When you’re living with diabetes, or loving someone with diabetes, you have to stay resilient as much as you can. It’s a marathon, not a sprint, and you have to be able to make it to the end one way or another. One of the things that helps me maintain my resilience with diabetes is celebrating the wins.
Acknowledge the Suck
I’m not suggesting that you focus only on the positives, because, as previously stated, there will be a lot of times when diabetes will make it impossible to see the positives. So, make sure you also acknowledge the “suck” that diabetes brings into your life. It’s not healthy to keep it in – so acknowledge it.
It’s the Little Things
Just like in actual marathons, in order to keep going once you run out of energy, feeding yourself some positivity about diabetes so you can keep going. It’s easy to feel defeated in diabetes because it never ceases to keep you on your toes. So make sure you’re celebrating the little wins!
Take a screenshot of a time that you really nailed the bolus – even if you don’t share it with anyone. And if you want to, share it with your mom, your grandma, your nosy neighbor who asks about your diabetes, your partner, your diabetes buddies, whoever! Show them what a diabaddie you are!
Enlist your Support PeopleHopefully you are sharing your diabetes data with someone who loves and supports you, and if not, this is a reminder to think about doing it. Ask your support people to help you celebrate your wins as well! If they’re only ever messaging you about highs or lows, it can feel a little less supportive. Even though they mean well, it’s nice to hear from them about the times where you’re in range, too.
It’s not about perfection, but celebrating the times when you’ve made progress can be really encouraging and give positive reinforcement for your hard work. If you’ve been working to get your time in range from 30 to 40% up to 50 to 60%, celebrate that! If you’re working to avoid blood sugars of 400 mg/dl and you do that for a week – bask in the glory of your hard work! Whatever your goals are, big or small, evaluate your progress and celebrate the wins.
Even if you don’t know what your actual diabetes diagnosis date is, pick a day that you want to celebrate it and do just that. It doesn’t have to be anything big; it could simply be treating yourself to something you don’t always have because it’s difficult to get the bolus right. For example, milkshakes tend to be my go-to Diaversary treats, and if my blood sugars are high afterwards, I consider it a free pass and don’t stress about it. Because, we deserve one day a year to not worry about what our blood sugars are!
Children with Diabetes has been providing CWD Journey Awards since June 2022 to help recognize the hard work that goes into diabetesmanagement. The awards are available for 10 years, 25 years, 50 years, and 75 years to symbolize the years lived with diabetes. The amount of work that you do to stay alive and healthy when you live with diabetes is significant. Getting an award not only allows you to celebrate the victories but causes you to reflect on all that you’ve done throughout that time. My parents gave me my 25-year medal on my son’s first birthday, and it was very emotional to receive it – especially on that day. I will always treasure that memory and the symbolism of the award.
There are many other ways to celebrate your diabetes-wins, but here are a few ideas to help you stay resilient in your diabetes journey.
Written and clinically reviewed by Marissa Town, RN, BSN, CDCES