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

Friday, November 30, 2012

Day 30!

Wow!  I made it!  Today's prompt is to recap National Health Blog Post Month.

I feel like I got some education out there.

I feel like I learned a few things myself.

I fee like I shared some funny moments.

I feel like I shared some good stories.

I feel like I have lots more to learn.

I feel like I brought out some feelings that I might want to explore further in myself.

Today is the last day of Diabetes Awareness month, but that doesn't mean that we quit, or that Kortnie can quit. 

We live with Type 1 Diabetes everyday 24/7/365.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Day 29 - How Diabetes has Changed Me

Phew, I am almost done with National Health Blog Post Month.  I am glad that I've made it this far and also glad that it is almost  over!

Today's prompt is... How has being a caregiver changed you?

Well, lets see how has being a caregiver changed me?  First of all, I've always been a caregiver to all of my children, but caring for a child with a chronic illness is a different ball game I guess.

#1 I ended up leaving my job, so now I am a stay at home mom instead of a working mom.  It has been a good change, it was hard at first, but I've learned I am learning on how to make our family work on one budget.  I've recently also started doing daycare in my home to help out with a little spending money.  Being a stay at home mom gives me the opportunity to be able to help out more in my community as well.

#2 Being a caregiver has made me more paranoid when it comes to my kids being sick.  I used to just be the "kids get sick, its normal, its okay, no need to freak out" mom, but not now.  If Kortnie gets sick I am constantly watching her to make sure she doesn't end up in bad shape.  If the other kids get sick I am worrying that they are developing T1D or some other auto-immune disease, I am googling (which can be BAD), and I am sneaking into their rooms while they are sleeping and poking their fingers to test their blood sugar too.  My husband is always telling me, "Stop Googling!" and my kids are always saying "I don't have Diabetes!"

#3 I think I have become a little more patient, well maybe not, LOL, with my kids I am more patient, with the insurance company, not so much!

#4 I have become a lot more scatterbrained, thinking about carbs, exercise, weather, hormones, growth spurts, illness, blah, blah, blah, all of the time, makes my brain a bit fuzzy

#5 I am so tired all of the time, tired equals unsexy...you know where I'm going with this?

That's what I can think of now, and specifically I don't know if it's all Type 1 Diabetes fault that I have changed.  People change over time, sometimes change is good, sometimes it isn't.  It was always my goal to be a stay at home mom, so that change is good.  I am happier being home with my kids, but I miss going to a job sometimes too.  I tired of being tired, I am tired of feeling like I miss my husband, I am tired of life that seems to just be plugging along.  I think I need a new change now, I'm just not sure where to find it.

Today's prompt is a loaded one and I'm just not ready to really think about it and delve into it right now. 

Overall, life is good, we have many things to be thankful for.  We have a home, a job, great kids, the medicine we need, insurance, a wonderful family, great friends and community.  There are things that we want of course, there are changes that we could make to be happier of course, we're always working on those, isn't everyone? 

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Special Sibs of a D-Kid Day Day 28

 As you know it's Diabetes Awareness Month.
It's also the month of my oldest daughter, Anastasia's birthday.
An appropriate end to the month is Special Sibs of a D-Kid Day, which is today.  Today is the day we recognize and celebrate the siblings of a D-Kid.  I've said it before that this illness is a family affair.  It takes all of us to support Kortnie and be there for her. 
Sometimes when Kortnie's blood sugar is too high, we have to delay or cancel a treat or dessert, not only does Kortnie have to go without, but most times the other kids go without too. 
Sometimes when Kortnie is too low, we have to stop and treat and rest, a lot of times that means the other kids have to stop too.
Is it fair?  I don't know.  What I do know is that there is hardly ever any complaining.  We get the "diabetes sucks" or "diabetes is no fun" comments every now and then, but Kortnie never gets blamed. 
Anastasia and Graham have taken this journey right alongside us.  They know what to do in a Low or High situation, they know how to check blood sugars, Anastasia knows what the different numbers on the meter mean.  They just take it all in stride. 
They are who they are, they love their sister, we love them, all of them.  We are a family and we do it together.
Getting ready to Zumba for a Cure, we participated in a Zumbathon to raise money for JDRF back in February, as always we do it together, Stasia and Kortnie Zumba'd their bums off, what a fun day.

Last Christmas, Kortnie was sick on the day of her school's Christmas program, her blood sugar was high, she had ketones, she was tired, she was BUMMED out that she was missing her program, especially since she was a 50's dancer.  We missed the morning performance, but by the afternoon performance she was feeling just a little better and she really wanted to go perform.  I took her in and let her perform, even though I could tell she was still feeling pretty yucky.  She was so happy that I took her to perform, and her little brother was happy to watch her and to support her.  He loves her so much.

Big sister always loves going to the JDRF Walk, it's important to her to help us fund raise and raise awareness.

Kortnie's 3 year D-aversary, Graham and Stasia think Diabetes sucks too, so they had to get in on the picture taking action.

They always support and love their sister unconditionally, especially if it means celebrating Kork's D-Aversary with ice cream cones!

This summer Kortnie went to her first year of D-camp, she and Graham are exactly 3 years apart in age.  He was only 2 when she was dx'd, he does not remember a time when she didn't have T1D and he has never been away from her for more than an overnight trip to Grandma's. She was gone a whole week from him and he was chomping at the bit to go pick her up, he was so excited to get her from camp, can you tell by their smiles here?  I love that they love each other so much.

Today, no matter who you are, whether or not you have Diabetes or some other kind of illness or challenge in your life, think about your siblings, think about how much they support and love you.  Tell them thanks, tell them that you love them, tell them that you support them too. 

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Day 27 I Bet You Didn't Know

Phew, I just did 3 other posts to catch up, here is number 4 for today, Day 27 in National Health Blog Post Month.  The month is almost done and I think I've done pretty good posting.  Hope you have learned something!

Today's prompt is I Bet You Didn't Know

I don't think there is anything you don't know about us by now, is there, seems like I've been doing book reports all month!

What I hope you to know is...

