A Dusty Keyboard

I don’t remember how to do this.

Has it really been a year since I tried to look ahead? For months I’ve been battling ideas that seem great on paper, or even within the relatively safe space of a “test the waters” Facebook post or Twitter message, but an equally crippling inability to act upon them with any certainty. For months I’ve seen stories and issues arise that generate plenty of thoughts, but no formal sentences worth sharing. For months I’ve thought about this blog, what it’s done for me over the years, what I think it’s done for others over that same time, and how I don’t want this URL to become a distant memory of blogrolls across the diabetes online community.

I think there’s reason to be proud that I’m paying more attention to topics like transgender rights, race issues, domestic violence, and validation within various patient communities. It speaks to a maturation of sorts. But if I still believe at my core, I’m a diabetes advocate, why is it so hard for me to prove it to myself that I still have what it takes to contribute?

Why have I been thinking about writing this blog post for three weeks but only now have the strength (is it really strength?) to say something?

I’m not going to make any promises about posting frequency because, quite frankly, I can’t stomach the disappointment when (if?) I don’t live up to that timetable. But I’m here, right now, to say that I’m still around. I still want to contribute to the discourse, and I will try to be more visible.

So, the task for now is to dust off my keyboard and start a figurative cleaning of sorts. Not a fresh start, but comfortable return. Until then, here are a couple of links to bide the time. Continue reading

I’ve Got Nothing

Yesterday was the first time I shared something on this blog in almost three weeks.

Ordinarily I’d quickly put up a bunch of back-dated content to fill out the illusion that I’m publishing something here every day. But that’s not the truth. That’s not me. At least right now it’s not.

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Here’s a Thing I Wrote for Symplur

This one looks at how different patient communities approach the new year, to what extent goals and resolutions are shared, and what makes for an open conversation among these communities.

Here’s a snippet.

While the how much question is worth considering as you engage this data, I think it’s equally important to look at the how. How were these communities prompted to engage with the topic of goals and resolutions? How well did those prompts foster a conversation among their respective communities? How might we evaluate the different approaches to this topic and find the optimal way to encourage goal setting and sharing?

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It’s A Gross Feeling

I had a brief chat with Kim this morning about my decision to switch to a pump. In the middle of our conversation I made the observation that “the real shame in all of this is in the back of my mind I keep thinking ‘this will give me something to write about on my blog’.” Followed quickly by “it’s a gross feeling”.

Not that I need to justify my actions to you, my eager-readers, but this has been on my mind since I mentally committed to switching to an insulin pump a few weeks ago. So here I am, trying to noodle this out with you.

This blog is not a business. I don’t have any sponsors. I don’t run ads. There is no revenue resulting from the content I put up on this blog. I have no financial incentive to post here every day.

I write, in part, to connect with other people impacted by diabetes. I write because it helps me cope with living with an incurable disease. I write because sometimes it’s fun. I write because everyone needs a place to share cat pictures every now and then.

And yet, I’ve gotten to the point where I can’t ignore that I’ve built up a following for one reason or another. I’ve built up a “brand” (it pains me to type that). After all of these years, people listen to what I have to say from time to time. It’s a good feeling.

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A New Look

You might have noticed that things have changed a bit since you last visited. Well, I hope you noticed the changes.

There’s a new theme, a new layout for the sidebar and menu structure in the header, and I made a few other minor tweaks to tidy how everything looks.

I wish I kept track of how long it took me to settle on this theme, the sidebar configuration, and every other customizable bit that you may or may not notice. I have a private “sandbox” blog that I keep around for the sole purpose of testing out new themes and customizations. Suffice to say that these changes were not made lightly.

Also, I may have a problem. But I promise to not make another significant change like this for at least 6 months.

…maybe 3 months.

…how about for the rest of the week.

(I wanted to find a way to use this gif in a don’t judge me, I accept that I obsess over this stuff and I like how this blog looks sort of way, but I couldn’t quite pull it off. Either way, here you go.)

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Just Talking About Balancing Diabetes

This week we’re talking about Kerri Sparling’s book, “Balancing Diabetes”. First I talk to Kerri about the writing process, developing a cohesive voice with the many contributors who helped make each chapter complete, and the awkwardness of self-promotion. Fitting with the nature of the book, I’m also joined by George Simmons, Sean Oser, Harry Thompson, Briley Boisvert, and Christel Marchand Aprigliano to discuss the chapters they contributed to, and why this book is awesome. Enjoy!

“Balancing Diabetes: Conversations about finding happiness and living well” is available now. You can pick it up on Amazon or Barnes and Noble, and learn more about the book, and Kerri at http://sixuntilme.com/book.

Special thanks to the other guests who appeared on this week’s podcast:

  • George Simmons – ninjabetic.com – @ninjabetic
  • Sean Oser – t1works.blogspot.com – @seanoser
  • Harry Thompson – @harrythompson
  • Briley Boivert – independence.com – @4thandlife
  • Christel Marchand Aprigliano – theperfectd.com – @theperfectd

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