Diabetes, online communities and an American Girl


Like many people this week, I’ve had Tom Petty in heavy rotation. He died after a heart attack Monday, one week to the day after the last night of his 40th anniversary world tour. So when I stepped outside for a quick saunter around the building and found a newly posted video of Petty’s last song performance, that’s what I chose: “American Girl.”

Earlier this week I set a hard and fast goal of walking 30 minutes every day and so far, I’ve stuck with it. It helps that I’ve brought earbuds in to work so I can listen to music while I walk.

I was inspired to set new goals after joining for the first time an online diabetes community through Facebook. It’s nice to read other people’s posts about hitting goals, offering encouragement or just plain venting. On the cover of the November issue of HME News is a story by Editor Liz on manufacturers that are launching online communities for the end users of their products.

“We wanted a place for them to share resources and make connections,” said Brittany Commodore, digital media manager for Inspired by Drive, which recently launched Live Inspired. “We wanted to offer that value, whether they use our products or not.”

Speaking of diabetes (aren’t I always?), the November issue also features diabetes. This year, it’s all about providing patients with the tools and tech to self-manage the disease.

I even posted a quote from the article to the forum, where I knew my fellow PWD would relate:

“When you have diabetes, you’re not just a patient, you’re a nutritionist, mathematician and behavioral psychologist,” said Colin Roberts, of West Corp., a telecommunications company.

As for Mr. Petty, his untimely death is a reminder no one is immune from health problems. His last performance was an exuberant one—both he and the band, and the audience. That’s the way to go: on top and having a ball, doing what you love.

“Oh yeah, alright, take it easy baby!”