I see strength everywhere I look.

I see it in myself as I dig, dig, dig deeper to manage diabetes as best I can.

I see it in my friends with diabetes as they face the challenges diabetes throws at them each and every day.

I see it in other people with diabetes as they get up and push on through the stigma and the discrimination and the assumptions and the judgement.

I see it in our lack of sleep and bodies not doing what we would like and our fear and our uncertainty.

I see it in parents of kids with diabetes as they rise again after a night of missed sleep and their fear and their uncertainty.

And I see it in the healthcare professionals working with is, advocating for us and helping us make sense of the labyrinth of our health system.

We are told that we get diabetes because we are fat, because we are lazy, because we ate the wrong food, because we didn’t move enough, because our bodies were feeble.

We are told that we are not doing the best we can, that our numbers are too low, too high, not enough.

We are told that we are not following the rules.

We are told there is no funding, no money, we cannot access what we want, what we need, what we choose. And then we are told that we failing when we don’t achieve unreasonable targets.

We are told we have no willpower, we are not resilient and we have no expertise.

We are told we are sick.

We are told we are weak.

We face all this. All the time. And yet every day we get up. We live a life like everyone else and manage a condition on top of it that would drive most people to distraction.

We become strong, because we have no other choice.

Pricking our fingers, injecting our bodies, watching how what we eat, how much we move, how we feel affects everything –  we manage all of those things with little complaint.

We fight demons, we blame ourselves.

But we get up.

I see strength in every person with diabetes – whatever their numbers, whatever their management.

We get up. We do it. Every. Single. Day.

Tell us again that we are weak. Tell us again.