As a result of seeming a bit "just ready to blow" in my last post, I felt like clarifying the who, the why and the how of the Type 1 Game blog...
I started this blog in 2008 to share what it really means to live with Type 1 Diabetes. I started it to share what it took to create the appearance of normalcy that most Type 1 gamers tend to project. I started it because there was no way that I could explain a Type 1 gamer's reality in a short conversation to someone who asked or to someone that I was trying to convince to donate and support the JDRF cause. The goal was to use it as a medium to express some of my innermost raw emotions. Hopefully some would relate and others would realize the importance of a much needed cure. I started this blog because I was no longer ashamed of playing this game.
I am not insane, crazy nor clinically depressed. I do however struggle with playing this game some times more than others. Blog posts during these times reflect these feelings. Expressing how I feel and spending some quality time at the gym, on my skis or on my bike enables me to re-establish balance during these hard times. It's a delicate balance, but it seems to be working for the most part.
I've met many, many extraordinary people through my involvement with the Type 1 community and JDRF. I've met lots of fellow gamers since beginning on this journey. I've met some gamers who have suffered a whole lot due to the physical ravages of the Type 1 game as well as others who have been gaming for a very long time without any long term complications. One similarity between those who have dodged problems are that they're constantly looking for better Type 1 game techniques and tools. They are not complacent to "just being" and accepting their fate of eventually becoming another statistic in the modern medicine database of diabetes related complications. They dare to challenge the phrase "It can't be done" or "That's impossible". They have the guts to charter the unknown Type 1 territory and simply ask "Why not?". I am inspired by these people. They give me hope. Like all great people who lived and changed our world before them, they dare to think outside of the box. They've taken their destiny in their own hands and have decided to go above and beyond what "normal" people do just because they've been told to or because they've always done it that way. So one of my goals as a father is to try to teach Adele how to enrich her life this way.
I feel cheated by modern medicine in a way. I feel that they are missing the boat in regards to the role of diet to better control blood glucose levels. I agree that the whole food topic is a delicate issue, especially when dealing with kids. If you restrict them too much, they're much more likely to overindulge once they're older and no longer under your constant supervision. But then on the other hand, they can't (or should I say "shouldn't") eat whatever they want whenever they want in my opinion. I would have liked it if we would have been presented with this reality when Adele was diagnosed and when she started pumping. I am 100% convinced that lower carb, whole food eating makes for more stable blood sugar and better control of Type 1 Diabetes. Why aren't more doctors preaching this? Is it simply an extension of our distorted concept of a "normal diet" in North America?
Those are my values and beliefs, now back to reality. Do I freak out and overreact each and every time Adele's blood sugar is out of range? No, I try my best to remain calm and make the necessary corrections. Do I totally ignore our doc's orders and start inventing my own Type 1 game rules? No, I follow our management plan all the while always looking for alternative tips and tricks. Do we only feed Adele lettuce and raw nuts? No, she eats "normal" (Gluten Free) food like most other kids her age, but we still take the time to discuss best food choices and try to give her enough information to be able to make good choices when she'll be the only one deciding what she puts in her mouth. Do we manage Diabetes or does it manage us? Is Diabetes in control or are we in control? I aim for more of a co-existance built on mutual respect.