Monday, March 31, 2014

Save The Date . . . .

It’s hard to believe that tomorrow is already the first day of April.  (Especially since I’m looking out my window right  now to see flakes wafting down and the ground covered in white . . . . again . . .  even though all our snow had finally melted.  I’m not happy with this turn of events.  But I digress . . . )  Anyway, it’s true.  Spring is here (or so they tell me) and April starts tomorrow.  Which means that Diabetes Blog Week is coming up FAST! 

SaveTheDateI’ve gotten a few emails asking when Diabetes Blog Week will be held, so here is your official Save The Date.  The 5th Annual (OMG, five??) Diabetes Blog Week will be held May 12th - 18th.  Sign ups will start the week before, Monday, May 5th.  (Olé!!)  As in the past, the blog topics for the week will also be posted that day.

As each year goes by, coming up with fresh topics becomes more challenging.  So last year, I put out a call for topic suggestions.  I loved that because 1) you guys have much better ideas than I do and 2) I’ve always wanted DBlog Week to be by the DOC as well as for the DOC, so having the DOC help come up with topics seems like a perfect fit.  So, I'm asking for your help again.  What should we blog about this year?  Please email your suggestions to me at

I’m hoping with your help we can make our 5th Diabetes Blog Week the biggest and bestest and funnest (and most grammatically inaccurate) one yet!!  (Just kidding . . .  I promise . . .  no more made up words.)

Monday, March 17, 2014

Good Luck with That . . . .

During our final dinner at JDRF Government Day last week Jeffery Brewer gave a speech that quickly brought tears to my eyes.  Parts of it have continued to run through my mind all week.  I know I don’t have this down word for word, but I wanted to share the gist what he said.

GoodLuckImagine your doctor diagnoses you with chronic illness.  He tells you “We have this medicine that you must take.  However, if you take too much it could be fatal.  On the other hand, taking too  little can, over time, lead to some very serious complications.  Also the amount you should take depends on what you are eating.  Your dose is also effected by factors such as stress, how much sleep you got, if you are getting sick, and the amount of physical activity you’ve done.  Further  more, you can eat the same things at the same times with the same amount of activity and take the same dose two days in a row, and the results can be completely different.  So . . . . good luck with that.”

If you are or care for a person with diabetes, you know that this is our life.  But I find I don’t really stop and think about it all that often.  When I go back and reread that paragraph I just typed, it sounds completely preposterous.  And yet, this is our lives with diabetes.  This is how hard we work every day, and how uncertain and fragile our management really is.  I’m not sure we give ourselves enough credit for all we do to stay healthy.  So today, I want to give you a huge pat on the back and tell you that YOU ROCK!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

#JDRFGovDay Highs and Lows

I always struggle to write up event recaps because I'm just not good at them.  I tend to draw a blank on what words to use other than “it was so awesome, you had to be there to understand”.  Great, huh?  So this time I’ll try the old bulleted list to attempt to describe my four days at JDRF Advocacy Government Day, where I joined about 150 other Advocacy Team Chairs and advocates from JDRF chapters around the country to bring our message to Capital Hill. 
  • HIGH:  Meeting with Senator Murphy and health staff from the offices of our Connecticut representatives to thank them for their continued support and to urge them to help ensure the Special Diabetes Program is renewed.  We explained how critical the $150 million dollars provided by the SDP to the NIH is for diabetes research.MurphyMeetingLOW:  A longer than expected walk to our very first meeting of the day, which brought on one of the lowest lows I’ve had in a very long time.  It left me feeling like I had been run over by a truck for the rest of the day.  But I did what any of us would do - sucked it up and powered through.  PWDs are STRONG!!  (Well, okay, I whined a lot too.  Maybe I'm not that strong.)
  • HIGH:  Walking into Congressman Courtney’s office and having his wonderful Health Aide not only recognize me on sight, but notice that  my hair was different and compliment me on it!  (The pictures don’t show it well, but I dyed it red last week.)  Knowing she remembers me and our previous meetings means we can jump right in with less background information and more important details each time we meet.capitalLOW:  During our meeting my CGM alarm went off a billion times due the a major rebound from my earlier 28.  (BEEP BEEP BEEP HIGH PREDICTED!!!  BEEP BEEP BEEP RISE RATE!!  BEEP BEEP BEEP HIGH!!!  BEEP BEEP BEEP OMG YOU ARE SO HIGH!!!)
    HIGH: Having a real example of life with diabetes to show the aide.
  • HIGH: During the final dinner we saw a cool new “something” that is hopefully headed for human clinical trials this year.OMGLOW:  It’s proprietary so I can’t show you or tell you anything more about it.  But trust me, it has very awesome potential!!
  • HIGH: Finally banishing some of my shyness and heading to the bar with great new
    Left to Right: Marcus, Jonathan, Lisa, Deb and Ann.
    LOW:  Major sleep deprivation.  (Totally worth it though!!)
  • HIGH:  Reconnecting with old friends, some of which I met IRL for the first time.friends Clockwise from top:  Meghann; Kathy; Jeanne and Flat Robby; Beth; and Mellissa and JuicyMama.
    LOW:  Saying good-bye to them all when it was time to head home.
  • HIGH:  Knowing that I’m doing something to help make life better for everyone with Type 1 diabetes.YouCanDoThisTooHIGH: Letting you know how important it is for you to use your voice too!  Please sign up and become an advocate - it’s quick, easy and painless!  You’ll get a few action alerts through out the year with easy detailed instructions to email or call your representative and let them know how important diabetes funding is.  Please please please add your voice to our ranks here.
    LOW: This time there isn't one. Everybody wins!!