Living life as a Type 1 Diabetic.

Archive for the month “May, 2012”

Nothing Kraft Dinner can’t fix.

One thing you’re used to do when you’re diabetic is to eat ‘healthy’. Pack up on nice proteins, eat a lot of vegetables, fruit is very good for you and please, stay away from the white rice. But when you think about it, isn’t this what everyone should be following as a healthy lifestyle? I am not saying that you can’t have your weekly Ice cream cone at that favourite diary place of yours, or even to have McD’s once in a while (McDonald’s is one of the worst foods you could put in your body… But so delicious!), but having a healthy lifestyle should be something everyone to follow. And while I applaud those who can follow it, I find it extremely difficult to maintain it.

Let me explain; I have been working non-stop on Chronicles Of Tyria and CoT’s forums for the past week or so. To a point where spending 45 minutes in the kitchen was impossible. So often this week I would have pork or chicken slow cooking for 8 hours.

Slow cooked anything:

Directions: Place meat, veggies and broth in Slow cooker. Add spices. Wait 8 hours. Place in plate, add salad. Eat. Keep left-overs for next diner.

But then, you run out of ingredients, and you ‘forget’ to go grocery shopping. What’s in the cupboard? Goldfish, oatmeal, canned goods, dried gravy sachet and Jello package. Oh. But what’s this? Kraft Dinner! (Or Mac-And-Cheese)

While Kraft Dinner was seen as a -very- bad processed food in the past, I’m not sure it is, anymore. At least not the one I buy as a back-up meal plan. The ‘smart’ Kraft Dinner’s noodles are actually made of cauliflower. Yes, you read right. Cauliflower. With no artificial colours or preservatives. The ingredient list isn’t confusing. They are actual words I can read and recognize. The original Kraft Dinner, not so much.

So eating right all the time is a hard thing to do when you’re extremely busy and I’m thankful for the 10 minutes preparation some things offer.

What are your back-up meals?


#DBlogWeek – Diabetes Hero

Let’s end our week on a high note and blog about our “Diabetes Hero”.  It can be anyone you’d like to recognize or admire, someone you know personally or not, someone with diabetes or maybe a Type 3.  It might be a fabulous endo or CDE.  It could be a d-celebrity or role-model.  It could be another DOC member.  It’s up to you – who is your Diabetes Hero??

Arg, late on the Bandwagon. Can’t blame me! Yesterday was a -gorgeous- day and I took advantage of it by going outside with my son. Something we both needed. The sun, nice breeze, a walk and later in the afternoon, a caramel sunday. Hmmmm! Deliciousness.

So, for the last blog subject; Your Diabetes Hero.

While there are tons of great artists out there that are type 1 diabetics, endos included, my diabetes hero is not diabetic. She actually isn’t from this world anymore, either.

My D-Hero is my mother.

When I was diagnosed, to her, it was like loosing a child once again. My sister had passed away at the age of 13 back in 1999 from a stupid roller-blading accident. (Everyone should wear a helmet! It’s VERY important!) And while I kept saying “It’s okay! I’m alive!” at the hospital, she couldn’t stop the tears rolling down her cheeks. Her daughter was sick, permanently sick, and it was another thing that could potentially take her only daughter left away. I stayed at the hospital for a whole week, they tried to bring my BG down quickly, my eyes were failing, I knew nothing about the disease and had to go to classes, too. She visited me at the hospital every single day. The first two nights, she had skipped work and stayed with me. She went to classes with me, to understand what was wrong with me and how to ‘treat’ it and she patiently waited outside my room while they would fill jars of blood for tests.

It’s when we got home that my mother became my d-hero.

The things my mother did… Just to keep me safe. Her first grocery shopping trip was 3 hours long. I didn’t go with her, but I knew what was going on; she was checking every side of boxes, bottles, cartons, to count the carbs. The lowest it was, the better. She was buying ‘food I could eat’ without having to inject a ton of insulin. She got recipes books with low sugar and proceeded to cook and bake on the same day.

Every single day, my mother had a new recipe to show me. She was focused on keeping me alive as long she could. And for months she took care of me like I was a porcelain doll. She was even teaching her customers how many carbs were in their plates! (She was a waitress).

