Thank You to the Man Who Chose to Love a Diabetic Woman
Living with a chronic illness is no easy task. Each day we wake up knowing we will face the same challenges we faced yesterday and will continue to face these challenges until a cure is found. We gain strength through this because we cannot choose to take a day off from our illness.
Many times, it is hard for the chronically ill to recognize their strength. For us, it’s not about waking up and being strong. For us, it’s just about doing what we need to do to make it until tomorrow. Where we do see strength, though, is in the people who choose to love us, despite how debilitating our illness may get. These are the true heroes. Thank you.
Thank you for taking the time to learn about my disease. You have spent your time researching my symptoms, my complications, my risks. You have read thoroughly about all of the things that can happen to me with this illness, about all of the things I cannot do, but you still stand by my side. You have done your research that allows for me to live more comfortably, knowing that if something goes wrong, you’ve read about it, and know what to do to help.
Thank you for allowing me to talk about dark issues. While I hope to live a long and healthy life, I know how fast things can do downhill with my disease. You engage in conversations no 25-year-old should have to talk about. You have listened to my grave and funeral wishes. Yet, you continue to love me as if I’ll be here forever.
Thank you for doing everything in your power to let me live my abnormal life normally. You have graciously taken some of the burdens of my disease, and have rested it upon your own shoulders. Without you, I wouldn’t be able to accomplish all I have been able to while facing the challenges I face. You will never comprehend the amount of gratitude I have that you are willing to stand on the sidelines of races with a bag full of glucose tablets and diabetic supplies so I can run in races like everyone else.
Thank you for being there to remind me I can make it through another day. Even though my illness is chronic, and I have been living with it for almost 18 years, I will never get used to having to inject myself 10+ times each day just to stay alive. You are there to support me when my life comes crumbling down in the moments I realize I’m different, and there’s nothing I can do to rid me of this disease. You have not judged me in the moments I wanted so badly to give up.
Thank you for putting on your brave face when things go wrong. You have held my hand through sickness, seizures and nights in the ICU. You have watched me collapse to the floor when I’m hit with a sudden low. You have watched my body turn against itself and poison itself when my body struggles to filter out the sugar in my blood. You have been there when the doctors have talked about my chances in this life, and you have not faltered.
Thank you for giving me your whole heart, knowing all the love in the world might not be enough to save me. You have willingly embarked on a lifelong journey with me, disregarding the fact that my life may not be long. You have selflessly stepped your foot into my world as a chronically ill person, and you have made the choice to stay.
Thank you to everyone out there who has made the choice to love a person with a chronic illness. Thank you, especially, to Jared, for doing all of the above and more.
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Thinkstock photo via altrendo images.