Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Ending on a high note . . .

Looking back over 2008, I have to admit it wasn't the best year for me. I usually love doing the End-Of-The-Year recap thing, but this year I'd rather not look back over some trying times I had. Of course, the year had some good points too. Diabetes-wise it was a really good year! I started this D-Blog, got brave enough to try pumping, was able to attend some terrific events and met a bunch of wonderful diabetes friends. So I think the best way to wrap up the year is by posting about a wonderful prize I won from a wonderful blogger. (This post is DREADFULLY LATE as well, so please forgive me).

To celebrate World Diabetes Day last month, Kelly had a little contest in which she asked us to tell her our hopes and dreams for World Diabetes Day. As luck would have it, her lovely mom pulled my name and I won!! Want to see the extra special gift pack Kelly put together for me?

Ooohhh, shiny! Stickers and Muppets!! What could be more fun. Umm, maybe what's inside.
Look at all this loot! SweetTarts for those pesky lows. Some calming tea to soothe the nerves. Yummy and nutritious almonds. An Airborne Power Pixie to boost my immune system. And a tin of sugar-free Knitting Girl mints. (Does Kelly know me or what?) But wait, what's in the pretty purple gift-bag?
Oooohhh, more sparkly wrapping. Why, it must be the grand prize.
That's right, my very own WellCharm with a year of Platinum service! I have to admit, I don't wear a diabetes ID tag because I usually find them really ugly less attractive than I might like. This charm, however, is so pretty. It comes engraved with my own ID number that medical technicians can use to access the records I've input into the WellAlarm site. I have to admit, it makes me feel safer when I'm out and about on my own. It's nice to know that if something should happen, EMTs will know that I"m diabetic and what medications I take.

So yes, just like my diabetes, 2008 wasn't all bad. Although my stuffy nose and sore throat will be glad to see it go. Here's to a healthy, happy (head-cold free) 2009 to all of the D-OC!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Houseguests for Christmas

Rox and Sox have come to stay while their owners are home in Germany for the holiday.  They wish you all a very Merry Christmas.  And so do I!!

Friday, December 19, 2008

A Holiday Poem

'Twas the week before Christmas, when all through the blog,
Not a new post was stirring, your time it won't hog.

Friends started e-mailing notes filled with care,
Wondering why updates had now become rare.

There's shopping and knitting and holiday crap,
I know I should post, but I all I want is a nap!

I'm cranky and blue and just keep feeling sadder
So I test my blood sugar to see what's the matter.

First it's too high, then it's too low
Holiday stress wreaks havoc on blood sugar, you know?

Bolus a correction when the highs appear,
And for those lows, gobble eight tiny reindeer.
(um, reindeer cookies!)

Then grab the knitting needles, so lively and quick,
And work on those gifts, just like St. Nick.

Less rapid than eagles my gifts how they came,
But I whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;

"Now, mittens! now, scarves! now, socks and toys!
On, lace! on cables! for girls and for boys!

To the top of the skein! to the top of the yarn ball!
Now knit away! knit away! knit away all!"

Then off to the mall in my car I flew,
To buy other gifts for the people I knew.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard in my head
The buzzing sound I've long come to dread.

I drew in my hand, and again pricked my finger,
Knowing I'd have a low that would linger and linger.

Shopping makes blood-sugar crash, from my head to my foot,
I need to sit down, eat something, stay put;

A bundle of candy I had flung on my back,
It's the reason my purse is as large as a sack.

The blood sugar woes make it hard to be merry!
And my muscles ache from the supplies I must carry!

I wish I'd stay home to knit one more row,
Instead of braving the mall and fighting this low;

But soon after the SweetTarts are safe in my belly,
My legs stop feeling as if they're made of jelly.

I'm feeling much better, a right jolly old elf,
And I laugh as I shop, in spite of myself;

A few more gifts from the list in my head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;

I make my way home, but then remember more work,
I've forgotten to bake cookies; I feel like a jerk!

A batch of shortbread, shaped like Christmas bows,
Just thinking of them and my blood sugar rose.

So much left to do, as my blog drops out of sight,
"Happy Blood-Sugar to all, and to all a good-night."

Friday, December 5, 2008

20 days . . .

That's right. Twenty days until Christmas.  Holy crap, I am so not going to be ready.  But instead of shopping, decking, baking, wrapping and knitting, what am I doing?  Blogging!  Blogging the fun Christmas Meme that's been making the rounds.  I love filling them out almost as much as I love reading them on everyone's blogs

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Both.  I like the look of wrapped gifts better.  But for the odd sized, hard to wrap presents, I'll cave and throw it in a gift bag.

2. Real tree or artificial?  REAL!!  My dad is allergic to pine, so we always had a fake one growing up and I always hated it.  (I think I might be mildly allergic too, but I ignore it.  I always get sick for Christmas.)

3. When do you put up the tree?  I tend to do things at the last minute, so usually the week before Christmas and it's hard to find a good tree.  (That's last years tree to the left, looking pretty sad.)  This year we are hosting the annual Christmas party for a group of friends, so we're getting our tree this weekend!

4. When do you take the tree down?  Again, the last minute.  Usually the day before the town will be collecting the dead trees.

5. Do you like eggnog?  Love it, but I haven't had it in years.   (Have you seen the carb content in eggnog?  I usually save my carbs for the cookies instead).  Why doesn't anybody make a low-sugar, Splenda eggnog?

6. Favorite gift received as a child?  Hmmmm, I don't know.  Santa always brought me great stuff, but I don't remember an all-time favorite.

7. Hardest person to buy for?  Dad.

8. Easiest person to buy for?  Mom.

9. Do you have a nativity scene?  Nope.

10. Mail or e-mail Christmas cards?  Mail.  And sometimes I make them myself.

11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received?  It wasn't so much the gift, but what the gift-giver said.  A co-worked handed me a box of chocolates and said "I feel really bad giving you these because I know you can't have them."  Ummm, okay, then why did you pick them out for me?

12. Favorite Christmas movie?  A Christmas Story.  And The Year Without A Santa Claus - because I love the HeatMiser!!  Oooohhh, and I know it's not a movie, but just thinking about the Schweddy Balls bit with Alec Baldwin from Saturday Night Live sends me into a fit of giggles every time.  I wish I could find it on YouTube or something.

13. When do you start shopping?  Mid-December when the panic sets in.

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present?  Yes, but only as a joke.

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas?  Christmas cookies!!  We have them for breakfast on Christmas morning.

