my life in 140 character bits


This, apparently, is how much of my life I have spent on Twitter since December 2008.

40,000 – goodness.


kicking it with the DOC – a PWoD learning from the diabetes online community

Recently I’ve been spreading my wings a little.  I primarily became involved in online health activism through social media because of my asthma.  I thoroughly believe in the power of social media and COMMUNITY in dealing with chronic conditions, and the power of these two things to create awareness and ignite passion to continue the fight against health issues that are prevalent and important, but if they don’t directly impact you, you tend to push them to the back of your mind.

Tonight I asked on Twitter what I should blog about.  Mike (@mydiabeticheart) suggested I write about what I’m learning from the Diabetes Online Community—the DOC for short.  Wednesday nights sometimes lead me into the #dsma (Diabetes Social Media Advocacy) chats on Twitter, because after the other Kerri shared the Kerri love I have become surrounded by passionate people with diabetes [PWDs] on Twitter, who tirelessly work not only to help maintain and improve their own health, but also work so, so hard to help and encourage others and ultimately educate people about diabetes—both to be AWARE and to spread their passion towards advocating for research for a cure.

The DOC is a community that is so full of passion that it is overwhelming.  This is a passion that is severely lacking in my own asthma community—as much as I love them, this could just be due to the pure prevalence of asthma and that asthma is “typically” milder than mine is.  The passion of the DOC overwhelms me.  It makes me want to stand alongside my new Twitter friends with diabetes—even though I have no idea what they are going through first-hand, I think a big part of advocacy is EMPATHY, something a lot of the people of this world are lacking, perhaps because they haven’t been educated in it.

So what is the DOC teaching me?  They’re teaching me that I can be a voice without being directly affected by diabetes.  They’re teaching me that passion is alive and real and just needs to be unlocked within people.  They’re teaching me about community on a huge level.  They’re teaching me that “OMG I knew there was Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes, but there’s a Type 1.5?!”  They’re teaching me about insulin pumping and continuous glucose monitoring systems and carb counting and being truly ALIVE with whatever life has thrown at them.  They’re teaching me about living, and living LOUD with diabetes.

Some days the DOC tells their stories and shares their adventures with diabetes in a continuous feed in my TweetDeck–I hear the stories about pumpers dealing with the TSA at airports, see the #bgnow tweets, hear the complaints about the alarms from their CGMs and pumps–and am slowly, slowly trying to put together what it really means to live with diabetes.  I am moved by the tweetups and conferences and events that happen that knit this community closer and closer together in an awesome way—a way that will some day be a giant celebration when diabetes is cured once and for all.

However, intertwined with this I get to see the other parts of the members of the DOCs life—tweets of skiing and school and rock shows and travel.  The stuff I can identify well with.  And these are the days I like best—even though engaged in constant battle, I think that we learn about one another best from how our health integrates with the rest of our lives—to form that balance that creates hope.

Thank you to EVERYONE in the DOC for welcoming me into your journeys, for sharing your passion, your hope and your community with me—as a PWoD [person without diabetes]on the outside.  Thank you for the conversation, the fun, and for helping to engage me into this fight alongside all of the very cool people that I’ve encountered because of your community.

Keep being the community of rockstar d-warriors that you are and engaging in the love of cupcakes with me—I didn’t know the whole cupcakes thing was a thing in the DOC before a few weeks ago, but when I found that out, I knew that my PWoD self would probably fit in just fine ;).

stuff, mostly awesome, that happened today

  • We planned our small group event for next Friday.  HELLO BOWLING.
  • I was standing in the upper level of the athletic centre waiting to go in for my kinese test, and talked to some random girl who was like “Oh [intro kinese prof’s name], with his vague notes and tight pants . . . distracting”.  She then wished me good luck on the test and left me thanking her and laughing.  I love people.
  • So my kinese test was not actually awesome, but being DONE it is awesome.  Also, apparently we have reverted to kindergarten, as the prof wrote IN HIS INSTRUCTIONS on the test to go to the bathroom before starting the test and not drink too much during the test.  Okay then.
  • I am not doing school all weekend.  That is awesome.
  • I ended up at the mall with my friend’s sister.  The following occurred:
    • I bought two CDs – Live’s “awake” [the best of album] and VersaEmerge’s “Fixed at Zero”.
    • I got dragged into the anime store and paced around outside.  I do not understand people’s obsession with thinking cartoon characters actually are something to squeal over and freak about about.
    • I tweeted a letter to some girl in there: image  I like when people give me things to tweet about.
    • I was introduced to someone as “the Dungeonmaster”, and said Hi and was unable to stifle back a laugh.  I hope he wasn’t too offended . . . Like the anime thing, I don’t get Dungeons and Dragons and its hype.
  • I walked mostly down the road home because apparently clearing sidewalks is not priority.  I am still alive to to tell about it despite crap road conditions.
  • I worshipped with hundreds of youth and dozens upon dozens of leaders tonight.  I knew my girls weren’t going to be there which I was sad about, but I did really think on some stuff with Jesus.
  • Found out one of my fellow Leaders is on TWITTER!  I love when I find out people are on twitter!
  • I came home and had yogurt.  Yogurt is healthy and awesome!  YAY!

conversations: incubus – morning view [feat. ryan gregg from addison road]

So, Addison Road is cool.  You should give them a listen, share some love, and buy an album or four.

They as a band also respond to tweets, as does their lovely guitarist Ryan Gregg!  I’ve had a few brief conversations with him in the past while, and today this came up:


Then this happened:


And now I am sitting here thinking . . . THANKS Ryan Gregg, for making me think about that, for pulling me to type ‘morning view’ into my iTunes library again.  Man.  I love this album – I love it as much, if not more, than I did five-plus years ago when I first got into Incubus at the ripe age of fourteen.

The excellent mixes of clear and distorted guitar tones, the subtle touches of djembe.  The faint and not-so-faint touches of crickets in the tracking as recorded outside the Morning View house.  The ability of this band to so greatly capture emotion on different levels—depths.  Brandon’s lyrics.

Also thinking: man.  This is a freaking epic album.  I plan to go through it song by song in blog-post form over the next few weeks. 

Grab a copy at your local record store or on iTunes and join me.