Message Monday

Laddie_Head SquareWelcome to the 7th year of Diabetes Blog Week. This is my 3rd time participating and I swore I wasn’t going to do it again this year. Why? Because I get totally burned out by writing blogposts every day and trying to read the posts of 100+ participants. Somehow I am incapable of staying low-key during the week and always overdo it. So why am I here? Because Diabetes Blog Week links me to voices of diabetes from all over the world. At the end of the week I will feel exhilarated after meeting new bloggers and catching up with those whom I already “know”. I’ll learn more about myself and my diabetes as I tackle the topic list. On Friday I will be proud that once again I have survived Diabetes Blog Week! As always, thanks to Karen Graffeo of Bitter-Sweet™ for organizing everything.

Today’s Topic:  Lets kick off the week by talking about why we are here, in the diabetes blog space. What is the most important diabetes awareness message to you? Why is that message important for you, and what are you trying to accomplish by sharing it on your blog?

When I started my blog in 2013, I wrote:

“The DOC (Diabetes Online Community) has become a family to me…. I think there is room for my voice in the DOC and I hope that I can help and inspire others  in the way that I have been helped and inspired by others…. I hope to use my blog to chronicle my journey through life with diabetes. Many of my posts will be reflections on the last 36 years as well as my opinions on current issues.”Blah Blah Blah2_DBW

That is typical blah for mission statements and I could easily write the same words again today. The main change is that it’s now been almost 40 years of diabetes.

I wrote one sentence in my first blogpost that seemed innocent at the time. It has morphed into one of the main reasons I continue to blog.

“The medical system in the United States is changing and I really wonder what the next years will bring for those of us with diabetes.”

Talk about the understatement of the year. I predicted that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) would bring me lower premiums and worse coverage. Wrong! I still have good coverage for diabetes expenses, but my premiums have almost doubled and they were expensive to begin with. Many DOC friends have fared far worse with huge increases in premiums and deductibles along with difficulty obtaining needed supplies and medications. Insulin prices have soared and for each insurance company mandating Humalog, there is another one requiring Novolog. The recent UnitedHealthCare mandate for Medtronic pumps is symptomatic of a broken healthcare system that increasingly devalues patients and results in huge profits for insurance companies, pharmaceutical/durable medical companies, and middleman wholesalers.

I also mentioned Medicare in my first blogpost:

“And before I know it, I will be on Medicare with a new set of rules that will save me lots of money in some areas, but will try to dictate that I live with 3 test strips a day and throw away my CGM because it is not proven technology.”

I am now counting down the months until Medicare. I am proud of my gray hair and feel strongly that I would like Test Guess and Go to become an information and advocacy resource for seniors with Type 1 diabetes. CGM coverage is one of the most visible battles but it may be just the tip of the iceberg with programs like Competitive Bidding threatening choice and access to needed supplies.

In three years of blogging I have been learning how to advocate. I know that I am a better writer than speaker. I know that I prefer one-on-ones to larger advocacy forums, but I am trying to grow. Regardless of where my senior years take me, Type 1 diabetes will be there and there is no reason to fight that. I don’t know how long I will continue to blog, but I’m not ready to quit yet.


To read other Diabetes Blog Week posts on this topic, click here.

13 thoughts on “Message Monday

  1. Hi Laddie! I’ve been slacking on D-Blog reading lately so I’m really looking forward to catching up and reading your posts this week! This post is so interesting to read how you are reflecting back on the past three years. I have definitely been impacted by the ACA and for the worse (although I have coverage so I guess that’s good). I really hope things change for the better in the upcoming years because it’s progressively getting worse and worse! (OK off my soap box now!)

  2. Isnt it funny looking back at those old blog posts and seeing how different our voices sound? It’s been great “knowing” you this past year, Laddie, and I watch your Medicare/Insurance stories from Australia with great interest.

  3. Yeah, you were on to something!
    I am so glad you blog. I love to read what you write, and I also feel giddy with selfish joy that you are paving the way for my medicare years.

  4. So glad you’re here this year. And thanks for blazing that trail. I’d like to believe that I’m not getting older but, for goodness sake, my T1D diagnosis came when I was already 40 something-ish ;). Here’s to many more posts from you!

  5. Thank you for deciding to participate again this year. And thank you for continuing to blog. We definitely need your perspectives!!

  6. Thank you, Laddie, for keeping us up on all the latest. I can always rely on you for information.

  7. Always fascinates me to hear about other healthcare systems around the globe and how they handle diabetes (of all types). In Aus we’re having a lot of drama lately about the provision of diabetes supplies and CGM coverage, so I feel you!

  8. Pingback: We hear you. | Very Light, No Sugar

  9. I understand we have had both a setback and a small success with CGM for medicare this week. Who knows maybe this year we will get over the hump.

    I referred your blog to the TUDiabetes blog page for the week of May 16, 2016.

  10. Its refreshing to see a blog with a unique purpose. Your medical system is very different to ours and that’s a little bit fascinating to me. I’ll be reading with a lot of interest.

  11. Yes to the “blah blah blah” part! I wasn’t even going to participate until late last night because I didn’t want to just be another background voice in the chorus of blah-blah-blah. It’s not who I am, and not where I want to be.

    I think that, when we first “join” the community, we play it safe and join the chorus, making it louder. Then some of us find our own personal motivations, and we start to diverge in our own vocal solos, experimenting with tone and lyric and tempo in a more unique and defining, albeit unpolished, manner.

    I’m glad you have decided to stand out from the crowd and make your voice true and unique.

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