We are a family, yep, one of us has the dreaded Type 1 Diabetes, its a family affair.  We all count carbs, we all think about her blood sugars, we all love her.  I probably think about it the most and do most of the work.  Kortnie definitely does the most suffering, but we try not to look at it as suffering.  She usually is okay with most things, but sometimes she thinks it sucks.  Yesterday we were at the grocery store, there was this girl walking around and laughing uncontrollably.  Kortnie was looking at her a little funny, after the girl was gone from our site, Kortnie says to me "that girl was weird, she laughs weird"  I told her that the girl was some kind of mentally handicapped.  She aksed me what that meant, and I told her some kids are born with brains that don't work right, or sometimes people have an accident and their brain gets hurt and that girl that was in the store probably was born with her brain not working all the way right, that her body will get older, but her brain will stay like a little kids brain.  I told her just like she has Type 1 Diabetes and some people think she is "weird", that girl has something that makes people think she is "weird" too, but if we think about it, everyone is weird or different right?  Kortnie says yeah, she thought about it for awhile, and then says to me "I think having Diabetes is worse!"  Hmm, not sure I agree, but it's not my disease so who am I to judge?
Did you know, that we don't mind if you ask about Kortnie's pump or her T1D, or her finger pricking, we don't mind if your kids want to know, ask us, we have an answer for you, depending on how old you are and how much we think you or your little one need or want to know.  Anywhere from explaining the whole disease and pump thing, down to "oh that's Kortnie's medicine", or "oh that is her robot parts" (little boys like that answer).  Don't stare and whisper.   One time when Anastasia was little, she saw a black man, she was maybe 2, she asked very loudly "why is that man so black?"  I just told her that some people had different color skins, just like she was kind of brown like daddy and I was kind of white like her brand new baby sister.  Just like flowers are all different colors too. She said "oh, okay" and that was that, I looked at the man and kind of sheepishly smiled, hoping he wouldn't be offeneded.  He smiled back and said, "good answer".  I knew he wasn't offeneded, he was a man who knew that kids had questions and it was the way we as parents and adults answer them that matters. 
I also hope you know that as much as we or I  complain, and as much as I would take away her Type 1 Diabetes, I would not trade Kortnie in for anything.  If we were given the choice of having Kortnie, a child with Type 1 Diabetes, or having no Kortnie at all.  I would in a heartbeat pick having her with her T1D. If I was able to take it from her, yes I would, if there was a cure, I'd move heaven and earth to get it, but, I wouldn't give her up for anything!
Also, what I want you to know is that Kortnie can do anything.  Sometimes her T1D presents challenges or slows her down a little, but that only makes her better and stronger.  She can and will do anything she wants, if I have to be there to give extra help I will.  If that means that I chase her down the soccer field and shove smarties in her mouth, then I'll do that.  If it means sitting in the parking lot of the dance studio or staying at every practice or sitting in my car out front of a friends house so she can have a play date, I'll do it. 
I also want you to know that there have been and will be many people in our lives that are willing to help, they are willing to take on the challenge of having Kortnie in their home and I appreciate them.  I am always nervous to let her go anywhere without me, but she is going off on her own more and more.  She is becoming independent, a lot of her friends know how to help her, and a lot of the adults around us are willing to learn and help.  I love that!
I want you to know that Kortnie is Awesome, Strong, Brave, Goofy, Funny, Beautiful, Crazy, Compassionate, she's a big sister, she's a little sister, she's a daughter, friend, granddaughter, cousin, and niece.  Someday she'll hopefully be a mom, aunt, and grandma too.  She can do anything and she will do great things. 
Type 1 Diabetes doesn't define her, but it is a part of her.
I bet you already knew all of that, didn't you.

Day 26 Memes, Posters, and Funnies

I skipped Day 25, my last skip day for the month.

Here is Day 26, the prompt was Make a chart, meme, or poster and write about it.

I am not that creative, so I'll share with you some of the funnies I've seen. I have a whole pinboard over at Pintrest that I pin stuff I think is funny or inspirational to me about T1D. You can check it out here.

Our juice box of choice.  So true, at 2am when I'm trying to sleep feed her juice, it seems like I can never get the straw in!

This comes from diabeticallyyours.com
funny because its all true

Funny to me, not sure who made this, it's on my pinboard.

My theme when I am giving the kids their meals or at a buffet or family dinner.  If you are talking to me, and my mouth is moving and my eyes looked glazed over and I hold up a hand to make you stop, don't get offended, I am trying to count the carbs on Kork's plate, and add in the dessert or 2nd helpings I think she might have later.  I find it's too hard to listen to someone talk to me while I do this, my brain can't do a million things at once.  LOL

This one comes from tudiabetes.org

Advice for newly diagnosed T1D's and their support people, moms, dads, etc.  I see sometimes we tell them that it'll get easier, but I am not sure it really does.  We just get better at dealing with it, and better at figuring out our emotions.  It's always hard though, and it always sucks.

I am always doing this!

Yes!  LOL, hotel rooms are too dark.


Does this even need explaining?

Day 24- What I Want People to Know

Day 24's prompt was to write a TV episode and tell you what I want you to know about Diabetes.

I'm gonna cheat since I'm playing catch up.  National D-Blog day 2 years ago, the prompt was to write about 6 Things You Want People to Know about your Diabetes.

I'll just repost it here  in case you want to revisit it you can see it here

Here is a copy and paste of the 6 Things

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 completely 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 independence, 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.

Day 23 - A teaching moment

I am behind on my National Health Blog Post Month again, so here I am playing catch up.

Day 23's prompt was "What's something your doctor taught you or you taught your doctor?"

Kortnie's first Endocrinologist was a Type 1 Diabetic himself, he was older and had a weird sense of humor, he was kind of nonchalant, he actually had a combined practice up here on the mountain.  He was a pediatric Endocrinologist, but there aren't enough patients here for just that, so he also saw other kids in pediatrics.  When we first moved here we tried a few different pediatricians for our kids, he was one of them, we didn't like him so we just moved on to the next guy and finally settled on a family practice close to our home instead of a specific pediatrician for just our kids. 

Enter Diabetes 2 1/2 years later and we were back to this certain doctor, he was the only specialist within 180 miles who could take care of Kortnie's T1D, so we felt he was the only choice for us.  We still didn't like him, and now we liked him even less.  I was relieved when he retired, even though now we have to drive to Phoenix for our appointments.

One time we were there for an appointment and he wanted to look at Kortnie's pump settings.  Her pump is locked so that she can't accidentally push random buttons on the front of it and mess up the pump or accidentally give herself insulin.  It locks much like a cell phone does.  To unlock, you hold down two buttons at the same time.  So, she handed her pump to the doctor, remember when I said he was T1D himself, well he actually used the same pump as Kortnie as well, he did not know how to unlock the pump!  Crazy-ness, you'd think a specialist doctor who had the disease he was treating and used the same pump would know about the lock feature, but no, Kortnie taught him how to unlock it.  Ironic I think.  It would be funny maybe, but since I already wasn't fond of this guy it just turned me off even more. 

