Like many of you, Allison and I have been spending time reflecting on the past year, and thinking about where this new year might take us. Turns out, this month's Diabetes Social Media Advocacy DSMA Blog Carnival asked just that question:

What is the one thing you are looking forward to in 2012? (diabetes related)

It's hard to pinpoint just one thing, but here's where the thought process took us both:Amy's Answer...

To me, every year is a brand new challenge, both in terms of my personal life and the places I'd like to go professionally.

I have two teenagers in my house now (along with a 4th grader), and that is a bumpy road at times. Sometimes each day feels like a new challenge to my patience and parenting skills. Did I overreact? Is this the right choice? Is THIS the moment to pull out "the big guns," or do I let this one slide? No one gets it right all the time, and I find myself wondering what kind of stories my kids will be telling about me one day...

Meanwhile, my glucose control has gone a bit haywire recently (the dreaded S.U.S.!), so I am back on my Dexcom (my safety net!), hoping the arrows and alerts and trend data will help me figure out what to do this time to smooth the BG seas.

On both of the above fronts: I am looking forward to a year of getting it right more often than not. God willing.

In the diabetes world, I wondered what was possible given the agendas of the major advocacy organizations in this country. We did a post querying 11 of the top diabetes organizations to ask them, point-blank. Some highlights of what these groups said, in shorthand form:

  • AADE - wants to bring down the barriers to becoming a CDE, and begin to recognize "peer counselors"
  • ADA - wants to continue to fight discrimination and engage in more "two-way and customer-service oriented communication with the online community"
  • IDF - says it has "a clear roadmap of action to keep diabetes on the global agenda and translate commitments into action on the ground"
  • JDRF - says it will "expand its efforts to make sure that the solutions we are all working so hard to bring to market do not face unreasonable regulatory hurdles"

That's a lot of good stuff to look forward to right there!

As far as the DOC itself goes, I remain grateful and honored to be part of such a wonderful community! I look forward to watching it continue to develop.

Yes, the DOC is a place for camaraderie and support — which we offer in spades — but it's also a place for us as patient/consumers to voice our concerns. We can strive to hold industry and the Powers That Be to higher standards, insomuch as we can ask the tough questions sometimes. I hope that we'll all continue in this vein, and continue to be respectful of each other's opinions, as the DOC blooms, and grows and grows and grows.

Allison's Answer...

2012 is the year that my diabetes "turns" 18 years old, though sadly I can't kindly ask it to pack up its bags or starting paying rent. So what's there to look forward to with this deadbeat pancreas that refuses to pull its own weight? Well, actually, there's a lot!

While I'm not looking forward to stressing over my blood sugars, I am looking forward to making my body a little bit more "baby ready" for inevitable time that my husband and I decide to go for it and try to have a baby.

And while I'm not looking forward to the number that travel does on my blood sugars, I am looking forward to spending time with my fellow diabetes advocates at all the awesome conferences coming up, like the DiabetesSisters Annual Conference and the 4th Annual Roche Diabetes Social Media Summit, not to mention the ADA, AADE, and CWD conferences that all hit in summer.

While I'm not looking forward to pricking my fingers and wearing my insulin pump, I am looking forward to seeing what kind of new technologies make it to market, and whether or not the recent string of FDA approvals will hold steady through the rest of the year.

But mostly I'm looking forward to continuing to show everyone — the naysayers, the newbies, and even myself — that a life with diabetes can be productive, fulfilling, and even awesome.

{This is our January submission to the monthly DSMA Blog Carnival. If you'd like to participate as well, you can get all of the information you need here.}

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This content is created for Diabetes Mine, a consumer health blog focused on the diabetes community. The content is not medically reviewed and doesn't adhere to Healthline's editorial guidelines. For more information about Healthline's partnership with Diabetes Mine, please click here.