Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Dream A Little Dream

D-blog week was amazing, I was doing so good at posting everyday until this weekend...life took center stage and I wasn't able to finish the week off. I have been thinking a lot about the last subject...


Imagine there is a tiny little pill that you could swallow and *poof* type 1 diabetes is cured, no more insulin, no more blood glucose tests...no more diabetes.

What would you do that first day of your life after type 1 diabetes was cured?

This has been incredibly difficult for me to imagine...it is what I want so desperately for my kids, yet I hardly ever sit down and truly think about life after diabetes, I guess I am too busy living life with diabetes. I have been very active in raising money to fund research for a cure, I try to educate my family, friends, strangers and anyone who will listen to me about type 1 diabetes...

But I have never let myself go to that place...

That place where I really feel the emotions connected to my daughters being cured, I want it SO badly...I ache for it...

But I don't imagine it.

I have hope that the day will come, I believe in a cure, I just don't fantasize about that day...but today I will.


~I would cry...sob is more like it.

~I would hug my two girls and hang on for dear life and never let go...they might think I'm crazy but I don't care!

~I would take my girls out for the day and not pack a bag full of diabetes supplies and snacks, then 20 minutes into our outing I would probably have a panic attack because I forgot all of our "stuff"...wait a minute, that's right, we don't need it anymore!

~I would take them out to eat and not worry about carbs...then we would order dessert!

~I would let them stay up late and eat loads and loads of popcorn!

~Then let them sleep in till 10:00 am...or later!!!

~I would go to bed and actually fall asleep without worrying that something terrible may happen to them while I sleep.

~I wouldn't set my alarm clock for 1:00 am or 3:00 am...or at all!!!

~I would stop going into their bedrooms at night to check and make sure they are still breathing.

~I would thank the Lord and all the powers that be for blessing us with this magnificent cure!

~I would sit down and write a letter of thanks and praise for every.single.person who EVER donated to JDRF, walked for a cure or simply spread the word about T1D or said a prayer for my kids.

~I would sleep for 8 hours straight and not wake up once...that is unless someone needs a glass of water or needs to use the bathroom. Let face it, with toddlers sleep is a luxury, diabetes or no diabetes.

Man...as I am sitting here writing all of the things I imagine we would do that first day a cure was found I feel like I could write a thousand things we would do, but when it comes down to it I would just be thankful. Thankful that I don't have to worry about the challenges that my girls faced, thankful that the devastating complications from type 1 would be a thing of the past, thankful that they were healthy again.

It is almost too much to imagine...I do want it so badly for them, it's why we have participated in JDRF's Walk to Cure Diabetes from the beginning and always will until a cure is found.

It's why I try to raise money and awareness, I want a cure, I want my girls to know what life without diabetes is like.

I will always actively pursue a cure and do all that I can as a parent to make it happen, but I will not torture myself with the "if only they were cured". I want them to live the life they have to the fullest, here and now, with diabetes...until that cure is found.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Lets Get Moving

Day 5- Lets get Moving

I have two daughters who are 2 years old and 4 years old, they are very active and love to play. We spend a lot of time in our back yard where they have a huge play set that they love to climb on, slide down and swing on. This has worked out great for me because when it comes to being active and their blood sugars, I just never know what's going to happen with them.

A perfect example of this was recently I took my kids in the back yard to play, they were running around having a blast. About 30 minutes into their playtime Miss E asked me if I would push her on the swing, I had just started swinging her when she told me that she was hot and she wanted me to stop pushing her. Then she said she was tired and that she wanted to go inside the house, looking at her I knew something was wrong. I had Lil Miss C in her baby swing so I was trying to quickly unfasten her belt and get inside to Miss E who had made a bee line for the house. By the time I got to the back door I saw Miss E sitting on the kitchen floor, I grabbed her blood glucose meter and started to get it ready when suddenly Miss E just dropped down on the floor and said she felt dizzy. She was lying there on her back and all of the color had drained from her face, I could feel my heart start to race and my hands where shaking.

It was a terrible low, one of the worst so far...38...I had to hold her head up while I gave her a juice box, she cried and told me she felt sick.