16. Lights on the tree?   Lots of 'em.  White and non-blinking please.

17. Favorite Christmas song?   The Carol of the Bells.

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home?   We go to my parents house.  They live two miles from my house, so it's not really traveling.

19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer?  Sure can.  Can you?

20. Angel on the tree top or a star?  A star, as you can see in the picture.  It's made from grapevines.

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning?   Christmas morning!!  I'd hate to spoil the surprise.

22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year?   Long lines and rude people in the stores.

23. Favorite ornament theme or color?   Errr, I don't know.  My decorating taste leans toward old-fashioned and country inspired things.

24. Favorite for Christmas dinner?  I love those spiral hams.

25. What do you want for Christmas this year?   I've been yearning for a new camera ever since I saw the cool one Kelly has!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Qualifying . . .


When I wrote yesterdays post, I was so excited about starting the CGMS process that I forgot to mention the requirements I need to meet for my insurance to consider a CGM medically neccessary.  I have Anthem Blue Cross, and here's what they want to see.
  • I must be a Type 1 diabetic, and therefore insulin dependent.  CHECK
  • I must test my blood a minimum of 4 times per day.  CHECK, usually before noon!
  • I must have a month-long blood sugar log that shows numbers below 50.  CHECK, including some nasty ones in the 30's and that scary 27 at the beginning of last month.
  • My endo must write a prescription.  CHECK.
So hopefully, it will be smooth sailing.  I'm afraid to get too excited though, because I feel like you never know what the insurance company will say.

I also have to admit that it irks me that they don't care about high blood sugar readings, only the lows.  As if the highs are no problem.  It's those highs that lead to costly long-term complications, so shouldn't I need to show them readings over 250 too? 

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

And so the fight begins . . .

"In this corner, weighing it at " . . . okay, wait a minute.  I'm not about to broadcast my weight on the internet, so I guess this little boxing metaphor will have to stop before it even gets started.

So, to put it plainly, my fight for CGMS approval has begun.  Earlier today I had my endo appointment.  I have to confess, as I printed out my blood sugar readings I was sickened.  I saw some very scary lows, but I also saw tons and tons of readings between 200 and 300.  The amount of time I have spend high concerned me, and I was prepared to say good-bye to my hard earned 6.3 A1C.

I did say good-bye to it.  In fact, I was shocked to find that my new A1C was 6.2.  After looking over my blood sugar results, my endo agreed that there must be a bunch of lows I'm not feeling and not catching.  That's scary enough to counteract any joy I should feel at having a lower A1C.

This afternoon I was on the phone with Minimed.  The hardest part of the process so far was figuring out what Caller Option I needed from the main switchboard.  Once I got to the right department, things went very smoothly.  My request is in, and someone should be contacting my insurance company tomorrow.  According to the information in their files, I easily meet Anthem's requirements for CGMS coverage.  Hopefully I will have good news by Monday or Tuesday.

And if I don't, I'm prepared to move on to Round 2 of the fight.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Yummy Holiday Treat

I know I just posted about muffins yesterday, but it's the time of year when good food is everywhere.  And I have a new favorite seasonal treat.

It's the Gingerbread Latte from Seattle's Best.  And they can make it sugar-free!  I usually get it with decaf coffee too.  If I feel like splurging and my blood sugars are behaving, I get the whipped cream on top.  More often than not I get it without, and it still feels like a decadent treat.


It comes with an adorable tiny gingerbread man cookie too.  When I don't get the whipped cream, they usually put him on the side.  Today the barista dunked him right in, which is why his face is a little runny.

I plan to drink as many of these as possible before they are gone for the season!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Are you stil hungry?

Okay, so I failed my "post every day this week" goal by missing yesterday. I'd blame it on a Turkey Hangover, but I really didn't stuff myself silly on Thanksgiving. I guess that's why I can still think about food. I had some bananas that were way too ripe, so I decided to bake up some banana muffins. I have plenty of banana nut recipes that I like, but I decided to try a new one this time. I gave Rachel's Version of Banana Bread a try.

Oh my goodness.


I don't think I'll ever use another banana bread recipe again! I made a few mods, but they were minor. First, I cut the whole recipe in half. It still made a dozen muffins, which is plenty for me and Pea. Second, obviously, I made muffins instead of breads. I baked them just like I bake any other muffin recipe, for 20 minutes at 400 degrees. And lastly, because I was lazy, I didn't do the topping. I'm sure it's awesome, but I loved these muffins without it. If a banana muffin had a torrid love affair with a bag of granola, these muffins would be their sinful love-child. Mmmmmmmmmmm.

I'm still trying to work out the carb counts on these. I looked up a bunch of banana nut muffin recipes and they seem to average about 18 - 24 grams per muffin. From the two times I ate these, I'd say they fall toward the lower side - but remember, your body may process the ingredients differently than mine does. Use your best judgement and be sure to check your blood sugar frequently until you figure out how to bolus for these.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thankful . . .

As we work our way toward the end of 2008, I've been reflecting back over the year. And I'll admit that for the most part, it's been a pretty crappy one. I've had lots of things go wrong this year, and so have many of the people I care about. So when we ring in 2009 in just 34 days, I'll be glad to bid farewell to 2008.

But today is not about dwelling on the things that have gone wrong. And I'm glad, because I have so much in my life that I am thankful for.

My wonderful husband.
My family.
My friends, both in real life and on-line. And especially those who now fall into both categories.
My cute little house, filled with warmth and love and plenty healthy foods.  (And sometimes some not so healthy foods too!)
The four months I got to spend owning the best kitty in the world.
All my pretty yarn.
My new insulin pump, and all of the other supplies that help me manage my diabetes the very best that I can.

On this Thanksgiving, be sure to take special notice of all the things in your life that make you thankful. Never, ever take anything for granted.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

In Case of Emergency . . .

I'm really good at planning. I can't help it. It's part of my nature. Or maybe it's just been ingrained in me after all my years with diabetes. But in any case, my head is always swirling with plans and lists, back-up plans, and In Case of Emergency plans.

With some surprise, I realized there is one part of my life that has been seriously under-planned for. Pump site changes. Don't get me wrong, I always have plenty of supplies available to change a site whenever and wherever I may be. But what would happen if, for some reason, I couldn't change my site out on my own. The chances of being too sick to change my site are slim, because I think if I was that sick, I'd be in the hospital anyway. But what if a knitter's worst night-mare happened, and I broke my arm or something. (Yes, in the case of a broken arm, I worry about the knitting before the diabetes. I can't help it.) I don't think I could do a one-armed site change.

