CHUCK EICHTEN

BETTER. It's such a basic concept. In fact, if you believe in such things, BETTER is the basis of EVOLUTION.

The basic gist of Evolution is that over time, animal and plant species EVOLVE to live BETTER within the circumstances of their environment. So the theory goes.

Take the giraffe for example. The "competing browsers hypothesis" was originally suggested by Charles Darwin. The idea is that long long ago, in the early days of giraffes, the giraffes with even slightly longer necks had access to more food. Food that was higher up on the tree, that couldn't be accessed by shorter-necked browsers, was theirs for the taking. So they lived a longer, BETTER life. Shorter-necked giraffes had a harder time of things, spending more time finding food, so maybe they didn't live as long, or make as many babies. Soon (well, maybe over millions of years), longer-necked giraffes became the norm, because when it came to eating, longer necks were BETTER.

Fortunately, the time span for Better diabetes is shorter. You can make things Better today. You don't have to wait for the next generation.

I have had Type I diabetes for over 35 years. In the process of living with it, I have tried many things to make it BETTER. Many things I tried were really idiotic. A few were rather smart, or at least proved to be, over time.

But from everything attempted, I learned something. Sometimes it was just the tiniest thing. Sometimes I learned something, then forgot it, and had to learn it over. Sometimes I thought I was learning one thing, then, later, it turned out I was learning something else very different. Over time, like with the extended evolution of the giraffe, the bumbling attempts to make it Better paid off. After three and a half decades of diabetes, I've never had an A1c over 6.5. I have seen no evidence of any eye, or kidney, or circulatory, or cardiac issues sometimes tied to diabetes. I get up and move vigorously every single day. My weight is normal.

But I'm not just lucky. I'm convinced it happened because I worked to make it Better.

The Book of Better is my compilation of all the idiot things, and the occasional smart thing, I did along the way to making my diabetes Better.

I've been a designer at Nike for 15 years. The experience taught me a lot about communicating. Designing for Nike taught me that all of us want to be inspired. We want to have an honest conversation. We want to be able to laugh. Even at ourselves. We want the truth. And we want to make it BETTER. I think the same applies to our diabetes.

Contact Chuck




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Jessica Apple, an insightful asweetlife.org blogger, asked me some really good questions about diabetes, The Book and other stuff. I did my best to keep up.

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