You Must Experience It To Understand It

DSMA July Blog Carnival

The Diabetes Online Community, or DOC, is a pretty amazing thing.  We each might be looking for something different from the DOC and we each have unique experiences.  With that in mind, we’re looking back at the chat from June 13th called Winging It and would love to hear thoughts on the following sentence . . . .

The diabetes community has taught me how to _______ and _______.


I must say that was an amazing DSMA chat.

I went to bed smiling – feeling like all was well with the world.

That night when the same question was asked I answered the following:

“The DOC has taught me to NOT berate myself for not always being the perfect pancreas for my kids and to celebrate success”

BUT – there is so much more that I didn’t share because well – I was busy trying to keep up with all the ideas and thoughts other DOCers were sharing.

Some of the other tidbits of truth the DOC has taught me are:

  • Unicorns are not just for little girls
  • Diabetes is hard (I knew that but it’s nice to be validated)
  • Complications are not inevitable
  • That PWD and parents of CWD active in the DOC are funny, smart, supportive, tad bit crazy and a whole lot of fun
  • I am not alone
  • There is always new technology, studies, trials, and tools that I can learn about
  • How to convert mg to mmol and visa versa (math hurts my head)
  • That a No Hitter is not just in baseball
  • It’s ok to have a bad day
  • #howtouseahashtag
  • There are more families than I thought with multiple kids with diabetes (hate the cost of joining the club but the members are fabulous)
  • Everything will be alright
The question that followed the above question during that awesome DSMA chat was this:

What does the diabetes community mean to you?

 I answered with this: The DOC means sanity, friendship, support, love, knowledge, power and courage.
To fully grasp this you must get involved. It is not something that can be explained or demonstrated. It must be experienced. The DOC is not about self-promotion or simply sharing articles or blog posts. To truly experience what the DOC is one has to get connected, have conversations (which are visible to – well everyone {unless done in Direct messaging}), attend the DSMA chats, read and respond to posts shared by others and share thoughts not just check-ins. There is certainly value in being a spectator – one can learn a great deal from watching a game but to fully experience it you have to suit up. 
Awesome Image above was created by the DOC’s very own Mike Durbin (@mydiabeticheart) – he created in last year for Diabetes Art Day. You can read more about his art here.  Mike’s art speaks to me because the majority of the DOCers that I interact with daily (sometimes hourly #Ihavenolife) are not in my town, not my state – many not even my country yet we are connected regardless of distance, type of diabetes, age, gender, race, or religion. We are united by a cause.
“This post is my July entry in the DSMA Blog Carnival.  If you’d like to participate too, you can get all of the information at


15 thoughts on “You Must Experience It To Understand It

    1. Thanks Tim. I checked yours yesterday – no ffl post yet. I know you are crazy busy with reviewing books and other writing. The pics you shared that Jeff posted on FB were great!


    1. My last post on was about my new blog on my our url. Not sure if there is a way to automatically have people redirected. glad you found my new one.


  1. I love this post!!! The whole post is awesome, but I found myself nodding along when you wrote about needing to be involved in the DOC to really understand. I always struggle to explain the DOC and it really is impossible. Thanks for letting me know I’m not the only one who feels this way!


  2. I went to Texas A&M and the very first t-shirt I bought there said “From the inside looking out, you can’t explain it. And from the outside looking in, you can’t understand it.” That’s how I feel about the DOC, too. I try to explain it to someone and I feel like a big ol’ goober for saying “My online friends” but it’s true. You guys ARE my friends. And I’m thankful for that. 🙂 (Can’t wait to see you in a couple of weeks, btw!!)


    1. I love your inside outside quote. Great stuff. I like a number of my online (never have met) friends more than some of my so called friends here. The locals that might read this are not so called friends. Looking forward to our quick meet up. The movers will be at my house but Chad will be here so I can sneak away. What time are you thinking?


  3. I think “complications” (hate that word) are really going away for anyone who works on their diabetes. In a month I’ll have had type 1 for 40 years and I’m doing just fine. For the first 15 years the fear of complications was like a dark cloud that overshadowed me all the time.


    1. Hi Bernard – Thanks for visiting my blog. Ive been on the road moving from TX to CA with multiple stops in between so my internet access and time available for internet has been limited (seems 3 kids, 2 dogs and 2 cats take up more time on the road).
      I agree that complications (hate that word too) can be avoided for most pwd that pay attention and don’t ignore the monster that is diabetes. Congrats on 40 years of doing it right – here’s to another 40! Thanks again for the comment (comments that aren’t spam are like little rays of sunshine!). Best wishes always!


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