I've mentioned this to Pea over the past few days. Since we'll have four days together over the Thanksgiving break, I want him to do a site change for me. From start to end. To make sure that he could if I needed him to. He doesn't want to do it. He's afraid of doing it wrong or hurting me. I don't think he could really mess it up, and I'm not afraid of a little pain. I think it's more important to be sure that, In Case of Emergency, he could help me.

Do you have someone who is ready to do your site changes if you needed them to? Have you long-time pumpers ever been in a situation where someone had to change you site out for you? Is it worth forcing Pea to do one, even if he's really uncomfortable at the thought?

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Frustrated . . .

Lately I've been battling with my blood sugars. And I feel like I'm losing. Yesterday was no exception.


I fight highs all morning. Usually it starts to level off in the afternoon. Yesterday my morning wasn't as bad as most days, but my afternoon was worse.  As I finished up my housework, I was feeling sweaty. I figured that was from the cleaning but I tested anyway, and rang in at 33. I had no other symptoms of a low. That makes me think that the highs I fight all morning are rebounds from lows I may be sleeping through - although I have yet to see a middle of the night reading that confirms this.

That 33 made me particularly angry, because it meant I was on my way to another rebound. The rest of the afternoon and evening would be spent trying to correct sky high blood sugars. I was so discouraged that I ate a few cookies. I figured if I was going to be high anyway, I might as well eat what I wanted. Not very productive, but for a moment, I just didn't care. In an attempt to be less reckless, I did bolus for the cookies.

As you can see from my meter readings, I never did rebound. I spend all afternoon and evening desperately trying to get my blood sugar up. I was frustrated. I was discouraged. I was tired and cranky. I got into a huge fight with Pea, that ended with me flinging empty soda cans into the basement, swearing a blue streak and stomping off to hide in the bedroom at 7:30. That's not like me. Yes, I have a temper and tend to raise my voice more than I should, but I don't swear at my husband and I never throw things. I guess the 53 reading at 8:04, after we had made up, didn't surprise either of us.

Next Friday I go to my endo. I'm sure when he sees my readings and I tell him that I'd like to go on a CGMS, he'll start the process immediately. But right now, next Friday seems very far away. And the time it will take to get approval, get my sensors, and get trained to use them feels like eons. And I'm left feeling frustrated about highs I can't correct and scared about lows I'm probably not feeling.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Mmmmm, hungry . . .

While other bloggers are posting daily as part of Nablopomo, I seem to be posting less often in November! That sounds just like me. So for my own small personal challenge, I'm going to post every day this week. To both of my blogs. I know that doesn't seem like much, but you have to start somewhere, right?

Today, I'm hungry. And there is a food meme going around. So there you go, instant post topic!

1. Can you cook? If yes, do you like to cook?
Yes, I can. And yes, I do like to.

2. When do you eat with your whole family?
It's just me and Pea, and we eat dinner together every night.

3. What do you eat for breakfast?
Usually FiberOne cereal - it's the only one that doesn't spike me. Or stone-ground wheat toast. Or yogurt and fruit. On the weekends Pea usually makes scrambled eggs for us. Or cheese grits.

4. When, where and how do you eat on weekdays?
Since Pea takes the train to work, I know what time he'll be home and have dinner just about ready when he walks through the door around 6:10. Although lately he's had to work over-time and hasn't been getting home until almost 7. Ugh. When he's home early, we eat in the dining room. When he takes the late train, we're lazy and eat on the couch while watching TV.

5. How often do you eat out (in a restaurant)?
No more than once a week, if that.

6. How often do you order delivery/take-out?
A couple of times a month.

7. Regarding no. 5 and 6: Say there weren’t financial reasons would you do this more often?
Yes, I probably would. Even though I love to cook, I also love to eat out at good restaurants.

8. Are there any “standard dishes” you serve regularly?
I cook fish and chicken at least once a week. But I serve them all different ways.

9. Have you ever cooked for more than 6 persons?
Sure. Even when I was in high school, I was making pasta from scratch and having more than 6 of my friends over for dinner parties. (The picture to the right is from my most recent Dinner and a Movie party. The theme was Airplane. You can click it if you want to see it bigger.)

10. Do you cook every day?
To be honest, I usually don't cook on the weekends.

11. Have you ever tried recipes from blogs?
You bet. Right now I've been making a lot of recipes from A Year of CrockPotting.

12. Who cooks more frequently at your home?
I do.

13. And who cooks better?
For most things, I do. I'm also quicker and make less mess when I cook. Although Pea's chicken cutlets are much, much better than mine.

14. Do you cook totally different compared to your mother/parents?
Kind of. I use more fresh herbs and more seasoning in general. Also, when I have the time, I don't mind cooking things that take some time, where as Mom is more about quick and easy dishes.

15. If yes, do you nevertheless eat at your parents?
You bet. I'd never say no to a free meal!

16. Are you a vegetarian or could you imagine being one?
I can't ever imagine giving up meat.

17. What would you like to cook which you haven’t dared to make yet?
I can't really think of anything. I'm usually not intimidated by cooking. Although I did have trouble with pie crust from scratch and never tried it again.

18. Do you prefer cooking or baking?
I love them both.

19. What is your greatest misery in the kitchen?
Everyone seems to have the same answer to this - not enough counter-space. While I am hurting for counter-space too, I'm going to take a different spin on this question and answer about my greatest COOKING misery. It was the time I tried to make a lemon cream sauce without a recipe . . . just winging it. I ended up with a curdled mess and we had butter on our pasta instead.

20. What do you dislike?
I dislike having to wash all the pots and pans after cooking. Oh, and most vegetables. And most pork (except ham and bacon). And mashed potatoes. And . . .

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Crazy for Bond

Over the years I've always enjoyed 007 movies, but mostly went to see them because Pea loves them so much.  All that changed when Daniel Craig started playing James Bond.  I've never been one for blondes, but I'm loving the Blonde Bond.  Suddenly I've got a school-girls crush.


So this time, it was me who was counting down to the release of the newest Bond film.  Over the weekend we went to see it.  Although I thought Casino Royale was better, I really enjoyed this one too.  And suddenly, I'm seeing Bond everywhere . . . . even in my diabetes.

I take my juice-boxes shaken, not stirred.
I am Licensed to Pump.
I try to keep my carb count down, but Ten Grams is not Enough.
I test my blood so much they call me Redfinger.

Want to put a little Bond in your life too?  It's easy . . .
Blood testing in public?  The results are For Your Eyes Only.
What to do if you've eaten your dinner and you still want more?  Easy, You Only Bolus Twice.
We all know the biggest diabetes misconception out there is Never Say Sugar Again!
And sadly, for now, Diabetics are Forever.

