Reconciling Superlatives

You know, I kinda hate the idea of writing about what someone else wrote. The idea is theirs originally, and if I write about it too, then I feel like I stole their idea.

That said, I hope you will permit me this one deviation from that notion. Because I read a blog post at Diabetogenic this week titled The Weight, and I’m having a tough time reconciling what I think was a well thought out statement, with my own feelings on the subject. If you haven’t, you should probably read that first before continuing here.
 
 
I’ve never met a single diabetes advocate who considered themselves a good advocate. Some won’t consider themselves advocates at all. I’ve never met a good diabetes writer who considered themselves a good writer either. Yet… I consider those people good advocates. I consider some people good, or even great writers.

When I notice that someone hit a milestone in their life with diabetes, I want to congratulate them. I want them to know that someone recognizes how hard it is to live day after day with this condition. I recognize that sometimes staying alive requires at least occasional moments of extreme bravery and conviction.

I’ve referred to PWDs as brave souls. I’ve referred to PWDs as incredible and amazing. Heck, I hand out medals that say “Champion Athlete With Diabetes” on them.

I like making people feel better by extoling their accomplishments in “syrupy superlatives“, to borrow Renza’s expression.

Still, she has a very valid point. We are just doing what we need to do to make it another day, hopefully giving ourselves a better chance at a long-lasting (and long-living) legacy.

I can understand why someone would want to be complimented for something other than their diabetes. Why wouldn’t someone want to hear their friend tell them their t-shirt is cool, or they’re a great parent?

So I’m in a bit of a conundrum. How do I reconcile my strong desire to make people feel good about their life with diabetes, while not making it about the diabetes?

Like a lot of other things, this will require some thought, and perhaps a shift in how I interact with other People With Diabetes. That’s not a bad thing.

I’m not afraid to take a look at myself, and whether I’m doing someone a service by complimenting them about their diabetes, or just making them uncomfortable.

For the record, I’m grateful for diabetes bloggers who give me something meaningful to think about now and then. I’m okay with being challenged about how I communicate with others.

I just want to be worthy of the challenge.

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Comments

  • Rick Phillips  On October 25, 2018 at 8:29 pm

    I disagree with Renza. I find myself much less concerned about what people call me diabetic, PWD, or anything else, than what they say and do.

    Like

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