This one's short - I promise!
I want to start by para-phrasing that (disputed (scroll to the bottom)) Margaret Mead quote...
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people with diabetes can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever will.
OK, it's a bit of a hatchet job on the original, but hopefully the sentiment is pretty clear. Being at the Diabetes UK Professional Conference this week has reinforced my long held belief that the people actively working in the field (be it consultants, DSNs, researchers, dieticians, GPs or any healthcare professional) want to make a difference to the lives of people with diabetes.
But I've also had the opportunity to look closer to home and spend some time with some people with diabetes, both those speaking out as the small (but increasingly loud) patient voices, and those here blogging with me. As I'm sure we all know, that peer-power is unquantifiably important and even just a small dose of it can be inspiring.
The end of the second day marked the moment where the patient speakers had done their duty (at least those I know), and we celebrated with a few drinks in the bar at one of the hotels. What struck me immediately was the passion and enthusiasm that the people round the table spoke about their experiences of diabetes and diabetes care. It's not surprising given how passionate everyone in the #doc is, but it's so refreshing to hear the words come out of people's mouths instead of reading them on blogs or in tweets.
Looking round the table, it's hard to not have faith. To believe... to know that things won't be the way they are now forever because there are people out there that want them to be better... that know that have to be better.
I think we expect that from healthcare professionals. They've chosen this field because they believe they can make a difference, and from what I've seen, they absolutely are working tirelessly to bring about that change.
But to look around a table at eight to fourteen people (depending on exactly when you looked) and hear what they have to say is inspiring. It makes you want to stop whatever it is you're doing, listen, and go away and do something to make a change. Then you remember that there are hundreds of people you could put round that table who share that drive, passion and desire to make things better for people with diabetes.
You can't help but know that it will get better, because these people, because you want it to. I'm proud to know those people and I can't wait to see what they're going to do next.