Friday, November 14, 2008

World Diabetes Day - A Day in my Diabetes Life


Happy World Diabetes Day.  I'm all decked out in blue (excuse me for over-sharing, but I'm blue right down to my underwear).  I'm getting ready to write a diabetes post for my knitting blog.  But I wasn't sure what I wanted to post on here on my diabetes blog, until I read Kerri's post.  I'm going to steal borrow her idea and give you a Day In My Diabetes Life.  It will actually be a compilation of many days, so I can give you some really good examples of what goes on.

6:10 am:  Pea's alarm clock goes off.  He hits the snooze twice until I yell at him to get up.  While he's getting his breakfast together, I pop into the bathroom to wash up and take my iron pill and my blood pressure pill.  My doctor was somewhat glad the my blood pressure runs a bit high, because taking an ace inhibitor also helps protect my kidneys.

6:30 am:  I put on my workout clothes.  Then I change the lancet in my blood test machine and do my first blood test of the day.  91.  Good.  I make no adjustments, knowing that the 30 minute mile I'm about to do on the treadmill won't have much of a short-term effect on my blood sugar, although it will (hopefully) help keep me stable over the next 24 hours.

7:15 am:  With my workout done, I test my blood again to see where I am.  104.  Great.  I set up the coffee maker to brew while I'm in the shower, and I bolus 1 unit to cover the spike I get from the caffeine.  It's insulin pump site change day.  Not only do I disconnect from my pump for my shower, but I also rip my site out.  Ouch.  It's not exactly painful, but the sticky site doesn't want to let go of my skin.  It's like ripping off a stuck on band-aid.  It smarts a little.  Hey, what's that?  A few large blood droplets start to ooze from the site.  That usually doesn't happen.  But sometimes it does.  You just never know.  I grab a tissue, mop them up, and hit the shower.

8:32 am:  Shower is done, new site is on, and coffee has been drunk.  Now I'm ready for some breakfast.  But first, another blood test.  I test before each meal.  86.  Good.  I'm having yogurt (11g carb) and fruit salad (21g cab).  I try to eat less than 30g at a time, but it can be difficult.  Today I'll be happy with 32g.  The pump tells me to bolus 3.2 units for the food, but deduct .3 units because my blood sugar is only 86.  (It tried to keep me at 100.)  So 2.9 units it is.

10:45 am: I'm surfing the web reading blogs.  I want to leave comments, but I'm having a problem.  Every post I read is . . . well . . .crap.  The words don't make sense.  There is no point.  I can't figure out what everyone is trying to say.  Stupid bloggers - they usually write so well.  What is wrong with everyone today?  I'm so annoyed . . .   I think I'll go knit.

11:02 am:  Knitting isn't going much better.  My fingers just aren't moving right.  BEEP-BOOP-BEEP  My pump says it's time for my 2 1/2 hour after a meal blood sugar reading.  Where is my meter?  Oh, I left it in the kitchen.  Knitting in hand, I go retrieve my meter.  Doh, I left the ball of yarn on the couch, so a long string has trailed me into the kitchen.  I'm so aggravated.  My meter rings out . . . 55.  Damn.  Anything under 70 is too low.  As I slurp down my juice-box, I realize with some guilt that the bloggers are not stupid today - their posts were as witty and well thought out as usual.  It was my low blood sugar that made my head swim and caused nothing to make sense.  I'm sorry for doubting you, blog friends.  It's weird that I'm so foggy at 55 - usually I'm okay.  After all, the other day I was 27 and completely clear headed.  Why am I surprised?  I know diabetes often contradicts itself.  You never quite know what you are going to get.

1:28 pm:  Time for lunch.  And another finger stick.  155.  Well now I'm too high.  Darn.  I bolus 1 unit for the salad I'll be eating and 1 unit because I'm higher than the target 80 - 120 range.  Then I put my salad together.  A big bowl of Very Veggie salad blend.  A cut up cucumber.  A handful of sunflower seeds.  Some chicken and some shredded cheddar jack.  A dollop of buttermilk ranch dressing.  And a big cup of water.  Yum.

4:05 pm:  Time for the next blood sugar check.  118.  Great!!  Now it's time to get ready for our ballroom dance class.  I change my clothes, grab my shoes, and pick up Pea at work.

5:33 pm:  Better test my blood before starting to dance.  I've got a juice-box at the ready if I'm too low.  But no, I'm at 122.  The pump says to take .4 units to bring me back to 100, but I over-ride this because the dancing should do the trick.

6:20 pm:  Dance class is over and we're on our way home.  I test again, and am just where I want to be, 104.  Hurray!!!  However, the highway is at a stand-still, so we decide to hop off and stop for dinner at a near-by restaurant while traffic clears out.  Eating out can be tricky, as I have to guess on the carb content of the food.  And I really, really want the Fish and Chips.  I haven't had them in ages.  Fried food is hard to bolus for, because the fat messes with the carb absorption.  And French Fries are one of my personal arch enemies, always making me spike.  But I've been having a pretty good day with the blood sugars - and I really want the Fish and Chips, so I'm going to go for it.  I bolus 7 units using my pumps Dual Wave feature.  I let it give me 3 units right now, and release the other 4 units slowly over the next 1 1/2 hours.  This should help keep me level even though the fat will slow down the way my body processes the carbs.

9:00 pm:  Pea and I are watching TV when my pump reminds me that it's time to test again.  111.  Good, right on track.

10:15 pm:  Time for bed.  I wash up and take my cholesterol pill.  High cholesterol runs in my family.  And since I have diabetes, it's important to keep my levels in check.  And now, time for my tenth and final blood test of the day.  246.  CRAP.  So much for my good blood sugar day.  However, the pump tells me that I still have enough units of insulin in my body (from that extended dinner bolus) to bring me back into range.  I make a note however, so next time I can adjust the bolus and get more insulin sooner.  That should help me avoid a spike next time I decide to indulge in French Fries.  Of course, the chances of next time working like this time are always a gamble.

And so ends my sample Day In The Life with Diabetes.  I can guarantee you that if I do everything exactly the same tomorrow, I will get wildly different results.  That's the thing with diabetes.  No two days are ever the same.  You just do the best you can, make adjustments when you need to, and try again tomorrow.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Putting out an A.P.B. . .


Sound the alarms!  My motivation is missing.  Last seen just two days ago.  Desperately needed and missed.  Lack of motivation has caused the skipping of two workouts.  Blood sugars are expected to soar.  It is believed my motivation took off when the skies turned gray and Mother Nature decided to send cold weather and rain.  Depression has followed.