We do have a diabetes educator at our hospital, who we love.  She mostly deals with Type 2 Diabetes patients, but she's told us that in the past few years she's had a lot more diagnosis of Type 1 up here on the mountain.  She and the hospital cover a wide area of patients, they people within 100 mile radius around Show Low where the hospital is, people from several different small mountain towns.  Over the summer she has started doing trainings with nurses from the hospital on Diabetes, it's an all day training and she goes over the different types of Diabetes, she invited me to come do a talk during the training about being the mother of a Type 1, and Kortnie comes and they ask her questions too.  The training was so well received that the hospital has decided to hold it twice a year, so I went back in the Fall and did the training again.  I was honored to be asked to come share some of my experiences, answer questions and just put some awareness out there. 

You can read about my talk and the experience at A Chance to Advocate and Educate.  I hope to be invited back to the next training, I admit that first time I went I was nervous, but now that I've gone twice I feel like I have more to add and am more comfortable talking to them. 

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Day 22 A Thankful Post

Happy Thanksgiving!

Today is Thanksgiving and the writing prompt for today is to write what I am Thankful for.
How easy is that?
There are many things I am Thankful for and I probably won't even think of all of them to write here in this post.  I read a thing once that said,
"What if you woke up tomorrow with only the things you thought to be Thankful for today?"
That really hit home with me.  Everyday I try to be thankful, not just in November.
I am Thankful for
My Family, all of them, from my husband and kids, to my inlaws, and my side of the family.  Brian and I both have large families, he has 4 brothers and 1 sister and they all have little families of their own.  I have 4 Uncles and an Aunt and 15 cousins and all of their families, we are pretty close with the majority of all of these people and I am Thankful for all of them. 
My little Family
My little family and some of my husbands side of the family

My little family and some of my side of the family.

My Dog, how could I not be Thankful for this sweet guy?  He is our friend, our companion, our playmate, our protector, he's my 4th kid.

My Home and all that is in it, the comforts of life, indoor plumbing, a wood burning stove, refrigeration, electricity, a roof, walls, beds, couches, TV, Netflix, entertainment, radio, our big jetted bathtub.

My husband's job and his ablility to support us.

My community, Snowflake, AZ is a wonderful place to live.

Teachers and School, I wouldn't like homeschooling my kids, more power to those who can, I just recognize it is something that I would not like to do. And our School Nurse, we love her, she loves Kortnie, she isn't afaid of her and she does whatever we need her to do to take care of Kortnie, she never has an issue with anything, she just does it.  The staff at school too, I don't think they get enough credit, the janitor, the office ladies, the principal, the special aides, the parents who volunteer at school, they all contribute to the raising of my children.

The other adults in my kids lives, their Primary teachers at Church, their coaches in the sports they play, their Girl Scout leader, their dance teachers, their activity day leaders, their friends parents, it takes a Village, I am thankful for our Village!

Insulin and technology that helps keep my Kortnie alive, and I'm thankful that I have access to those things.  While I'm on the subject of T1D, I am thankful for the DOC (Diabetes Online Community) and for the various organizations out there to help us navigate this illness.

My car, transportaion in general.

Techonology in general and the internet.  Some of it can be a pain sometimes, and some of it can do harm, but if its used properly it is a blessing.


Date Nights.

Babysitters that have fun with the kids and people who aren't afraid to take care of Kortnie.

Nature.  From trees to lakes to oceans.  Rain to snow to sunshine.  The Stars and the Moon.

My Country, the good ole US of A, the rights I have, the solidiers who protect those rights.  The Civil Servants of my great country, the police, firemen, national guard, and the 5 branches of the military, and all the others who serve, from church leaders to doctors and nurses, from road workers to forrest service. 



and lastly

My Husband

I know I mentioned my family first and he is my family, he is where my family begins, but really he needs extra thanks.  I love him, he is my best friend, he makes me laugh, he makes me crazy, he makes me hot!  He works hard for us, he brings home the bacon, he plays with the kids and the dog, he does whatever I ask of him most of the time.  He loves unconditionally, he has a magical laugh and a sexy smile, he has a twinkle in his eye, he loves his mama, he loves his babies, he loves me, and he loves his family and mine too, even when we are making him crazy.  He is a giver, he is the best thing that has ever happened to me, and he ranks right up there with my dad as the best man I have ever known. 

Happy Thanksgiving!


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Day 21-My Mental Health

Day 21's prompts are to write about Mental Health or create a new medical technology.  I am going to write about my Mental Health, as today fits perfectly, I feel like I need a Mental Health break. 

Taking care of a diabetic kid is exhausting mentally, it takes a lot of thinking, you can read about that here. 

Besides being a full time pancreas and nurse to Kortnie, I am also her mom first and foremost.

Not only am I her mom, but I am mom to 2 other kids, Stasia and Graham.

We all know that moms are nurses, phsycologists, chauffers, tutors, confidants, playmates, friends, disciplinarians, teachers, cooks, housekeepers, seamstress, personnal shoppers, secrataries, etc, the list goes on and on.

I am also a wife.  Wives play some of the same roles as moms and then some.

I am lucky enough to be a stay at home mom and wife, but that means that all of the housekeeping, shopping, cooking, bill paying, and birthday/special occasion present buying.  Brian helps, but I do most of it, I organize all of it and ask him for help when I need it. 

To make extra money I babysit here at home.  I love the kids I watch, sometimes it gets crazy though, I've had 11 kids here at once, that includes my own kids.  I don't have that many at once very often, and when I do, it's maybe for an hour or so after school gets out.  Keeping up with the different kids scheduales and what their parents owe me, takes a lot of thinking too.

I am PTO President at the school that Kortnie and Graham go to.  That is a pretty big job and I probably put in at least one hour a week into it, but there are other weeks that I put in more, like the last few weeks we've had a few things going on and I have been putting in 5-10 hour weeks, a lot of the work I do for the school and PTO, I can do from home, or I can do while I have my daycare kids and Graham with me.   These next few weeks after Thanksgiving will be busy with PTO and I bet I'll be doing 20-30 hours each week, at the school, not at home, I will still be able to bring Graham and the daycare kids along with me.  I love being able to serve my kids at their school, I like the relationships I've built there with the staff, teachers and students.  The smiles the kids give me and the thanks I get from the teachers and staff are worth the work I put in. 

Brian and I are Nursery leaders at our church, on Sunday's we take care of about 20 little ones 18months-3years old for 2 hours, we do have 2 other helpers.  Every other week I prepare a Sunday School lesson for them.  It's nothing too major as the little ones don't need real in depth lessons.  I love my little ones at church and serving there is fun but tiresome.

These are my roles in my family and in my community.  I love the things I do, but sometimes I get tired too.  Sometimes it is hard to keep it all together and keep myself sane.  Especially when I Kortnie is having a bad Diabetes day, or when Stasia and Graham are having bad days.  Sometimes I get stressed with all of the things I have feel like I have to do.  Sometimes I have to take a step back and evaluate my Mental Health.

