Tuesday, September 6, 2011

What We Aim For.

Most people put their hard work into something with tangible results.

Chopping, dicing, mincing, stirring, baking, grilling, zesting... these things result (hopefully) in a satisfying meal.

We study hard and stay up late into the night and morning to cram for exams, so we can hold that hard-earned diploma in our hands.

We wake up early and throw ourselves into whatever it is we do as a vocation, and can find gratification in reputation, self worth, and means to earn a living.

We sweat and stretch and exert, so that our bodies stay healthy. So that we can win a medal. So that we can beat someone in a round of basketball.

We meticulously count calories and track exertion, so that we might lose (or gain) weight.

In all these things, there is a goal to reach. An achievement to celebrate. But when it comes to diabetes, the ideal end game of all our hard work is... nothing.

We work hard so that nothing happens. So that we keep our eyes, kidneys, feet, and everything else free from harm. We do all of this so that diabetes remains an invisible monster.

(What sort of motivating tool is that, anyway? Aiming for nothing? Nothing is a lousy reward.)

I think that's part of why living with diabetes can feel so burdensome at times - not only do we deal with the counting, the equations, the guessing, the emotions, the never-endingness of it all, but we do it all just to "keep up". Just to be "normal". We do it all so that nothing seems out of the ordinary.

We hope that all of that "something" we do leads to nothing.

The best possible result of our work is that you will never know there was any work to be done in the first place.


  1. wow, kim. this is so profound. "we hope that all of that something we do leads to nothing." amen.

  2. Very interesting observation, but I think this explains something the medical profession has such a hard time understanding: all of this effort is to merely keep what people with diabetes don't need to worry about, and they wonder why depression is higher in PWDs, or why the percentage of patients who meet their goals isn't higher? Look at the end results, people, and add to this that all this work actually does not GUARANTEE anything, and you have the state of diabetes care today!

  3. That is so beautifully expressed Kim. I think a lot of PWoDs will find it much easier to get inside our heads after reading that.

  4. This is the part people don't get. Who wants to work their butt off for...nothing?

    We need a company to sponsor gift cards or cupcakes or something!

  5. Profound = great word to describe this. Nicely written, Kim. I tend to look at it as my aiming for normalcy... Same sentiment, though - who wants to be "normal"??? And it's such a subjective word anyhow. But we thrive to succeed in whatever we're aiming for!

  6. I've been struggling with depression with a capital "D"iabetes lately & I have no doubt that part of it is due to what you are speaking of here. It is the powerful dichotomy of this illness.
    Thanks for reminding me that I am not alone in trying to accept and understand it-

  7. in a way it's a lot like "safety" - people work and study and nag and it's a PITA, and if it's effective... nothing happens. excellent post.

  8. My mind is spinning! You so hit the nail on the head. Our reward is nothing.

    Thank you for this great post. I'll be pondering it all night I am sure! Hugs!

  9. And sometimes even though you do all that something, you don't even get the "reward" of nothing. Lousy deal all around and you've stated it really well!

  10. "The best possible result of our work is that you will never know there was any work to be done in the first place."

    That sums it up, Kim. You touched a string there. I am working hard to gain some more (quality) years with my loved ones, to stay healthy and have a successful pregnancy. But I will never know if my work payed off or it was a matter of chance.

    I'm lousy at staying motivated so I like to break this big "nothing happening" goal in small, tangible goals that I pick up on the way. Few pounds less so that my insulin resistance decreases. Fat to fall off my belly so insulin absorption is better (and also, a pump doesn't look good on a bulge). Keeping off the roller-coaster days. And I celebrate every small success.
    For me, doing "something" for "nothing" is far better than doing "nothing" for "nothing". At least I have the peace of mind. That's my reward.

  11. So well written Kim! We sure DO work hard for "nothing" to be our payoff.

    I LOVED George's reply...gift cards and cupcakes would do wonders for morale...LOL!

  12. oooohhhh, fanTAStic perspective here. something i've never thought about, but it rings SO TRUE. thank you!

  13. Wow, this is so true. Really well said.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.