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DSMA Blog Carnival: What the Diabetes Community has Taught Me

Laura K. on how the DOC has impacted her

Laura KolodjeskiLaura Kolodjeski

I’ve mentioned in the past how much I appreciate and support DOC-established initiatives that bring the community together and foster diabetes awareness. Initiatives like Blue Fridays, DSMA Live, D Blog Week and D-Blog Day have taught me so much about the people within, the purpose of the DOC and how deep your support runs.

Another great DOC-established initiative is the DSMA Blog Carnival. So, when I came across this month’s topic, I just knew I had to contribute! The assignment asks that participants share their thoughts on the following sentence:

Earlier this year, I shared with you a few ways that Sanofi US Diabetes has been influenced by engaging with the diabetes community. Now I want to focus on how the diabetes community has impacted me specifically, and the difference you’ve made in my personal and professional life. I narrowed it down to the following two lessons:

The diabetes community has taught me how to listen and empathize.

1.    On listening: As some of you who have met me in person may know, I love to talk and truly enjoy getting to know people through conversation. The diabetes community has taught me the most valuable part of the conversation is the knowledge acquired through listening and that sometimes my role is best served by sitting back and truly taking it all in – whether it’s with the diabetes community, at work or with my family.

2.    On empathizing: The diabetes community has taught me not to sweat the small stuff! As a business woman, wife and mother, at times life can deal me a pretty diverse hand of cards. The whirlwind of life and its responsibilities can feel overwhelming and even impossible at times; but, it’s during these “impossible times” that I find myself thinking about the diabetes community, and what I’ve learned while listening to you. You demonstrate immense strength, intelligence, poise and most of all, love in even the most trying of times. These instances have helped me to better understand what it must be like to live with a chronic health condition and how to push through challenges to truly prioritize what’s important in life.

Laura Kolodjeski listens intently as Cherise Shockley shares insight about the DOC
Laura Kolodjeski listens intently as Cherise Shockley shares insight about the DOC on World Diabetes Day 2012 at Sanofi US headquarters.

As I reflect on the lessons above, I realize how much support the DOC has to offer its members even beyond the realm of diabetes. The diabetes community serves as an inspiration and motivation in my daily life, both professionally and personally, and for that I am truly grateful.

All the best,

Laura K.

This post is my July entry in the DSMA Blog Carnival. If you’d like to participate too, you can get all of the information at http://diabetessocmed.com/2012/july-dsma-blog-carnival-2/

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