Kortnie at the 2011 JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes, Tempe Town Lake, Tempe, AZ

Thursday, December 9, 2010

We're still Here!

We got the first batch of our family pictures back and I made this cute little collage.

Can you guess what the grandparents will be getting for Christmas?

We're still out here in the DOC blogland, but busy busy busy! As I am sure most moms are this time of year.

For Thanksgiving the kids and I took a trip to see my parents, 2 days of driving, 2 days of fun and 2 more days of driving. It was worth it, but let me say my dad's homemade fudge, just a small piece, had us fighting High BG's for a day and a half, even with site changes and new insulin. Could be the traveling and not following routines too contributed to that too?

Once we got back we had big Sister's baptism to get ready. Also, I was busy doing PTO stuff. Oh and a Endo appointment too, A1C is 8.3 up from 8.1 3 months ago. Not too happy about that, so we are going to kick it into high gear and get it down! We've been between 8.1 and 8.5 since dx. I'm ready to move into the 7's now, thank you very much!

Christmas is approaching very quickly and I am going to get it done this week. Decorations are up, most presents bought and/or made. This week I want to send out the Christmas cards, mail the packages, finish the buying. Then next week I'll work on wrapping so that by the time school is out I can enjoy the time with my kids and maybe do some baking, we love handing out plates of goodies to our friends and neighbors. We have our church's Christmas party this Saturday, I am also on the committee for that and I feel we're in the home stretch now, it's been a big thing to work on, but fun!

This is my train of thought right now though.

Holidays are hard when you're trying to convince yourself that your kid is "normal".

Last year, we were new with this T1 stuff, being dx'd 2 weeks before Thanksgiving the holidays are a blur, this year I am seeing how much FOOD and CARBS play a part in celebrating. I am working on doing some re-focusing, but it's not as easy as I want it to be.

I hope all of you are enjoying the Spirit of the Season. I hope you are enjoying your family and remembering the sacrifices of our Lord and remembering that Jesus is the Reason for the Season. Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa or something else. I'd like to wish you a Merry Christmas!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

World Diabetes Day

November 14 is World Diabetes Day. It's also Kortnie's 372nd day of living with this silent but deadly disease. She'll be doing the Big Blue Test this afternoon and posting her results. Check it out www.bigbluetest.org and if you want to learn more about World Diabetes Day you can check it out at www.worlddiabetesday.org Today is a day about learning, preventing and advocating, not only for Type 1 (Like Korky has) but also for Type 2. Here's hoping that all or our D-Friends have great Blood Sugar's today, that they get out and get moving, and that everyone can have a Specatacular day. I love you Kortnie and to my non-D kids, I love you too, you do so much and give up a lot to support your sister, our lives have changed drastically over the past year, but we are still going strong and for that I am thankful!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

6 Things I Want You to Know about Korky and her Diabetes

It's the 9th annual D-Blog Day and this year's topic is '6 things you want people to know about Diabetes'. So here goes.

1. Just because it says Sugar Free, does not mean my kid can have it without permission from me, a finger poke, or a bolus.

2. Just because it's got sugar in it does not mean that my kid can't have it at all.

3. Korky's Type 1 Diabetes is not the same as your Grandma's Diabetes, in fact Kork's Great-Grandma (my Grandma) has Diabetes, and Korky's paternal Grandpa (Brian's dad), and paternal Great-Uncle (Brian's uncle) had it too. She didn't get it from them, they have Type 2, big difference.

4. Yes, my kid loves candy and sugar and treats, when she was little like 2 or 3 she'd wake up in the middle of the night, like 2am, sneak some candy and turn on the TV. That is not the reason she developed Type 1 Diabetes, nope, it wasn't because she ate too much candy. She just happens to be born with a faulty pancreas. Again, she was born with a faulty pancreas, we did not damage it.

5. If she says she needs to check her BG, then she needs to, she's not doing it for attention. If she falls asleep or goes droopy all of a sudden, then something is wrong. Give her some kind of sugar, then check her BG, it can be scary, but try to stay calm. You'll have time to freak out or break down later. If she starts 'freaking out', crying uncontrollably, fighting with you, yelling at you and yes even hitting you, then again something is wrong, talk to her in a calm voice, check her BG or get her to do it, give her a correction, call me and let her lay down for a rest. Don't let it hurt your feelings, she never remembers what she did, she didn't mean it, she still loves you.

6. I may seem calm, I may seem like Diabetes doesn't affect me, I may seem like I'm not overwhelmed, like I'm not thinking about it all the time, like I'm not completly freaked out. It's just a facade, I am always thinking about D, I am always worried. I struggle to trust Korky with herself and to let her have some independance, in fact I struggle with letting anyone take care of Korky, even my own husband her dad. I know he should be my number 1 and I do trust him, but I still struggle with it internally. I am not sure if it's trust I struggle with or fear or a combination of both.

7. I have one more.... Diabetes doesn't define Korky, or me either for that matter. It doesn't have to take center stage. There's more to us, but on the flip side, I appreciate your concern, your willingness to learn and you're desire to help us.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Korky's 1st D-Aversary what I learned, Gratitude

