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DiabeticallyYours

Living life as a Type 1 Diabetic.

Archive for the tag “high blood sugar”

Crazy busy, crazy BG.

OH dear gods.

Hi! It’s me again! I’m… Back! Somehow! It’s been one crazy ride through the gaming community on my part.

All this started with me starting a blog about a game I really love, Guild Wars 2. It’s actually a fan site and, after ArenaNet promoted it on their Facebook page, it boomed. I got really busy managing this community and, well, I was in the process of moving, too! So, creating a new community, moving to a new city, packing, unpacking, then new plans about Chronicles of Tyria (The community) with a brand new podcast, contests, holy gee I’m extremely busy. Being with Aaden, alone at home (My husband got another contract in another province!) I’m managing a community, a podcast, a toddler, a house and, most importantly, diabetes.

How hard is it to manage diabetes when you’ve got crazy events going on? Well, I’m really not good at it, to be honest. I need to setup a routine. I need to start working out again. (Oh yeah, don’t get me started on my weight loss journey, because that went down the Drain!) Good news is; Aaden is starting daycare at the end of August. So I’ll be able to work during the day on the community (Right now I ‘work’ until 2 or 3 o’clock in the morning and during Aaden’s naps) and I’ll get some more sleep.

The upside of working so hard is that the community is blooming. We’ve hit more than 80 subscribers in 2 weeks for our podcast, more than 2.5k views! Super stoked about it!

Downside; I’m not testing my BG as often as I could. Sometimes I end up having hypos during the podcast recordings, so I have to set my mic on mute and drink a juice box. Not the best diabetes management. Sometimes I test before meals and I’m at 15. What was that about? Oh, right… I didn’t test before breakfast because I was answering emails, keeping  up with Facebook and twitter, scheduling meet ups… And the list goes on.

Also, I’d like to point out something to people who say that “Being a stay at home mom give you all the time in the world to do everything you need to do”.

Having a baby/toddler/kid at home is like being at work. But work lasts around, oh, ALL DAY, you get no break and you have to cook meals for your boss on top of it. It’s all fun and games when we go to the park, when we cuddle after we played for a while, but you’re always busy non the less. You pick up toys; constantly. You do groceries but really, you have to hurry up so you can get home before lunch, prepare lunch, undo bags, feed your kid, put him to bed for his nap and then, you get to sit down for about 15 minutes. Afterwhich you need to do the dishes, clean whatever mess you left in the kitchen and all the food your son threw on the ground because it looked like the best thing to do at the time… And then, you prepare things for diner and work a little if you can.

I’m not sure I want to list all the things you need to do, but having to manage diabetes on TOP of it all, I find extremely difficult.  Sometimes I don’t test before bed anymore. I’m so extremely tired that I flop in bed, sometimes still dressed, just to get up in the morning and since, lather, repeat.

Here’s a little look see at my very bad diabetes management. Don’t be scared!

Courtesy of my super duper iBGStar which is neglected!

 

When I went to see my endo last april… She said my control was excellent. I wonder how disappointed she would be right now.

And somehow, I wish more people would understand what it feels like to live with diabetes. Maybe they would give me a break sometimes!

I will be updating my blog more often, that’s for sure. I won’t be rambling much on the community, but more about diabetes and about being a mom, you know, things I used to be blogging about Haha!

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#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 😀

Diabetes and memory loss.

I had a half day off from being a mommy and wife yesterday as I took the road to my endocrinologist’s. Sunny day, sunglasses, lounge music… Driving an hour to go shopping and another hour to my appointment. (My endo is far away because I moved last year but kept her.) I left my son with my husband and, for the first time in a while, had some time to myself, for myself.

I spent about 45 minutes in my favourite book store. It felt good.

I was happy to see my endo and she was happy about my results and seeing the iBGStar in action, live, for the first time. She knew about it but never really had seen one in person, so going through my stats and multiple sections was fun for her. I could tell by the glint in her eyes. You know, like when you have something shiny in your hands. But I digress.

I remembered a small conversation I had with Leah about high BG and memory loss, so I asked my endo about it. And here’s what she told me.

High blood sugar and confusion come together. Just like low blood sugar’s confusion state, but in a less drastic way. However, high blood sugar is not linked to dementia or memory loss. Long term, low blood sugar is. And by long term, she said “Frequent low blood sugar over the lapse of 10, 15 years or more”. Your brain needs sugar in order to feed itself, and so the constant low level of sugar in your blood can lead to brain damage that cause memory loss, dementia and all those nasty things. She also said that this study was done on type 2 diabetics on insulin treatment and that type 1 diabetics did not have such a study. Because type 1 is rare and that type 2 has become an epidemic, they have not bothered to conduct the study within type 1s.

I’m assuming it’s the same, if not worse, with type 1s.

So there you have it. Low blood sugar can cause damage to your memory, as studies show. Hence why it’s so important to take care of your diabetes.

Oh, and my latest A1C? 6.2! Awesome!

The strength of a non diabetic husband.

