, the DOC is a relationship that is constantly encouraging me to grow.  This is often painful as much as it is exhilarating.  When it gets frustrating, I ask myself why something is having that affect on me.  When it is helpful, I’m simply appreciative.  When it’s overwhelming, I step back for a moment and get some air.  When I come back, the support from others reminds me what it’s all about.

So whether you lurk occasionally or hang out often, do what’s comfortable to you and know that your participation is priceless to others.  Remember that our differing opinions come from our differing circumstances and personalities.  Remember that differing opinions are a thing of value because they reflect a real way of thinking for other people and demonstrate courage to speak up.  This leads to discussions that lead to effective communication which leads to powerful community breakthroughs if people are humble, honest, sincere, and brave.

A powerful force for growth, change, and a better way of life for people with diabetes, that’s what the DOC is to me.

Lessons from the DOC

 
 
Thanks to Michael Marcol for the photo

Thanks to Michael Marcol for the photo

 

Last Day of Diabetes Blog Week

What we’ve learned – Sunday 5/15: Last year, Wendy of Candy Hearts made a suggestion for this year. She commented “I think Day 7 should be a post about stuff we’ve learned from other blogs or the experience of coming together online…” Today, let’s do just that!! What have you learned from other blogs – either this week or since finding the D-OC? What has your experience of blogging the DBlog Week topics with other participants been like? What has finding the D-OC done for you? If you’d like, you can even look ahead and tell us what you think the future holds!

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Through reading many blogs about diabetes I’ve learned the deep and dark feelings many people touched by diabetes endure.  And so I’ve learned I’m not the only one-not even close.  There is a sense of comfort in knowing I’m not alone. 

I’ve learned that because diabetes is complicated it manifests it’s side effects in a multitude of ways.  I’ve learned the human body is complicated and functions and reacts in a multitude of ways.  Therefore we cannot assume that what works for one diabetic works for another or that what happens to one diabetic will happen to another.  This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t look at data it just means there are exceptions for EVERYTHING.

Most of all I’ve learned that everyone in the DOC has their joys, passions, moments of excellence, loves of their lives, dreams, etc…and this doesn’t mean they don’t have a desperate need for support, approval, patience, kindness, hope, and a listening ear.  And perhaps this is why the DOC is one of the largest and most close knit communities out there.  We need each other.  We need each other to help celebrate the good times and to support one another through the bad times. 

And I say this despite being the lonely loner I am.  I’m happy to have found you all.  Thanks for sharing and thanks for reading :)

XOXO

The Lonely DOC

 

I truly admire the fact that the DOC or Diabetes Online Community provides so many people with this feeling that their not alone- such a valuable thing.  There are people in the DOC however, who feel alone.  Lots of them.  Any community out there can have elements like that of a High School where the kids that have bonded hang out, support each other publicly, have a large voice, and own the right gadgets.  They don’t necessarily pay much attention to those who are more quiet or perhaps have been in the background for a while or are simply different and linger just outside the realm of the community. 

Well, I’m typically fine with feeling alone, although I’ve been catching a lot of comments in the DOC environment lately and I’ve noticed that many are lonely and not liking it.  I’m very different from most people I know so that probably has most to do with how I feel.  Yet, feeling isolated isn’t fun for anyone.  This is the sentiment many others are expressing out there.  Part of me wants to find a way to turn some focus to helping those who maybe don’t have computers/internet connections at home, who don’t think they write well (probably the math wizards), or those who don’t have the confidence to post their thoughts, feelings, and opinions online-yet who desperately seek support of some kind. 

I don’t quite know a way of doing this yet.  This site now gets thousands of visits a week and very few comments and that is fine with me.  I just hope people are getting something out of what I’m writing.  I always knew I was an “advocate” because I’m not able to shut up when I have a strong opinion in mind.  And my thoughts tend to linger on the subject of people and their rights and their wellbeing so I hope that makes me somewhat helpful in the DOC.

With this post, I hope to encourage those of you who do have the platform and confidence and writing skills to be open to figuring out ways to support the underdog or the forgotten one, or those who seem to be hiding a bit.  I understand there is this thing about “survival of the fittest” and whoever wants to join in online is allowed to do so.  Thing is, many people have certain limitations (shyness perhaps?) and diabetes can often weaken some of the fittest out there anyway.

And those of you who feel alone or ignored and who feel like you aren’t welcome by the DOC, I hope you’ll find a way to jump in or take part or even heck, start your own support group.  In time, you’ll feel more comfortable and included.

And if anyone ever wants to email me, I keep things confidential unless permitted otherwise and I won’t ignore your emails, I promise.  It’s happened to me plenty and it’s not a good feeling when so much great support is spoken of.

And if you are someone who needs a little push, a little help to start your own diabetes blog, stay tuned for my free How to Start A Diabetes Blog Series.  It may be all you need to go ahead and let your voice be heard.

Much love to all the DOC and those just outside…

XOXO,

Sysy

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