The time has come, a day I myself dreaded. The first anniversary of Korky's Diabetes diagnosis. She was diagnosed on a Sunday afternoon, November 8th 2009. We recognized her one year mark this year on Sunday November 7th, I suppose we can have the D-aversary on either the 1st Sunday of November or the actual date November 8th. Personally I just thought that it was kind of depressing and I felt like taking it to the Lord and telling him, "Okay, it's been a year, that's enough, you can take it back now". My Korky though, thought it was pretty cool, I guess to a 6 year old it sounds like another day to celebrate, she told people all day "today is my Diabetes 1st Birthday!" My husband and I talked and I told him "Guess what today is?" Of course he didn't know, but when I told him it had been a year since I'd taken Korky to the ER that fateful Sunday afternoon, his face kind of fell, and he said to me, "It's only been a year?....Oh, yeah, I guess so, it feels like longer". Yes it's been a long year!
We figured to "celebrate" we'd have a Junk food Carb fest all day. One donut each with a 3/4 cup of Lucky Charms cereal and a 1/2 cup of Orange Juice for breakfast, for lunch it was a cheese crisp, then we went to church, came home and had a "make your own pizza" night, I make the dough up and then we use up leftovers and just stuff we have on hand. For dessert it was one piece of Halloween candy. Yes, it was lots of carbs and a lot of junk, but I try to rationalize it that some of it was pretty good for the kids, the OJ, the milk on the cereal, the cheese and the veggies on the pizzas (even though they really didn't put on too many veggies, mostly black olives). And awesomely enough her BG's stayed in range all day, they hung out in the 130-150 range with only one high of 238 which she had insulin on board for and it came down pretty quick.
Like I said above Korky has taken her disease in stride, at first she would ask "why me" or "why don't Stasia and Graham (her sister and brother) have to take shots", she get upset when she couldn't just have a piece of candy or an apple without a shot or finger poke. She'd get mad if I told her to come check her BG while she was busy playing with her friends, she wouldn't want to poke her finger or take shots in front of anyone. In the hospital, she only wanted daddy to do her shots, when we came home and he went back to work, she got used to me doing them and then only wanted me to do them and not her dad. When we went on the pump it was the same way, she only wanted her dad to do the site changes, but I forced my way in there and now she and I have become so good at it that most of the time we don't even ask Daddy-O to help us with it. Over the past year she has adjusted and grown, she doesn't really care if other people see her poking her finger, taking a shot or a bolus, or doing a site change. She doesn't love when complete strangers stare at her or ask questions, but when it comes to friends and family she doesn't care one way or the other about doing her stuff in front of them. She's learned that if she just gets it done she can go back to whatever she was doing in the first place, there's not much procrastination anymore. She has learned what she can eat anytime, what she can't ever have, and what she can have with a small bolus. I am constantly amazed by her adaptivness, I guess that's why this Disease is given to young children mostly, they can learn to change and adapt much faster and easier than adults. I'm not saying it's easy for her, some days she makes it seem that way, and then we have some days that are absolute HELL! But really, this has been a tough, long year for my 5 now 6 year old baby. I am proud of her, in awe of her, amazed by her. In fact I am amazed by all of my kids on a daily basis, how well they all have adapted to Korky's disease.
Now on to me, I said this one year D-aversary was depressing right, well the day started out that way, I was feeling sorry for myself, sorry for Korky and sorry for the whole family. I am so glad that we recognized her D-aversary on Sunday though. We went to church that afternoon and I was still having my pity party, I didn't even really want to go to church, but the kids wanted to go and Brian must have felt that I needed to go too, so we all got showered and dressed and went to church. I am so glad we went! Now we are LDS (or Mormon) and the first Sunday of the month we have a Testimony meeting, we take our Sacrament and then for the rest of the meeting time, our Ward (or congregation) members are encouraged to come up to the stand and give their testimonies. The first person to get up started off the theme that everyone seemed to follow, Gratitude and Thanksgiving, very appropriate for the first Sunday of November. Various member of our church got up and testified the things they were thankful for and recognized that God has his hand in all things. We went on to our Sunday School class and were taught a lesson on keeping our Cisterns full, by trusting, studying and communicating with the Lord. (I could go on and on but I'm trying to paraphrase), after Sunday School the women and men separate and go to our individual classes, the women's class is called Relief Society, where the theme of Gratitude and Thankfulness was continued. As I sat through those 3 hours (yes 3 hours) of church last Sunday afternoon, I realized there is much to be thankful for and that instead of having my pity party I should show some gratitude and my heart was lifted. So I have to say, I am thankful we recognized Korky's D-aversary on Sunday so that I could have my inevitable pity party, then go to church and have my heart lightened.
Yes my daughter has Type 1 Diabetes and it sucks, big time. But, there are diseases and afflictions out there that can be worse, there isn't a cure, but there is insulin and insulin pumps, and various other devices, that we can use to help control it. She has to work hard to maintain her health, but if she works hard she can do most anything that a "normal" kid can do. Yes, I live in fear that she MIGHT die in her sleep, but some mother's live with the KNOWLEDGE that their kids won't make it past X number of years. It is hard work, not only for Korky, but for the whole family, but that hard work builds character, teaches us resilience, and compassion. So, yes, I have a lot to be Thankful for, I won't go so far as to say I am thankful for Diabetes, but I am Thankful for my daughter Diabetes or not, for my other 2 kids and their sweet souls, for my husband who helps me more than I recognize on a daily basis, for my home, for our insurance, for our family and our friends who love us unconditionally and support us and would do anything to help us, for our crazy dog, for modern medicine, for the country we live in which isn't always perfect but could be a lot worse, for the fact that my husband has a good job and I am able to stay at home with our kids, for electricity, for running water, for an abundance of food available to us, for the Internet and the DOC, for the teachers who love my kids at school and at church, and for so much more, again I could go on and on, but this is getting long.
Bottom line is we as a society take so much for granted, when we are having our pity parties, we just need to sit back and think of the things we are taking for granted and remember to be thankful for them.

Here are 3 people I am most Thankful for, Graham (3 years old), Stasia (7 almost 8) and Korky (6). They are decorating their pizzas as my GrammyBoy would say. We used, leftover spaghetti sauce, pizza sauce, ham, pepperoni, green onions, mushrooms, black olives, jalapenos, leftover taco meat, and bacon bits, and of course cheese.

Here is Korky, clearly enjoying her pizza and her Junk Food Carbfest D-aversary.