I don’t mention my husband a lot in my blog, unless it’s to say that he’s working for my son and I really hard, gone weeks at a time. But I feel the need to take at least one blog post (this one) to brag talk about him.

His name is Aaron and he is Taiwanese. GASP. Interracial couple! No wonder why Aaden is so cute, right? Aaron is actually from the United States, Wisconsin to be exact. Me being from Canada, the french province of Quebec no less, makes you think “Oh, they’ve met online!” and you’re right. But we didn’t meet on a dating site nor FaceBook, we met on an online game called Guild Wars, being in the same guild, doing quests and missions together… Until out relationship grew, decided to meet offline and he bought a plane ticket to come see me. Then I decided to sponsor him as he moved here with me. Long and expensive process, but very worth it.

I want the world to know that I’m head over heels in love with this man. I want to shout how much I’m lucky to have him in my life. Through thick and thin he’s stuck with me; my mother’s cancer, her death, my depression after her passing, the process of getting my new insulin pump, my tough pregnancy with Aaden… Every step of the way, he had a shoulder for me to cry on, a smile to keep me going, a juice box for my lows to be fixed.  And then my father got him a life changing job that would require him to be gone weeks at a time, working on hydro dams, far off into the north in different provinces. He missed Aaden’s birth. He missed Aaden’s first steps, his first birthday… And even though he misses us (and we miss him) he is working his butt off for us. 7 days a week, 77 hours of work per week. To bring in the money for us to live well, for me to be able to enjoy my insulin pump and not go back to the horrid shots. My husband, through everything, has always had a smile for me, good words of encouragement, even when I would cry on Skype and he couldn’t hug me, comfort me, he in his own way would find a way to be able to anyway.

The fact that he is so in tuned with my diabetes shock me sometimes. I say “Juice.” and he knows I’m low. If I’m low, he knows the confusion and anger I’m projecting isn’t personal. He drops everything he’s doing in an instant and comes to my rescue, my hero in shining armour. When I had highs during my pregnancy and that I would spend sleepless nights, testing every hour to bring it down as quickly as possible, crying over the fact that I didn’t want to hurt Aaden as he was being created in my womb, he would sit next to me and tell me everything was going to be okay. When I cried when I got my pump because I thought my mother would be so proud of me, he held my hand and squeezed it gently, letting me know that he agreed in silence. When I would realize I almost had no insulin left in my vial, he would get dressed and go to the drug store in a heart beat. I would test, I’d see a 2.3mmol (41mg) and I’d tell him the number, he would run to the fridge to grab me a juice box. He’s not diabetic, but he understands the numbers. He learned, to be in tune with me. To understand me, and be part of my diabetic life.

Taken from Type 1 diabetes Meme Facebook page.

Did I mention that my husband is going to turn 23 in june? Young to have all this put on his shoulders, but he stuck with me, all these years. And I’m so very thankful for him.

Oh yeah, he is also coming back TODAY! For a few weeks before the has to go back. But not to worry, I will be blogging just the same.

Our wedding day, October 2008

Type 1 diabetics; misunderstood?

Let me start by saying that while I understand what type 2 diabetics go through a daily basis, I believe that Type 1 diabetes should need a whole different name. Why? Because of the misunderstanding between people, between professionals, and I’m a little tired (especially today) of having to explain to everyone the difference between Type 1 and Type 2 over, and over, and over again.

I went to the pharmacy today to pick up test strips. Something I do very often on a monthly basis, ever since I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. I recently changed my strips from One Touch to BGStar because of my new glucose meter; the iBGStar. So I’ve only picked up a box of 100 test strips about 2 weeks ago, which makes an average of 7 tests a day. Which is realistic, quite frankly. Upon my arrival, they give me my Humalog (Insulin vials) but let me know that there are still 24 days left before I can renew my test strip order.

Um. Excuse me?

I tell the (new) pharmacist that I’m a type 1 diabetic, I need to test my blood glucose quite frequently. Before and after meals, when I wake up, when I go to bed, before and after physical activities or just when I feel plain weird. She tells me with a very serious face “You’re only supposed to test about 3 to 4 times a day.” And I look at her with a very confused face which reflected something like ~How dare you tell me how to control my disease~ and ~Since when?~ and this is when I repeat myself. “I’m a type 1 diabetic, I need (I emphasized on the needing part) to test several times a day.” Especially these days, with the weight loss and the very frequent lows. I need to recalibrate my pump’s basals, so how am I supposed to know how much insulin to deliver if I don’t know my BG every few hours?

She looks at me, a frown on her face, clearly showing that she did not understand why I need to test so often. One of the difference between type 1 diabetes and type 2.

No, I cannot control my blood sugar with what I eat. No, I cannot ~cure~ my disease. I know I don’t look sick, I am just pancreas-disabled, for life. No, if I’m low I don’t need more insulin. No, that is not an mp3 player, it’s an insulin pump. No, you would not die if you would have to inject insulin multiple times a day. Stop saying that.

