Monday, November 26, 2012

Joslin Blog Project: Talking.

I'm honored to be participating in Joslin Diabetes Center's Blog Project this month, alongside a handful of other dedicated and passionate diabetes advocates. We'll each be writing four posts that detail our personal journey with diabetes, in the hopes that we can raise some awareness along with some money. Our goal is to raise $5,000, as a team, for the Joslin High Hopes Fund through this blog project.

Our prompt for this week is: Why/how did you get into blogging? What have been the best and worst parts of doing so?

I've shared my "how I found the online community" story before - so there's the beginning of how. But why? My first entry here explained how I hoped that adding my voice to the diabetes blogging community would bring "more awareness to the cause, and some comfort, information (and entertainment?) to those affected by diabetes". I think all of those still ring very true for me - I'm here to share my story, through whatever medium seems to fit best. I'm here because I know that feeling alone is one of the most toxic parts of life with diabetes. I'm here because I wish someone like me had been around when I was going through my lowest points.

My very favorite moments of being a diabetes advocate are the ones that connect us on emotional and personal levels: the swell of cumulative encouragement when someone needs it, the realizations and connections that lead someone to feeling the very essence of community in their heart, and the forming of friendships that sometimes begin with just a tweet and grow into the deepest sorts of love and support.

image credit: Wendy at Candy Hearts

When we give, we are beautiful. When we show love, we are true.

My less favorite parts center around the things I shouldn't care about, but sometimes do: Is this my last good idea? What on earth am I going to write about today? Am I tweeting too much? How can it take me five days to respond to an email sometimes? Why am I literally losing sleep so that I can stay up to write something that no one comments on? Why is no one commenting? Why do I care that no one is commenting? Was I off base? Do I care? Should I care? Should I really be using every vacation day from my "real job" to go to conferences? And then, shouldn't I just be grateful I have these opportunities and who needs a real vacation anyway? Is it worth the sacrifices I make in my "real life" to continue being this heavily involved in advocacy? And what on earth am I going to write about today?

The truth is that I pour my energy, time, and heart into what I do as a diabetes advocate because it feels right to do so. There are times I can help someone laugh at something so cruel and punishing as diabetes - I love being able to do that. There are times I'm able to really connect with someone; to perhaps put words to something they've been feeling but haven't vocalized - I love that, too. There are times that someone who feels as I once have finds me and says, "I thought it was just me".

What I love most is being even a small part of that realization in others. It's never just you.

If you would like to make a donation toward our $5,000 blog project goal for the Joslin Diabetes Center, you may do so here.


3 comments:

  1. Yours was the first blog I found! I was desperate for help and I felt like I was drowning in my diabetes care. As I read your posts and started clicking through the comments I found that there was a whole world that was untapped.

    I always, always read your posts. Sometimes I never comment because I fear you will get sick of hearing "hey! me too!"

    But please don't stop posting. But also don't lose sleep over making sure you post :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Kim, you are SUCH a great voice in the community, and I'm so glad you're here.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Just piping in to let you know that there's another non-commenting reader out there appreciating your posts.

    ReplyDelete