Taking a bite of that delicious pizza, I think she put pepperoni and ham slices and tons of cheese on her pizza. Oh and an extra special treat of Diet Mug Rootbeer.
Posted by Picasa

Friday, November 5, 2010


Our (I say ours, but really it's just Korky's isn't it, sometimes I feel like T1D is my disease too, maybe it is since I am the Pancreas for now) 1st D-aversary is coming up soon. The date is November 8th, a Monday or we could go with Sunday the 7th, which is the actual day of the week Korky was dx'd. I told Korky yesterday that her first D-aversary was coming up, she asked me, "what's that?" I told her it means she'd had T1D for a year now and it was kind of like the 1st birthday of her D. She got all excited and said to me, "are we gonna have a party?" I'm thinking to myself, you want to celebrate this and I want to be depressed about it. Hmmm, so I told her I don't know what we're going to do for it, my first instinct is to have a giant CarbFest, like Pizza for dinner and DQ Blizzards for dessert. However, that's not really too practical, first off Pizza Hut and DQ Blizzards for a family of 5 is not all that cost effecient and secondly, I am sure I don't want to be in the mode of battling major highs all night long, and thirdly probably most importantly, it just doesn't sound all that healthy. Catch 22 though, you gotta let loose sometimes and let kids be kids right?

So my question to you "seasoned" D moms (and Dads and those who actual have the dreaded D) is this something to celebrate? What do you do to commemorate the occasion? Do you just let it go by unannouced? Part of me just wants to be sad about it, but another part of me thinks it is worth celebrating, we've lived with this for a year, it's been a major challenge for all of us, and I think we're doing pretty good. Kortnie wants to do something fun to mark the 1st year, so I guess we should. I just don't really have any ideas of what to do. I'd love to hear if and how you all "celebrate" your D-aversaries.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

2010 JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes Tempe, AZ

We took part in the JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes at Tempe Town Lake, here in Arizona last weekend. I think it was pretty successful. It was our first year to walk as a family team (about 6 or 7 years ago before D hit us personally I did this walk with my first daughter as part of a corporate team). I registered our team under the name "Friends and Family of Kortnie Silverhorn" back in January I think, but as time went on I decieded our team name should be Korky's Krusaders. So next year I think that's what we'll call ourselves. I registerd all 5 of us as individual walkers on the family team and set a fundraising goal of $1000. I am happy to say that we raised a total of $1220.00 for our walk. Most of our donations came from family and friends.

The walk took place last Saturday October 30th. Tempe is about a 3 hour drive for us. We decieded that we'd just drive down early Saturday morning, so we left here about 5:30am and got there right at 9:00. We ended up doing only the 1.5 mile fun walk rather than the full 3.2 mile walk. We figured that would be much easier on the kids and our sanity as well. After the walk was over we checked out the booths, I signed us up for trial net, and the kids got to paint pumpkins. We enjoyed the lunch that the walk put on as well. We were in a hurry to get back home for trick or treating though, so we didn't hang around too long. I think next year, we will plan to go down to the Valley the night before and make it more of a family weekend getaway.

Below are some pictures of us on walk day, the weather was beautiful, the people we saw treated Kortnie like a princess and she enjoyed getting some good attention because of her diabetes, people with knowledge asking her "smart" questions about her diabetes, her pump, her test kits, etc. She told me that it was nice that we didn't have to talk about it all day. Which I didn't get at first because it was like Diabetes was everywhere, but later I figured that she meant we didn't have to answer the same questions or explain the same things over and over like we do with non-D people.

Our family walk team (right to left) Big Sister Stasia (7 almost 8), Korky our D-kid (6 years old), Daddy-O Brian, Me, best friend Zoie (7 also almost 8) and on my lap is little brother Graham (3 years old).

Kortnie paining her pumpkin, a fun activity!

Stasia walking for a cure!

Zoie (in pink shorts) and Korky (in black pants) walking for a cure!

The girls, Stasia, Zoie and Korky

Friday, October 29, 2010

Pumpkin time 2009 vs. 2010

This year 2010
2010, she looks like a healthy normal girl doesn't she?

Last year 2009, look at that skinny neck and arms, they make her head look big, see how pale she is and the bags under her eyes, they are kind of sunk back in her head too.

This picture her face doesn't look too sick but from her arms and neck I can tell how sick she was. She never let me take pictures in the hospital, so these Halloween pictures are the only ones I have to show how she looked. My Kortnie used to be a pretty solid girl, not fat, but she had meat on her bones, in fact in Spring of 2009 according to the chart they use at headstart prep-school she was obese. (She never looked obese, she was just taller and meatier than the government says kids her age should be). These pictures show a sickly, skinny girl, not my Korky.

