A Blend of Life, Family, Awareness & Tales

Archive for May, 2011

Gardens and Pirates and Staph, Oh My!

Wow. A week and a half can really get away from a girl!

So, what have I been doing, where have I been? Beats the heck out of me. We finally had some great weather here, so the garden was the main free-time activity for me. It took up quite a bit of house-cleaning and and dinner-making time too. Sorry about that Family, but I swear it will be worth it in a month or so!

So my Mom and I have hit the majority of the great garden centers in the area, and even discovered a few new ones. “I think you can find room to squeeze in one more plant.” Maybe it is not the best that I garden shop with Mom, she is such an enabler!  Who am I kidding, I wouldn’t miss those great times with her for anything!

Yes, even cuter than this.

Our fabulous little daughter had her dance recital this past weekend. She danced to “The Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything,” and I am positive she was the cutest pirate ever.

I was backstage for both shows helping the girls which was both fun and a challenge. Eleven girls, 22 tap shoes, and two and a half hours of down time takes a lot out of a mom. This is especially true after a six-hour first grade field trip. Don’t get me wrong, it was a great day with my daughter. It was just everybody else’s kids that tested my patience! (Not your girl though, friend!)

It was a very busy 10 days, and there was only one downer the whole time. Our little girl got a pump site infection in her arm, which the urgent care doc claims is Staph. Is it? I don’t know. It wasn’t actually cultured, but from what I researched, it sure seems to be Staph. Nevertheless she is on a pretty serious antibiotic so it should knock it out. If you find pus as fascinating as I do however, this was a bit like hitting the ooze lottery. Seriously, I could watch that all day.

What? I thought you would just enjoy an image of a cream filled doughnut.

Thanks for checking out the blog today. I promise to write more regularly going forward.

D-Blog Week — What I Have Learned

Well, here we are. It is the last day of Diabetes Blog Week, and I have to say it was a bit exhausting.

I have sheltered myself these last few years, trying not to “think” so much about Diabetes. Sure, I think about Diabetes throughout the day, everyday, but more in a mechanical ‘count the carbs’ and ‘test the blood sugar’ kind of way.

Thinking more than that about Diabetes on a daily basis is very difficult for me. I applaud all of you D-bloggers out there that do this everyday. It was tough for me to do that (the reason I missed two days.) We of course strive for the best A1C, want what is best for our daughter, but honestly if I think about the complications, the dangers, the things that could go wrong, I go a little looney!

I was introduced to a bunch of great D-bloggers this week, and I will continue to enjoy reading your posts. I will continue my blogging plan of including Diabetes as one of the several topics I would like to cover, but it will not be my only focus. I hope you enjoyed reading and writing as much as I did this week!

Awesome Things

Today’s D-Blog week assignment is Awesome Things. These are the awesome things that Diabetes has brought to us. There is really nothing awesome about Diabetes, but if we have to live with it, we might as well look at the glass half full.

  • We keep fewer unhealthy foods around the house, which is good for everyone. We, like anyone, love cookies and cake, but probably have them a lot less often than we would have because of the havoc they cause blood sugar. All of our bodies can thank Diabetes for that.
  • Several years ago our little girl learned that she and Nick Jonas have both Diabetes and the Omnipod in common. Now though, she only has eyes for Justin Bieber!

Imagine the simultaneous screams of every girl in the U.S. under the age of 16.

 

  • We have (in addition to our family and friends!) the greatest babysitter. She is now a college student, who shares both her name and Type 1 Diabetes with our daughter, but she is still willing to take care of our rug rats when she can.
  • We were introduced to our little girl’s teacher, a phenomenal woman who volunteered to take on her our daughter and her Diabetes. She was her Kindergarden teacher, and then moved on to 1st grade with the entire class, staying together this year too.  (Please can you just teach her for 8 or 10 more years? No? Ok, how about our little boy next year in Kindergarten?) Miss T., you have set the bar very high for your colleagues going forward not only as a great teacher, but also as a terrific Type 1 Diabetes caretaker.
  • Our little girl’s Diabetes diagnosis really put everything else into perspective.  She may have some challenges in life, but there is absolutely nothing she can not do with a little extra attention and planning. As much as I know it those with Type 1 may hate to hear this, our little girl really could have it a lot worse.

Don’t get me wrong, if we could eliminate this disease tomorrow, there is nothing that would stop me from getting our little girl a cure. But please know in the meantime, she does not want your pity, just your understanding.

