Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Back to Basics #2 : What is Diabetesgeek?

I often get asked why I blog, and why I write about very specific subjects, be that type one diabetes, mental health or social pressures.

As readers, you don't get to see behind the scenes; the drafts that never make it out into the public space, the excessive amount of wine that is consumed (someone's got to do it) and the hours spent crafting these little snapshots of my life. You see the darkest mutterings of my brain that are 50% coherent, with a few nice images. Perfect! So why do I do it?

The Foundation

I was diagnosed with Diabetes at age 4 so I spent a lot of my time not understanding my condition. Retrospectively, I never spent more than 5 minutes talking about it, I wouldn't say I was in denial but my diabetes definitely took a backseat for 13 years. As I turned 17 I began to think 'I need to sort my shit', so to speak. I think it is important that people don't feel alone, because I've been there and it really sucks.

Growing up with T1D I have always felt there is a lack of resources for teens and young people. Whether that be leaflets, online support, peer support or professional and medical advice. Teenagers are supposed to be one of the most vulnerable societal groups, it is the age where one may discover alcohol, drugs and sex so a lack of resources screamed out to me. 

Libs & I in Bath, UK for my 18th birthday
get away!

The Cornerstone

Re-wind to February'16 and I had taken myself out of full-time education and dropped my part-time job. Having weekly counselling made me very reflective, all of the advice I was given went along the lines of 'you need to look after yourself'. So that is exactly what I did, I launched Diabetesgeek not thinking it would go anywhere. My aim was (and still is) to share my story, spread awareness and reach out to other T1s. I felt totally consumed in my 'diabetes bubble', I needed saving. My blog provided me with a space to vent and let go of everything I had held back for 13 years.

I thought if I can use this platform to even shed the tiniest bit of light on subjects that need attention then I am completely fulfilled. 

The Establishment 

Diabetesgeek acts as an outlet for my emotions; it's where I can be appreciative/frustrated/sad/apprehensive and whatever formulates is always welcome. What is great is that I don't have somebody sat opposite me to judge, instead I have a community (mostly PWD) who are there to support me, give advice and most importantly, listen to what I have to say.
I love how I can choose how much (or little) I want to share with my readers. With social media being so universally accessible I feel like we lack anonymity; blogging allows me to create a persona and is very creatively satisfying.

Diabetesgeek is a place, which I hope, gives others somewhere to let go and get lost for a while, just like it does for me as the creator. I feel like we all need that.

Thanks for reading!

Amber xx

Twitter: @diabetes_geek
Instagram: diabetesgeek

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