My motivation

Early in my T1 years I was not too concerned about complications. After feeling like I was dying before T1 was found in me, after the diagnosis I wanted to live as fully as I could.

My first complication came much earlier then I desired. Hypoglycemic unawareness came into my life 2 years after I was diagnosed. This sure got my attention as it was so scary to know that it could take me out permanently if I was not very careful.

Thankfully, since December 2014 I have been using a Dexcom CGM to help me keep my blood glucose numbers in a safe range. It is so exciting to have this technology work for me.

However, my motivation for living as well as I can with T1 is my son. I was fortunate to become his mom through international adoption. I am one of the older mom’s among his classmates. So, since I am his third mom as he has a birth mom and a foster mom; I always do the best I can with my T1 so that I can live for as long as possible.

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Drums

When I was in elementary school the first instrument I played was the violin. I liked the sound of this stringed instrument as for me it was so soothing and so beautiful. I was disappointed when my family moved as my new school did not offer orchestra.

I switched to the clarinet. Then in junior high I took band class. The clarinet did not come as easy to me as the violin did. It showed as I was in the third row of three rows for clarinet. I did my best but I just did not have a passion for it.

One day in music class, the teacher asked me to play the rhythm on the drum behind me as one of the drummers was not paying attention. I was not accustomed to being on the spot like that. I had never played the drums before. Thankfully, I did just fine. I think it was at that point that an interest in percussion instruments began within me.

While I will always like stringed instruments, I wanted to protect my fingers so that it would be easy to test and know what my blood sugar level is.

Today I had the pleasure of trying out some drums at a music store. It was fun! I still need much practice but music has helped me tremendously. I am listening to a lot of music from my pre-wedding days as this music takes me to a great place emotionally.

As I am on this unexpected and new path of my life as a single mom I think it is time for me to take up drumming so I can keep marching to the beat that is my life. A life where T1 intercepts it in interesting ways.

283

It is #BGWed and I posted my much too high morning reading of 283. Ever since the day after Thanksgiving 2014, I have been experiencing the most stress in my life. My blood glucose readings are certainly reflecting this as my A1c level has gone higher then I like.

I am thankful with an appointment with my dietician today as she is helping me with a meal plan to make my daily meals easier to prepare. Cooking is not my favorite thing to do and I don’t think it ever will be.

I think for those of us with diabetes and I certainly know for me, I wish eating was not necessary for survival. This would make my life so much easier. My life would be less expensive and think of all the time I would save with no food shopping, preparation, and dishes. Not to mention money as I do prefer organic and grass fed beef. I even give my puppy grass fed chew sticks that thankfully Costco sells.

However, this is just not reality even though I have wanted it to be reality for as long as I can remember.

I do recognize that eating with family and friends can be an enriching and needed time in dealing with the unexpected events life always throws at us or a time to enjoy fellowship.

So, this morning I started my day at 283 and I can’t wait for it to be under 150 and above 80. The overnight high or low readings are the ones that do the most damage and frustrate me and scare me the most.

As always, I will keep plowing along and not get struck on the high number I woke to this morning as I know it will not stay with me all day.

I hope to enjoy a late breakfast as that will mean my BG is back in my target range. A place I try to stay as often as I can. Thirty years into this it is so important to be in my target range.

Happy #BGWed to you, I hope your numbers run where you like them!

Diabetes isn’t always…

the reason for a dysfunction in my body. In 1985 when diabetes came into my life, I took it as best I could. I made a promise to myself to not let diabetes stop me from doing anything. I never wanted diabetes to excuse me from living life fully.

So, thankfully, I continued in my sports. After my T1D diagnosis; being active in sports became even more important in my life. I really needed the endorphins that exercise brings.

Now, let’s fast forward and I am in high school. My period was not normal. So, I was told that it was because of my T1D.

It wasn’t until after 2005 that my Kaiser primary care doctor recognized that I have PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome). Ironically, when I shared that observation with my endocrinologist, she did not think I had PCOS. Not wanting to accept another medical issue, I went on for a while, until an OB/GYN doctor suggested doing an ultrasound to confirm if PCOS was an accurate diagnosis. The test was easy and it did indeed confirm that I have a mild case of PCOS.