Last night, my youngest started throwing up around 1am.  I think he got up at least 15 times between 1 and 6:30am.  I kept thinking how I wanted to sleep, how my husband needed to sleep so he could go to work, how of course there was no school this morning and my daycare kids weren't coming until 8am-ish and I had planned on a lazy morning with my babies.  It seemed everytime I would doze back off to sleep he would get up and throw up some more.  Then I started thinking about how I could keep him away from the daycare kids, I didn't want to call and cancel them at the last minute, I didn't want them to get sick, I didn't want to lose out on the money I would make today.  I also need to keep him away from his sisters, I don't want them to get sick, especially Kortnie.   A bug like this could land Kortnie in the hospital.  Then I started thinking about how it's almost Thanksgiving and how Graham was looking so forward to Turkey Day at Grandma's house, and he's supposed to have a sleepover at Grandma's so Brian and I can do some Black Friday shopping, and how I was even going to try to make a roundtrip trip to the Phoenix Valley (180 miles each way) while Brian was at work and the kids were at Grandma's to do some shopping and now all that is up in the air.  I can't leave Graham sick at Grandma's, if Kortnie gets sick I definitly can't leave her. 

I am definitly having a Mental Health crazy day today.  All I can do is take deep breaths and take it one minute at a time.  For now, I have my girls and the daycare kids downstairs playing video games, Graham is up in my room watching TV, sleeping, and throwing up.  Hoping to keep him isolated and keep the virus contained to him.  Hoping for a fun relaxing family day tomorrow, hoping my kids can still have that sleepover at Grandma's and that by tonight everyone will be healthy. 

When you find yourself feeling a bit crazy, sit down, close your eyes, take a few deep breaths, and make a game plan.  Cut some stuff out if you have to, you don't have to do everything all of the time.  Enjoy what's most important, your kids, your family, the ones you love. 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Day 20 Prepping for the Holidays!

Phew, this is my 4th post this morning, I am playing catch up, for my other posts, keep on reading.....

Today's prompts, I didn't like too much, so I am going with the bonus prompt, Prepare for the Holidays.

Holidays with our family and extended family take a lot of prep.

Kortnie has T1D, she can in essence eat anything, but the holidays are filled with carbs - sweets and starches.  She loves the cakes, cookies, jellos, stuffing, rolls, mashed taters, caramel corn, homemade candies, the list goes on and on.  Whenever we are going to a party or family event or special dinner I have to talk to her about portion size and giving up some things for other things.  Often we bring take home containers so that she can bring some treats home for later so she can enjoy 2 or 3 things at the event and bring the other stuff home to try later.  By the Way, Fudge is the devil as far as Kortnie and her blood sugars are concerned, I hate when fudge comes out, it's so good, she wants it, I want it, and it's still something I haven't figured out how to bolus for, we'll try again this year!  My husband's family likes jello salad, but full on sugar jello is a bit of a no for Kortnie, she can have it, but I'd rather she have sugar free, so I always make her a special just for her sugar free mandarin orange jello. 

Brian, my husband, has this crazy allergy type thing.  He gets migraines, we've figured out some triggers, like extra creamy chocolate, Cadbury and other Swiss chocolates, those are easy to avoid.  Another trigger is meat, especially poultry this is cooked on a bone.  Like chicken or turkey cooked bone-in, we think that the bone marrow or something, cooks down and gets into the meat and makes him sick.  Cow meat too, but not as bad as poultry.  This means for him at the holidays we have to buy a more expensive, turkey breast, and cook it separate in the crock pot.  This also means that he can't have gravy made from turkey drippings, so we make him a separate gravy from packets and his turkey breast drippings.  Also, he can't have stuffing cooked inside the turkey, so we make separate casserole of stuffing for him.  I like to boil down a turkey carcass, make broth and make a yummy turkey soup, but nope he can't have that either.  At Christmas, we buy him a ham slice, cut out the little round bone and fry it up for him, no big spiral ham for him!  He's a pain in the butt, but we love him.   Lately we've noticed our oldest daughter gets migraines, so this year, she'll be eating Brian's special stuff with him and we'll see if that helps her.

Brian's Grandma Anna is lactose free and gluten free.  She has Ceilacs and Lactose intolerance.  No cream, butter, rolls, stuffing, etc for her.  Brian's mom will make her a special bowl of potatoes with no butter, a special bowl of veggies with no butter, a Gluten free cornbread stuffing, usually a special dessert, no butter on the turkey to make it brown, etc.  Brian's mom doesn't like any of the GF or DF stuff, so she just makes everything separate, the traditional stuff for everyone else and special GF and DF stuff for Grandma.  It makes more work for her, but I think she loves it. 

This year we are traveling about an hour away for Thanksgiving, the kids will stay the night at their Grandma's while Brian and I go do the Black Friday thing.  So the kids will be gone from home for about 36 hours.  This means packing extra stuff for Kortnie, just in case, test strips to last her that long, batteries for her devices, extra site changes and cartridge changes, juice boxes, making sure her phone battery is charged, plus clothes and toiletries for all 3 kids!

For Christmas we are travelling to Nevada, about a 14 hour drive, we'll be gone for a week.  Packing clothes and stuff for all 3 kids, plus Brian and I, warm winter clothes, toiletries, Christmas presents for the kids and family we are going to visit, a whole bag of Diabetes supplies, stuff for kids to do on the long car ride, a cooler with snacks and drinks to save money on stopping to eat, the list goes on and on, I have already started thinking about what I need to pack and making lists so I don't forget things. 

It's all worth it though, the crazy allergies and extra cooking, the extra packing and driving.  It is all worth it to spend time at the holidays with family. 

Day 19 Write about Life and Death

Life and Death?

How can I write about that?

Since I am still playing catch up, I am keeping this one short.

Life and Type 1 Diabetes-it can be good, with hard work and perserverance, we can help Kortnie to live a good long life with her Type 1 Diabetes.  I will always, ALWAYS, work hard to make sure she has a good long life.  I will always expect everyone around us to keep an eye out and help her to live a good long life.  I will always fight for whatever I need to fight for to keep her healthy and strong and to treat and take care of her T1D.

Death and Type 1 Diabetes-it's the scariest thing ever to think about, but it's a realility.  Eventually (hopefully when she is OLD), she will die of a complication of her Type 1 Diabetes.  I can accept that, but again I'm going to work hard, very hard, harder on this than anything, to make sure that she lives a good long life.  Unfortunatly there is are so many things that can bring really hard times, complications, or even death to our door, but I believe that we will continue to strive and work hard to keep death away.  She WILL live to be an old Great-Grandma, she will see many things and she will live a good long life, longer than me. 

Life and Death, kind of a hard thing to think about, but I think about it often, it's a demon of mine, I'm sure her dad too.

