It’s the fifth annual Diabetes Blog Week, with thanks to the lovely Karen Graffeo from Bitter~Sweet Diabetes. Today’s we’re writing about the emotional side of diabetes. Come back tomorrow for the next instalment, and in the meantime, check out #DBlogWeek and follow along!

There is a dark place in my mind that is locked most of the time. Usually, I manage to keep it closed away and it remains hidden.

And when I am feeling strong and robust and life is moving along at its usual pace without too many problems, I am not tempted to go to the dark place, to open the door and examine what’s hidden.

But when I am feeling vulnerable – for whatever reason – and my defences are down, I peek. Stupidly, I go in, treading carefully, cautiously looking around. To the dark place.

The dark place is the fear that lives inside of me about diabetes. It’s the fear of today, of tomorrow. And of the unknown. It scares me and it scars me. It makes me feel fragile; breakable. And highlights how broken I am.

In the dark, I feel the relentless-ness and the never-ending-ness and the overwhelming-ness of diabetes that I usually simply expect – and accept. Suddenly, the day-to-day and more-than-manageable tasks that I need to do seem impossible, daunting, too big to contemplate.

The dark place is quiet, the only sound is my amplified heartbeat.

I’ve learnt to breathe slowly, see the dark place for what it is, allow myself time to visit, accept what is there and then close the door. I come back and face the light and life and the people I love. I go to work, I see my friends, I bake, I drink coffee, I listen to music. I look like I am living my life – and I am. But when I’ve visited the dark place, I am scared and look over my shoulder. I feel oppressed and fatigued. It takes me a while to fully come back – sometimes only a day or two, sometimes longer.

This is my emotional side of diabetes. This is the dark place. This is the exhaustion of diabetes.