Thursday, November 4, 2010

Balance: Not a Game

So, I was playing with my Wii Fit the other night.  I did one of those body tests out of the blue for the first time in forever.  If you are familiar with Wii Fit you will know what I'm talking about.  For one of the body tests you stand on the balance board and have to adjust your weight accordingly depending on what's on the screen.  You might be 60% on the right and 40% on the left and you have to hold it within the blue lines for 3 seconds.  As the rounds pass the area you have to balance in gets smaller and smaller.  Until the last one where it's a thin blue line. Or in the case of the picture below its orange.  It turns orange when you're holding it in the line.  I was taking a picture while standing on the board, you might think I must be colour blind going on and on about a blue line!

 Every time I play this particular game it reminds me of diabetes.  That last screen where the area you have to hold it in is so paper thin.  Imagine that tiny little area is your diabetes management complication-free.  A slight touch too much on one side or the other sends you flying.   That's what diabetes is like for me.  There is a fine line where I'm supposed to exist all day every day of my life.  If I cough or sneeze I'm out of the safe zone and spinning wildly out of control desperately trying to regain the balance back.  Any little hiccup and you're out.  In real life, I've never been able to hold it within that line for very long.  It's as if managing diabetes could be related to standing still versus walking.  If you stand still, not a whole lot changes. You might shift your weight a little bit here and there but nothing so drastic.  Take your diabetes for a walk and then try and manage it.  With each step your weight shifts back and forth forever and ever.  One step your high, the next your low, the next your high and so on. That fine line is nearly impossible to stay in.  It's inhuman!  I've heard a lot of analogies relating to something like this.  It's like a tightrope, or a unicycle or anything that requires incredible acts of balance.

I wish I could hold my breath and not move for the rest of my life and stay safe in the comfort of that thin little line.


  1. What a fantastic analogy! I love it. It makes complete and total sense to me, though I don't think I could have ever described it quite so elloquently.
    I find that when you speak with people who live with diabetes every day for many many years they'll say that, after awhile, it is easy to realize those ups & downs exists, but also easy to develope a habit of making excuses for them or just plain ignoring them all together.

  2. Fun with analogies. It's more like a balance beam. It's narrow, but not impossible to move around on. I can even sleep on it, somewhat fitfully, holding on.
    And I'm balancing between molten lava and quicksand, or maybe between a steep cliff and a lake of sulfuric acid.
    Between tanks full of crocodiles and piranha?
    I've been thinking about the balance analogy for a while, probably too long.

  3. thanks guys! Jerry, I like the crocodiles and piranhas analogy. You should write a post about it!
    really, we can only work so hard at attempting to be the brains for our non-functioning organ.


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