Diabetes – 10 Things I Hate About You…

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Well, I admit it, I skipped out on blogging yesterday. I was tired and lazy and really didn’t feel like thinking about Diabetes that hard yesterday. But I am back, and while this is not a very positive post, it is rather simple. So here we go, the 10 things I hate about Diabetes:

  1. I hate that our daughter doesn’t know any other life. (She was diagnosed young and that is often used as a positive, but lets face it, it also means the complications may begin sooner that someone diagnosed at a later age.)
  2. I hate that really stubborn Highs and super-low Lows usually come as we are going to a movie, a party, or before some kind of event like a dance recital or wedding. They also invade her life when she is at school or playing with a friend, always making her miserable and reminding her that she is different at just the wrong time.
  3. I hate that every single day the first thing I think when I look at our little girl is “I wonder what her blood sugar is?”
  4. I hate that I don’t feel comfortable letting her go on a sleepover at a friend’s house. My best friend has certainly offered, but I don’t want her to have to worry all night about low blood sugars. (I could stay over too though, and we could have drinks!)
  5. I hate that my little girl has to continually explain to strangers what that thing is on her arm. (Her pod – insulin pump.)
  6. I hate that she has to have Mom or Dad at every event when other kids are just dropped off. (Don’t tell her, but I enjoy staying and probably would anyway!)
  7. I hate that even though she usually doesn’t wake up, we disturb her sleep two to three times a night to check her blood sugar.
  8. I hate that my calculation errors can cause her discomfort.
  9. I hate that I don’t trust the school staff enough with our daughter’s care even though they are doing a spectacular job.
  10. I hate that my pancreas works just fine even with the abuse I probably give it. I would take her Diabetes any day if I could. 

Ok, there’s ten. Too depressing! Diabetes is part of our life, and because of it we probably eat a little healthier that we would have otherwise. We have met people that we would not have without Diabetes, and have gotten to know people such as school staff much better that we would have otherwise. We have learned how responsible our daughter is, how empathetic our son can be and just how much we really can do as parents. There is nothing I like about Diabetes, but we might as well look for the good if it is going to be around for a while.

There that feels better. Back to happy thoughts!

Letter Writing Day

Yesterday’s blog topic was a letter to Diabetes. I am a little late in posting, but I fell asleep last night before I finished. Anyway, here it is. Enjoy!

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Dear Diabetes.

Just a quick note to tell you how very appreciative I am for you adding a couple of hours to each of my days. There was a time that I needed to set my alarm for our daughter’s two a.m. check, but not any more. You have provided me with a second “evening” to enjoy. I have rediscovered the joys of Doogie Howser, M.D., and c’mon, even you have to admit the temptation to purchase the Slap Shot and the Magic Bullet after watching for half an hour.

Don’t worry. I haven’t forgotten your true calling – to make our daughter’s life a little more difficult. You do a great job! You are a tricky little devil, that day she went low after eating the cupcake – Classic! Oh and last year, that stubborn high during her dance recital. You were invincible that weekend! You sure keep her on her toes.

But I digress. We were all getting too much sleep before you came, and now you have completely reset at least one biological clock in our family. For that, I thank you! Gotta run, Family Ties is coming on.

See you in the morning, Jodi

A Different Perspective

Our Daughter has Type 1 Diabetes. Usually I don’t think about it that way anymore. We go through the motions, just like doing laundry or making dinner. We test her blood sugar, count carbohydrates and worry about others having to do the same, but we really don’t know any other way.  Diabetes has been part of our daughter’s life since she was just 18 months old and most days I don’t think about that being the reason we are doing all of this.  

When I do think about it though, “Ugh.” It can be overwhelming.

We try not to think about the fact that our little girl has had Diabetes for nearly all of her life.  We try not to think about the complications she may have in the future. I already worry about such things as the first time she stays home alone, or the first time she goes on a sleepover. I even think about the first time she encounters a party with alcohol and decides to drink. What if her blood sugar goes low, will she wake up in the morning?  I worry about her living alone some day, who will check her during the night?  I could really go on and on, but then I work my head and heart into a flurry of anxiety.  It is hard to stop these thoughts once they start, but fortunately I have found comfort in the online community of adults with Type 1 Diabetes.

A couple of years ago I stumbled upon “Six Until Me.” Those of you familiar with Diabetes blogs know of Kerri Marrone Sparling as kind of a super star in that world. Those of you not familiar would probably enjoy her blog even if you are not familiar with Diabetes. She is a great writer, funny and has an excellent perspective on life.

That first day I looked at her blog I read all of her entries and realized “Our little girl would be ok.” Kerri is an adult with Type 1 Diabetes and has it since childhood. She is a successful, healthy woman and mother.  She shares her daily life with us, and in doing so, whether intentional or not, she offers parents the peace of knowing that their type 1 kids will be ok. Yes diabetes does weave itself into her life, but she doesn’t let it control her. Kerri sums this up perfectly in one sentence: Diabetes doesn’t define me, but it helps explain me.

That is how we want our little girl to live her life. She may have some challenges, but Diabetes should never stop her from doing anything she wants to do with her life, and just maybe she can take something good from it as well. When our little girl is a bit older I would like her to read Kerri’s posts as well. She is a great role model for people of any age with Type 1 Diabetes.

Kerri, if you are reading this, I am a huge fan and also one of your lurkers! Though I never comment, I love reading your blog. A belated thank you for inspiring this parent of a child with Type 1 Diabetes.

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