She did this right up until she was too weak to.

My mother was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2007 and passed away in March 2008.

But she was, and still is, my diabetes hero.


#DBlogWeek – Saturday Snapshots

Back for the third year, let’s show everyone what life with diabetes looks like!  With a nod to the Diabetes 365 project, let’s grab our cameras again and share some more d-related pictures.  Post as many or as few as you’d like.  Feel free to blog your thoughts on or explanations of your pictures, or leave out the written words and let the pictures speak for themselves.

I’m such a bad blogger. I forgot about today’s #DblogWeek!! I was so focused on taking the day off with my son after a long week of hard work (And it paid off!) with my GW2 fan page and forums… That I completely forgot to post anything. *Sigh*

So, instead, I’ll post a picture that every (or most at least) mothers have; First picture with their babies, right after delivery. Most mothers have them. Not all mothers have them with a pump on their chest!

This is my life. Starting anew. I’m so glad he’s in my life now, I’m a better diabetic because of him, that’s for sure!

#DblogWeek – What they should know

“What is one thing you would tell someone that doesn’t have diabetes about living with diabetes?”.  Let’s do a little advocating and post what we wish people knew about diabetes.  Have more than one thing you wish people knew?  Go ahead and tell us everything.

Before my diagnosis, I knew nothing about diabetes. I thought diabetes was related to sugar. It had something to do with sugar anyways and that, for some reason, they had to carry this pouch and test their blood for god-knows-what.

That was my actually thinking. Honestly. I thought that people with diabetes couldn’t eat anything that had sugar in it. Shredded wheats, candy, Captain Crunch, cake, cookies… I didn’t think Diabetic people could eat all of those, and that there was sugar in basically everything. Even your common apple. I thought that an apple did not have any sugar.

That it was healthy.

Diabetes class (After my diagnosis) at the hospital brought me down to reality, gave me knowledge. But just a basic knowledge. you learn things about diabetes on your own, you get used to 5 shots a day or wearing a pump. Testing for blood doesn’t hurt anymore, for the most part, and so on.

What I wish people knew about diabetes… There’s a whole, giant list. And while I wish people were educated on that matter, it’s not my place to decide for them. They’re not sick. They don’t have to live with diabetes. I would educate them for type 2 prevention, but you can’t educate someone to prevent type 1. Type 1 just happens. I didn’t ask for it, I didn’t know it existed. It found me. Or rather, my immune system found it.

I don’t want people to know what it’s like, to live with diabetes. What I want from people, is no judgement. But for them not to judge me, they would need to understand truly, what it’s like to live with diabetes. So I’d need to teach them -everything-.

And that’s never going to happen.

#DBlogWeek – Fantasy diabetes device

Tell us what your Fantasy Diabetes Device would be?  Think of your dream blood glucose checker, delivery system for insulin or other meds, magic carb counter, etc etc etc.  The sky is the limit – what would you love to see?

Well, my pancreas working, for one. But I guess the point of this topic is not to talk about a cure for diabetes (Because there isn’t one! Dr. I-Can-Cure-Your-Diabetes!) but about what would make my life much easier if I had this fantasy device.

For one, I think the pump itself is a great device, and I wouldn’t go back to having 5 shots a day with an insulin pen. I am not criticizing people who have them, I know how scary/expensive switching to a pump is. But if it weren’t for the pump, I wouldn’t have that as close to “normal” life as I currently have it. But if I had to create something, it would be this:

A small pump, smaller than the one I have (Medtronic 522) which only 1 site would do both things; distribute insulin AND check my BG. No need for two sites. But not only would it do that, if it were to see that my BG was high, it would automatically deliver the insulin I need to correct it, and make sure that my BG would be at 5.4 (97.2mg) throughout the day. And night. And Physical activities. And sickness. And stress. And so on.

Something that would recharge the batteries through solar power. Something that wouldn’t make a mess every time I change a site. Something that would allow me to wear the site as long as a whole month.

We can all dream, right?

#DBlogWeek – One thing to improve.

