If you took a poll of my friends and family, I'm sure general opinion would be much of the same. I'm not ladylike. Now, to be clear, it's not that I'm a ladette, or a lout of some sort. It's just that by obvious definition, I don't exactly embody the innate qualities of grace and elegance.
When I was in my teenage years, I can remember the shouts of 'spacial awareness!' from my Dad on a daily basis, as I would once again walk into the coffee table. Oh how that would annoy me. To be fair though, I do have the tendency to be a bit of a klutz. I have several different laughs. One of which sounds like I've swallowed a seal, and the other sounds like I'm a wounded moose.
But just because I'm not pretty, don't wear make-up, or style my hair beyond drying and brushing, and I prefer jeans and trainers to pearls and heels, does that really make me un-ladylike? What makes a lady ladylike in the first place?
I had a quick google for 'how to be lady-like', and found a very helpful wikiHow, which gave me some food for thought. A huge part of being a lady has absolutely nothing to do with appearance.
Choose your words wisely. I do believe that this is very important. There are a lot of things that I would like to say, but since I'm trying to regulate the frequent absence of a brain to mouth filter, I am practising the art of biting my tongue (or fingers) more these days. There are a lot of people online in the d-world. I don't necessarily agree with everything that's said. I'm very opinionated in a lot of matters, but I try to be respectful, even if I completely disagree with what a person says. If I can't phrase it properly, I often steer clear. Not because I'm not interested, but I think it's probably better to say nothing than to begin a tirade against a person or an idea that looks like bullying. I hate bullies, and I've vowed never to be one. I've always wanted to be someone that younger people can look up to. There is no way that I could ever be considered a decent role model if I blurted out things without thinking about the consequences.
Sharpen your mind. If it's all about the knowledge, then I think that I must be a lady in training. I don't think I've absorbed as much information as I have in the last year in a really long time. I think the first year with anything as life altering and new is a very steep learning curve. I think being pro-active has really helped with this. I read articles, I read books. I'm happy to talk with people, and educate when I can, and where it's appropriate. I think even writing this blog has been useful in helping me keep things together.
Having read through a few different articles, and looking through any comments about grooming, I see 'stand up tall to face the world'. That, I absolutely agree with. Everyone should try to do that - it's all about the confidence. If you don't feel it, at least try to pretend you do until you can get back up again. All of us, ladies or gentlemen, need to walk tall and proud - I think that's how you get people to take you seriously. I think as well, it's how you get people to believe that diabetes isn't going to stop us doing anything. That it's nothing to hide and be ashamed of. Doing so could go a long way to changing some of the public misconceptions about this disease. Misconceptions that I, for one, am getting tired of seeing.
So what do you think, ladies and gents? Could I be a lady-in-waiting? And would a pair of heels help me stand up a little taller?