Last year around Halloween time is when we really started noticing just how sick our Korky was. She was finally diagnosed on November 8th. Last year, we had 3 kids, full time jobs for both the husband and I and the family that babysat our kids was out of town for a month for a family emergency as well, so needless to say we were busy, frazzled and at our wits end. And on top of that it was Halloween time, pumpkin carving, parties, costumes and trick or treating was all afoot. Kortnie had been sick off and on, she was always sick so we thought nothing of it, the seasons were changing, we thought she had a cold, we thought maybe she was growing and it was making her tired, we'd noticed she seemed to be getting longer and losing some of her baby fat, we thought she was just growing into herself. After Halloween was over, I was uploading the pumpkin carving pictures and the costume pictures onto the computer. I looked thru them and realized how much weight Kortnie actually had lost. She just got sicker and sicker, finally we took her to the ER instead of waiting for a Monday morning DR appointment we had scheduled. We didn't have a scale at our house, so I didn't know how much actual weight she had lost, but when they weighed her at the ER, she'd lost something like 13 or 17 pounds since her last DR visit back in August. Something like 20% of her body weight. We're coming up on our 1 year D-aversary. Lately I am tired of this stupid disease. I am tired of checking BG's, tired of worrying all the time, tired of lows that make her droopy or fainty and scare the crap out of me, I am tired of the highs that make her mean. I am tired of ordering supplies and going to the pharmacy, tired of the endo appointments and blood tests, tired of saying no you can't have that right now, or no you can't go until we make sure your BG is back to normal, I am tired of waking up in the middle of the night, tired of reading about kids that die from this disease or kids that get other complications from it, I am tired of the strain this stupid disease has put on our marriage, tired of living in fear that one of my other kids will develop it. There is so much more I am tired of too. I want to say, "Okay, Heavenly Father we've lived with this for a year now, we know its hard, we've gained perspective and respect for T1D, we'll never take life for granted again, we've learned lots of lessons, you can take it away now, we want to be normal again." In fact I have said this many times, but I know he won't just take it away, so I try, I try so hard to change my pleas to asking for a cure, to asking for more awareness, try to change my selfish pleas to thanks, thanks that my child lives and I try to ask for help, help me to keep her alive, help me to let go of the anger and maybe a little of the fear too. Some days are good, some days not so good. I met a lady last weekend, she has a 15 year old son with T1D he was diagnosed at age 3, her husband has it too, so she's lived 12 years as a mom of T1D and I'm not sure how long as a wife of T1D. If she can do it, I know I can too, I just don't want to. How do you get past the anger, does it ever happen? It seems like I get past it, but then something happens and it comes back. I'll keep trying, I guess, it's all I can do really, keep trying and keep praying. People tell me that God never gives you more than you can handle so I guess if HE thinks we can handle this, then we can and will. I just hope HE doesn't give us any more.
I'd like to take the time right here, right now and say how thankful I am for the D-Online Community, mostly the mom's. I do so love reading your posts and finding that I am not alone. I don't comment much and I don't do such a good job of keeping my blog up to date, but I'm out here lurking and feeling comforted by you all. For this week's sugar bolus click the link, this is a good one people. Good luck!


Friday, October 15, 2010

Brownie's are 419 Carbs

This morning my 3 year old son asked me if we could make brownie's. I thought about it and we decieded that we'd make a batch of brownie's then we'd use cookie cutters to cut them into fun Halloween shapes. So, we get all the stuff out. Here we are at the counter we have our box of mix, veg oil, eggs, measuring cups, bowl and spoon. We pour the mix in the bowl and I pick up the box to see what to do next. My sweet 3 year old (non-D) is standing on a chair right next to me. He takes that brownie mix box out of my hand and puts his face right up next to the box and says to me "It says 4-19 carbs mom". He doesn't read, he just likes to pretend.

The point I am trying to make is that I find it amazing how much my 3 year old boy knows about "diabetes stuff". It's a "good" feeling to know that Kortnie's Diabetes is a family affair around our house and not just something for she and I to deal with.

But on the flip side, I also find it a little sad. Sad that my 3 year old knows that we "worry" about carbs, sad that he also comes up to me and says "Korky's being mean, you make her check her blood", sad that he knows he can't just have the random juice box he finds in the car because it's Korky's medicine. I find it sad and scary that my older daughter (almost 8) came running in the door one afternoon and told me, "Kortnie's low I need to take her a snack!", and she grabs a slim jim and a water bottle and then runs off again before I had the time to tell her that slim jim's and water are free snacks and what she really needs is a juice box and why the heck don't they just give her the glucose tabs that are in her backpack! They were on their way home from school, Kortnie was sitting on the curb about 6 houses away and of course I followed Anastasia right out the door, juice box and car keys in hand, she was 135 when she left school and in the 15 minutes they had been walking and messing around (it's only a 10 minute walk, but you know kids they have to stop and visit with every dog or friend they see) she dropped down to a 67. Anyways, I just find it a little sad that not only does Diabetes affect Kortnie's life, but it affects the lives of my 2 other kids in big ways too. I am also proud of my 2 non-D kids for taking it all in stride, loving and supporting their sister, learning about her disease and making efforts to help her.

We are about 3 weeks away from our first D-aversary. We've come a long way baby, and I'm not too sure I'm happy about it.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Great Sleepover Debacle

Well, it's reared it's ugly head, "Mom can I sleep over at Andre's house tonight?" First of all you might think I'd say no because girls just don't sleep over at boy's houses right? Well, my daughter Korky and Andre are best friends. Our family and his family are best friends.

We met each other in June of 2008 when I went back to work after having a year off when my last baby was born. The S family is a mom and dad, a 22 year old daughter, a 16 year old daughter and a 7 year old boy. The S family (mom and oldest daughter) had an add in a local grocery store for their home based day care. This was pre-diabetes mind you. Anyways, I called them up, interviewed them, looked around their property and decieded that they would be a good fit for our family. They quickly became our friends and more like family than our babysitters. They love us and we love them. Our babysitter relationship with them went on for a few months over a year, before the big D hit.

The S family was on vacation when Korky was dx'd. Their Grandpa had been ill so they were off visiting him, my kids had been going to a different babysitter (also a good friend of ours) and ironically enough on the first day the S family was back in town is when I took Korky to the ER and got her diagnosis. I took a 3 month leave of absence from my full-time job at Walmart so that we would have time to adjust to our new way of life, also so that we'd have what we thought was alot of time to train the S family on how to take care of Korky. I ended up not ever going back to work. The S family was more than willing to learn how to take care of Korky, they read books, they came over at lunchtime and practiced drawing up the insulin in the syringe, they learned how to check blood sugar, how to calculate how much insulin to give, they gave us love and support. That was all well and good, but I just couldn't bring myself to hand over my 5 year old daughter to someone else for 8-10 hours a day and have them give her shots! So, I left work and they lost us as full-time customers at their day care. We still agreed to stay friends of course. We still are close friends, we see each other a few times a week, sometimes their little boy comes home to our house with Kortnie after school and they have play dates. We spend quite a few of our Saturday's over at their house, and their 16 year old daughter, K, has become our "date night" babysitter. K suffers from hypoglycemia, so she has a grasp on what low blood sugar feels like, she also has mastered most of Kortnie's pump functions, she can check Kortnie's blood sugar, figure out carbs and give a bolus using the EzCarb or EzBg functions on the pump. And, if she has any questions we are only a text or cell phone call away, she never hesitates to call us if she needs us. Her high school is only 2 blocks away from Kortnie's elementary school and she's even on Kortnie's emergency list. It might seem crazy to you, but K, a 16 year old girl, is the number one person I would trust Kortnie with besides my husband and I. Her older sister and parents are a close second.

