Thursday, May 31, 2012

My How I’ve Changed


I have been known to go back and read some of my previous posts from time to time.  Reading my thoughts and ideas from some time ago is educational and it really does help me stay on track with my diabetes.  It can be a reminder of something I had planned to try, and why, as well as a way to see how far I’ve come….or not.  I recently got to thinking about where I am with my diabetes and how much has changed over the past year.  It amounts to a lot!

Most significant is the change in my attitude toward food.  I have written in the past about how I’m a food-a-holic , how my inner child sometimes takes charge, and how a foray into the grocery store is akin to passing through hell.  Just this year I have been making some changes to how/what I eat.  I have lowered my carb intake, focusing on healthier carbs and very little processed stuff. Snacks consist of healthy nuts, string cheese and bell peppers.  My portions are significantly smaller.  I’m power-walking every day.  Due to these changes, I have lost weight, gone down a pant size, I’m not hungry all the time and my glucose readings have been better (except those damn fasting readings that just won't budge!).  I can actually walk down the potato chip aisle and the bags no longer speak to me.  I can completely ignore them and I don’t feel deprived! Hallelujah!

Compare today’s Kate to the Kate of 2005 and you will see a big difference.  When I was diagnosed in 2005 I was about 30lbs heavier than I am now, I adored processed carbs and pizza and I didn’t exercise regularly.  Now let’s look at the Kate of 2006, a year later: I was about 30lbs heavier than I am now, I adored processed carbs and pizza and I didn’t exercise regularly.  Hmmm, I’m seeing a trend here.  Yes, I did make changes in the first year after my diagnosis but they weren’t glaringly obvious.  I still adored my beloved carbs but I didn’t eat them as often.  I checked my glucose a lot  and made attempts to adjust what I was eating.  My glucose control wasn’t bad at all and I wasn’t yet on any oral meds.  Instead of letting go of certain foods that might not have been good for me, I tried SO hard to adjust them so they were more “diabetic friendly”.  Why?  Because I didn’t want D to force me to change.

Fast forward to today and my mind set is way different.  In fact, just typing about my previous lifestyle makes me shake my head.  Who was that woman?  She was nice and all, but what was she thinking?  The reality is that the Kate from back then was just fine.  She was dealing with a huge change in her life the best way she knew how.  She wasn’t much different than thousands of other people who are newly diagnosed with diabetes.

The moral of this story is that it doesn’t matter how your D path leads you, just as long as it eventually leads you to better health.  There are some people who are able to completely change their eating habits overnight, but they are rare.  Even when we’re faced with a serious health condition, it can take a while to make the necessary changes and that’s ok.  Yes, I could have been stricter with myself and possibly come to some important realizations more quickly, but I didn’t.  So what, I got here didn’t I?  The coolest thing about how I got where I am today is that I’m more likely to stick with this new lifestyle because I learned it slowly.  I didn’t force myself to change overnight.  I let myself let go of unhealthy things over time and now I don’t miss them nearly as much.  They are a part of my past just like all-nighters with my friends and ….well, we won’t go there.

Am I now the “perfect diabetic”?  HELL NO, and I probably never will be.  That’s ok too.  We are people and that makes us imperfect.  No one can do it all right all the time, but we can work toward a healthier lifestyle at a pace that works for us.  We’re all different, thank goodness, and our paths will look differently from each other’s.  Follow your path and when you stray a bit, just use that GPS whose course is set toward a healthier you.  You’ll arrive and be happier, and healthier.  It’s worth the journey.

2 comments:

  1. I'm just starting my diabetes journey. Hearing about how you made positive changes in you life reinforces my desire to make positive choices in my life. Thanks for writing.

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    Replies
    1. Wow Marie, you just made my day! Thank you for being committed to a healthier you. I'm pleased that my words may have helped you.

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