Thursday, 1 November 2012

Why Do I Write?

Today kicks off WEGO Health's National Health Blog Post Month, with a prompt asking, "Why do you write?" I wrote on this topic for a blog carnival earlier this year, so I've revised and re-posted my previous piece.

Why do I write about my health (my son's health) condition? My reasons for writing about my (my son's) health condition: I write for me and I write for Dylan.

I Write For Me
My blog is my journal; my diary; the place where I process my thoughts and feelings about raising a child with type 1 diabetes. There are days when I don't know what to write about, and yet once I start the words just flow out; other days I have a specific purpose for a post. Some posts are superficial, while others run much deeper. Regardless, I have become addicted to the cathartic power of writing. Not only is it an avenue for me to express my ideas, it is a tool that helps me to reflect on how I feel about diabetes and all that comes with it. 

Through blogging I have come to terms with my son's diagnosis, and feel a sense of peace that I never had before. It is no longer just about fighting for a cure. It is about accepting that this is the life we have been given. It is about understanding that each day is a gift. It is about knowing that I can choose to make the most of each and every day. It is about connecting and being part of something much bigger than myself (the DOC). And it is about making my voice heard.

I Write for Dylan
All of the above being said, this blog started because of Dylan and I will continue to fight for a cure for type 1 diabetes, for my son and for the thousands of individuals living with this disease. And until that cure is found, I will advocate and educate about type 1 diabetes at every chance I get. Why? Because I can't stop. I will never give up. It's that simple. 

A few years ago I gave a speech, at one of JDRF's Research Symposiums, in regards to why I walk with JDRF every year. I'm going to borrow a bit of it, as it can also be applied to today's topic. 

"When I ask myself why I walk (blog), I am always presented with the same image – the day Dylan was born. I think of that moment when the nurse put him in my arms and I held him for the very first time. I remember our first eye contact. That moment, be it very brief, felt like an eternity, and I could have lived in that moment forever. It was the moment that every mother is blessed with, when you realize that you love your child beyond all possibility, beyond all measure. And in that moment, your life is changed forever because everything you thought you knew about life, love, and what is important, is called into question and everything you thought you knew about yourself requires self-examination. In that moment the only thing in the world that matters in your child.

As parents we know that in loving our children we must also try to keep them safe. And when I think back to that first moment with Dylan, I know that I certainly never thought that keeping him safe would include safety from the immediate and long-term side effects of type-1 diabetes. But as long as it does, I will continue to walk – year after year after year – and I will never give up until there is a cure. I owe him that."

Visit every day in November as I tackle the daily prompts in the National Health Blog Post Month!

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