It was scary, but I was thankful it happened in our own back yard and I was able to take care of her. We have a park that is just a few blocks away, every time I take the kids there I always bring their meters and juice boxes...you just never know.

I don't have the girls in organized sports yet so I am not sure how that will play out in the future for them and their diabetes. I have Miss E signed up for swim lessons this summer, from what I have read on some of the other d-blogs...swimming can be a nightmare on their blood sugars. Time will tell, I think it's a little bit of a learning curve and a little bit of luck when it comes to figuring out how different activities will affect their blood sugars. I used the word "luck" because some days diabetes just doesn't behave...even when you are doing everything "right".

I'm just hoping that swimming will be kind to my girls :) It is something that Miss E is really looking forward to.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

To Carb Or Not To Carb?

It's day 4 of Diabetes Blog week and our subject is...


In my house I love a good routine, my kids eat every meal and every snack at about the same time every day. I am not a super rigid D-momma, we do get spontaneous once in awhile, but I do love the way a regular schedule keeps my girls blood sugar levels happy...or happier, let's face it...some days you can do everything "right" and the big D will slap you in the face with a crazy high or scary low blood sugar number!

I do let my girls eat carbs but I like to do it in moderation, luckily for me my girls are HUGE veggie lovers!!! I am not even kidding you when I say that my girls would rather eat steamed broccoli then buttery mashed potatoes. They love carrots, celery, green beans and salad without dressing! OH...how did I get so lucky :)

The truth of the matter is this, before diabetes entered our lives I didn't really give my children junk food, juice or loads of high carb stuff. The carbs that I would feed my kids where things like whole wheat bread, brown rice and pasta, we also eat a lot of fruit which tends to have plenty of carbs in it. That was something that I wanted to do for them to set them up for a healthy future...who would of thought diabetes would be a part of our healthy future I envisioned?! But I am thankful for the choices we made, because when D became a part of our daily lives I didn't feel like I was depriving my girls of their favorite foods or drinks.

I like to let my kids have an occasional cookie, chips or pizza night, when we have pizza I always serve it with a healthy salad on the side and some milk. I don't want to deprive them or create a negative feeling towards the foods they want or like. A CDE once told us that it is better to let your kids have the occasional bowl of real ice cream or slice of birthday cake because we don't want them to have a future where they sneak these things and feel guilt over the food they eat. As long as we give them the appropriate amount of insulin, carbs are not a bad word in our home. I feel like for my family we can have carbs at every meal as long as I balance it out with veggies and protein.

This is how we roll in our house...everyone does it different and I respect the choices of others who are fighting the daily battle with D, we each have to find what works for us.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

My Biggest Supporter

It is day 3 of Diabetes Blog week and the topic is "My Biggest Supporter"

Today I want to share with you the person who has been my rock, my biggest supporter since that very first day that type 1 diabetes became a regular part of my vocabulary. Here's the dilemma...

I can't pick just one!!!

I have a few people in my life who have been instrumental in keeping me sane, lifting my spirits in moments of despair, showing me that life goes on and my girls will be okay. They have laughed with me, cried with me, cursed diabetes and rolled with the curve balls that D has thrown our way.

They have been my D-angels, blessings in my life and irreplaceable.

D-Angel #1-

My husband, Richard...

He has been by my side from the moment we first heard the words "your daughter has diabetes". He cried with me, he held me, he was strong for me when I could barely hold myself together. He has picked up prescriptions, done 3:00 am blood sugar checks so that I could sleep... even though his alarm was set to go off at 4:30 am so he could get ready for work. He has been there through it all, without him I would be lost and I am thankful to have him in my life. He is an amazing father to my girls, he loves them unconditionally and I am blessed to call him my man :) I love you honey!

D-Angel #2-

My best friend, K...

She is truly the ultimate best friend...we live over 1,ooo miles apart from each other but I never feel more then a phone call away. When we talk I feel like she is in the room with me, sipping coffee and crying, laughing or contemplating life with me. She has a way of making it all feel okay...even on my lowest of low days she can make me smile and help me see the brighter side of life. She will let me talk for hours about diabetes and never make me feel like I am boring her with talk about my daughters blood glucose numbers or diabetes facts :) She always wants to know more. I know that we will be BFF's until we are old and gray and I look forward to many more years of friendship with her...luv ya K!

