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The Power of Weather

I did much more complaining about the weather these past few days than I should.

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Tuesday it stormed like mad in the evening. While it was storming, there were people who were still going without power from a previous outage. So when our power went out on Tuesday evening, I had no room to complain… Okay, maybe I had a little room to complain because I was in the bathroom when the power went out and it was dark, dark, dark.

By the light of my Dexcom, I made my way to the other room to find my husband. He silenced our screeching battery back up system and plugged in a lamp. We had light, we had each other, we would have had board games but those were all pack up (a story for another day). A quick text message to friends to see if they had power turned up a place for us to sleep if the power was still out at bed time. An hour or so later, our power was on. Others were still on days without power.

Yesterday was hot and my blood sugars were crazy. But my medication was safe and cool in the fridge. My back up insulin was safe in a lunchbox with an ice pack. I sweated, I hydrated, I lived just fine yesterday. This morning it stormed and I think we needed it.

There are offices without power, there are people opening their homes to coworkers so that business can still happen. There are offices with power offering extra desks and functioning internet connections to business who don’t have power back on.

I will not complain about the weather today. I will not complain about frizzy hair.

I also admire the kindness I see put into practice when the weather goes a little crazy.

Related Posts

Snow wimps

Summer in March

Fall

 

 

It kind of looks like…

Diabetes Blog Week Post #6

Today’s topic: Snapshot Saturday

I’m not typically a weekend blogger, but I couldn’t skip this weekend (or last weekend for that matter).

The point of today is to share with you what diabetes looks like on a daily basis. So what does daily diabetes management look like?

It kind of looks like math:

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Numbers, graphs and equations

It kind of looks like a medical show: Read the rest of this entry

What They Should Know

Diabetes Blog Week Post #5

Today’s Topic: What they should know

I get to do what I usually do when I blog about diabetes, I get to say what I think everyone should know about diabetes.

I want people to know everything about diabetes. Actually I want to know everything about diabetes, but there’s too much information all around to cram into people’s brains during the maybe two minutes of their attention I have.

There are too many things to pick from, but I think I’ll select the umbrella… a definition.

Type 1 diabetes is a chronic medical condition, caused by an autoimmune reaction that attacked the insulin-producing cells in my pancreas and I will live with it for the rest of my life.

(Also see: My immune system ate my pancreas)

I’ve been asked a lot of questions after telling people about what type 1 diabetes is. Including:

  • Can’t they just take out your pancreas?
  • Will you always be on insulin?
  • Aren’t you too young/old/skinny to have that?
  • Can you still eat ____?

But when I really think about, it’s more and more apparent that I just wish people would come at diabetes with an open mind. Forget the things they think they heard one time and listen to someone who lives it.

I’ve encountered people who have tried to teach me about my own medical condition because they once knew someone who had diabetes. We live with this condition day in and day out. We work with medical professionals to decide our care. We are in charge of our own day-to-day treatment.

Diabetes blog week

Post #1: Find a Friend

Post #2: One Great Thing

Post #3: One Thing to Improve

Post #4: Fantasy Diabetes Device

Advocacy Noodles

For an employee event, I was able to convince our local gourmet food and cookware stores to put on a private class so we could make something hands-on. They recommended a pasta making class.

The class was awesome!

I don’t usually eat a lot of pasta and usually I get the carb-friendly Dreamsfields stuff that comes in boxes from the top shelf at the grocery store (that’s significant because I’m short!). We made the noodles and sauce from scratch (and of course enjoyed the fettuccine of our labor).

While the pasta was boiling, I decided to test my blood sugar so I could eat it as soon as it was ready. One of the employees noticed what I was doing and asked, “Is that for diabetes?” Read the rest of this entry

Are you feeling better?

I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in August of 2011 (I say that a lot), a not so very, but somewhat long time ago. I was hospitalized for three days. A month later, my husband and I moved to Cleveland.

We returned to his hometown on multiple occasions, like Thanksgiving and Christmas and saw the family friends and church folks. At Easter, between walking into his hometown church and taking our seats, I was asked by multiple people, “Are you feeling better?”

I was briefly confused and wracked my brain to remember if I’d been remotely ill in the weeks leading up to Easter. Nope. Hmmm…. what do they think is wrong with me?

Read the rest of this entry

Feeling Stabby

Why does it seem like every news story that mentions diabetes in any manner is accompanied by a picture of someone stabbing him or herself in the stomach with a syringe?

