The Most Famous Person with Diabetes is…

Some heroes are born, others are made

Wil Dubois

This month at dLife we're talking about famous people with diabetes. When I think of what it means to be famous, my mind goes beyond TV personalities, movie stars, record-breaking athletes, explorers, captains of industry, military and political leaders, kings and queens, great writers and artists, or the men and women behind ground-breaking advances in science — even though people with diabetes have filled every one of those roles and more. No, when I think of famous people I think of heroes. I think of those people who rise above challenges and do amazing, wonderful, inspiring things.

Of course, I guess complete cads are well-known as well, so could technically be called famous, but personally I put them into the category of "infamous," and I'm sure there are some infamous people with diabetes, too. No doubt we share our ranks with murderers, dictators, liars, cheats, thieves of every stripe, and people who kick puppies.

But I digress. Back to fame and heroes.

I suppose some heroes are born, but most heroes are made. They're often just ordinary people who find themselves in unusual circumstances and respond with nearly super-human glory, courage, and cunning. So who fits that bill for diabetes? Well, there are actually waaaaaaaaaaay too many diabetes heroes to list them all, but there is one who is a hero among heroes.

When I think of all the diabetes heroes, one particular person rises to the top of my list: You.

Yes. You are my hero. You are the ultimate diabetes hero. Think about all you do for yourself, your loved ones, your community, and your faith. Every day, just having diabetes takes heroic effort. The fact you make an effort to stay in that fight makes you a hero, and I know you are making an effort because you are here at dLife reading about diabetes. Trying to learn more. Seeking to understand more. Giving yourself new tools to keep your blood sugar in control and complications at bay. You are taking time from your hectic life to test your blood sugar, think about what you eat and how you move, and see your educators, doctors, and specialists.

I think that's pretty damn heroic.

What? Don't you feel like you rise to hero status? Why? Oh… you have a bad day now and again? Yeah, me too. Sometimes you cheat on your diet? Yeah, me too. You forgot your medicine last Tuesday? Yeah, me too.

But you don't have to be perfect to be a hero. Plus, even super-heroes aren't perfect. I don't think he'd ever admit it, but I heard that Superman trips on his cape now and again. And there was that one time when Batman fell off the top of a warehouse chasing the Joker. Even Wonderwoman couldn't remember where she parked the invisible jet last Tuesday and had to spend hours looking for it.

So you can't be too hard on yourself. The fact that you are trying makes you a hero because hero status comes from the act — the effort — not the results. You are a hero for simply trying, and I guarantee that the effort you put out will make you healthier than if you were not the hero that you are.

Will you ever achieve perfect health? Probably not.

But taking better care of your diabetes is heroic enough to make you my hero.

Wil Dubois is the author of four multi-award-winning books about diabetes. He is a PWD type 1, and is the diabetes coordinator for a rural non-profit clinic. Visit his blog, LifeAfterDX.

Read Wil's bio here.

Read more of Wil Dubois' columns.

NOTE: The information is not intended to be a replacement or substitute for consultation with a qualified medical professional or for professional medical advice related to diabetes or another medical condition. Please contact your physician or medical professional with any questions and concerns about your medical condition.

Last Modified Date: August 29, 2013

All content on dLife.com is created and reviewed in compliance with our editorial policy.

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