Anyone seeing my motivation is asked to please report it immediately.  Reward may be granted upon safe return home.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Oh, you can't have that . . .

We talk a lot about the need for creating awareness of diabetes and how we live with it every day. I imagine the "uninformed masses" as nameless, faceless people very far from me. I live in my little bubble of immediate family and friends, who all understand diabetes pretty well.

Last week, in Louisiana for my uncle's services, I was outside of my bubble. I only see my aunt and cousins every few years, and I forget that diabetes isn't a daily issue to them. I need to remember that they still believe what we were told 20 years ago, that sugar is taboo. I need to remember to explain that a low means I need glucose, not insulin. I need to teach them that although I try to stay below 140 after a meal, it won't always happen. When I'm stressed out and far from home, eating things I don't usually eat and trying to guess their carb content, a 214 will slide in there - and it isn't the end of the world.

After the funeral, we gathered at my cousin's house for some wonderful southern cooking sent over by members of their church. My cousin's husband reminded us to save room for all the desserts - but then said to me "Oh, but you can't have that" in the apologetic tone we all know well. It was okay though - it was a great opportunity to educate them all on carb counting and meal boluses. There was no way I was passing up home-made Louisiana pecan pie!

I selected a modest slice and guestimated the carbs as well as I could, remembering that the filling was sugar, pecans, sugar, butter, sugar and sugar. I remembered fleetingly that my physical activity over the past two days had consisted of car rides, airplane flights and sitting in the funeral home. That's okay, I'd adjusted later for any Pie-High.

Later that night, Pea and I relaxed in the hotel, glad to have made it through the stress of the wake and funeral. I felt pretty nauseated, and assumed it was due to the spicy and unusual foods I'd eaten earlier. (Mmm, the jambalaya and boudin. Later in the week we had gumbo and crawfish etoufette. Yum! ) I decided to test my blood and go to bed.

3 . . . .

2 . . . .

1 . . . .

beep . . . .

"Oh crap. Sweetpea, I'm 27." Ah, stress. I forgot to take into account that we all felt much less stressed out after making it through the funeral. Yes, I was still upset and sad - but the weight of the services has been lifted off us all. In any case, I'm less concerned by what caused the 27, and more concerned with how it snuck up on me. I wasn't shaky or sweaty or foggy. I'm grateful that I was alert and functioning, but it still bothers me that I got as low as TWENTY-SEVEN with no symptoms except for a bit of queasiness. That's scary.

I think it's time to fight for a CGMS. And yes, next time I'll have a second slice of pie!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Fly High and Say Bye

First, indulge me in a little figure skating talk. Brasseur and Eisler, a Canadian pair team, had a daring move called "Fly High and Say Bye". It always brought the crowd to their feet. Wanna see it? Look for it around the 1:10 mark in this video.



Fun, huh? But why take a walk down figure skating memory lane with the "Fly High and Say Bye"? Well, that's not so fun. My family is flying high on a trip to say bye to my Uncle, whose long battle with cancer ended early Saturday morning.

Uncle J, Mom and Aunt M. April 1949.

Bye, Uncle J. I'll miss you teasing me about my knitting. I'll miss "fixing" your coffee just the way you like it. (Black, no sugar) I'll miss comparing medical devices with you. But I'm glad you are in a better place, whole and free from pain.

Friday, October 31, 2008

One Word Meme

Why yes, apparently if everyone else jumped off a bridge, I would too.  :)

Only Type One Word .. first word that comes to mind

1. Where is your cell phone? Upstairs
2. Your significant other? Sweetpea
3. Your Hair? Short
4. Your Skin? Pale
5. Your mother? Awesome
6. Your favorite thing? Knitting
7. Your dream last night?  Robbery
8. Your favorite drink? Martini  :)
9. Your dream/goal?  Happiness
10. The room you’re in? Livingroom
11. Your ex?  Mistake
12. Your fear? Complications
13.Where do you want to be in 6 years? Happy
14.Where were you last night? Couch
15.What you’re not? Judgemental
16.Muffins?  Yummy
17.One of your wish list items? Yarn
18.Where you grew up?  Here
19.The last thing you did?  Yawn
20.What are you wearing? Hanknits
21.Your TV?  Soaps
22.Your pets? Passed
23. Your computer? Laptop
24. Your life? Off-track
25. Your mood? Mixed
26. Missing someone?  Always
27. Your car?  Old
28. Something you’re not wearing?  Jewelry
29. Favorite Store?  Many
30. Your summer?  Fun
31. Like someone?  Friends
32. Your favorite color?  Green
33. When is the last time you laughed?  Today
34. Last time you cried?  Hhhhmmmmm
35. Who will respond to this? Someone
36. Who’s Answers are you anxious to see?  Everyone



Happy Halloween to all!  Remember to count and bolus!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Be Prepared

"Be Prepared" is the official Boy Scout Motto.  As far as I'm concerned, it should be the official People With Diabetes Motto too.

Right now my family and I are getting prepared.  Prepared for some bad news about my uncle as the end of his battle with cancer draws to a close.

When the dreaded call comes in, we'll need to be on the soonest flight we can catch to Louisiana for the services.  For me, that means being as prepared diabetes-wise as I can.  I've gathered all of the D-supplies I'll need on the trip - and then some.  Insulin (short and long acting), extra infusion sets, quick-serter, alcohol swipes, IV prep pads, meter, lancets, extra test strips, syringes, ketone strips, and more Smarties, Sweet-Tarts and gummies than I could possibly need.

I have to admit, I don't look forward to going through security.  I haven't flown in almost four years, and I've never flown as a pumper.  I've done some homework on how to make it through security with as little delay as possible.  I will have all of my supplies in a (large) Zip-Loc bag - although cramming in all of the stuff listed above will be quite a feat!  I will have it out and ready as I approach the security checkpoint, and will let them know immediately that I am diabetic.  My insulin will be in it's original boxes, with the prescription printed on the front.  I will show them my insulin pump, and explain what it is and that I need to stay connected to it.  I believe the security checkpoints are extremely important, and my goal is to make their job as easy as possible.  I'll try to be prepared with everything I need to show them I am not a risky passenger.  I'm just a person managing a disease.

Be Prepared.  We live by those words every day, don't we?

Have you flown recently?  Do you have any more tips I might need?

(P.S. And for those wondering - yes, I checked and yes, knitting needles are still allowed on the plane.  I've got mine all ready to go.)

Monday, October 27, 2008

DRI Conference - Fun, Informative, Inspiring!!

