When you are born with Diabetes life can be a little different for you than for those around you. Especially when it is not discovered right away.
Growing up I did not go to the doctor regularly. I went for my required immunizations for school of course, but other than that I never saw a doctor. Only as an infant with kidney issues, which at the time seemingly were rectified by treatments prescribed from my pediatrician.
It was not that my Mom wasn’t a good parent. She was a single mother who worked 6 days a week, with zero help. My maternal Grandmother also lived with us until I was 10. I was never (obviously or outwardly) sick. There were no outside symptoms to cause alarm to anyone. For all purposes, I appeared to be a healthy and happy child.
As I entered my teen years it became apparent that something was very wrong. Thankfully a kind ER doctor paid attention, and at my second visit to the ER, requested a full blood lab be done. It was then discovered I was a diabetic. I also then learned I had been born this way. Although it was caught, the years of being undiagnosed had already taken their toll.
Fast forward to 2017…many, many years later.
I have not minded the neuropathy. It began when I was 15 along with arthritis. Although debilitating, I have learned to adjust to the level 10 pain and live with it drug free. No I am not some heroic moron who doesn’t believe in medications…. It is simply that no medications have helped. The medications usually caused terrible side effects and never even made a dent on my pain! I also have learned to deal with losing my vision and gastroperisis. The stage 3 chronic kidney disease is very scary, but I am also living with that.
BUT…..being told that my memory issues may be diabetes of the brain and discovering this is paramount to dementia is NOT acceptable.
How in the world is this even remotely possible? I mean, seriously????? Lose my mind? I am not even 50!
At first I attributed my memory slips to being extremely over extended with my obligations. When I could not remember if I ate breakfast when it was lunch time however, then knew there was a problem. I was suddenly experiencing a little more than simple forgetfulness. Suddenly the fears of being blind or unable to draw because neuropathy had taken my hands, or being on dialysis three times a week no longer were my greatest fears. The idea of my child looking at me and me one day not even knowing who she is…..that…..is SCARY.
When Mom was here living with us, slowly deteriorating as a result of the cancer which consumed her brain, I experienced that look. My Mother looking at me, my best friend, my hero, not knowing who I was. She called me Daddy, more than once. That feeling I had, I would not wish that on any child, especially not my own.
SO now, I wait…..I have a neurologist appointment scheduled a few months from now. In the interim, I am also to have an uptake, iodine radiation as I am having further thyroid issues despite the 3 yrs of therapy and there seems to be a nodule present. How ironic that the idea of possible cancer does not nearly scare me as much as losing my mind.
I have not shared this with anyone but for my closest friend and my husband and daughter, as they were in the room when the doctor mentioned it.
Suddenly my endless obligations and my work all seem so inconsequential. The things I worried about really are so trivial at the end of the day.
Time….that is what matters. Spend it wisely. You never really know how much we are being granted, do we?