Haidee S. Merritt is a self-proclaimed realist who knows, after 38 years of diabetes, how real the disease is. The collection of cartoons in her book One Lump Or Two: Things That Suck About Being Diabetic (www.HaideeMerritt.com) spans a period of more than a decade, starting out as nothing more than a few doodles and growing to represent a lifetime of personal struggles and experiences.
This perspective is rare: a bitter yet honest look at living with this disease since her diagnoses of Type 1 at age 2.
Haidee has traded-in denial as her favourite coping mechanism and chosen humour; she assures us this seems to be much more productive.
“When it comes to communicating with others about diabetes, I wholeheartedly believe in the need for opening up new approaches and energies. I find that illustration works best for me. I believe cartoons can really reach people who are reluctant to embrace traditional supports and therapies.
The art-therapy aspect of it is really amazing; it’s quite soothing to squirrel myself away and gnaw on the bitter nuts I’d been storing my whole life. So, not only are the cartoons a way for me to confront and accept things, but they have given me a way to tell other people about it. People ask questions after they read the book; it starts a necessary dialogue and makes every topic approachable.”
You will laugh at her cartoons – they’re perfect for those who have lived with diabetes and know the many and varied experiences life brings when coping with a disease 24/7.
Her goal is to become a Celebrated Diabetic Personality and she has an opinion on just about everything, so just ask.
Reach her directly at [email protected]