Thankfully, I do not struggle with my weight as much as some people do with PCOS. I attribute this in part to an active lifestyle and eating healthy.

Now it is time to walk my puppy to the Vet!

Costco snacks

Costco is one of my favorite stores as they offer excellent customer service as well as low prices. Their return policy is second to none.

Today I stopped by to pick up some food staples. However, I got a little too caught up in the samples. I find it hard to guess how many carbs might be in whatever sample looks too good to pass up.

I’m also always excited when Vitamix is there as it is nice to get really healthy samples. Fortunately, I have a Vitamix at home. I enjoy making smoothies or soup.

It’s dinner time and I get to enjoy dinner with my aunt who is visiting from Arizona!

Why I am grateful for T1

My journey with T1 is one that has crossed many states, included a variety of endocrinologists, CDE’s, and dieticians, different insurance companies, 17 years’ worth of Minimed and then Medtronic insulin pumps, a Dexcom CGM, the American Diabetes Association, the JDRF, diabetes camp in 3 states – two years as a camper and the rest as a staffer, fundraisers – whether my first half-marathon in Las Vegas in 2001 for the ADA or a race next month for the JDRF.

Like anything that is new, it can be scary and uncomfortable. However, with T1D I found it best to strive to do my best each day as I knew complications were even scarier. I wrote my thesis on “The Role of Attitudes in the Management of Diabetes in Children.” I was thrilled in April of 1995 to present this at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research and my paper was published in the conference journal.

Anyone with T1 or someone who cares for someone with T1 knows how challenging of a disease it is each and every day. Attitude is the one thing we can choose as often as we need. Thankfully, having T1 taught me at an early age to make wise beyond my years choices. Alcohol was of no interest to me as I knew how scary a low blood glucose level could be.

Living with T1D for thirty years and all of the up’s and down’s in numbers and emotions; well, it taught me how to be a strong woman.

A, soon to be single mom, who did not file for divorce.

I never wanted to be a single mom just as I never wanted to have T1 diabetes. However, T1 taught me valuable life lessons that are helping me go through this toughest time of my life. I have so much to be grateful for and I thank God for keeping me safe in a relationship that saw far too little support and far too much pain.

My third day in April

This is a day that for many months I did not know if it would come true. Thankfully, it did and this my third day in April is a day of celebration!

I am the only one with T1 diabetes in my family. Thankfully my only sibling and her two sons did the testing and it does not appear that they will develop T1.

When T1 came into my life it changed my life drastically. Many obvious signs such as testing my blood glucose level and taking shots. However, the emotional side of diabetes was often a bit hidden.

I was only 13 years old when hypoglycemic unawareness rudely appeared in my life. This complication would make me have to work harder to stay conscious and to stay alive.

I knew that my life could be gone so fast, that I never looked ahead very far in my life. I wanted to find a loving, supportive and caring soul to marry; however, I never dreamed about a wedding as I wasn’t sure if it would ever happen.

I choose psychology as my major and after college I needed a break from school. I went to Alaska and worked with severely emotionally disturbed children ranging in age from 8 to 18 years old. These children were placed by the state in a residential treatment program. This position gave me such insight into how life could be really challenging for a child if they were not brought up by healthy parents.

I knew I would never want to be a mom without being married, so I didn’t count on being a mom.  I did know that if I married and my spouse and I felt that being parents was the right step for us, that I would want to become a mom by way of adoption.

When I was a junior in college I spent a semester abroad on an amazing program called Semester at Sea. While sailing around the world at the age of 20, I visited orphanages in China, India, and Russia.

As my life went on, I did get married and I did become a mom by way of international adoption.  Russia would not allow me to adopt because of T1. That was hard to take, but each country has the right to determine the type of parent who should be allowed to adopt.

I saw my son for the first time in Guatemala when he was three and a half weeks old. It was so hard to leave him; thankfully, he was with a very loving foster family. In February of 2008, it was another trip to Guatemala to bring my son home.

My son has an April birthday. He is my biggest blessing and he most certainly is a diamond!