I was one of the lucky people in the New York City area who was able to attend the Diabetes Research Institute's day-long conference, DIABETES 2.0 -Harnessing New Technologies in Research and Treatment. There is probably no way to actually sum up this experience in words. Although it was a very long day, starting with a 6 am train ride and ending with a 6:30 pm blogger dinner and a 9 pm train ride home, the hours flew by. The sessions were very informative and the first two took away some of my cynical doubting attitude about the chance of a cure in my life-time. (I do believe a cure for diabetes will be found.  I just sometimes doubt that it will be found in my life-time.  But the information I saw on Saturday made me more hopeful). Another session inspired me to get back on track with my exercising, and had me on the treadmill this morning before 7 am - and before the excuses for skipping my workout cropped up. The last session, about Diabetes Burn-Out, left us with lots of laughs and good tips.

Equally as important as the information was the social aspect of the day. I was fortunate enough to meet a whole gang of fellow diabetes bloggers. It was awesome to spend the day with a bunch of people who really get what I live with every day, because they do too. Some people I "knew" from their blogs, and it was great to put real-life faces and personalities to their on-line ones. Others were new friends who's blogs have quickly been added to my feed reader. All were delightful! I was battling high blood sugars all day, but my frustration was lessened when several others admitted theirs wouldn't come down either. I think maybe the conference center was pumping a sugar-mist into the air! (Just kidding.)

So, who did I meet? Well, it's easy to remember because my Event Photographer was on hand to take some group shots. In this first one, we are striking our best Rockette pose - but I obviously missed the announcement that our pumps were supposed to be on display.


We quickly realized we had left out a few key people and gathered again for another group shot.

From left to right: Scott (who it turns out I went to college with), Fran, Gina, me, Lee Ann,
Val, Kelly, Allison, Amy and Bernard (who Pea and I were fortunate to spend the train ride home with).

If you ever have the opportunity to attend an event like this, I would highly recommend it. As my post title stated, it was fun, it was informative and it was inspiring.

I thought I'd end this post with a little video that was mistakenly taken as we were lined up for pictures. It seems my camera was on the wrong setting, so we got some inadvertent video footage. There isn't much to it, but I think you can hear our laughter and the fun we were having.

video

So yeah, I guess the red light really means the camera is recording video!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Funny site

Nope, I'm not directing you to a web-site that will make you giggle.  I don't have one of those to share today.  Although I did get quite an eyeful yesterday when I Googled "tighty whities" in an attempt to check my spelling for a post over on my knitting blog.  (Do you use Google to check your spelling sometimes?  Usually it works out really well . . . . except for yesterday when it lead me to a blog that I'm not even going to link.  I'll let you use your imagination, or Google it yourself.)

Anyway, when I say "funny site", I mean my pump site feels a little funny.  It doesn't hurt, but it just doesn't feel quite right.  Kind of like it's pulling at my skin.   I've never had a site feel that way before.

My blood sugars have been okay.  Not great, not terrible, but okay.  I woke up a little high the past two mornings (109 and 122).  After breakfast yesterday I needed a .2u correction Yeah, that's point-two units.  Not bad, but I usually don't need any post-breakfast correction.  Then again, I punched in that my yogurt has 10g of carbs and I think they changed there recipe and it might be 12g now.  Today's post-breakfast was perfect - and I didn't have a yogurt.

My highest high since putting this site in was 175.  So I guess I'll let it ride.  It will be time to change it out tomorrow anyway.  So unless I start hitting 200's, I'll leave it in.

At what point do you decided a site isn't right and put in a new one?  Now that finances are on everyone's mind, do you give your site a little more leeway before deciding it's bad and changing it out?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Dancing with the Amateurs

I'm going to make a confession.  I don't really like to exercise.  I go in spurts where I'm all into it - logging miles on my treadmill and pumping iron along with my strength training DVDs.  But before I know it, the laziness hits.  I decide I've earned a day of rest.  The next week, I take two days.  Soon I'm happily spending my exercise time lounging on the couch knitting.  And as much as I've tried, there's no way knitting on the couch counts as a workout.

I think the key in sticking to a workout routine is to find things that feel like fun, not exercise.   No matter how lazy I get, I know I'm guaranteed a 45 minute workout each week.  How, you ask?


Dancing!!
(That's me and Pea at a team competition between our dance studios.
Not the best picture, but the only one I have of us dancing together.)
In 2004, when Pea and I were planning our wedding, we decided to take ballroom dancing classes.  To our surprise, when the 6-week program was finished, we both liked it so much we decided to continue.  The more dance technique we learn, the better the workout is.  Obviously, fast dances like my personal favorites, swing and cha-cha, really get the blood pumping.  But surprisingly, smooth dances are also a real workout if you do them correctly.  (Not that we do - but we're trying.)  The rise-and-fall of a good waltz takes a lot of muscle control in your legs and core.  Just holding the proper dance frame takes strength - head back and left, shoulders back, chest lifted,  back arched (but not arched too much), weight on one foot, and arms extended to open the frame.  Then you've got to really reach with your legs to create the big, swoopy movement - which gets your heart-rate pumping as much as a walk on the treadmill.  Oh, and do this in four-inch heels without letting any part of that crazy dance frame crumble.  Yeah, not so easy!!

Not so easy . . . but so much fun!  And so much exercise.  My blood sugars following a dance lesson always rock!  And when Dancing with the Star hit the air-waves a year after we started our lessons, dancing ballroom became almost cool!  So, if you are struggling to get motivated for your workouts, why not think about what activities you can do that feel like fun instead of exercise?  It's a sneaky way to trick your body into a workout without even realizing it.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Petition for a Doodle

November 14th is World Diabetes Day, a day to raise awareness of diabetes. I'm sure most of you have seen the great logos Google uses to mark holidays and events. They call them doodles, and the diabetes community is hoping Google will put one up for World Dabetes Day.

Here's how you can help. Please go sign a petition that will be presented to Google on November 1st. We're hoping to have more than 20,000 signatures, so we need your help!!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Juggling Life


In the past week, my normal routine has been completely shot to hell. Pea took some days off so we could finish a bathroom re-do project we started far too long ago. Many balls were dropped while trying to juggle a home improvement project along with my normal daily routine. Sure, spackling and sanding, priming and painting, ripping out old cabinets and installing new ones is quite a work-out - but it's very different from my normal exercise routine. Our meals were off schedule and consisted of take out or easy to cook foods that weren't all that healthy. We couldn't get all the work finished, and I'm left with mounds of unwashed laundry, piles of neglected chapters, assignments and quizzes for my on-line class, and blogs that have been sorely neglected. Along with a week of blood sugars that have seen both higher highs and lower lows than normal. It's pretty stressful.