Yesterday we gave ourselves and our loved ones a big pat on the back for one thing we are great at.  Today let’s look at the flip-side.  We probably all have one thing we could try to do better.  Why not make today the day we start working on it.  No judgments, no scolding, just sharing one small thing we can improve so the DOC can cheer us on!

When it comes to my flaws (and I have many of them), I’m not scared to admit them. I know I am a control freak, I like when things go my way. I know that I tend to burst in anger instead of assessing things (Never on a professional level though.) And I try to fix things, I work on my flaws, and sometimes it takes a while, sometimes only a matter of days. One thing I have not been doing ever since I gave birth to my son, diabetes wise, is to test my blood sugar before bed and right after I get up. And it’s important, you know, so that my BG stays nice during the whole 6 or 7 hours of sleep. If I have a BG of 10.5 (or 180mg) I would normally wait until it’s fixed. And I tend to never test. I have a snack at night, my pump beeps during sleep time for my BG reminder, I don’t hear it and keep on dreaming.

The next morning, I tend to my son; diaper change, sippy cup, cuddles, breakfast. It takes about half an hour or so before we sit down to have breakfast, and that’s when I test; right before eating. Most of the time my BG is good, but there are those crazy 2 weeks in the month where it’s not so good. Female hormones; gotta love ’em. Sometimes I test before breakfast and I’m not suprised to see a 15. (Or 270 for you mg readers).

I should test at those times. Having high blood sugar when you sleep, on long term, isn’t necessarily great. And then I’m mad at myself for losing this crazy control I used to have when I was pregnant.

And for not having a CGM.

#DBlogWeek – One great thing.

Living with diabetes (or caring for someone who lives with it) sure does take a lot of work, and it’s easy to be hard on ourselves if we aren’t “perfect”.  But today it’s time to give ourselves some much deserved credit.  Tell us about just one diabetes thing you (or your loved one) does spectacularly!  Fasting blood sugar checks, oral meds sorted and ready, something always on hand to treat a low, or anything that you do for diabetes.  Nothing is too big or too small to celebrate doing well!

This is kind of funny actually, because it makes me think about my brother Vincent and something that happened when I visited my father last week. It made me realize that I was somewhat of a pro at guessing Carb counts. And I’m pretty sure it takes a diabetic to do that, right?

When I go over to my father’s place, I don’t necessarily chose what I’m eating and most of the time I have to guess how much carbs there are in one meal in order to make the input in my insulin pump. Was that half a cup of rice or is there more? That meat marinated in a carb-loaded sauce all night… We go out to eat often… And that’s always a guess!

At home, I rarely have anything full of carbs, let alone ice cream or chips or even donuts. When I go over there, it’s Ice cream heaven. My brother Vincent is staying at their place for the summer because he works with my father when he’s not in college, and my step-mom buys so much ice cream, the freezer’s full. Yes, Vincent is an Ice Cream lover. No, he is not diabetic. But I am, and temptation is bad! One night, after a day of outside activities and fun under the sun, We had those Drumstick Ice cream cones – The Caramel ones – and they, were, GOOD.

So as I push the bolus button on my pump, I ask my brother “How many carbs are in one? 35? Check on the side of the box for me please.” And so he answers with “37! Clooooseee!” And then I have to ask “Fibers? Like 1?” and there was 1g fiber. So, 37 – 1 = 36. Pretty close for carb guess!

You know what he did? High five’d me for guessing right. Ooooh, Vincent, you’re a funny guy!

But I guess I am an awesome carb guesser. And for that reason, my blood sugar readings are often accurate even when I go out to eat.

Vincent feeding my son Aaden a yummy Oreo Ice cream sandwich. Mmmmmmm.

#DBlogWeek – Find a friend

“Think about the d-blogs you read that you think we may not know about and introduce us to one that you love!!”