So, this past Saturday we were over at the S familie's home, we were visiting, and making multiple batches of bannana bread, the Kortnie and Andre were riding horses, running around all over the place, sword fighting, climbing in the tree house, chasing bugs and horney toads, playing with the dogs, and swinging on the swing set. They were having a wonderful time, the weather was nice and we were all enjoying ourselves. That morning we had been to our town's Harvest Festival and the Pumpkin Patch. While ate a late lunch of chicken sandwiches and chips while at the S home and nobody was really in the mood for dinner. About 530pm I was getting ready to head home, and Kortnie asked that fateful question, "Can I sleep over here?" Oh man, what do you say, the kids are having fun, this family is my "go to" family, all 5 of them were planning on spending the night at home, the young ladies didn't have Saturday night plans so I knew that Kortnie would be in good hands. So, I said okay, but told her I was scared because it would be the first time she would be away from me since she got T1D. She told me she would be okay, I made it clear to her that if her numbers got weird than I would be coming to get her. So it was around 5:30, we checked her BG (she was 195 a little high, but not too bad for her), gave her some bannana bread and a bolus and I left to come home with my 2 other kids. I called her at 8:00pm, told her to check her BG, it was 307! Oh no, I said I don't like it being that high, you need to come home, she started crying and got all sad, so I said, okay, get a bolus and I'll call you back in an hour. So, they gave her a bolus using EzBg and I called back at 9pm, check your BG I said, she did and now it's 334! Oh no, now I told her she has to come home because I will have to check her all night long, she was crying, but Mrs S was able to talk her into coming home, told her it had been a crazy day and none of us had been eating right and that was why she was all messed up (very true). So, Mrs S brought her home to us, checked her again at 10, she was down to 310 gave her another bolus and sent her to bed, check again at 130am she was still 318, another bolus and finnally at 630am she was down, but too low now she was down to a 72. We got that under control and for the rest of Sunday she was right on target.

So, I tried, I tried to let my daughter be a regular 6 year old and spend the night with a friend, I tried to be brave and I falied, or D got in the way, or both. I feel bad for my baby, her heart was broken at having to come home and the next morning when her sister asked, "how come you came home?" she cried and said her BG's were too high. This sucks, stupid D! Oh well, I guess we are gonna try again this weekend. We are going to eat normal and more on scheduale this Saturday and see if we can make this work again. I am scared, I am nervous, but I also trust the S family with my baby, I know they love her and will watch over her. I am thankful for them, but I'm still gonna worry. Wish us luck.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A Sugar Bolus (Giveaway)

This week's sugar bolus giveaway is a gift certificate to Petite Baubles, a fun website to get great medical alert jewelry. Here's the link to enter the giveaway, hurry though, you only have untill midnight tomorrow night to enter!


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Emergency Room

Last November on a Sunday during the Sacrament Meeting at our church, I felt urgently that I had to take my baby girl to the ER, RIGHT NOW! I knew she'd been sick and for some reason that day she looked alot worse, I never hesitated, I grabbed her up told my husband that I was taking her to the ER and that he could stay and teach our Sunday School class. Well, that day quickly turned into the worst day of my life. We got Kortnie's diagnosis of Type 1 Diabetes before our church was even supposed to be over, I couldn't even call my husband and tell him what was going on, because we don't take our phones to church. I do consider it such a blessing that the ER wasn't too busy that day, within 10 minutes of being in the waiting room we were taken back to triage and then straight to a room in the ER, within about half an hour we were told what was wrong and more tests were ordered, insulin and vitamin drips were started and heart monitors put on my baby.

Well, two Sunday's ago 10 months after that fatefull visit to the ER, I had to go back again. The day started off good, Kortnie's D was behaving itself, my husband left to go spend the day dirtbike riding with his friends. I got the kids showered and dressed and we headed off to church. Our baby boy wasn't feeling well, he had a fever, cough and runny nose. I figured we'd go to the Sacrament Meeting portion of church, then we'd take the girls to Sunday School, listen to the oldest girl give her talk, then I'd bring the boy home while the girls stayed at Sunday School for the next hour and a half or so. I arranged for a neighbor to drive the girls home, Kortnie, had checked her BF and it was 128, a good number. I brought the boy home, got him changed into comfy jammies, set him up on the couch with crackers, water, pillow and blanket, and Tom and Jerry cartoons. My husband and his friend pull up and I go out to see how their ride went and help them unload. Well, guess what, hubby crashed and he crashed good, he looks terrible and is limping around. Great this is all I need, we got his gear unloaded and took him upstairs thinking he just needed a good soak in the tub. WRONG! He had road rash all up his left side, terrible cuts, scrapes, and bruises already forming, his shoulder was swollen up really bad too.

So, it was husband's turn for the ER. I called a friend to come sit with the boy and wait for the girls to get home from church, we have some great friends, a family that we are close with, their daughters are 22 and 16 and their son is 6 the same age as my Kortnie. We are blessed that this family has taken on the task of learning all about Kortnie's diabetes, they are the only ones I feel I can truly trust with our Kortnie for an extended period of time. Of course there are phone calls and texts involved with them reporting BG #'s and asking about carb counts, but they are willing and able to help us out with Kortnie. The 22 year old daughter was able to come that day.

