Ball and Chain

As I was driving to an appointment last week, Social Distortion’s song “Ball and Chain” came on the radio. The first thing I thought of was living with type 1 diabetes and a whole bunch of other things I wished I could blank from my brain. For so much of my diabetic life, I have thought of type 1 diabetes holding me back. At the same time I am very grateful for the added responsibility and self awareness.

Take away, take away
Take away this ball and chain
I’m lonely and I’m tired
And I can’t take any more pain
Take away, take away
Never to return again
Take away, take away
Take away this ball and chain

-Social Distortion

I would love for diabetes not be a major thought of mine, but it is always there in my head. I have found that in the last few years where my control is very tight and mu health markers look great, I think of my diabetes so much more and it has become a huge thing. I think to myself what things would be like without these thoughts. I just want the normal everyday insecurities and self defecating thoughts. The way I am wired and how I deal with things, something else would probably fill the void. When will we ever be good enough?

Being reflective stinks sometimes. More often than not, I dwell on the negative rather than the positives that have occurred. When I look back and reflect on some of the things I think of as major events, I realize that they are mostly negative. One of my earliest big memories is when I was 5 and had my feet burned with boiling water. This is something that I would love to forget. I remember my parents putting me in the kitchen sink and running cold water over my feet after the boiling water hit my feet and me screaming my head off. Each week as I was recovering from the burns, my mom would take me to the tub, clean the burns and cut off the dead skin. To regain strength in my feet, I would ride my younger brother’s pedaled toy tractor around the living room. I remember it hurting, but the desire to recover was huge. The highlight of this whole situation is that my dad was home for my birthday and picked me up for pin the tail on the donkey when it was my try. Due to my dad’s work, my birthday fell when he had his yearly industry show. He made it this year. This is the fact that I should remember. There are other things pop up when I think back, but I need to get this back on track.

We all have hurdles in our lives. We all have insecurities. This is something I repeatedly have to remind myself. With the world we live in these days, we need to be up and happy all the time with wonderful things constantly happening to us. There’s no room for negatives or being a bit down. Take a look at Facebook, Instagram or any other social media that’s out there. Very seldom do we see posts that we are putting ourselves in not so great situations. Everything has to be great and so positive. I know I have fallen for this as well and I think a certain way when I see something that plays into my insecurities. There will always be someone better looking, leaner, more successful, smarter, stronger, sexier, wealthier, happier…etc.

With type 1 diabetes, there are so many mental hurdles or opportunities on a daily basis to feel like a person is lost. I search for control. I question my choices. I become nervous and anxious at doctor appointments. Am I doing well enough? How do I compare to other diabetics? What great new autoimmune issue now? When I was younger, I thought all of these types of things would just have disappeared as I aged and learned more. Boy was I wrong. Ignorance is bliss. The more I learn, the more I realize, I have no clue. My health is pretty locked down, but the mental stress out weighs any kind of health concerns.

This has been a ramble…

My main point with this post is that we all have some kind of “ball and chain” that is adding some difficulty to our mental or physical well being. Even after thinking about what I wrote, I think that maybe this should be some kind of uplifting message.




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *