Dear Pancreas:

Contrary to popular belief, I have not been destroyed by your minions. This battle isn't over yet.


Monday, April 1, 2013

You can come after me if you want, diabetes, but it will be the last thing you do. I promise you that.

Alarms have been my new thing.  Suggested to me, to snap me out of whatever land I may be in at the time a blood sugar is needed.  

And one of those alarms, is this blog's title (minus the diabetes, of course).

So I got to thinking on my walk today, about said title phrase, and the various news stories I've heard about how many cancer patients have a fighting mentality about cancer.  They're going beat it.  Fight it. Own it.  Insert creative adjective here.  There have even been reports of patients getting PTSD from this fighting mentality.

And then I got to thinking about my diabetes, and if this mentality would work for me as well.

And the more I thought about it, the more I thought it was a different type of fight and the same type of fight, all in one.

In one sense, you would have to fight till the death, but in another sense you don't win by curing yourself, you win because you didn't get complications.

And perhaps, diabetes burn out, results from constantly fighting the good fight.  Fight Fight Fight Fight with no let up.  And if you put your guard down for one day, one hour, one millisecond... you're on the ground.

So mentally, how do you address diabetes in a way that doesn't totally suck the life out of you, but that also makes you a stick in the mud?

More and more, I think of diabetes being more like Parkinson's Disease (my dad has it).  I watch how, if he doesn't get the doses exactly right, he will get the side effects of the drugs (intense shaking).

I watch how it slows him down both mentally and physically.  Parkison's, is another disease you just can't ignore unless you want to be on the ground (so to speak).  (I'm sure there are a lot of diseases that come in this fashion).

And he has to set a variety of alarms to remind him to take certain pills, and if he forgets, things go haywire.  But where his effects are immediate, ours are more insidious.

You know the consequences are coming.  You don't know when and you don't know how, but you know they are coming.....

My name is Boyd Crowder.  You can come after me if you want, but it will be the last thing you do.  I promise you that.  

In the long run, how realistically, can we maintain a Boyd Crowder stance?  For a Justified (tv show) stand point, Diabetes, is like the law chasing after Boyd constantly waiting to catch him in the act.  And sometimes he is caught.

At one point Boyd has an interesting exchange with Raylan:
Boyd: What brings you to my house?
Raylan: Oh, this is your house now?
Boyd: Why, yes, prison is my home.
And how would that look with diabetes and yourself?

Boyd: What brings you to my house?
Diabetes: Oh, this is your house now?
Boyd: Why, yes, prison is my home.

Maybe we don't break free from Diabetes?
But maybe accepting this, gives us more power?

We know, that sooner or later, we will get out of our rut.  We'll put up the good Boyd challenge.  But when we let our guard down, and get caught, maybe we need the same Boyd mentality.

To shrug the fact that sure, diabetes won today, but it won't everyday.


Saturday, March 30, 2013

Friday, March 29, 2013

Remember The Name

I have come to the following conclusions about diabetes management and myself:

  1. I will not test my blood unless my meter is ON MY BODY. 
  2. I will not remember to do follow up blood tests, or even be inclined to do them, unless I set my phone to go off. 
  3. I will not have my snacks if I don't have an alarm that goes off. 

My alarm that goes off is the theme to the TV show Justified, because I've become a fan of Boyd Crowder, and well....   I sometimes feel as nutty as he does, when:
  1. My blood sugar isn't doing what it should do.
  2. I'm counting everything right, but it's still being evil
  3. I'm feeling less human and more bionic 

Alarms, are my savior. Or, at least one of my saviors.  Because I hyperfocus so much on certain things, work, internet, youtube, work, ANYTHING ACCEPT DIABETES MANAGEMENT, that the alarm snaps me out of fantasy land and makes me THINK for a few seconds about blood sugar management and then, after that 5 second test is done, I can go back to whatever was distracting me at that moment.   

For the time being it's working.  

I am thinking, I need to make an arm sleeve that would have elastic hoops in it, which would carry my blood sugar meter, poker and strips on.....  I realize this would already cause people to look at me like I belong in the mental ward.... which on some days, I think I do belong there, but.... I know myself.  I know, that if my reminder goes off to test my blood and I am upstairs, and my meter is not within that area, you can forget about me testing my blood. This is the hard but honest truth. 

I'm finally wearing my scanner again-- although, unless you want to tell every nosy person on the planet what it is, don't place it on your arm....   although, I might, and then make stuff up about what it really is....  