D-Angel #3-

My sister-in-law, N...

Not only is she my sister-in-law, but she is godmother to both of my daughters. She is a true D-Angel for my girls, they adore her and love her so much. She has always made a huge effort to be a constant part of my girls lives, we don't live in the same state but you wouldn't know it by the way the girls talk about their nina. You would think she lived next door to us. She has not only been an angel to my kids but she has been a huge source of support for me too. We talk on the phone weekly and she is always quick to offer love and support on those tough days when I am on the brink of a serious cry-fest. Thank you N, for the constant love and friendship you have given me.

I have so many others who have been a huge source of love and support, nieces, nephews, moms and dads...grandpas' and grandma's, nana's and everyone in-between. I am thankful for all of you in my life who have never given up on me or my family, you have loved us and given me the support and friendship I have so desperately needed. You all know who you are :)

A true friend is someone who will always be there for you...even when you have nothing more to offer them then love...

The greatest gift ever.

Making The Low Go

Lows are one of the scary realities of type 1 diabetes, they keep me up at night with worry and they often cause me to second guess myself on a pretty regular basis when it comes to bedtime snacks for my girls.

Because lows can happen anywhere at anytime, I like to travel with an arsenal of supplies ready at a moments notice.

My go to of choice lately are the glucose tablets. My girls love these things, Lil Miss C has been known to say she is low just so she can get her hands on those "giant candies". I always check her blood sugar when she says she is low, but many times she is not low...she just wants a treat. Pretty smart for a two year old!

Some other go to items for treating lows...

Juice boxes...these are great for those lows that happen at 3:00 am. I have never been able to get my kids to chew on food or tablets at that hour.

Milk...when they aren't too low I use this

Candy...not very often because I don't buy it, we use it after the holidays when the girls stocked up on the halloween treats :)

Raisins...they loooooove raisins and want them all the time

And for the worst case scenario...

Glucagon...I have never had to use this and I pray I never do, that being said...I never leave home without it.

So there ya have it :) Those are a few of the things that we use to "Make the Low Go".

Monday, May 10, 2010

A Day In Our Life With Diabetes

This week all over the D on-line community, people have united together to discuss different topics related to life with diabetes.

I'm a little late to the party but I thought I would join in on the fun. Each day we will be discussing a different topic related to diabetes. I wasn't sure if I would be able find the time to post each day...but at the last minute I thought "why not"?! I am giving it a go...I am a day late so the topic for yesterday was...

"A Day in The Life"...

Here is just a glimpse of an average day for my family...

My day usually starts at 3:00 am, this is my first blood sugar check of the day. I sleep with two blood glucose meters by my bedside, one for each of my girls.

I always test Miss E first because she usually sleeps through it, even with me wiping her finger with a cold, wet alcohol wipe and poking her tiny finger to draw a blood sample. If her number is too high I have to give her a shot with insulin, if she is too low I give her some quick carbs to get her to a safe number and wait 15 minutes then re-check to make sure her number has gone up.

Then it's off to Lil Miss C's room where I repeat all of the above steps...the big difference with Lil Miss C is that she almost never sleeps through it. If I am lucky I am back in bed around 3:15-3:30 am for some much needed sleep, if I am dealing with lows I might get back in bed at 4:00 am.

We wake up around 7:30 am and I always wake up to some hungry girls so before anything else I am checking blood sugars again...x's two! I prepare breakfast which always includes measuring out their food, calculating the carbohydrates in the meal and then figuring out how much insulin each of my girls needs and then giving them their shots...x's two!

The rest of the day looks a little like this.

Snack time...repeat, blood sugar tests, calculate carbs, administer insulin via shots.

Lunch time...repeat above

Snack time...repeat above


By now I think you get the picture :( Each of these meals or snacks is often different because I have to adjust insulin depending on what their blood sugar is, giving a correction for high numbers and extra carbs for lows. It's always changing from one day to the next. But on those days when the numbers Gods are smiling down on us I say a little prayer of thanks.

