Monday, January 17, 2011
Interview with Author Cherie Burbach
Hello Cherie. This book involves helping others to cope with diabetes. Tell us about your new book.
I didn’t realize that dialog would be an issue. Where did you get your inspiration for your book?
I've been a Type 1 diabetic for 20 years, and over time I've noticed that many of my friends and family say and do some really dumb (and sometimes hurtful) things in relation to my disease. Things like commenting on what I have on my plate, telling me how I "gave" diabetes to myself, or even just refusing to have sugar-free beverages around because they don't drink them. I don't think people mean to be hurtful, I just think if you don't have the disease, you view it from the assumptions and misinformation you've heard.
I wanted to write a really short, simple book (much shorter than the space I'm taking here to explain myself! LOL!) that people could breeze through quickly and yet still find a nugget that would change their perception about diabetes.
Wow! You have really opened my eyes. You include stories based on your own experiences to illustrate your point. Can you briefly share with us one of these stories?
Sure. One woman I worked with used to comment every day at lunch at the amount of fruit I ate. I'd typically have a piece in the morning and then a piece of fruit at lunch. She'd scream for the whole office to hear, "I'm telling! You're diabetic and you're not allowed to have fruit! My niece is diabetic so I know better."
Obviously she didn't. Diabetics can, and should, eat fruit. For that matter, diabetics should eat a balanced diet like everyone else. Balanced is the key. Bottom line, though, this woman heard somewhere that diabetics couldn't have fruit, and she decided to become "the food police" with me. It was not only rude, but incorrect.
That must have been difficult to handle. A Reviewer wrote, “Often writers say if they can touch just one life or change one person for the better by telling their story, that their mission is accomplished… I was a prime target for this book; one of the guilty uneducated and judgmental non-diabetics with a friend who has diabetes.” Tell us what you think about this review.
I was really touched at this comment. It's true, if even one reader gets the point you're trying to make, it was worth writing the book. I loved that the reviewer was honest in admitting that even though she had a diabetic friend, she really had no idea what the disease was all about. Those kind of reviews make it all worthwhile as an author!
I understand completely what you mean. What a wonderful review! Now it’s time for the not-so-serious question. Tell us something about the real you that we’ll never forget.
I met my husband through online dating, and on one of our first dates he made me dinner. I thought this was so sweet, and I started to think "Hey, I am really falling for this guy." I even let the thought "he's the one" float into my mind as we ate his delicious (albeit rich) meal of ribs, Texas toast, and macaroni and cheese.
A few hours after the meal, I started to feel bad. I had lots of pain that got worse and worse, to the point where I couldn't stand any longer. We were still on our date, and he was very concerned. I kept trying to shake it off, but he had to call an ambulance and follow me to the hospital! I kept thinking, "This guy is so going to dump me after this date!" LOL!
Turns out his rich meal helped set off a gallbladder attack. I had to have surgery and have it removed. From now on, we call his ribs "Emergency Room Ribs" because of that story.
Oh my gosh! Well, there’s one thing I can say. You have found a real gem of a man, a person who cooks delicious ribs. Not everyone is so lucky to find a man who cooks. Yum! I like the new name, “Emergency Room Ribs.” By the way, that happened to me, too. I fixed this luscious casserole for my husband and I promptly took him to the hospital that evening and found out that he had gallstones. The casserole was very rich and clashed with his system, setting off a gall bladder attack. So my husband sympathizes and understands completely.