Just When You Want to Complain about Your Life....

I had a chance recently to meet a young man who reminds us we can all take the hand life deals us and make the best of it. My "To Your Health" story featured Seaman High School junior Bryce Simons. Sports fans will know him as a leader on the Vikings' basketball team, averaging 15 points a game. But Bryce shared with us how he copes with Type 1 diabetes. He was diagnosed when he was six-years old. Imagine being a little kid and suddenly having to be poked and prodded with shots and testing devices several times a day just to feel okay. Rather than let it get him down, Bryce grew up learning, not only how to manage his disease, but how to thrive with it. It's not always easy - the thrill of competition can make his blood sugar level soar, so he takes insulin shots to get it back down; but once he does that, the intensity of competition can make it drop too far, so he has to take measures (a drink of juice, a quick break) to boost it back up. If adrenaline kicks in again, the cycle starts over. Many of us might get frustrated and say it's not worth it. To Bryce, it's just a part of life. He loves the game, he loves to compete, and, believe it or not, he doesn't mind diabetes a bit. It's just a part of him, he told me. I asked if he ever felt like using it as an excuse, and he said no way - he doesn't like to make a big deal out of it, prefers people not know, although he doesn't hide it either. In sharing his story, he hoped other young people with diabetes would see that it can be managed and there's no reason it should interfere with any of their goals. Substitute your own challenge for diabetes in that attitude - no matter what it is, there's no reason you can't manage it and strive to achieve your dreams. Thanks, Bryce, for reminding me situations are what we make of them - and there's no reason we can't make them into something positive.


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