Monday, September 27, 2010

I am humble

Diabetes Wife wrote to me:

At least once a week, I ask myself why I stay. Today was that day. We stay because we love the man we knew when we married. We know it's the diabetes that has changed them. We know it's not who they really are. Yet, when the time comes to leave, each one of us will know. We have to do what is best for us. And there should be no remorse. No one should have to endure the verbal and sometimes physical abuse that happens when a diabetic goes low. No one.

My response: Thank you. I have been miserable all weekend. Tom finally realized I was serious and really listened to me last night. Of course, he says that things will change. but we know that's only until the next time he goes low. Its so exhausting -- but what's the alternative? I really just want to take the path of least resistance right now. Work is SO HARD right now I just can't take on any more "work"

I wish I could get a full night of sleep
maybe then I would feel better?

I hope you get sleep
Tom's Wife

Sunday, September 26, 2010

I'm Tired Too

After reading DW's post from Friday night, I'm with her
Suddenly, I'm really considering the idea of leaving
at the end of the day, its the mean-ness -- the selfishness
Over the last month there has been a definite increase in his mean treatment to me
it is probably not obvious to the casual observer
and if I were to list any one item, you would say - no big deal
you need a tougher skin

but why do I need to have a tougher skin at home
isn't that the place where I can be and just feel loved?
just feel safe?
why should I have to be home and worry about saying the wrong thing at the risk of being made fun of?

And as I said the other day, there is always the question as to whether it is diabetes-induced or just personality-induced

Also, as DW said, when they call you a liar -- because they just can never be wrong -- the pain builds up to a point where it is sometimes just too much to bear

I'm sitting across the room from Tom today and I can tell, he "doesn't know what is wrong" Why am I so angry today?

But I don't know if its "anger" as much as it is defeat
was this a personality "deficiency" he had before I met him and I missed it?
has his diabetes taken over so much of his life that I'm just an appendage?
I'm just there to help him survive?

I went on-line and looked at apartment rentals in the area today
clearly the money would be harder than it is today
but I could do it
I'm sure I would have times of loneliness - but not sure it would be worse than today

do you ever wonder whether the emotional toll on us -- which doesn't get measured -- is so different than the physical toll on them -- which does get measured. At least someone tries to treat theirs....

Its only 1 pm and I feel defeated for the day already.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Hard to stay angry at a diabetic husband

why is it so hard to stay angry - even when he does such @#$% stuff?
I guess we always wonder if its the diabetes causing the bad behavior?

I don't even know if the specific incident even matters any more
but Tom did such an inconsiderate thing last night
and he hurt my feelings - BIG TIME!!!
He came in - all big eyed -- what? what's wrong? why are you upset?
Really? Are you stupid? Clueless?

So I spelled it out.. word for word...
then I get the hang-dog look, he is sad, he is sorry
yada yada yada

But this is no different then we have had before
how can he be this dense?

Truly, he seems more concerned about our dog than me
really, I'm not kidding

And yet, here am I today, making him dinner and talking with him as if nothing happened. he was acting as if his sugar was low -- what am i supposed to do?


I'm just frustrated tonight
why does he get to be mean but I have to take care of him?

ok, I'm going to bed.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Talking it Out

I had a conversation with a new "friend" today
In telling her about my significant weight loss, I realized that I figured out how to "talk" my stress instead of "eating" my stress

Not sure if I told you this before, but over about a year I lost 70 lbs
in fact, I didn't plan it
it kind of just happened

but a bunch of stuff (bad stuff) happened
and for one of the first times in my life, I couldn't eat
but what I did do, is start talking, in a different way, to people that matter
when I was feeling defeated and cornered, instead of hiding away and eating
I selected a few people who may be impacted in a manner similar to me
and shared some of what I was feeling

Amazingly, they understood -- they were able to empathize with me
even if they didn't have the exact same experience as I had
they "got it" -- they understood -- they helped me see the humor
they helped me see another way through -- I didn't have to hide and eat to feel better -- which of course never worked!

You know, of course, that these people who understood - they were women
Maybe, because I am a women, and we talk
but it worked for me
I just have to stick to it
I fear I won't be able to - but its my hope that I can

Why is it that talking can be so difficult?
it is so hard to trust, it is so hard to believe that someone else believes in the sames things as us when those "in power" tell us we are wrong, we are "stupid", etc

On the living with a diabetic side, we are led to believe that we make up our husband's diabetic "incidents"

He wasn't low, that was our imagination
he wasn't high, that was our making things worse than they really are
we make these things up so we can add drama to our lives
or something

but when we talk, when we share
we realize we are not the ones who are wrong
we are not the ones who are crazy
we are struggling to get through the day

Why in the world would I want Tom to be low in glucose?
why would I ask him to eat something to increase his sugar?
Do I do get some diabolic pleasure from this?
Oh, I know, I really want him to die, yes in another 30 years!
and in the meantime, I want to panic every time he has a dramatic swing!
This really makes no sense -- what is he thinking?

But sharing, talking, knowing that others understand, really does help
And, I don't mean talking indiscriminately
it matters what you say and who to share things with

but I am here to tell you, it finally has helped me

have a good night
Tom's Wife

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Is this a happy ending?

