I’ve spent a lot of time at home this week, hanging out with the dog and the cat, and another dog that has been here for an extended sleepover. The dogs, especially, seem to have a certain calmness about them (most of the time, anyway). They don’t seem to be burdened by many of the things I am concerned with.
Dogs don’t seem to worry about too much. They sleep when they sleep, they eat when they eat. They’re happy if you’re watching CNBC, or Drunk History, or the ballgame on TV. Their pursuits include fully stretching out on the floor, chasing after balls in the yard, and playing tug of war over a toy. If you’ve had a difficult day, they seem to empathize, but they’re also happy waiting nearby in case you need them.
The dogs that have been my companions this week don’t live with diabetes and all of the crap I live with as a Person With Diabetes. They don’t have to check their blood sugar 7 or 8 or 10 or 12 times every day. They don’t have to guess how many grams of carbohydrates are hiding in my noonday meal, or how many units (or partial units) of insulin are required to counteract the carbs entering my system, and they don’t have to remember to bolus before they eat those carbs.
These dogs get excited about dinner, and walks in the park, and the occasional mailman or jogger that goes by. But the rest of the time, they’re good just hanging out. They don’t have to live with the frustration of high glucose readings and doing the detective work to find out why the readings are high.
They drink water when they’re thirsty. They’re not forced to drink water to help get their blood sugar to come down. They’re not into why my insulin is so freaking expensive. They don’t have to fight with insurance companies to get them to cover devices like continuous glucose monitors and insulin pumps and enough test strips to be able to live the best life I can while standing in for my own pancreas.
Dogs are okay being lifesavers alerting us to highs or lows. Dogs are okay with just being part of the pack, and enjoying the occasional bacon flavored treat. Life isn’t much more complicated than that, because it doesn’t have to be more complicated than that.
I want that. I want a dog’s life.