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Be Thankful: A Letter of Gratitude

If you, like me, have diabetes, you realize upon reflection that you are, despite the constant demands of the disease, blessed.  Somewhere, sometime, you have benefited from the kindness, professionalism, and genuine concern of a medical professional, be it a nurse, pharmacist, dietitian, physician, therapist, or supporting staff.   

Composing a letter of gratitude to one of these people who has touched your life is a wonderful way to celebrate the new year.   Here are a few tips to get your started:

1:  Take time to reflect.   During your time with this disease, who has made the greatest positive impact on your life with diabetes?

2:  Make a list.  What qualities do you most appreciate in this individual?  What specific incident or incidents influenced your diabetes management and outlook the most?  

3:  Write a first draft.   Writing intimidates a lot of people, so allow yourself a rough draft or two to get all your thoughts on paper.  Include as much specific information as possible, especially if the professional has a lot of patients.  

4:  Revise.  Read your letter over and record any corrections that you would like to make in your final draft.  

5:   Write your final version, being sure to sign your name, and send it off to the postman. Many medical professionals communicate with patients by email, but an email has a less personal feel than a letter received in the mailbox.   

I know that diabetes is sometimes incredibly isolating, and it’s easy to forget the professionals who work diligently to make sure that we receive the care and education we need to self-manage our disease. When I take the focus off myself, I realize that diabetes care is a team effort. The people who seek to keep me healthy and strong deserve a “thank you.”   

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