A young man I know just completed his divorce from a type 2 diabetic woman.
They have 2 kids.
She (they) are in their young thirties and she had zero control over her diabetes
She had a horrible diet, never exercised, and from what I heard would let her glucose swing wildly high and wildly low -- wouldn't take any medication
By the way, she works in the medical field also
On more than one occasion, she was driving and her son called daddy because he was scared that mommy was falling asleep while driving!

Well, my young friend told me that he didn't know what to do, he was worried about the kids, that he was tired of dealing with her illness, but -- you know the line -- do you leave someone because they are ill?

Guess what? She left him and the kids! She walked out!

Of course there is more to the story and we will never know the entire truth, but at the end of the day, he got custody of the kids and she is off "killing herself" and the kids are safe with my friend.

I don't know if this is really a happy ending or not, I believe it is for the best. My friend is a terrific person and his kids will have a safer more secure home life now. But they have also lost their mom. Gosh, this is just a no-win situation isn't it?

It really makes me sad,
I mean, of all people, I know how diabetes can have such a devastating impact on the person who is ill and on the family "married" to the disease. It is HARD!!!!

But lots of people face it and deal with it. Maybe not all the time, but they realize that there are other people involved and take care of themselves so that they can take care of others. And then there are those who are not capable of reaching that place -- at least not enough of the time.

I know for me, leaving has been an on again/off again "fantasy" -- not sure that's the right word but I'll use it anyway. There are times when I just don't think I can take one more minute of him! And, with this type of disease, it is SO DIFFICULT to determine what is disease related and what is just personality related. Is he having trouble reading/putting sentences together/remembering stuff he used to remember because he is older? not paying attention? has high sugar? has low sugar? is angry with me? wants some quiet time? is not in the mood to talk?

And yet, truly, the good times far outweigh the bad times for me still. If it weren't for him, I would probably laugh much less often. So I am staying put. At least for now. But, that's my decision. Everyone else has a different path to follow. And the path continues for a long time. There really are no right or wrong choices - there are just choices.

These are my thoughts for today.

As always, I wish every other diabetic's spouse, a good night's sleep tonight.
Tom's Wife

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Labor Day 2010

This Labor Day I am grateful for so much in my life
At the same time my heart breaks for others who are not as fortunate as I
Yet, there are the day to day challenges of life -- especially life with a diabetic -- that just depletes me - even if I don't want it to be that way!
Worst of all, when I compare my "troubles" to others, mine pale -- my life is "easy"
I should stop "whining" -- I have so much --

My diabetic husband shows all of the same signs as the others
He yells at me, he talks crazy, he starts flailing around at 2 in the morning, waking me up so I can get him some sugar then making it almost impossible to get him to take it!
But he tries to eat well and he tests often and tries to keep his glucose low
But its such an awful disease!
How is a person supposed to do what a body (pancreas) does automatically?
Some days are just too much! right?

Then there is my job.
I love the fact that I have come so far in my career -- I never dreamed I would do so well
just taking one step after the other
I really remember the days of counting every single penny coming in the door
wondering how I would pay for peanut butter to get me through the next week
20 years later, it still amazes me that I don't have to do that anymore
but don't misunderstand
we still live as if we do
we squirrel away what some would consider "a lot of money" from each paycheck
because (1) we are both afraid that the money will stop some day and (2) we are both worried that some day Tom's medical bills will be enormous and we will not have the money to pay for them. Neither of us wants to think of him being in need of special care and not being able to pay for it. We both know that I am not a nurse -- especially when I read about the care that other women give to their husbands. I just KNOW that I couldn't do that!

Maybe its why I never had kids, maybe its because I'm too selfish. Tom says its just because I'm realistic and understand my priorities in life and he supports my focus on my career, rather than him or kids. That's how he sees it. When I'm in a good place, I can see that; when I'm in a sad place, its another story. then all I see is how lacking I am. How I am not a good person. That I am selfish and just care about taking care of myself.

Today I am having one of those days. I am feeling like everyone else has a more difficult life than me and it is not nice of me to complain.

I'm not much of a person who hugs others; but if ever a person needed a hug, its our friend Wife of a Diabetic. What she writes on her blog just tears me up. I can imagine what it must be like to be in her shoes. In my case, Tom has only offered me glimpses of what she has to bear on an hourly-daily basis.

Someone else wrote what I think so many of us think: How can I leave a man who is "just sick" After all, its not his "fault" Yeah, but its not our fault either, and we had no idea what we were getting when we got married.

then again, women marry men who do other things that they didn't expect.
I once knew a women whose husband had an addiction to on-line porn.
She didn't learn about it until her 5-year old son caught him
hubby wouldn't/couldn't give it up
they got divorced

Is that different? Should it be different? Yes, we can evaluate... but in both cases, the woman's life and that of her children were turned upside down

None of us is perfect
neither are the men we marry

I think of Labor Day and how much time is spent working
working at something we get paid to do
and working at so much more than money can pay for
that is the life of a diabetic's wife
and at the end of the day
what is it that we would really choose to do?

I have no answers, not today, today is just too hard.....