When I started this blog, I didn’t think I would make new friends. No, not a face to face, let’s go for coffee friend, but more of an Online relationship, just like the one I had at first with my husband. (Of course, much less romantic!) The definition of “friend” is the same as before, but the bonds we now share can be created within a second, from miles away and across the globe. And though I was writing just to “vent” and “inform” about Type 1 diabetes, I couldn’t help but notice that more people started reading my post, but most of all, commenting! I felt new bonds forming, and sometimes talking about other things than Diabetes right on my blog. And once, I received an e-mail by someone who was concerned about me. And even though we did not “know” each other, this blogger had taken the time to send a private e-mail to me.

Scott E, from Rolling in the D, was a new follower of mine (Well, as new as it can get! My blog itself was rather new, too…) and I had followed his blog just recently. One night, something stressful happened; I was out of insulin and only 5 hours or so remained in my pump. Meaning that I would be several hours without insulin . Read about it here, and the follow through here. It was back in March, so no need to scroll your life endlessly, just click the links! (As you can guess, I’m still alive, so everything went fine after all!)

I often think about Scott E’s e-mail. It’s a reminder that even though you might not “know” someone, you can still care about them. But the fact that we share a common bond, Type 1 diabetes, makes it even more personal.

I received his e-mail the next morning because when he had sent it, I was in bed, reading The Hunger Games. Would I have known, it would have been super helpful, too. He suggested ways to help me maintain a few more drops of insulin to last me until I get to the pharmacy, he expressed his deep concern towards another Type 1 and even though I was fine, (Woke up with a really good BG) I kept thinking; what if? What if I wasn’t fine, and something really bad would have happened? What if I didn’t post after this; would everyone think I was dead? Would it have reached my D-bloggers community? Would Scott E feel helpless and wished he had sent this e-mail sooner?

Okay, whoa! This is getting super depressive! And it’s not my intention. My intention is for me to show you that friendship you make online, especially here in the D community, is strong. And Scott’s blog is a very good read with every posts he does. Even his Wordless Wednesdays! And I highly recommend you follow him, go read his blog. It’s always interesting and very well written! He is not fake and truly cares about the people in the D community.

Scott E, Thanks for being a friend!


Turns out that Scott E is also doing the #DBlogWeek and posted about me and the exact same thing that happened! What are the odds! Well, it just confirms that his friendship is true, and another reason why you should believe me when I say that he’s a good person and an awesome DBlogger! So follow him! You’ll see I’m no liar 😀

Third Annual Diabetes Blog week

A popular D-Blogger named Karen is hosting the third annual diabetes blog week and I made sure to be on the participants’ list! I would love it if my fellow D-bloggers would also participate as I think seeing all of our entries on each day of the week would be really interesting! See all the info here.

In other news, I haven’t updated much this week because I’m on a little vacation at my father’s with my son until Mother’s day. So starting next Monday, especially with the D_blog week coming, you’ll hear lots from me, and I expect to hear from you as well!

Read you then!

Surprise, Surprise…

Sometimes you feel like a failure. You think “Maybe I’m just meant to fail.” like everything you do turns to dust, never to gold. You never finish what you’ve started. Sometimes, you just have the wrong mindset.

It’s hard to get out of a mindset where everything seems to be falling apart. Everything around you is evolving quickly and you’re standing there, in the dark, with nowhere to go. I think it just takes one tiny thing to get out of this state and resume being you.

I was fairly happy last week, but not so about my performance with weight loss. Tracked my point system, but ate a lot of junk food. Drank more wine than I should’ve, didn’t move as much as I could. So I wasn’t expecting much with the scale, rather a gain than a loss. But, I still hopped on the scale this morning. Dreading it, loathing it, loathing myself. “I could’ve done better. And I didn’t.

That was my mindset.

But when sometimes you think you’re doing it wrong, for this and that reason, something works out for you anyways. And for that reason, I have lost 3 other pounds. 202 lbs. Huh!

All of a sudden,  my mindset changed. When I was seeing black, now I see positively. I realized that even though I didn’t do what I should’ve done, I have done what I could, and not worse. Because I could’ve ate junk all week, but I didn’t. Because I could’ve stayed at my computer all week, but I still played with my son and walked outside.

So sometimes, you might be discouraged, feeling blue, unworthy… All you need is a little tiny thing that’ll make you smile, and you keep on going.

Like every other things in life.

Silly things make me smile. You?

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