How do you cope when life has you juggling things outside of your normal routine? When you find yourself starting to drop balls, is diabetes one of the first ones to fall off track? I found it hard to make healthy food choices when I was too exhausted to care. I found that the combination of hard physical labor and being totally engrossing in our project made me less likely to feel a low coming on. I'm left feeling like I'm behind on everything and completely off track, which doesn't help keep my stress levels down. It annoys me that a home improvement project can throw my disease and control so far off track.

But I guess the thing to do now is stop dwelling on the past week and start moving forward. The hardest work in the bathroom is done, and we should be able to finish things up over the next few weekends. It's time to stop juggling and get back to the normal routine. Trade bathroom demolition for walks on the treadmill. Stock back up on healthy snacks and make nutritious meals. Stop feeling overwhelmed by my school work and just get it done. Hopefully these efforts will get those blood sugars back in line.

How do you keep from dropping the diabetes ball when life causes you to start juggling your routine? I'm determined to do better on our next home improvement project!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Jackpot

Things have been pretty busy around here lately. Pea and I are starting to feel like the only time we see each other is when we collapse glassy-eyed in front of the TV. So yesterday we decided to take time out for an adventure to our favorite playground for grown-ups, Mohegan Sun Casino. Pea's game of choice is Roulette, while I'm more of a Slot Machine girl.

Oddly enough, I couldn't help but compare the one-armed-bandit to my blood glucose monitor. They both sing out to me - with a Ling-Ling-Ling from the slots and a Beep-Beep from my monitor. I feed shiny round quarters into one, and red droplets into the other. Then I wait patiently for the results. Sometimes I'm up. Sometimes I'm down. When I break even, I consider that I've won!

Are there days when you feel like you have as much control over your blood sugar as you do over the slot machine reels? Sometimes it's all just feels like a gamble to me. With the slots, I try to cash out when I'm ahead. I wish diabetes had a "collect your winnings" button too. Instead, I just keep feeding in those red droplets.

Yesterday was a good day. I hit the jackpot on both counts. I ended the day with an extra $200 in my pocket and a daily blood sugar average of 108. I hope Lady Luck decides to stick around for a while!!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

My meter of choice

A few days ago in one of the forums I peruse, someone posted that they were getting ready to buy a meter and wanted to know which one we preferred and why.  She was thinking of buying a One-Touch Ultra Mini.  I posted that I own one and use it as a back-up because it's small enough to stash permanently in my purse.  I also let her know there was a good chance she could qualify for a free one (scroll down and click on "Get a meter").

However, my favorite meter, the one I use all the time, is the Accu-Check Compact Plus.  Since they just came out with a new version, I thought I'd write a post about what I love . . . . and also what I don't love . . . about my meter.


WHY I LOVE MY COMPACT PLUS (new - on the left & old - on the right):
  • The strips.  They come in drums of 17 which you load into the meter, so you don't have to fiddle with individual strips each time you test.
  • The lancet.  It's pretty painless.  And it snaps right onto the side of the meter.  So not only do you not have to fiddle with strips, but you don't have to juggle the lancet device.
  • Uploading your results.  I did have to buy the cord, for $15, to allow me to upload my blood sugars to my computer.  But for me, it was well worth it.  I like the on-line software Accu-Check has for printing results, averages, trends and other reports.

WHY I LOVE MY NEW VERSION COMPACT PLUS EVEN MORE:
  • The case.  I loved the old case, above on the right.  I wasn't sure what I'd think about the new case, but I love it even more.  The meter slide into a pocket, instead of being held in by an elastic loop.  Under the pocket is a little flap that makes a compartment meant for spare drums of strips.  I use mine to hold an emergency syringe and bottle of insulin.  In the old case, it was out in the open and at times I felt self-conscious having it out there for the world to see.  I appreciate that it's now hidden away.  On top is a pocket for spare lancets.  And the whole thing folds in half and secures with an elastic.  I was skeptical at first, but I love it even more than the old zippered case.
  • The backlight.  That's right, no more struggling to see results in dim lighting.  The new backlight is awesome.
  • "Strip Tally"  If you hold down the off button, it tells you how many strips are left.  There is also a window on the back, like the old version - but over the years the window on my meter got cloudy and I couldn't see the numbers below.  Being able to see  my strip tally on the screen is much better.
  •  I got it for free.  Actually, better than free.  Target was selling it for almost $70, but I knew better than to buy it then.  I waited two weeks, and CVS had them on sale for $10.  Plus, if you bought it, you got $10 in ExtraCare bucks back.  And, there is a rebate in the box for your purchase price back, up to $40.  If you watch for offers, it's pretty easy to get meters for free, because the companies want you to buy their strips.

WHAT I DON'T LOVE ABOUT THE COMPACT PLUS:
  • The size.  The old meter wasn't really all that compact, and the new one is even larger.  I understand it needs to be large enough to hold the drum of strips, but it's about three times as tall as a drum.   I'm disappointed that the new version got bigger instead of smaller.
  • It doesn't ping my pump.  I'm always sure to enter each and every blood sugar into my pump.  But it would be nice if Minimed had partnered with Accu-Check so my Compact Plus sent the results to the pump automatically.
  • The strips are not "preferred".  My co-pay for the Accu-Check strips is pretty high.  I have to admit, this ticks me off.  Bad enough I'm stuck doing 8 - 10 fingersticks a day, but the fact that my insurance company tries to dictate what meter I use is pretty infuriating.  But that's another fight for another day.
So there you go.  My thoughts on the Compact Plus. I hope it's helpful - whether you decide these features are what you are looking for in a meter or not.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

You've got mail . . . eerrr, dinner . . .

Last night, I did something I've never done before. I sat down to dinner with three other Type 1s. Three complete strangers, who quickly felt like friends. People who I met thanks to the Internet and the Diabetic OC.

You may have read over at Kerri's blog about the Fld County Diabetes Dinner she arranged. The idea appealed to me immediately for two reasons. 1) I live in Fld County and 2) I've never ever shared a dinner with other Type 1s. I was nervous, yes, hoping I wouldn't revert back to Junior High Karen who was painfully shy. As it turns out, there was absolutely no need for nerves or shyness.

I arrived a bit early, and babbled to the hostess that I was meeting a group - but I didn't know how many of us there were or what name the reservation was under. Luckily, a minute later, Kerri showed up to take charge. She also babble to the hostess that she didn't know how many of us there were (and that we didn't have a reservation because we didn't need one on a Monday night). From that moment, I knew things were going to be fine (although I'm sure the restaurant staff wasn't as optimistic!!)

