I’ve declared November Official Ashley Month. Well, not really, but it seems to be. And it seems to have come at just the right time.
Many diabetics are planning events and activities for the upcoming month. No, not just for Halloween this weekend (which is the anti-diabetes day…or maybe we should call it “the most insulin taken day of the year, behind only Valentine’s and Thanksgiving”) or Thanksgiving just four and a half weeks away. November is Diabetes Awareness Month. Which means we all sport our blue, especially on World Diabetes Day. It’s our time to join together and really work as a force to educate the world about diabetes. Dispel any and all falsehoods out there, as we know there are many.
BUT, many of you may not know what else November means. November is also Inflammatory Bowel Disease Awareness Month…in Canada. I’m not Canadian, but I’m going to go ahead and say IBD needs a whole month too. World IBD Day is May 19th. IBD’s “color” is purple. Like T1 diabetes, Crohn’s has no cure and no known cause. There isn’t even a solid treatment plan. Some diets work for some and not at all for others. Some meds help one patient but can have the opposite effect in other patients. Unlike diabetes, it cannot immediately and directly lead to death. But it makes you more likely to get certain cancers, 75% of Crohn’s patients have surgery and 50% of those need at least one more surgery, causes pain and discomfort on a regular (or so it seems) basis and can seriously impede upon your ability to live life. Being that I know so little at this point, I can’t say for sure, but I don’t think there’s as much political pull in the attempt or non-attempt to find a cure. Whereas with diabetes it is blatantly clear that a cure realistically may never be found. Perhaps it’s because I’ve had diabetes for a longer time and am more comfortable with the regime, but I feel like Crohn’s is much farther behind in technological advancement. With diabetes we have pumps, cgms, a variety of insulins, etc. With Crohn’s you have 4 different levels of drugs and once you’re out of the first level you’re taking meds that can and probably will cause cancer and a plethora of other problems.
I don’t mean to compare in attempt at saying one is more deserving of a cure than the other. Just to kind of explain to all the diabetics what Crohn’s means in terms related to diabetes. I’m not sure if that makes sense. But diabetes is the only other chronic condition I have experience with and sometimes it helps me to compare the two. Since I know most of you who read this are diabetics, I guess I thought I’d try to explain the easiest way possible.
Just a side note, IBD covers two different diseases, Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis, yet they can agree on one color. Why in the world can’t diabetes agree on one?! Side note complete.
I have to say I’m looking forward to November. Thanksgiving, Diabetes and Crohn’s. Thanksgiving isn’t really a ME thing, but it’s one of my favorite days of the year, so it counts toward being a great month. I am ready to embrace and support my two November causes!