• Ishani Nandedkar

Tale 2 : The Taboo

People who often mean well, come to me with varied and sometimes weird solutions for my Type 1 Diabetes. "Take this Ayurvedic preparation, go to that alternative medicine doctor, don't eat meat, submit yourself to the feet of this God, eat that, don't eat this, wear this gemstone, consume that herb," and the list goes on and on.

I understand that diabetes is the biggest disease in India today, but the type of diabetes that I have is NOT CURABLE, yet. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease which means that my own immune system attacked my pancreas and slowly but steadily killed it. It is not a lifestyle disease like Type 2 diabetes which affects 90% of the total number of diabetics in the world. It is genetic and nothing could have prevented it from happening to me.

Type 2 diabetes or the more common diabetes that usually affects adults, is a lifestyle disease caused by a sedentary lifestyle, unhealthy food habits, high blood pressure, etc. The difference between the two types of the diseases is that the more common one can be managed with oral medicines and a good lifestyle, and can sometimes even be cured. But please understand that both of them are poles apart and completely different conditions.

I cannot live if I don't inject insulin, the hormone that regulates the blood sugar in a person's body. My pancreas doesn't produce it anymore, unlike a Type 2 diabetic whose pancreas still produces it but not enough or not efficiently.

I have traveled the country widely and observed that it is a taboo and is rarely talked about. Because, how can a child have 'sugar'? And if she does, then people who don't know about the condition are troubled and take it personally, that how will she get married? Will she be able to have kids and carry on the name of the family? Will she live to see the next day?

Painful, if you're in my shoes, no? I can get married, become the CEO of Google, and have 10 kids if I want to. I just have to take insulin regularly and manage my blood sugar well and I'm a normal person who will live a long and healthy life.

The reality of my life is better than what my dreams ever were. I'm married and dearly loved, I own a Yoga Studio and teach yoga to my dear students and, if I want to, I'll have kids and make them into compassionate and knowledgeable individuals who will do great things in life. Although, it's nobody's business to ask any Type 1 diabetic these personal questions ;).

So lovelies, let's educate ourselves and be compassionate towards others. Because, I really want to change the world's view on this condition but together we can do much more.

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