This week is Diabetes Blog Week, the brainchild of Karen Graffeo at BitterSweetDiabetes.com and is the sixth year it has taken place. Many writers taking-on the same topic…….but with a different take. Very cool idea……thanks for the opportunity Karen.
Today–Day 3: What is in your diabetic closet that needs to be cleaned out? This can be an actual physical belonging, or it can be something you’re mentally or emotionally hanging on to. Why are you keeping it and why do you need to get rid of it?
PLEASE make sure you add your thoughts on what it means to you, after you read today’s article.
My ‘closet’ needs to be cleared of the frustration I feel in this search for a ‘cure’. It is not something of which I can easily let go. It’s the promise I gave to my daughter and again to my son. But the results in the research world just seem to be so much slower than the research and development of devices and management tools.
Did you ever see the cartoon of Pepe Le Pew (for you younger folks, go to YouTube). Pepe is a skunk who falls madly in love with a cat who has crawled under a newly painted fence giving the black cat a white stripe down her back; thus causing all sorts of confusion for the star-crossed Pepe who spends every cartoon trying to ‘win her over’……never winning. Usually there is a point in the cartoon that will have ‘La Chase’. The cat is all out of breath but Pepe, full of love, is in a twinkle-toe run without losing a breath.
That is how it feels sometimes. You see; when you know what you want, and a device surely fits that bill, it is easy to throw all of your resources to ‘make that thing’ happen. When you are unsure what will work, it’s a much slower pace, and a lot of trial and error to get to the finish line. With a device, you get an idea of what the end picture needs to be, and you work toward it. With ‘a cure’—-not as easy.
That said, let’s be clear, there has been much trial and error in this device arena as well. And surely the end product is not going to look like everyone thought it would when the development began and where the thought was that there will be no personal intervention needed……I think everyone now knows that won’t be the case because we are human beings and not robots and our lives will influence something mechanical. We will always need to be involved in some way. Things change while being developed. It is also happening much slower than we all thought it would and were told as well, isn’t it? But that’s okay too. That is the world of set-backs, FDA governing in research; and all part of ‘the process’.
But we saw CGMs and insulin pumps ‘metamorphasize’ into everyday devices so we can picture that happening. We can see a ‘device’ go from A to Z. We will get there. But what does a cure look like? Since it has never been seen before (the closest being islet cell transplantation but with immunosuppression in place, not the answer; BUT some people are still off insulin–so even though not THE answer, we ‘tasted’ some of it), it is hard to recognize where it is hiding. I have been at this a long time and I know we (the global diabetes community of wonderful researchers) will get there. But being as closely connected as I am does not absolve me from wanting it any faster. Being a dad wanting it faster is the frustration that gets to me sometimes. I need to learn to let that go. It is counter-productive and can leave one mighty lonely sometimes.
But THAT more than anything else is also the very same thing that keeps me at it everyday. I have learned not to defend what I feel because everyone has their own feeling and that is their right. They can support who they want and even say what they want touting whoever it is they believe in, which is fine also; that way we can all learn what is out there.
My kids are at the finish line each holding an end of the red ribbon waiting to be cut as the cure crosses the line. It’s no secret of the faith I have in the DRI (disclaimer as everyone also knows that I work for their Foundation), but quite frankly (and I have said this before), me being a dad trumps how I feel about any entity……I just want to get there.
And THAT can get frustrating some times…….and I need to clean that out of my closet. There is too much happening right now moving that process forward, good things. But I want it yesterday.
I am a diabetes dad.
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