We were seated at a table with a clear view of the door so we could attempt to watch for others meeting us. Soon J joined us, and a few minutes later R arrived. We all chatted so much that the poor waiter had to come back three times before we were ready to order. We compared how long we've had diabetes (I "won" with almost 29 years, but all false pride at that fact was lost when I realized this also meant I was the oldest person at the table). We "pumped" J for her perspective on being diagnosed as an adult, just 6 months ago. We listened to R's insights about going through pregnancy as at Type 1. We were entertained by D-blogging stories that only Kerri could tell. We talked about husbands and boyfriends and parents. We talked about jobs and cats and dogs. We talked about lows and highs. We tested our blood sugar (and no one asked what the results were). We ate our dinner, and we talked and shared and laughed until the waiters started putting up chairs and turning off lights in a desperate attempt to make us go home!

A shared disease is no guarantee that people will be compatible, but these three women are people I would be happy to hang out with even without the diabetes bond. The fact that we could share our diabetes trials and tribulations with people who really get it was the icing on the cake. (And yes, we can have cake, we just need to bolus for it!)

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Monday, September 8, 2008

"Dressy Pumping"

Before I got my pump, one of my biggest concerns was how and where I would wear it.  I wasn't all that thrilled with the thought of having it clipped to my waist.  After all, I've inherited a pear-shaped body-type (gee, thanks mom), and I certainly didn't want anything drawing more attention to my hips!

I also wondered what I would do on fancy occasions.  Where would I put my pump if I was wearing a little dress?   Pea's cousin's recent wedding provided the perfect opportunity to come up with a solution, and I thought I'd share.

Like I said, I'm a pear-shape.  Because of this, I always gravitate toward A-line dresses.  This turns out to be a good thing, because I found the folds of the skirt are perfect for hiding a pump.  The dress I wore to the wedding was a blue lacy number, with a tan lining underneath.  I decided the solution would be to sew a small pocket for my pump right into the inside lining of my dress.  (Click any photo to enlarge it for a closer look.)
First, I measured my pump and cut my fabric.  I wanted it slightly wider than my pump, so I could slide it easily in and out when I needed to.  I also made it quite a bit longer than my pump, so it wouldn't fall out the top of the pocket when I danced.  (I just used some old cotton in my fabric stash, since I knew no one would see it but me.  A pretty fabric would have been nice to use too - like when you wear pretty underwear and feel special all day.  Sorry, a bit of over sharing there!)
Once I had the strip measured out, I turned the raw edges over slightly and hemmed them a bit so they wouldn't fray. Of course, when cutting the strip I made sure to leave a seam allowance for this step.
Once done sewing the strip, I laid my pump on top just to double check it for size.  To be honest, the one in this picture ended up being a bit narrow, so I quickly sewed up wider one. 
Once I had a "pocket" my pump would fit into, I put on my dress and decided where I wanted the pocket to go.  I marked it with a pin, turned the dress inside out, pinned on the pocket and tried the dress on.  This was the hardest part, and I pinned it several times before I got it placed just right - low enough that I could get to it when I needed to, but high enough to disappear into the folds of the skirt.  (But then again, I'm a bit obsessive-compulsive - so just right is a hard place for me to get to!)
Next, I CAREFULLY sewed the pocket to my lining.  This was the scary part.  The lining was a slippery, silky fabric that wasn't easy to work with.  And it would be just like me to accidentally sew through the outer layer of the dress as well.  But luckily, by going slow and being careful, I stitched it in just right!
Done!!  I checked my new creation by standing on my bed in front of the dresser mirror.  Can you see the pump?  I sure can't!

I intended to get a "real" picture of my dress in action at the wedding, but unfortunately things didn't work out so well.  I ended up with a terrible headache, probably a migraine, that had me tossing my appetizers before we even got seated for dinner.  We had to take a taxi back to our hotel, and I was probably asleep before the bride and groom even had their first dance.  Oh well, at least I looked nice at the ceremony.

What is your favorite way to wear your pump on fancy occasions?

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Leaky

Six months ago, I had my annual dilated eye exam.  For the first time ever, the eye doctor found a leaky vessel.  In my left eye.  It was small, and she told me that after almost 29 years with diabetes, this was bound to happen.  She reassured me that there was no reason to be alarmed right now, but that we should keep a close eye on it.  (Hahahahaha, close EYE on it!!  I crack myself up.)

So today, we took another look.  (Tee hee, LOOK.  Okay, enough puns?)

The good news is, the bleeder in my left eye is gone.

The bad news, now there is one in my right eye.

Sigh.  Again, it's very small and not in a "dangerous" part of my eye.  For now, we'll wait another six months and check again. 

But we know what that means.  Six more months for me to worry about the state of my eyes.  Damn this disease is frustrating some times.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

My AIC results are in!

Actually, they were in on Friday morning at my endo visit - I just haven't had a chance to post until now.  But first, a bit of background . . .

When I worked at my old job, my A1C was in the low 7's.  After I quit, I got it down to my all-time low of 6.4 -but it was back up three months later and has never been anywhere near that since.  In the past year, I've been stuck between 7.0 and 6.7, unable to do any better.

I've been on the pump for about 4 1/2 months.    My current A1C . . .

6.3!!!

I'm stunned!!  I'm thrilled!!  I'm excited!!  I'm overjoyed to know my decision to start pumping was absolutely the right one for me.  And I'm inspired to keep up with the hard work it took me to get here.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Lucky

I have diabetes . . . and I'm lucky.

I count and weight and measure . . . and I'm lucky.

I prick and jab and bleed . . . and I'm lucky.

I inject and pump and bolus . . . and I'm lucky.

I walk and dance and (occasionally) lift some weights . . . and I'm lucky.

I'm lucky because I have options. I have choices. Yes, sometimes I slip. Other times, I make all the best choices and the numbers are still off. But that's okay. I can correct . . . adjust . . . make my next choice a better one.

My uncle has been battling cancer. He's had multiple surgeries, chemo, treatments and procedures. Last week the doctors said it still isn't working. He is out of options. There are no more choices. There is nothing left to try. No reason left to fight.

So today, I know I am lucky. I'll go to my endo appointment tomorrow. If my A1C doesn't meet my secret expectation of well under 6.5, I won't let myself get upset this time. I'll be thankful for my choices and thankful for my options. I'll remember how lucky I am . . . and fight some more.