In the hospital at diagnosis, she was so sad and having a hard time, she was 5 and she kept asking us "I'll have this until I die?" or "I'll have to do this until I die?"  I kept saying to her, "yes, for the rest of your life". 

How hard is that to hear from your 5 year old?  HARD I tell you, HARD!

This is all I have to say about this, it's depressing, I don't want to think about it anymore right now. 

Day 18 A very special Sib of a D-Kid

Sunday, the 18th was my oldest daughter's birthday, she turned 10!   She is Kortnie's big sister.  She takes a backseat to Kortnie and her Diabetes way too often. 

Kortnie was diagnosed with Diabetes 10 days before Stasia's 7th birthday.  It kind of put a damper on her birthday, but she didn't complain. 

Instead of using this post to do the blog prompts, I'm gonna talk up my biggest girl. 

She turned the big 10 this weekend, and we are making a week long celebration of it.  Friday night she had 4 of her friends over and we made let them make up their own pizzas, we had popcorn, chips, a veggie dipper tray, ice cream, and brownies.  They danced to cool music and Justin Bieber, they watched the movie "Brave" and painted nails.  Her friends all went home around 9pm.  It was a good time, and she was gracious enough to let her little sister join in on the fun. 
Saturday I took her and Kortnie to go see Breaking Dawn 2, yeah, a little PG13 for my girls but I made them close their eyes for the too sexy stuff.  We had a great time, I bought them the $20 Twilight keeper soda cups and popcorn bucket, we waited in line for 45 minutes to get in the theater, we got good seats and saw lots of people we knew from our town.  It was fun!
Sunday was her real birthday and we went to church and had a laid back birthday at home, we went out as a family for ice cream cones, and I made her her favorite homemade Mac&Cheese. 
Monday she was back to school, so I went and picked her up and took her out to a fancy cafe for lunch, just her and I we had so much fun, this was a picture from lunch yesterday.  After lunch, her dad and brother met us at her school and we handed out cupcakes to her class.
Thursday she'll have more presents and special chocolate pie at her Grandma's house, it's Thanksgiving, and we'll be thankful for so many things, but at the top of my list are my kids, especially my big girl!
She is 10 now, in 4th grade, she loves Softball, Basketball, and Swim Team.  She loves Justin Bieber too.  She does so well in school, so well that she helps tutor some of her classmates after school.  She says she wants to be a teacher or a doctor when she grows up.  She likes to play school with  her siblings and friends.  She is beautiful!  She helps Kortnie with her diabetes and is always concerned. She knows what the blood sugar numbers mean too.  She loves to bake and cook and is getting pretty good at it.  She likes to help me with my daycare kids.  She rides her bike and goes to Zumba with me.  She is tenderhearted and loving.  She drives me crazy sometimes, and I think she is hormonal, but I wouldn't have her be any thing other than what she is.  She is my first born and was always the best baby, hardly ever cried and slept through the night at 6 weeks old (well she'd sleep a good 6 hour stretch).  She doesn't get sick very often either.  She is our biggest girl and we love her so much! 
Check out this FB page Special Sib's of D-Kid's 

Day 17 My Strengths and Weaknesses

Did you think I gave up on posting everyday?  Well, I got busy with a fun weekend with my kids.  It was my oldest's birthday and my other 2 kids got invited to a few other birthday parties.  Here I am, though, gonna get back on track and play catch up!

So, Friday the 17th, the prompt was my Strengths and Weaknesses.  This is hard for me, to think of these things about myself or about Kortnie, and relate them to taking care of Diabetes, but I'll try, here goes.

Me-My Strengths
1.  I am getting pretty good at guessing portion sizes and carb counts, it's called SWAG-ing, Scientific Wild A$$ Guessing.
2.  I am one of the only people it seems who can look at Kortnie and see that something is wrong-blood sugar wise.  It's in her eyes.  Her dad is getting okay at this too, and about this time of year her teachers start getting okay at it too. 
3.  I can give a good combo bolus while I'm driving-maybe not a strength, it's probably just about as bad as texting and driving-which I never do
4.  I'm starting to get this D-stuff figured out, which means that I will be thrown a curve ball pretty soon!

Me-My Weaknesses
1.  I still get mad and sad and curse the evil Diabetes way too often.
2.  I get tired and sleep through my alarm when I'm supposed to be checking Kortnie.
3.  I let Kortnie's Diabetes trump other things, like time with my other kids, time with my husband, and time for myself. 
4.  I sometimes put too much of Diabetes care and responsibility on Kortnie.  I get tired and I sometimes make her do too much.  I want her to learn how to take care of herself, but I also don't want her to get all burnt out on it right now, she has a lifetime to take care of herself.

Kortnie-She is all strength, no weakness!  She hardly ever complains about having Diabetes, she's come so far, she does more than any other 8 year old should have to do.  She can read nutrition labels, she can measure up or weigh goldfish or cereal or whatever.  She can change her site and cartridge in her pump (sometimes she still wants me to do it), she can figure out what her blood sugar numbers mean and give herself sugar or insulin if she needs to.  She is awesome and brave and strong, and we love her!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Difficult doesn't Mean Impossible, it Simply means that you have to work Hard

I skipped blogging yesterday, but that's okay because you get to skip 2 days in National Health Blog Post Month. 

Today's prompt is, use a picture or video to inspire a post.  Here goes Day 16

I saw this quote yesterday on facebook and I knew it would be perfect for today's blog post.

Difficult doesn't mean impossible.  It simply means that you have to work hard.

