Monday, May 09, 2005

Diagnosis Stories

A lot of these stories are showing up lately. I was reading Violet's wonderful blog this morning, Pumplandia, and was very touched by her diagnosis story . She is right when she comments that there is a great deal of diversity in everyone's stories. But I think the common denominator here is not simply the end result, but also the process of betrayal by one's own body. The feeling that you just can't trust it anymore. And in the time leading up to diagnosis, you have no idea why. Joseph felt this as he realized he couldn't go to bed at night without knowing if his pajamas and sheets would be soaked in the morning. He couldn't go for a walk or drive without fearing he might need to pee or, just as desperately, a drink of water. And, in reading Kerri's story as well -- though she wasn't sick in the time before diagnosis-- wetting the bed, and subsequently, having to wear “The Alarm” must have prompted a tremendous loss of faith in her own body. I don't know what that must have felt like as the child experiencing this, but as a mom who woke every morning holding her breath, hoping her child had a dry night, and inevitably feeling the pain as her son struggled to tell her about his accident, I have an inkling.

Like birth stories, these tales of transition share common markers – and these are important. They are an integral part of a journey that leads all those who embark on it to the same place– a new and very different life. Sharing the diagnosis moment and its precursors lets diabetics know that they were not alone in that early betrayal– the time when your body rebelled and you had no idea why.

And, going forward, in this new life of blood sugar checks and boluses, highs and lows, these stories reaffirm that you are not alone.


Tekakwitha said...


Well worded! I was trying to figure out why I was 'enjoying' everyone's diagnosis story. It's because it shows I wasn't alone. I wasn't the only one who was so tired, so thirsty, so disoriented, so SICK. And then the diagnosis when everything seems flipped upside down. It's comforting somehow.


Violet said...

It's proven true for me that there is strength indeed in numbers. And while I'd like to do undo my body's betrayal of itself--perfectly put, Sandra--one of the unexpected returns of this disease is that it's brought about connections with people I would have never otherwise met or spoken with. Powerful stuff, that.