This should probably be titled, “True Story, Part 3″ but this title is more direct. By the way, did you miss me? It’s been a few weeks since I’ve posted.
I work with a really great group of people. Some of us hang out outside of work and we have our own little “work family” so to speak. We are really good about celebrating special occasions around here whether it be a going-away party if someone leaves or a retirement party, baby shower, bridal shower, graduations, etc. We also celebrate birthdays. We call them “surprise” parties, even though we always know we will get one, we’re just not always sure the exact day or time of day. We’ve had various treats served at these birthday parties, ranging from cookie cake to make-your-own ice cream sundaes, to brownies, to various other sweet treats.
Last week, however, I was pushed over the edge by what I, as a diabetic, consider an ignorant comment. Since the beginning of this year, I have been making strides to not only improve my own glucose levels (amount of glucose in my blood – ideal number is 70-150 before and after all meals) and A1c (3 month average of overall glucose control – ideal percentage in USA is 4-6% or 5-7% depending on who you ask), but incorporating more exercise into my daily routine and recording what I am consuming using a great app titled “Lose It!” It’s amazing how much better you eat when you are aware of how many calories and carbohydrates are in an item. While I have been exercising regularly, though I’ve “fallen off the wagon” over the last few weeks or so, I really haven’t lost as much weight as I was hoping. (I know that taking insulin and having better glucose control almost seems to make this feat impossible, however. I don’t like this fact and I don’t have to like it either, but I digress because I am happy with the food choices I am making). What does this have to do with last week and exclusion, you ask?
On the last Wednesday of every month, our area of the department is given a cookie tray for employee satisfaction. Now while I would prefer that we were offered a healthier alternative such as a fruit or veggie tray, I understand that it is much more cost-effective to purchase cookies and that I am only 1 of 12 people who should avoid the cookies. Several times, I can avoid that cookie tray like nobody’s business. Other times, I grab a sugar, oatmeal raisin, or chocolate chip cookie, because I’m human and I want one, diabetes and all! (I am by no means advocating eating cookies!) Other times, I want one and by the time I go to get one, there are ALL gone. 12 people eating close to 40 cookies – you do the math. That means someone or a few people are eating more than one. Oftentimes because of this, I complain that I wasn’t even given a chance to eat a cookie. Again, I am not advocating eating junk food or non-diabetic friendly foods, but I would like the option to have a cookie if I want one. I can eat it and take insulin to cover for the grams of carbohydrates consumed. One time, I made the “mistake” (sarcasm) of complaining that the cookies were gone and that it was unfair that a few of us didn’t get any. (A coworker also stated she didn’t have one either and she does not have diabetes.)
Last week, at one of our birthday celebrations, the dessert of choice was an ice cream cake. Here is the brief conversation that occurred approximately 2 hours after the ice cream cake birthday celebration:
Coworker: “We saved you a piece of ice cream cake since you weren’t able to make it back to the party.” (I wasn’t able to get away from my desk at the time of the celebration)
Me: “Oh, that’s okay. I’ve decided to pick my poison this week so I’m skipping out on the ice cream cake.”
Coworker: “Okay, but just so you know, we saved you a piece so you weren’t excluded.” (Coworker is the same as the one I mentioned about being upset about the cookies being gone)
Boy, did that burn me! Excluded! Excluded? Excluded?!?! You exclude me EVERY SINGLE CELEBRATION by not having something diabetic-friendly! Boy did that comment piss me off!
So, I guess what I’m trying to say is even though I do get annoyed when I am not given the option because we all know that YES, DIABETICS CAN EAT SWEETS, the exclusion at every single event and not having a healthier option trumped the TECHNICALLY “not exclusion” of saving me a piece of ice cream cake. After all, we’d all be better off if we ate a little healthier, diabetic or not!