I saw this and I thought that it perfectly summed up how it is to take care of Kortnie, and how it will be later when she takes the reins completely to take care of herself.   Living with Diabetes is difficult, but not impossible.  If you don't take care of yourself properly you could live a less than great life, or you could even die.  Taking care of yourself properly is difficult but not impossible, and even if you try really hard to take care of yourself, you will still eventually have complications, and likely your life will end due to Diabetes or complications of Diabetes, but hopefully not for a long time, until you are old and have lived a good long life. 
I have blogged this month and even before this month about the challenges and difficulties raising a child with Type 1 Diabetes, I have blogged about how I am worried about how she will handle the difficulties when its time for her to be on her own, and I have blogged about our hard work.  I have blogged about wanting to give back the T1D, and I have blogged about being thankful for the opportunities and friends T1D has brought to our lives.  I have even blogged about being Thankful for having access to the things that help us take care of Kortnie and her T1D, but I don't think I have ever said, "this is impossible!"
I have said before that one of the things I hate to hear is "I don't know how you do it, I could never do what you do!"  I realize that when other mom's say this to me, they don't mean anything bad by it, they feel like they are paying me a compliment, giving me support, or sympathy.  I love them for loving me, but when they say that... I could NEVER do it, God gave you this because he knew you could handle it, I could NEVER do what you do
I just want to tell them "yes you could, you don't know what you could handle until you have to do it, if you didn't do it your kid could die, and that is something no mother could ever do, is let her kid die, you could do this, I never would have thought I could do it either, but I have to, there is no other way, it's hard for sure but, I know you could do it"
So yeah, that quote/picture sums it up for me.
Difficult doesn't mean Impossible.
It Simply means that you have to work HARD.
Diabetes Fact of the Day
Long-term complications of type 1 diabetes develop gradually, over years. The earlier you develop diabetes — and the less controlled your blood sugar — the higher the risk of complications. Eventually, diabetes complications may be disabling or even life-threatening.
Complications can be Heart and Blood vessel Disease, Nerve Damage-Neuropathy, Kidney Damage, Eye Damage, Foot Damage, Skin and Mouth Conditions, Osteoporosis, Hearing Problems, and Pregnancy Complications-  High blood sugar levels can be dangerous for both the mother and the baby. The risk of miscarriage, stillbirth and birth defects are increased when diabetes isn't well controlled. For the mother, diabetes increases the risk of diabetic ketoacidosis, diabetic eye problems (retinopathy), pregnancy-induced high blood pressure and preeclampsia.
You might think, oh just keep your blood sugar down and you'll be fine.  Well, that's the hard part.  Yesterday Kortnie's blood sugar ranged from 30-410, her ideal blood sugar range is 80-120.  Anything under 80 is too low, under 60 is dangerous, anything above140 is too high, above 250 is not good, above 300 is dangerous.  Keeping it in range is the hard part, you have to be able to calculate your insulin needs based on many things.
1.  How many carbs is she eating, how much fat and protein are in the things she's eating?
2.  What kind of exercise or activities is she going to do today?  Is there PE at school today?  Does she have soccer or basketball practice, or a game?  Is she going to go jump on her friends trampoline?  Is she going to ride bikes or run?  Is she going to hang out and watch TV?  Is she going to be sitting for a long time, at a movie, at school taking a long test, in the car to drive somewhere, reading a book?
3.  Is she growing today?  How much growth hormone is her body producing or releasing today?
4.  Is she excited about something?  Is she nervous about something?  Is she sad about something?
5.  Is she getting sick?  Has she been sick?
Many things to factor into the insulin dosage, and add in the fact that, me, her dad, herself, and her school nurse are trying to do all of these things at different times of the day, that just adds one more thing to factor in.  6.  What happened earlier today with her mom or her dad or her nurse?
It is a difficult battle every day, but for the last 3 years we've proved it's not impossible.  

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

World Diabetes Day

Today is World Diabetes Day.  Every November 14th is WDD.   You can find out how it became a thing here.  November 14th is the birthday of Sir Fredrick Banting, who in 1921 created Insulin.  Before 1921 a diagnosis with Type 1 Diabetes was a death sentence.  Thanks to Sir Fredrick Banting and his discovery of Insulin, many lives have been saved. 
You see in a "normal" person, their pancreas produces insulin, insulin breaks down carbohydrates and turns them into energy.  A Type 1 Diabetic's pancreas does not produce insulin, with out the injected insulin that Dr. Banting discovered, they would starve to death.
So, November 14th is set aside by the International Diabetes Federation and the United Nations to raise awareness about Diabetes.
The blue circle is the IDF's official symbol of Diabetes Awareness. 
Here is a timeline in pictures of how Kortnie looked before and after her diagnosis.  In the first picture she is on her way to her first day of Kindergarten, August 2009, she is plump, rosy, and healthy looking, in May we had been told she was obese.  The second picture is September 2009, 8 weeks before her diagnosis, you can tell she has started losing weight, her neck and face are skinny, I thought she was growing into herself or losing her baby weight, I was remembering being told she was obese just 4 months prior.  The middle picture is her 2 weeks before diagnosis, her neck and arms are so thin, her head looks too big for her body, her skin was pale and dry, this is when I started putting it together that something wasn't quite right, but I thought she might have a flu or mono, I didn't have a scale at home, when we took her to the ER and they weighed her, she had lost 14 pounds from when she had gotten weighed at school in the beginning of August.  The fourth picture is 3 weeks after her diagnosis, 3 weeks after starting on insulin, she still looks thin in the neck and chest, but her arms and face are have gained back some weight, her skin is better, but she still looks tired.  The last picture is Christmas, about 7 weeks after her diagnosis and starting on insulin, she has gained most of the weight she lost back, her energy was back, the light in her eyes was back, she was Kortnie-Licious again!  I will be forever grateful to Dr. Banting and his team.

Here are some moments in the history of diabetes.

  1. In 1500 BCE, ancient Egyptians recognized diabetes in people who urinated frequently and lost weight for no apparent reason. It was not labeled at that time but it existed.
  2. A Greek physician named Arateaus recognized that the urine produced from people with diabetes was sweet and termed it Diabetes Mellitus.
  3. In 1776, Matthew Dobson actually measured the urine for glucose and found it to be increased in certain people.
  4. In the early 1800s, diabetes was considered a clinical entity but the prevalence was not really documented. No specific treatment was used and usually within weeks to months the disease was fatal.
  5. The last 200 years have helped us understand many of the underlying causes of diabetes, ways to decrease risk factors of diabetes, and actual treatments. The outlook has definitely improved, with good results when therapies are used.
  6. Treatments have been effective, but still no real cure has been discovered.
  7. The disease of ancient times involved insulin deficiency (Type 1).
  8. In the early 1900s, Edward Sharpey-Schafer thought the lack of insulin was the cause of diabetes.
  9. Frederick Bating and Charles Best discovered insulin by reversing diabetes in dogs after inducing it. They did this by extracting pancreatic islet cells from healthy dogs; they later purified the insulin, and along with James Collip and John Macleod, were the first to treat a patient with diabetes using insulin.
  10. In 1936, Harold Himsworth proposed that more people had insulin resistance than insulin deficiency (Type 2).
  11. The discovery of biosynthetic human insulin replaced animal insulin, which eliminated reactions to insulin.
  12. Over the years we went from checking glucose in urine samples to using glucometers and checking blood sugar. In the beginning, blood glucose meters were only available in the hospital. Over time they became smaller, more sophisticated, and were made available for home use.
  13. New classes of oral diabetes medication have been discovered working on the pancreas, liver, muscle cells, gut hormones, and kidneys. Some that remain are cheap and reliable, and some are gone due to excessive side effects.
  14. Insulin injections went from glass syringes and long needles (which needed to be sterilized and reused), to disposable syringes with short, attached needles. Even easier are the disposable insulin pens which just require the click of a button.
  15. Pumps have made many lives much easier and eliminate the need for multiple daily shots. The added flexibility helps with an easier meal plan and exercise plan.
  16. Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) assists people in identifying blood sugar trends, and is crucial for those who suffer from hypoglycemic unawareness.
  17. Ketone testing has gone from testing urine with strips to blood ketone testing, which is more efficient and reliable for testing for Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA).
  18. New technology and medications are always being developed since diabetes is big business. The future looks bright. Hopefully we will gain progress in the fight against diabetes.
  19. On the darker side - 2012 shows that insulin deficiency (Type 1) accounts for 10% of diagnosed cases (autoimmune) which can be controlled with exogenous insulin (insulin injections). About 90% of the cases are considered insulin resistance (Type 2). This has become evident in the past 40 years and has created an epidemic world wide (causes may include inactivity, food portions and weight gain, along with genetics).
  20. The most recent statistics from the ADA are: 26 million people in the US have diabetes; 79 million have pre-diabetes with an increased risk for diabetes. One in three will have diabetes in 2050 if dramatic changes are not achieved. The yearly cost of diabetes to the nation is $174 billion.
  21. The need for a team approach with multiple follow up appointments has proven results, whether in person (one on one, class) or on the phone. Having a physician, CDE, dietitian, social worker, podiatrist, pharmacist and ophthalmologist is the best way to follow all the organ systems involved in diabetes

