Part Four: Was Diabetes the Cause?
The beginning of this downhill descent, 1687-88, coincided with the death of two of Anne’s daughters from smallpox. It also coincided with her father’s ascent to the throne and his loss of it during the Glorious Revolution. The familial loyalties and betrayals involved in this were deep and complex, and Anne was not a deep or a complex person. The compound stress must have been enormous. She was eating, and probably drinking, heavily. Might Anne have developed diabetes around the time of, or during, her 4th or 5th pregnancy? Anne’s lifestyle was characterized by overindulgence. She was not very active; her preferred recreation was playing cards. She would certainly be at greater risk than most for developing diabetes during a pregnancy, and unconsciously fueling the diabetic trajectory with her personal habits.
Spears is a registered nurse with Master’s Degrees in Nursing and Public
Administration. Her first novel, Six of One, JoAnn brings a
nurse’s gallows sense of humor to an unlikely place: the story of the six wives
of Henry VIII. Six of One was begun in JoAnn’s
native New Jersey. It was wrapped up in the Smoky Mountains of Northeast
Tennessee, where she is pursuing a second career as a writer. She has, however,
obtained a Tennessee nursing license because a) you never stop being a nurse and
b) her son Bill says “don’t quit your day job”.