So, here we are back in the ER on another Sunday, waiting in the waiting room with my husband, it was a busy day at the ER that day, the memories of that Sunday 10 months ago sat heavy on my heart. The outcome was different of course, hubby ended up with a broken collarbone, 4-6 weeks of healing time in a sling, not much you can do for that. But, what I want to tell you about is how many memories came flooding back to me. I haven't been back to the ER since Kortnie was diagnosed, I didn't even think it would affect me, but it did. I could see clearly in my mind, how small and sick and afraid my little girl was. I saw Dr's and nurses that helped out with Kortnie. The lighting, the smells, the rhythm of the ER all brought something back. I like to say that Sunday in November of 2009 was the worst day of my life, I was scared, my baby was scared, we were uneducated and looking into a life of the unknown, we didn't really know if she'd make it through the night, through the next couple of days and if she did our lives would be changed in a big way forever and if she didn't make it our lives would still be changed forever. Big thoughts, big issues, I could feel it all over again. After my husband was discharged we went across the street to Walgreens to fill his prescriptions and as I was standing in the parking lot a helicopter took off from the hospital taking someone to Phoenix for further medical care. Kortnie and I had flown to Phoenix that Sunday 10 months ago as well. Seeing that helicopter take off brought more memories to my mind and heart and I was feeling those emotions all over again, but this time, I realized that Sunday 10 months ago when Kortnie was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes, was still pretty much the WORST day of my life, but also, maybe the BEST day of my life. The best you ask? Well, yes, even though she was diagnosed with this terrible disease with no cure, it was the best because she LIVED! We were told that it was possible that if we had let her go to sleep that Sunday night and taken her to the DR on Monday morning like we orginnally planned that she might not have woken up at all Monday morning, she would have been in a coma or maybe even have passed away in the night. I am grateful that I felt so strongly the Holy Spirit telling me that Sunday in church to take her to the ER, I am grateful I listend, I am grateful that the DR's and nurses treated her so kindly and efficiently, I am grateful for the helicopter pilot and the 2 inflight nurses who took such good care of her and I and our 45 minute flight to Phoenix, I am grateful to the DR's and nurses in the PICU at Phoenix Children's Hospital, and I am grateful for the DR's and nurses on the Diabetes floor at PCH who gave us a crash course in treating and living with T1D. So, even though as I sat in the ER with hubby that afternoon and relived the worst day of my life, I am glad that I can look back on that day and also think of it as the best day too. Diabetes doesn't define Kortnie or me, but it's a part of our family now and it helps all of us to be a little stronger and more compassionate I think. If I could take her D away I sure would, but I'm not going to dwell on that, I'm going to be grateful that Kortnie LIVES with a terrible disease rather than letting it bring her down.

On side note, I have a question. Our insurance only covers 150 test strips per month, and we use more like 250-300. I've been buying test strips at Walmart and we all know how dang expensive they are. Last night I found American Diabetes Wholesale and found I can buy test strips there for 1/2 the cost that I buy them at Walmart or other drug stores and you get free shipping on orders over $100. I'm just wondering, where do you D-moms and dads buy your test strips? Am I on the right track with American Diabtes Wholesale, or is there somewhere else I should be looking?

Friday, September 10, 2010

Fun Giveaway

I've been really getting into reading the fellow D-blogs out there, a pretty tight knit community of mom's, they do all kinds of fun things like giveaways, D-feast Friday, and art projects, check out some of the links to the right. I still have more to add and hopefully I'll find the time to sit down and really update the blog and get it up to speed soon. For now, check out this cool giveaway over at D-Tales!


Saturday, August 21, 2010

Back to School

Well, it's that time of year, back to school time. This is a first for us, as Kortnie is still in the "newly diagnosed" stage. Last fall when she was dx'd and in the hospital for a week, I was nervous to send her back to school but I took comfort in the fact that she was only in Kindergarten and only going to school for a 1/2 day, 8am-1045am. She didn't have to do any checks (unless she felt the need) or shots at school. Now this year is a whole different ball game. She's in 1st grade and at school 8am-2:20pm. She is also on the pump now and that's supposed to make things easier right? I fretted all summer long, thinking too much, worrying too much, letting to many "what if" situations run through my head. Kortnie is the only diabetic child in her school, the teachers and staff have tried to be accomodating to her, but I really think they just don't get it. They are making efforts and I am trying to be patient and to tell myself that we'll get it down eventually, but I'm also frustrated on the inside. Here's a breakdown of what's happened so far.

August 10, the day before school started, I went down to the school and met with the school "nurse" and the school district nurse. The actual school nurse is not a nurse at all actually, this already makes me nervous. These 2 ladies are nice, don't get me wrong, I'd totally be comfortable with them cleaning a cut or helping my kid with a bloody nose, but T1D is a life threatning condition. It my kids LIFE in their hands. How am I supposed to just trust them with her LIFE? Maybe my biggest problem is that I can't let go. Well, anyways, we talked about how we'd like to handle things, about hypo and hyper glycemia signals in Kortnie, about how much Kortnie actually can do for her ownself. I went home feeling okay about the situation.

August 11, a Wednesday, the first day of school. Oh man, can we say nervous? Okay mom you're gonna be okay, Kortnie's going to be okay, just breathe. I dropped them off, came home and putted around the house for a bit. I went down to the school at lunchtime and Kortnie came to the nurse's office to check her BG and get her bolus. She has her BG monitor with her at all times, in the classroom and such so that she can check her BG whenever she wants to, but we all decieded for bolus at lunch time she'll come to the nurses's office 5 minutes before lunch. So, she comes down, checks her BG, I give her a bolus for lunch while the nurse watches, and she goes on her way, her BG was just right a 130 that day. Awesome! I feel okay about this.