Oh yeah… perception.

I pictured diabetes that way for a long time too. Then my pancreas failed and I started stabbing myself in the stomach (leg, arm, butt, etc) with a pen needle and later I started letting the OmniPod do it for me.

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This is a Novolog pen needle. When capped, it has been mistaken for a marker

Those of us diabetic individuals who take insulin (not all types have to be on insulin!) aren’t running around with orange capped syringes and sticking them in our bellies whenever we want. Read the rest of this entry

I don’t follow a “diabetic diet”

I got sent home from the hospital with instructions to follow an 1,800 calorie, “diabetic diet” and the recommendation that I eat 4-5 servings of carbohydrates per meal. That didn’t last long. I felt like I was eating too much food at each meal.

I no longer follow a diet (and my doctor is ok with that), I eat intelligently. In my completely non-professional opinion, I think everyone could benefit from eating intelligently.

This mini had 14g of carbs

What I mean by that is, I know (or intelligently guess in some cases) what I’m putting into my body and I eat “normally.” I count the carbohydrates in everything I eat so that I can take the right amount of insulin. I pay close attention to fiber because it affects how those carbohydrates affect my blood sugar (I don’t find that I can subtract all of the fiber in my carb calculations). I limit my protein intake because I have an increased risk of nephropathy and need to be kind to my kidneys.

I feel empowered when I know what went into the thing on my plate, even if it sometimes looks like a messy, gooey pile of ingredients. My cooking earns no points for aesthetics. Intelligent eating for me also includes eating at regular intervals, including on the weekends. My numbers are more pleasant when my meals don’t fluctuate very drastically.

This perspective on eating is really helpful when cooking for guests with their own food issues. When my mom is visiting, we can easily make meals that are free from gluten, dairy and soy because of using individual ingredients.

Sometimes intelligent eating means I have do to some “complex” math, but at least I can enjoy the cupcakes I’ll be baking tonight. Read the rest of this entry

Being the Diabetic Coworker

About month after starting with the company that I currently work for, I called off sick one Tuesday morning.

Then I called off sick the next morning.

And the next morning, I call my boss and told her I was making an appointment with the doctor and I hoped to be back to work on Friday. Later in the day she received a voice mail from me that I was being admitted to the hospital. I can’t say that I remember what I said, I can barely remember calling my husband from the doctor’s office to tell him that his mom was going to drive me to the hospital because I had diabetic ketoacidosis. You probably already know the story.

I decided to participate in the March DSMA Blog Carnival because I’ve recently been remembering/rediscovering what life was like last August and this is the prompt:

Does your employer/school/friends know you have diabetes? Why or why not? Read the rest of this entry

What’s in Rachel’s Desk?

Well my desk is actually filled with boring office-like stuff like files, paper clips, lint roller, etc…

But my handy cabinet hosts my work emergency kit.

Awhile ago, I had a minor panic because I’d misplaced my lancet. It had sunk to the bottom of my purse as is common with most things that I misplace. But I had flashes of trying to poke my fingers with the thumbtacks in my bulletin board and decided that I should make sure my emergency work kit is complete. I of course asked Twitter for advice. Kerri at Six Until Me shared her post about work supplies with me.

I made a list of things to keep in my office. I carry a regular emergency kit in my purse at all times with my back up meter, back up insulin, an extra OmniPod and glucose tablets, so I’m typically prepared for anything when I’m out. Since I spend a lot of time at work, I need to be prepared there… and not just for diabetes.

Here’s what ended up in my cabinet:

20120313-115830.jpg Read the rest of this entry

It’s Sugar Free!

“You can have this. It’s sugar-free!”

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Over the holidays I heard this a lot.

With a few type 2 diabetics in our family, sugar-free treats at family gatherings aren’t uncommon. But since I’m the first and only type 1 in our family, they don’t know carb-counting very well.

Although I really appreciate the sugar-free cupcake, cookies, pie, etc… I need to either hear, read or guess how many carbohydrates they have so I take the right amount of insulin. Sugar-free treats aren’t exactly “free” for me. They still have carbohydrates. Believe it or not, some sugar-free things have more carbohydrates than regular versions (we discovered this at Thanksgiving with Cool Whip).

Sometimes, the sugar-free desserts aren’t worth it (sometimes they totally are). I enjoyed the occasional cookie or cupcake treat every now and then before my pancreas up and quit, but desserts were the easiest thing for me to skip in my life before diabetes. Read the rest of this entry