A few months ago, I re-read the Lord of the Rings trilogy, a feat unto itself considering how weighty a tome it is, and how little time I have. Stolen moments to read are almost non-existent these days.
But finish it I did, and I was struck by how each time I read it, a different aspect of the story sticks out to me. This time it was Gollum who struck a chord with me.
For those of you unfamiliar with Gollum's story, once upon a time he was Sméagol, a hobbit just like Frodo and Sam. He and a friend happened upon the ring while fishing. Overcome by the power of the ring, Sméagol decided he must have it and killed his friend; taking the ring for himself.
Shunned by family and friends, he retreated into a cave under the Misty Mountains and became Gollum. The ring gave him long life, but deformed his body and mind, and was ultimately stolen by Bilbo in "The Hobbit".
If I stay with the same metaphor that I used in this post, where diabetes is the ring, then I am afraid of becoming Gollum. You see, Gollum was torn by his devotion to his "precious" and his great desire to be free of it. His life was consumed by the precious.
I have been quiet for the last few weeks. And there have been some good reasons; some of them diabetes-related, some not. But they have caused me to retreat so far into my own cavern that I was afraid that I may not return.
I realized I had been missing when, upon seeing me out with the kids yesterday, my next-door neighbour exclaimed how she hadn't seen me in forever.
And it's because sometimes the burden of the ring is too much and I have no interest in poking my head out from the safety of my cave. I am consumed by carbs, ratios, lows, highs, correction factors, units, blood sugars and logs. Add to that tummy bugs, teething, fevers of 104.5 and some scary heart episodes for me, then it's a wonder I make it outside at all.
The precious is consuming me.
My devotion to the precious is evident when someone tries to take it from me. A few nights ago, at a get-together with some other D-Moms, one of them offered her teenage daughter's sitting services. Her T1 daughter. Who was dx'd at the age of 2. And while outwardly I was smiling and saying, "maybe", inwardly my brain was laughing manically.
Because I am determined to hold onto the precious with white-knuckled fists. Like Gollum, I am both utterly devoted to it and crying to be free. It's a battle I am fighting in bits and pieces, but one I'm afraid I never will win completely.
Alas, in the end it was Gollum's devotion to the ring that ended up destroying him. These days I feel I need to tread lightly lest I follow in his very large flipper-prints.
Edited to add: As per Sara's request, here are the links to my other LOTR posts:
One Disease to Rule them All
You shall not Pass
18 hours ago