August 12, Thursday, 2nd day of school, I went down at lunch time again and this time the nurse gives the bolus while I look over her shoulder, everything is okay. Great!

Augst 13, Friday, 3rd day of school, I show up at lunch time, this time I've typed up a few pages, instructions on what to do if she's high, what to do if she's low, the bolus steps on the pump, signs of hypo and hyperglycemia, emergency numbers for me, the hubby, Kortnie's grandma and uncle, a family friend and our doctors. I made a folder for the nurse and the teacher, they were appreciative of this. The district nurse was there that day as well, Kortnie came down for her bolus and check, all is well, the nurse did just fine. She told me that she feels she can do it by herself now, so I don't have to come down on Monday. Ooooooooooookay, I think I can handle that. We'll see.

August 16, Monday, 4th day of school. Everything seemed to okay, no phone calls no complaints from Kortnie. YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

August 17, Tuesday, I get a phone call, we are out of test strips, (my fault for not checking before she left for school and Kortnie's fault for not telling me she used the last one.) Okay we can handle this, there are more test strips in Kortnie's classroom. Nurse says okay, no more phone calls so I figure all is well. Well Kortnie got home and her BG was HIGH, over 300! What the Heck? So she starts crying and tells me this story. "We went to my teachers class to get the new strips and the nurse said let's just get a couple out, and I told her we need to change the chip but she said we didn't have to and she wouldn't listen to me" Okay Kortnie it was a mistake, I'll tell the nurse tomorrow about changing out the chip and I'll get it fixed.

August 18, Wednesday, I took the kids to school, explained about changing the chip when you change test strips. Everything will be okay. So after school Kortnie comes home, I asked her, "how did lunch go". She says, "well we got to the cafeteria and I asked my teacher 'teacher don't I have to go to the nurse's office' and teacher said, 'oh yeah, I forgot, go on over there' (WHAT!?!?!?!) so I went over to the nurse's and the nurse said, 'I called you in your class and your teacher didn't answer' (why didn't you go look for her nurse?) I know I told teacher her phone was ringing and she said, 'let it go to message'" UGH, well that's a big fail! Now she was late getting to lunch, took her extra long to eat and she didn't get very much recess. The whole point of going to the nurses's office 5 minutes before lunch is so her recess doesn't get reduced because of diabetes.

August 19, Thursday, a phone call at lunch time, The battery in the meter is dead. Okay, you have new batteries in the nurse's office, "oh I do, oh here they are silly me" UGH!!!!!!!!! Then another call, I can't figure out how to change the battery, it isn't working. Oh brother, here I come, I got down there changed it out, gave her a bolus and she was late to lunch again. Man oh man, at this point I am thinking to myself "maybe I should homeschool her untill she is old enough to do all this on her own." My husband laughed at me and said there was no way I could do that. Kortnie and I butt heads on just about everything, she'd probably never learn a thing. He told me to be patient. Okay, I will try.

August 20, Friday, she's low at lunch in the 50's, they told her to just eat her lunch no bolus. Oh gosh, hello, I have it outlined in the packet on what to do if she's low. Give her 15 or 20 carbs, no bolus and recheck, they didn't do that, just had her eat her whole lunch 65 carbs, no bolus and never bothered to check her again!

August 23, Monday, I go talk to the nurse, tell her she needs to follow the outlined instructions in Kortnie's packet. She says okay, the BG's have been good at lunch time, no issues this week...yet. (at least no issues at school), her morning and after school BG's have been high, need to readjust her basals, we'll be doing midnight and 4am checks the next couple of days.

I am at a loss with school, I feel scared or angry all the time. I'm trying to be patient, but THIS IS HER LIFE! At least this week has been okay, but if things get crazy again, I tell you, I willl be going down to that school and getting in some faces. They are supposed to be schedualing a training seminar with our diabetes educator, I better look into if they have that schedualed yet, I'm sure that will help make things better. Thanks for reading and being patient with my ranting!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Well, I haven't done very well about keeping this blog updated. I do have another blog that is more about our family life. But, I do enjoy reading the other D-blogs out there so I thought I should be more consistent about keeping this blog about Kortnie's Diabetes updated. I've learned alot and felt alot of comradarie from reading the other blogs in the Diabetes community so I want to put some stuff out there too. Maybe someone will stumble upon this and connect with our family and get something out of it.

Kortnie has had diabetes 9 months and 1 week and 6 days now. We like to say that we've gotten the hang of it, and maybe for the most part we have. It's become a part of our lives, but we try so hard not to let it run our lives. Kortnie got on the pump at the end of May and it's been a blessing. For the most part her BG's have been pretty on the mark. She still has some highs and lows, most of the highs are because she needs a site change or because we over corrected a low.

She just went back to school and is in first grade now. Last year when she was dx'd she was in Kindergarten and only went to school for a 1/2 day so she didnt' need to check or take a shot or bolus while there. This year on the other hand she is having to check at lunchtime and bolus. We've chosen to pack her lunch each day so I can include an exact carb count. We're in the 2nd week of school and we've had few challenges already, but that's another post.

So that's a little more about us and I really mean it when I say I want to keep this blog updated more often so look for some new posts soon!
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, February 28, 2010

First Ever Round of Blood Tests

So, it's official, Kortnie was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) 3 months ago. That means that she had her first round of blood tests. She'll need to do these tests every 3 months forever I guess. Anyways, this time all they ordered was a GlycoHemoGlobin (otherwise known as an A1C result), I guess that as time goes on they order tests for thyroids and other issues too. (we are still learning and absorbing all of this massive amount of information) Anyways, when she was diagnosed her A1C was an 8.9 and when she got tested this time it was down to a 6.9!