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Day 13 - Something Taboo - Dead in Bed Syndrome

Today's prompt is to write about something Taboo.  I want to write about something called Dead In Bed Syndrome.  I consider this taboo because I don't see it written about very often.  We don't talk about it very much, unless we hear of someone who has died, due to Dead in Bed Syndrome.  When Kortnie was diagnosed, I wasn't warned of this, the doctors and nurses we've seen have never mentioned it.  I found out about it maybe a year after diagnosis, once I'd joined some DOC online groups and made some online friends. 

Dead in Bed Syndrome is defined as...

Someone with type 1 diabetes is found dead in the morning in an undisturbed bed after having been observed in apparently good health the day before. No cause of death can be established. This is the typical situation of the "dead in bed" syndrome, a very tragic outcome which leaves the family with many unanswered questions: Why, when, how, could it have been avoided?

I have heard of it happening more times than I care to count since I've heard about this.  Usually if you see a blue candle burning on my Facebook page, someone has passed of this, and I don't light my blue candle every time either. 

Dead in Bed Syndrome, this is why I try to check Kortnie's blood sugar at night.  I wouldn't go more than 4 hours during the day without checking her blood sugar, so I check it at night too.  There are times when I've caught a low and had to sleep feed her juice or smarties, or when I've caught a high and had to give her more insulin.  There are times when I've slept through my 2:30am alarm or when I've turned off my alarm clock and not gotten out of bed, but I usually still end up getting up around 3:30 or 4am and going to check her anyways. 
I am not saying that everyone with a Diabetic kid should get up and check the kid in the wee hours of the morning.  That's just what I do, and Dead in Bed is one of the reasons why.
I don't know if I will do this for as long as she lives at my house.
I don't know when I'll expect her to do it.
I don't know if when she is in college I'll still get up and call her and tell her to do it.
I don't know if when she's married if I'll expect either her or her husband to do it.
I don't know.
Today, totally random, in the middle of the afternoon, her blood sugar was 36, she didn't even feel it.  I noticed that she looked kind of pale and glassy eyed and was acting kind of funny so I told her to go check.  Thirty.Six!  That is way too low, anything under 80 is too low.  There was no rhyme or reason to it either.  She has been 31 and 29 before and not felt it.
I am not sure if she'd wake up if she was low.
What if she went low like that in the middle of the night, just because Diabetes is fickle like that?  And didn't wake up to have some juice. What if she didn't wake up at all?
I don't know, there are too many what if's. 
I don't talk about this, I talk about how Diabetes sucks, how it is weird, how it is expensive, how it is fickle, how it is hard, how it makes us strong.  But, I don't talk about how it scares me.
Diabetes Fact of the Day
6% of deaths in Diabetes patients under the age of 40 are due to Dead in Bed Syndrome.
6% is relatively small, but I don't want to be in that 6%, I don't want anyone to be in that 6%.

Monday, November 12, 2012

My favorite Health App/Device/Book is...

Today's prompts for NHBPM are Call BS on something, or review your favorite Health App/Device/Book. 

I can't think of anything to call BS on that I haven't already talked about this month.  Mainly misconceptions and myths.  I've already talked about those here and here.  I am sure there are other things to call BS on, when I think of them I'll save it for another blog post later.

I'll tell you about some of my favorite things that help me and Kortnie all of us take care of Kortnie.

1.  The Calorie King book.  We got one of these at the hospital, it is awesome, it has carb counts (and calorie and fat counts) of all kinds of food.  It has a restaurant section, and it also has specific counts of actual brand name foods, or a general count of something.  It has fruit, vegetables, nuts, baked goods, and drinks.  It also has counts for something like a tablespoon of flour or sugar or what not.  Love this book!  There is also a website http://www.calorieking.com/ where you can type something in and search for it and it will bring back choices for you.  So type in something like Wendys Frosty and it will bring back a bunch of options from small vanilla frosty up to large chocolate frosty with whip cream.  I hear there is an app for it too, but I don't have it on my phone, but I do go to the browser on my phone and look up the website quite often.  I have one of the books in my kitchen and in my car.  It makes SWAGing easier (Scientific Wild Ass Guess).

