Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Using the F-Word

Used to be, when people asked me how Elise was doing, I always used the F-Word. As in fine. As in she's fine, we're fine, my whole stinkin' life is FINE (As least, that's how I would scream it in my head).

But to the person who asked the question, I would always just say, "she's doing fine". Because anything less than that was an admission of my failure. So I would put on my biggest, brightest smile and pretend that everything was okay, all the while inside I felt like I was drowning.

Because as hard as I tried, I still felt I was failing at this whole "being a pancreas" thing. But I wanted people to believe I had it all together. I also figured that nobody wanted to hear or really cared about how hard it is to care for a baby with diabetes.

But after awhile, I got tired of lying. So I started a blog. And poured out my inadequacies, my fears and most importantly, my failures. And you know what? It felt GOOD.

Then, to my utter surprise, people started reading my blog. And commenting. And saying things like, "yeah, been there, done that... you are NORMAL!" And I could scarcely believe that there were others out there who felt like I did. When Elise was first diagnosed, I felt so alone. And like nobody understood. But on my blog, I could be real and accepted all at the same time.

And now, when people who live outside my computer ask me how Elise is doing, I no longer use the F-word (unless I'm having a REALLY bad day, and it's the other F-word). I tell them how it's really going. Because I don't want to put on a facade anymore. And I think it's important for people to understand that life with D is really a day-by-day (and sometimes an hour-by-hour) disease.

So why am I blabbering on and on about being real? Because I just read a post on another blog about why it is so important to be able to be open about your struggles. It touched me so much that I just had to share it with you. It's a long read, but so worth it. You can either click on the link below or copy and paste it.


I'll end by saying this; if it wasn't for my blog, and all of you who have encouraged me by sharing what you struggle with, I would not be as functional as I am today. I'd most likely be curled up in a dark corner somewhere, unable to face the utter crap that life with diabetes can throw at you.

I like it much better out here, thankyouverymuch.


  1. I'm going to scope it out. BTW, without you guys, not only would I be curled up in the corner, but I would be sucking my thumb, banging my head against the wall, while mumbling "mama, mama, mama" - THANK GOD we all have each other.

  2. WOW, this hit close to home. I was listening to the radio with Bridget and Joe on the way to school yesterday when a suicide was reported on. We started touching base on the fact that NO problem is unfixable...no matter how bad it seems...wow, a lot to think about. Thank you Jo!

  3. I agree, keeping it real and sharing the highs, lows and everything in-between is a great source of strength and support...especially when someone comments on your blog saying things like "been there, done that"

    Sometimes life with D can feel very lonely and scary, having people like you and this amazing D.O.C telling us that we are not alone in this is a beautiful and powerful thing!

    I will head on over to check out this post!

  4. Wow! That is powerful and moving and brought me to tears -- not that it takes that much. Thank you for sharing - it was a good read for me today.

  5. This could NOT be a more timely post for me. You summed it up PERFECTLY! People ask all the time how we're doing, how Adam's doing and I say FINE. Because frankly, I just don't have the freaking energy to describe what it's like. Even though things are not fine.

  6. Thank goodness YOU understand ME, because I am just like you!I stopped the fakeness pretty soon after Maddison's diagnosis.

    I always think people read my blog and think Im angry, cold, resentful, gloomy and obsessed all the time, then I remember....my feelings are normal, if anyone is all sunshine and positive feelings with Diabetes all day then they are in denial, ignorant or not human! :) ((HUGS)) I hope you are getting in some naps with baby?

  7. Fantastic post and I also read the post you linked to. These really hit home with me right now. I feel so overwhelmed right now with working full time, taking class, house work, pregnancy and diabetes. Thank goodness there are people like you guys. I think I will try to write something on this subject soon on my blog. Thanks so much for sharing. :) (Also, thanks for letting me know about your acne, I hope mine starts to clear up at the 18 week mark. :)

  8. I got a congratulations too from Artsdeco. :)

    I look forward to having a few minutes to read that post! I'm so thankful for you Joanne, and all our blogging friends! How did I survive 11 years without you guys????

  9. Hi Joanne, thanks for commenting on my blog :) I've replied with my email address for you. Plus, feel free to add me to your blogroll :)

  10. I'm so with you on the "fine" comments dragging me down. That's exactly why I started blogging, too. It's really helped me release some of the pent-up ick that comes with being a pancreas.

    Glad to have met you online.

  11. wow Joanne what an awesome post girlfriend . Jeeze what is it about diabetic moms that we have such different issues from everyone else .

  12. I remember at our first visit with the endo three months after dx the social worker came in. She asked how *I* was doing. Rather than break down in front of my child, I said "fine."

    Read this post: http://www.d-mom.com/everythings-fine/

    Scream it with me!

    (Off to read the link...)

  13. The new F-word indeed! Thanks for linking to that post. Another (non-D) blogger I read also linked to it, so it is quite universal. I've fallen behind on commenting but I wanted to say congratulations to you and your family, and welcome Mattias!

  14. "No it's not gonna be fine. Nothing's ever fine.... I'll show you fine!!!" (the outburst from Liv Tyler's character, Corey, in Empire Records... she then takes a pair of scissors and starts stabbing a cardboard cut-out of Rex Manning). That's what usually pops into MY head when I answer fine and don't mean it. =)


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