Next we move on to bedtime, after baths and pj's we do another blood sugar test and give the girls a snack. Depending on how hungry they are and what their blood sugar number was we may give another shot to cover their bedtime snack. Now we are at the last shot of the day...hopefully! This is when I give them their Lantus and put them to bed. By now they are pretty sick of all the shots and poking so I can often count on some crying (I would too) and sometimes the occasional "I don't want diabetes anymore" moment.

After putting my girls to sleep it is now time for some much needed 'mommy time', checking e-mail, reading my favorite blogs and then just for peace of mind I usually test the girls blood sugar one more time before I go to sleep.

I set my alarm for 3:00 am and start all over.

This is a typical day in the life with diabetes for our family, if you add both of my daughters tests in there I am usually doing approximately 16 or more blood sugar tests a day and about 12 shots a day between the two of them...sometimes it's more, sometimes it's less. I didn't talk about all of the other "normal" stuff that we do in a day...had I done that you may have felt like you were reading a novel :)

Just add reading, playing, cleaning, cooking, errands and so-on. I am not complaining in any way...I am just trying to give you a 'glimpse'. I do this everyday for my kids, but I know that someday my girls will grow up and this "job" that I do now will become their "job" and it breaks my heart to think of that. I would gladly continue to be their pancreas for the rest of their lives if they would let me, but I know that is unrealistic and I know that eventually they will need to do these things for themselves.

So there ya have it! A day in the life with type 1 diabetes...our day in the life, every family does it a little different depending on pumps, shots, sports, schedules etc., etc, etc. I can tell you from experience that every one is different, I have two daughters with type 1 diabetes and they are both so different when it comes to managing this disease, they require different amounts of insulin and react differently to food. No two are exactly alike when it comes to T1D.

Still praying for a cure, and wishing all of my fellow D-moms, D-dads and PWD's a wonderful day and many blessings!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

T.O.F.U.N Bowling

It has been pretty busy here in our household lately with a lot going on, but I wanted to share with you one of the highlights we had this last week.

We attended our local JDRF T.O.F.U.N Bowling event...This was sooooooooo fun!!!! T.O.F.U.N stands for Type One Families United Network, this is an outreach program for families who are living with type 1 diabetes to get together and have fun in a social setting. A few months back I started to volunteer by helping plan the TOFUN events, this was exactly what I needed to fill me up with a whole lot of warm, fuzzy feelings :) I had been wanting to do more volunteer work for a long time and when this opportunity came my way I was all over it! We have participated in the JDRF's Walk to Cure Diabetes for the last two years but I have been wanting to do more with them and this was a great way to do that. Basically I help plan the events and then show up and have fun, this is a perfect way for me to volunteer because I am able to do everything on-line and through phone conversations...perfect for a stay-at-home momma with no babysitters!

We had about 80 people show up, this was such a wonderful turnout! We also had an Omnipod representative there which was so cool, I finally got to see a pod in person. Miss E has been terrified of going on the pump but after seeing the pod and talking with the rep. she left there wanting a pump!!! I couldn't believe it, for two years she has said "NO WAY" and now she keeps asking me when she will get to go on a pump. I am still unsure of what pump we will get for her when the time comes, but now that I know she is interested I will be doing some more research on the different options available to us.

Now, back to the bowling...I was AWFUL!!! But that's okay because I had a blast, I was pretty much throwing gutter balls the whole time...with the exception of one strike :) Woo Hoo!!! The most important thing though was that Miss E and Lil Miss C had the best time ever. Miss E was literally doing victory dances each time she threw her ball down that lane, it was the cutest thing ever!!! And Lil Miss C, who is all of 2 years old, kept giving high five's EVERY time she would bowl. It really was a great day AND we won two free games of bowling and a bowling towel so we will be heading back there real soon to use those up.

All in all, it turned out to be a great event and I am already looking forward to our next one. We had an opportunity to meet a lot of great families, which is one of the main reasons I wanted to become involved with the TOFUN events. Diabetes was also very good to us that day, we only had one low blood sugar before lunch and no crazy numbers happened after all of the excitement and activity of the day.

Yeah for good numbers :)