2.  Rufus, the bear with Diabetes.  We also got him in the hosptial, he came with some syringes so Kortnie could practice giving him shots.  See the colored patches on him, those are the places you can give yourself shots, the arms, legs, and belly, the red patches on his hands are where he pricks his fingers.  He comes with a JDRF t-shirt and ours had a medical alert bracelet on him too.  3 years later, Kortnie still sleeps with him and takes him places.  He is just a teddy bear, but he's a teddy a bear with Diabetes, just like our kids.  All the little Type 1's seem to love their Rufus. 
3.  Diabetic Barbie this little girl Emma wanted to know why there was no Barbie with Diabetes, so her mom helped her to start up a campaign to make it happen.  Now they are making their own accessories and selling them with the proceeds going to various Diabetes related charities and organizations.  She makes insulin pumps, meters, syringes out of clay, she also makes mini pump pouches and walk t-shirts.  She makes them to fit Barbies, American Girls, Rufus, Lenny the Lion (Medtronic mascot-an insulin pump maker), and other stuffed animals.  We were lucky enough to win a drawing and got Rufus a pump, meter and pump pack.  Here is Kortnie showing off her Rufus and his new purple pump, and her pink pump.  She was very excited, now Rufus can have a pump and not have to have as many shots!  If you have a diabetic kid, go check out the Diabetic Barbie Facebook Page, these pumps and accessories can be made in any design, they are not just for girls, if you know a little boy with Diabetes, she can make him a kit for a stuffed animal or for a Rufus or Lenny, or a Ken doll.  If you don't have a diabetic kid in your family, go like her page anyways, the more likes, the more Mattel will take notice. 
4.  A fun test kit, Kortnie uses this one, it's a Sugar Bag from Sugar Medical Supply.  It holds her meter, her poker, a vial of test strips, and has a zipper pocket where she can put a couple rolls of smarties, and a unzippered pocket we can slip in a name and emergency card, and a few dollars if she wants, or a log book, there is also a strap for a pen-needle or syringe, and a vial of insulin.  The outside of the case has a pocket where you could slip a phone in too.  She keeps all her testing stuff in there and carries it either by itself, or in her purse, or her backpack for school.  It is cute and fun and not boring black.  Again, it's not just for girls, there are designs for women, boys, and men.  This is just the one she picked out.  She has had it for a little over a year and it is wearing out, so I have ordered a new one in a different design to give her for Christmas.  Even though it is wearing out, I still feel it is good quality, after all she has used this daily for over a year, and she opens and closes it and gets stuff out of it about 10 times a day, and she is 8 years old, so you know this thing has been thru the wringer. 
These are just a few of the things that make our diabetic life easier and funner.  I have not been asked to review any of these items, I get nothing for saying such nice things, just wanted to share a few things that we love. 
Diabetes Fact of the Day
  • People with diabetes are at greater risk for depression.
  • Poor diabetes control can cause symptoms that look like depression.
  • At any given time, most people with diabetes do not have depression. But studies show that people with diabetes have a greater risk of depression than people without diabetes. There are no easy answers about why this is true.
    The stress of daily diabetes management can build. You may feel alone or set apart from your friends and family because of all this extra work.
    If you face diabetes complications such as nerve damage, or if you are having trouble keeping your blood sugar levels where you'd like, you may feel like you're losing control of your diabetes. Even tension between you and your doctor may make you feel frustrated and sad.

    Sunday, November 11, 2012

    Humanitarian Missions-Honoring our Vetrans Day 11

    Today's prompt in the Wego Health NHBPM is write about your favorite thing this is not health related, but likely improves your life.

    Well, it is Veteran's Day today, so I will write a little about the Military, the men and women who serve now and the Veterans.  I guess the military couldn't quite be classified as one of my most favorite things, but it is  they are, something I respect. 

    We live in a great country where our young men and women get to choose whether or not they want to serve our country.  There are so many places in our world where people are forced to serve their countries.  I am forever glad that we live in a place where we get to choose.  For those who do choose to serve our country by joining the military or the national guard, I am thankful for you too. 

    My dad, 2 of my uncles, all 3 of my grandfathers, some of my cousins, my husband's grandfather and brother, and many, many friends of mine have served or currently are serving now.  I believe my life is improved by the military who protects my country and my freedoms.  I also believe the live of my kids are improved, as well as the lives of countless others all over the world.

    I'm gonna turn it back to medical now, not only do our military members protect us, they perform countless humanitarian efforts in the name of the US, the deliver medical supplies, food, water, and assistance all over the world, the people who receive and benefit from these deliveries would likely tell you their life was improved by them.

    My dad, is my most favorite Vetran, One of the stories I remember most from when I was growing up a military brat, is from a time when we were living in Guam, my dad served as a Chief on the USCG Basswood,
    Basswood has taken part in many notable missions since her commissioning and while being stationed in Guam . In addition to her primary mission of aids to navigation, she also participates extensively in maritime law enforcement missions, search and rescue cases and marine environmental protection. During her tour on Guam, Basswood has been the driving force of PROJECT HANDCLASP, a U.S. Navy program that provided health care and humanitarian relief to the farthest outlying islands of the Pacific Ocean . Basswood's participation in this program has allowed her to travel to virtually every island or atoll in Micronesia .
    There is no finer example of devotion to duty than through Basswood's display of dedication to the aids to navigation mission. She was responsible for maintaining all federal aids to navigation in Micronesia . This area of responsibility was roughly the size of the continental United States . It included over 100 fixed and floating aids in Guam , the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas Islands (CNMI) and Kwajalein Atoll. Basswood was also responsible for the aids in Subic Bay, Republic of the Philippines , prior to the closing of the U.S. Naval facility there in 1992. Basswood also worked the aids in Palau , Hawaii , and along the West Coast
    I remember him going on missions to the atolls in Micronesia, to Kwajalein, and to the Philippines.  I remember him coming back and talking about delivering supplies to the Peace Corp workers on the atolls.  Places where there was no electricity, refrigeration, or telephones.  People lived in grass huts and often only wore grass skirts and nothing else.  Sometimes, the USCG guys would bring clothing that their own kids had grown out of and trade it with the islanders for some of the things they made like coconut soap and carvings.  He brought back pictures and told of how the people lived a simple life.  They would moor their ship a ways away from the atoll (small island) and take little speed boats up to the shore to deliver the supplies.  He told us of how the kids would get so excited and one time they got the grand idea to bring coolers of ice onto the island to let the children play, they had never seen ice or felt cold before, could you imagine?   I am proud to know that my father served such important missions, they may not be the MOST important missions in protecting us and our freedoms, but to me, humanitarian missions are just as noble and wonderful as protection missions.  Yes, humanitarian military missions is one of my favorite things. 

    My favorite Vetran

    3rd Platoon Bravo delivering medical supplies in Baghadad

    Delivering supplies in Kirkuk, donated by the World Health Organization (WHO)

    Medical Supplies going to Haiti after the Earthquake

    Military Police teamed up with Iraqi Police to deliver medical supplies to Basra, this little girls smile says it all, her life was improved this day.

    National Guard delivering medical supplies in Cambodia

    Getting ready to air drop medical supplies in the South Pole

    There are so many more pictures of our military men and women delivering medical supplies all over the world if you look around the Internet. 
     Check out the Who Diabetes Program and definitely go do the Big Blue Test, help these organizations get the funding to get medical supplies gathered so that our military can deliver them. The Big Blue Test is the easiest way to help.  You don't need to be diabetic to do it, just log some activity and bam you help them get one step closer to meeting their goal of raising $100,000 by November 14, 2012, which is World Diabetes Day. 
    Learn more about World Diabetes Day here
    Diabetes Fact of the Day
  • 347 million people worldwide have diabetes1.
  • In 2004, an estimated 3.4 million people died from consequences of high blood sugar.
  • More than 80% of diabetes deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries.
  • WHO projects that diabetes deaths will increase by two thirds between 2008 and 2030.