Here's the breakdown according to our Doc's a "normal" person will be around a 4 or 5, Kortnie should be around 6.8-7.5 with 6 being too low and 8 being too high. So there we are sitting in the office and the doctor is checking out Kork's results and he says, "She's normal", so of course I was totally relieved that she was in her range because I was worried that she'd be too high, I swear I never know if I am doing anything right, when we check her blood sugars all day she is all over the place and it makes me crazy! I like things just right, patterns, everything in it's place, everything turning out just the way I want it, and Kortnie's diabetes doesn't EVER follow suit. I am having a hard time making a place for the chaoticness of it. (enough of that, that's another post entirely), So like I said, the Doc said "she's normal" and I am happy, and Korky pipes up with, "I'm normal? So my diabetes is gone?" BIG SIGH, such a literal child, what more can we ask from a 5 year old though, really? So, no Kork your diabetes isn't gone, what Dr B is trying to say is that you are "normal" for a diabetic, "Oh" she says with a confused look on her face, "okay baby, by "normal" we mean that your results are "normal" for your diabetes and we did a good job keeping your blood sugar under control, you still have diabetes, forever, but we did a good job handling it, and we have to always do a good job so you can always have "normal" test results"....."okay mom" BIG SMILE, but I can tell this is just more info that her sweet 5 year old brain is having a hard time processing. Over all, it sucks, but we'll continue dealing and living with it, we'll get to be so it's just a regular part of life, right?

Friday, February 12, 2010

Take 1

I've had a blog about our family for a year and a half or so already, but recently I thought I'd start one that is just about how our family deals with Type 1 Diabetes. Our middle child, was diagnosed November 8, 2009. It was a major shock to us, as we don't have anyone with T1D in either side of our families. We do have some relatives that have had Type 2 Diabetes, but as we've learned, they are 2 TOTALLY DIFFERENT diseases. Yes, there are some similarities, but really the differences outweigh the similarities. We've lived with this disease for 3 months, and I have to say we are still learning, it's overwhelming at times.

I figured I'd start writing about T1D for a couple of reasons, I've enjoyed reading other blogs, seeing youtube movies and cruising websites that deal with it. I've felt support and camraderie out there in internet land and I thought maybe I could put some of my own support out there for other families to stumble upon. Also, the 2nd reason is so that I can journal our life with T1D for my daughter Kortnie, so she can look back on this journal and know that we have been right here with her every step of the way.

We have a typical family I think, my husband and I have been married 9 years this summer, we have 3 kids, Anastasia is 7, Kortnie is 5 and Graham is 2. Kortnie is the one with the T1D. After her diagnosis we looked back on her life and figured that she'd been living an undiagnosed exsistence for probably most of her young life. We've seen changes in her now that we know about her disease and now that we are working to keep her blood sugars level. Looking back, she's always been overly dramatic and run pretty "hot and cold", she could go from loving and sweet, to crying and tantrum throwing in the blink of an eye. She's always seemed to have a balance or dizziness problem, she'd just run into things or just fall down out of the blue, then she'd bruise like no other! When she was little she and switched from formula to milk she started throwing up and got really sick. We and the Dr's figured she had a lactose intolerance so we switched her over to Soy milk and that helped, but she would still get sick all the time. I used to joke that she was the sickest kid I knew, she'd catch every cold, flue, or virus that came around and she'd get it 10 times worse than anyone else. In March of 2007 we took a trip from our home in Arizona to Spokane, WA, we drove and stayed in hotels with indoor swimming pools, we swam and sightsaw adn atteneded a family wedding. We had a great time, but when it came time for the long drive home there was something wrong. Kortnie had to stop and use the bathroom I kid you now, every 30 minutes. She was dying of thirst too, after awhile we cut way back on the drinks, thinking it would stop the frequent bathroom visits, it didn't, for a whole day we would have to stop every 45-60 minutes so she could go to the bathroom, she even had a couple of accidents, she just couldn't hold it, she was crying because she was so uncomfortable and thirsty. The 2nd day of driving was better but we still had to stop every 2 hours or so. I figured she must have gotten a UTI from all the swimming, so I gave her cranberry juice and yogurt. After we got home she seemed to be better. Life went on and by the summertime she started having to use the bathroom alot more, around September we started noticing alot of weight loss in her, we thought that maybe she was just growing into her baby fat, then she started getting so tired, exhausted really, she would say she was hungry then not eat, and she was sick with colds and flues nonstop for about 6 weeks, the crazy thing is that she seemed to be okay during the week Monday-Friday, but by Friday night she was run down and would sleep adn be sick all weekend. Finnally the weekend of November 7&8th came, she looked much worse we could see her bones and realized she was losing too much weight, her skin was dry, she looked like she was gray, we agreed we'd take her to the Doctor first thing on Monday morning the 9th, however sitting in church on Sunday morning, I felt a strong prompting, telling me to take her to the ER RIGHT NOW, so I did, I got up and took her. I just knew they'd tell me she had swine flue or something like that, but oh no, they said she has diabetes! After that it was a whirlwind, they started taking tests, taking blood, checking urine, an awful blood gas test, besides T1D she had a UTI and Strep throat. We live in a small town in Northern Arizona and the hospital decieded that we had better go down Phoenix and go to the Children's Hospital. They wouldn't even let us make the 3 1/2 hour drive, they insisted that she be flown by medical helicopter, they scared the crap out of us telling us that her body was shutting down, she was losing weight because her body was eating up all of her reserves she'd already lost 1/4 of her body weight, her blood was turning to acid and eating her up from the inside out. So, she and I flew down to Phoenix, they put us in PICU and hooked so many tubes up to her, she looked small and tiny and frail in that big bed with all those tubes hooked up to her. The scariest night of my life! We spent the next week in the hospital learning all about the disease and how to take care of our little girl. I'll end this post for now and next time I'll finish the story and then from there we'll go on and talk about every day life, lessons learned, funny things, sad things, about how live goes on. Thanks for reading.