"It's a tracker the FBI implanted in me."
"It's an alien pea pod"
"It's my device to blow shit up with" (Boyd reference)  [and just to clarify, NO, I don't want to blow shit up LITERALLY]

It's amazing the odd looks you get, if you really let your sensor be visible to the public.  (Stay away from that chick.... somethin' ain't right.) 

On that note, should I make an arm sleeve that carries my meter, I will post pictures.... 

In the meantime, here is a Boyd Crowder video.... heaven forbid, he ever have to test his blood sugar!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

The Elephant In The Room

I was never a person who liked babies or little kids. I cringed at crying. I avoided people with strollers. I didn't know how to talk to them. I thought women were crazy for even wanting them... until my baby nephews were born... As soon as I held my first nephew in my arms just a day or two old, I transformed, and the love and joy I felt as a new Aunt was overwhelming. I loved watching him explore his world, and the different toys, and the pure joy he expressed whenever he had a bouncy ball. I love hearing the new words they learn to say and the phrases. I love that my older nephew (almost 2) calls me "Dah-ba-day"---that is my official name, and I assume proud ownership of it! It evolved to be my name because I'd repeat phrases and words he would say, and it eventually stuck. :) As an Aunt I feel that they are my rental babies. I didn't have total responsibility for them, but I could love them with an unconditional feeling that I don't experience often. I have laughed more, I have loved more, I have grown more. And no, it's not baby fever. I don't consider myself capable of having my own children (at least at this point), I can barely take care of myself. But I have learned that Aunts can be like moms too and can play a pivotal role in the development and in their lives. So what's the elephant in the room? It's a confused saddness that I feel, and that I'm sure my two sisters who have the nephews feel, that my brother has been rather ice cold to even attempting to get to know his nephews. It has created an invisible space between him and the family, that doesn't show any sign of shrinking. He (and his wife), has had multiple opportunities to visit with not just me but with my nephews, because I see my sister more than I see him. And one example will probably be this weekend. We are celebrating the first birthday of my nephew... this is the one who lives is Mississippi, so it's not like we can do a hop, skip, and jump and be over there. He has already said he will not be coming because his wife is sick-- which, may be the case, but my sister only visits for a set time in the summer, and if my brother doesn't come to this party, he will most likely not see her or his nephew. I know they are not crazy about kids or babies. In fact, I am sure that had all of the feelings I have mentioned above. But despite this, I just feel saddness because I think they are missing a wonderful opportunity to become closer with this family, instead of becoming farther apart. He is a stranger to both nephews and I am not sure if this will ever change. I have several pictures on my desk of my baby nephews, at different ages, holding them, seeing their smiles, and their love for life. My favorite is of me holding one of them, who is fast asleep and smiling, and I am smiling too. I know that you cannot make someone like babies/kids and I know I am being critical. I just feel like he's missing something special, something you don't get every day to experience. I wish he would hold one of the nephews (something he's never done), and maybe let some of those inhibitions go. To let go of whatever fear he might have, so he could experience more of the most memorable and joyfull moments that I have experienced... Babies offer hope. Hope that the world can become a better place. Hope that our planet can be taken better care of. Hope for new possibilities. And they can light up a person and when they visit, they can drag you out of the darkness and strife so well, that you forget you were ever in it to begin with....

Sunday, November 27, 2011

When I'm sitting down to eat...

I am not expecting the Spanish Inquisition.  I have had Type 1 for over 15 years and I have had my share of food police and then some.

Well, the other day I sat down to some turkey soup.  It really didn't have that much turkey for protein, so I picked some ham out of the freezer and thawed it to increase my protein.  I also set down my food scale to weigh my items.  And it quite literally went like this:

"What's that?"

"A food scale." 

"Why are you using it?" 

"To weigh my food." 

"Have you done this for a while?"

"It's fairly recent." 

"Where'd you get the ham?"

"The freezer."

"Why did you get the ham?" 

"To add protein to my food." 

"Are you on some kind of diet?"


"Then why would you eat more meat? ...educate me."

At this point, I gave him the "death stare," as in-- ask me one more question about my food and I will kill you with my laser beam eyes.

Things like this make me utterly pissed off because of the loaded guilt and feeling of being scrutinized for every God damned food choice you make.  It's a feeling that I'm sure most diabetics have experienced in their life--  and it's not a one-time deal.  

I almost feel like making a stop sign to have at the dinner table:  "Diabetic Police Banned" or "Mind your own food."

I don't mind answering questions about diabetes and food choices, but I do mind when I'm trying to enjoy dinner--- give me a break.  I think about diabetes 24/7.  I deserve to have a moment of peace after I've counted my exchanges and weighed my food.