“Well, you sure as heck are
not a LATENT diabetic now. You are over the top.” Our old family doctor was
cut from rare, expensive cloth, one of a kind, in fact. He always told
things just like they were. There was no pussy footed, mealy mouth, way
“I first learned about sugar
in my blood when I was twenty-one.” I told him. “For all these years I’ve
been able to control diabetes but have just been careless.”
“Very seriously, I doubt you
will be able to control this much longer,” he told me.
“Will you give me a chance to
show you I can?” I asked.
“Well, okay, but I’ll have to
monitor this for a while. We will have to test you right along to make
sure.” He was reluctant to give me those liberties.
There wasn’t any point in
discussing anything, any more with him. He would just have to be shown. He
couldn’t have known the impossible plowing through every deterrent I had
been through over the years. No one in the whole world seemed to understand
why I was so needful of exercise. I remember when we moved back to Ponca
City around 1965 a woman who was out walking in the evening was suspect. I
mean, what possible reason would a person get out to walk unless she was
just trying to call attention to herself for some seamy reason, one or the
other? That was when I began to take the folk’s honey colored, cocker
spaniel with me. He always stayed right with a person except on rare
occasions when he visited with some dogs behind a fence. Honey was my excuse
for walking. After all, his vet had complained about the dog’s weight and
obvious lack of exercise. None of this, of course, did I share with my
Large family dinners with the
richest foods including sumptuous German chocolate cakes, cream pies, and
every dessert to tempt anyone away from whatever diet were a curse for my
situation. It was almost a relief to now say, “Can’t have that, not on my
Control for the stress factor
was harder. Once a doctor asked me to write my activities on a sheet of
paper. He went along marking through most of them except a couple or three.
One year there were 400 students to whom I gave private art lessons. It was
just unbelievable. The phone rang continually. The folks were all gentle,
usually, sweet little women and it would have been unbelievably rude not to
take out some time with them.
Another time I had a therapy
program going for Rhonda. We needed five people every hour to help. So that
meant there were forty different people going through my house every day.
That is 280 people a week, 1,120 people a month. All the churches scheduled
their members so we never lacked for volunteers. Rhonda learned to read, her
general health improved immensely.
And for the first time in her
short life she was sleeping all night without waking up screaming with
spastic cramps in her legs. I would say these were just some of the most
stressful times of my life. There were other, bone chilling, gut wrenching
memories I just can’t think about that now. But, all and all, the ding,
dang, diabetes like a pouncing lion, frozen in time, by a stop action
camera, just looms above me. As far as stress, for what I’ve been through, I
admit, there is absolutely no end to that. Sure as there is a blow-up of any
kind, diabetes wins that round in a vicious way and the lion moves one step
closer to me.