Body Language and Diabetes

This post is two-fold. I’ve come to recently love watching TED Talks on Netflix. Not only am I fascinated by learning, but I think one of the best things about them is that they are no-frills, straight to the point talks by engaging speakers, and then they’re done. No bull, no sugar-coating, here it is, what you do with this knowledge is your choice, type of deal. Fits me well. This is the first fold.

Seth recommended that I watch a TED Talk that he’d previously viewed, on posture and body language, and how it affects us. I’ve always thought I pay attention to my body language, and have made the effort to be very mindful of it, especially in professional settings. I watched it last night, and while I’m not awful in the body language arena, as with most things, there is always room for improvement, and I learned things 🙂

But still, something Amy Cuddy said in her presentation struck home with me. For some time now, at the forefront of my mind, I have been trying to figure out how to put into words what it was like to receive a life-changing diagnosis of type 1 diabetes, at the age of 25. I still don’t know how to comprehend or make sense of not having the life anymore that I had for 25 years. In Amy’s TED Talk about body language, she shares with the audience a personal story and at one point she says, “so I really struggled with this, and I have to say, having your identity taken from you, your core identity, and for me it was being smart, having that taken from you, there’s nothing that leaves you feeling more powerless than that. So I felt entirely powerless. I worked and worked and worked, and I got lucky, and worked, and got lucky, and worked.” I had an aha! moment and thought to myself “yes, I can relate to that, I know what that’s like. My identity was taken from me and I’ve had to find a new one.”

Just like Amy, I’ve had to work very, very hard to create a new identity, a new normal, and be accepting of it. Who I am today is not who I was pre-diagnosis. The things that I do on a daily, sometimes hourly basis are not what I would’ve done 6 1/2 years ago. This is the second-fold.

You can view Amy’s TED Talk here: Amy Cuddy: Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are.