So she goes ask the head pharmacist (or what I assume to be, much older gentleman who nods when she speaks to him, looks at me, nods and smiles a little as he recognizes me). She comes back saying they will call me tomorrow because they are out of BGStar strips. It’s okay, I mean I still have a few to last me until tomorrow. Besides, it’s not like they’re out of insulin or anything.

So as I was walking back home, my son in his stroller amused by his surroundings, I kept wondering why. Why is it, that even professional people, don’t know about type 1 diabetes? No, not that they don’t know, but they are clueless about it? They think because you are diabetic, you cannot eat what you want. I actually can. How many carbs? 15? Here, let me inject insulin, I’m good to go. I’m not type 2, this type of diabetes is different, on so many levels! But yet again, I’m labeled as if I was because society does not give proper education on this kind of disease.

I was a little… Not insulted, but deceived, maybe. Especially that I had to explain, again, what type 1 diabetes was, to a pharmacist.

Did you get your diploma in a Cracker Jack box, missy?

Finger or forearm blood tests?

While I was reading my iBGStar user guide, I was reminded that you could now use your forearm to do your blood glucose tests. To me, testing on my fingertips isn’t a big deal. I don’t find it hurts (anymore) and I’m wondering if doing the tests on my forearm would benefit me in any way. So I’m doing my own little research to find out what positive or negative points I could find in changing my method of testing my blood sugar.

I wish my insurance would cover the CGM (Continuous Glucose Monitor) but I can’t really afford the standard 50$ every 3 days. That way, I wouldn’t have to test so often during the day, just less as you still have to make sure the results are accurate. But that’s another issue.

Abbott Diabetes Care suggest that testing on the finger is reccommended when you think your blood sugar is low. So I’m guessing that finger tests are more accurate, but that’s just a theory. The only benefit to testing elsewhere on your body I’ve found while searching the net, was that it’s less painful. But other than that, I’m wondering if any other kinds of benefits could emerge by doing so.

Are you testing anywhere else than on your finger tips?

 

iBGStar Review

I’ve finally received my iBGStar from Sanofi Aventis! I say finally because Canada post -again- did not deliver to my door and instead sent it to the post office. I blame this on a lazy postman.

I was very excited to get it, so much that I’ve basically let aside my chores for the day. No store visit for this lady today! (Bananas will have to wait, Aaden… Sorry!)

I’ve made a review video about it which I will integrate into this post at the bottom of it. So if you don’t feel like reading, go watch the video!

First, while the animations are purely decorative and entertaining, I love seeing my iPhone telling me to put blood on the test strip and make a futuristic animation of my blood going into the device and being tested. Super cool! (I bet this will even make my non-diabetic friends jealous and they most likely will want to try it out too just for the heck of it!) It’s easy to set up; even though I read the instructions to make sure I didn’t do anything wrong, it would have been easy to just connect the iBGStar, as it was already charged, and start testing right away. I was high, I knew this, but I didn’t care about spoiling my device with my super sugary blood, so I tested right away, along with my old OneTouch meter, to see if the readings matched. And they did, so everything was set to go!

Here are some positive points about the iBGStar:

  • Small; about 1/6th of the size of your iPhone or iPod;
  • Free app; just download it straight to your iPhone or iPod;
  • Track your BG on charts; up to 90 days of tracking on one single chart, easy for your endo to read;
  • Statistics e-mail friendly; Your endo needs some results on charts? One single press of a button and it’s right on his desk(top);
  • Built-in user guide; no more downloads from websites after losing your user guide;
  • Syncs readings to your iPhone when connected if you have made a reading while disconnected;
  • Goes where your iPhone or iPod goes;
  • Charges alone or with your iPod and iPhone. Just connect to the wall or into your iPhone or iPod and your iBGStar charges!

And for some negatives:

  • iPhone and iPod battery vampirism; the iBGStar loves your device’s energy! Sucks it right out to charge itself, unless your device is on hibernating mode;
  • No customizable backgrounds; you have the choice of 6 pre made backgrounds to chose from.

So far, so good! I can’t see anything else that is a negative. So that was a small review, yes, but I’m sure I will have much more to say about the iBGStar in the next coming weeks as I get accustomed to my new toy.

;

Oh hi Active life!

And it’s packing day! And probably will be packing week as we’re moving in about 2 months! Packing, if done at my pace, is a pretty nice workout I’ve found. I’ve dropped low 2 times until I decided to put m pump at 50% of it’s usual basal rate. But then, I decided that I would work my elliptical machine while Aaden would nap (and is still napping. The only time I can blog without interruption!) so 20 minutes of intense “running”, I had to lower my basal rate at 25%. And still go low. I think I’m working too hard -or- need to lower it even more.

As for my blood sugar, it’s been dropping like a bullet. I am blaming this on weight loss and I’m not going to complain about it, HAH! I can fix a low very easily, however, it’s much harder to lose weight.

Speaking of blood sugar, I’m waiting for Canada postal service to deliver my new precious little baby; the iBGstar. Fellow blogger Diabuddies blogged about it and got me hooked. Next thing you know, I’m ordering the thing. Will be posting reviews about it soon so keep reading!

Until then, stay healthy!

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