Sunday, April 25, 2010

Am I really alone?

It's normal for diabetics to feel alone in their disease, even in the presence of other diabetics.  Everyone has different needs: carb intake needs, medication needs, exercise needs.  No two diabetics control their disease the same way.  Even within a family.  For example, my mom has told me that she can eat pizza, but ice cream raises her glucose level.  The opposite it true for me: Pizza makes my sugar levels go through the roof, though I'm able to eat a reasonable serving of ice cream.  (Thankfully I found a pizza place in town that uses a thinner crust that I'm able to eat without my glucose going too high.)  The best way to get through dealing with a disease like diabetes is the support of others also dealing with the disease.  How are you able to get support when there is no one going through the exact same situation?  Am I really alone in this fight against diabetes?

While reading another blog (written by the mother of a girl with Type 1), I realized that I'm not alone in feeling alone.  Not only did her blog entry remind me that even if I feel alone that Jesus is always with me, she helped me to remember that even though we don't all have the same type of diabetes, even though we don't all have the same carb requirements, even though we don't all have the same medication needs, even though we don't all need the same amount of exercise, we are all in this fight together against this monster called diabetes.

What would my advice for someone who is feeling alone?  Find someone else in a similar situation who might also be feeling alone.  Even if your exact situation isn't the same, being able to talk about your situation and feeling of being alone may be the therapy you need.  A little pray time never hurt, either. *wink*

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Thursday night ramblings

I haven't written on my blog in over a week so I thought I'd post, even if it's mainly ramblings.  I have had some minor slip-ups with my diabetes, but overall not too bad.  I'm at a major plateau with my weight loss.  I only have about 10-15 lbs to lose, but I've been going back and forth with the same two pounds for a month.  I think I need to get back to limiting my carb intake, better glucose control, and increasing my water intake.  If I can do those three things and keep up with my current exercise routine, I should be able to lose those last few pounds.

Life with the kitten has been good.  We've had Josie for two weeks now.  She made quick friends with the dogs.  Sadie, our almost seven year old beagle mix, pretty much ignores her.  She plays with the kitten now and then, but likes to be left alone for the most part.  Of course she thinks that Josie is going to steal her bone, so if the kitten gets to close, Sadie will take it to another part of the house.  Mira, the one year old husky-shepherd-collie mix, absolutely adores her!  She had a special bond with our previous cat, a female orange tabby named Tigger, who passed away July 2009.  It's been obvious with the way she's been reacting to other cats that she really missed having a cat around.  She snuggles with Josie, even allowing her to pounce and grab at her face.

She has her snuggly times and has her hyper kitty times.  When we let her out in the morning, she loves to run around.  There are several times during the day when she'll willingly snuggle up and take a nap on someone's chest or lap.  She usually takes a nap during dinner or right before the younger ones go to bed.  Then she's in major hyper kitten mode - darting across the house; climbing furniture, her cat tree, or even people; pouncing on anything that moves.  Feet and dog tails are fair game!  (Another reason to wear shoes as much as possible.)

I love her snuggly times.  I let her nap on me as much as possible in hopes that she'll be a lap cat.  Our previous cat was pretty much hand's off, though she did have her cuddle moments.  With recurring bladder infections, even on prescription food, she was often uncomfortable and not always in an affectionate mood.  Yes, I know that cats are not owned, they're served.  It's a pleasure to serve little Miss Josie, even as she tries to pounce on my fingers as I type.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Birthday bliss

Yesterday was my 40th birthday.  Wow!  Really?  Am I really that old?  I remember when I was little, thinking about the year 2000.  That seemed like so far away.  And that would be the year I would turn 30 years old.  So old and so far away.  Well my 30's have come and gone.  Now I'm in my 40s.  A few people have asked me how I feel about turning 40 years old.  Given the alternative, I'm thrilled!  Honestly!  I embrace turning 40!  I rejoice in turning 40!  I even wore a t-shirt to church yesterday that said, "This is what a really cool 40 year old looks like."  (Thanks to my online friend for the great gift!)  Of course that lead to a friend of mine announcing to the whole congregation that it was my 40th birthday, but I'm ok with that.  We all got a good laugh and I've sworn my revenge.  MUHAHAHA!!!

My husband and daughters spoiled me!  The morning started off with me playing the kitten while hubby made me breakfast - a delicious omelet with ham, onion, and cheese.  The girls and I went to church.  When we returned home, I was surprised that hubby didn't have something yummy cooking for lunch.  He mentioned he needed to go to one more store and told the girls to keep their shoes on.  I assumed he was going to take a couple of them to the store with him and bring home something to whip up for lunch.  What a special treat to find out that he was taking us out for lunch!  We went to my favorite Asian buffet where they serve some special treats on Sundays, I found out.  (Typically we go there during the week.)  I was able to try mussels and frog legs.  The coconut shrimp was delicious!

On the way home, hubby stopped at a store and came out with a HUGE balloon shaped as the number 40.  He had been teasing me for over a month that his birthday present to me was going to be a balloon - just one balloon.  Oh, with a fun size Snickers bar attached (which he added to the balloon when we got home).  Most of the afternoon I was able to just lay around and be lazy.  It was great!  After a delicious dinner of steaks on the grill, sweet potatoes, and garlic potatoes (for the kids), we had present time.  I had told my husband that the kitten and all of her stuff was my gift and I needed nothing else.  Of course he didn't listen. 

Since most of my wardrobe consists of jeans and t-shirts (I'm at home full-time, working part-time at the YMCA's drop-in nursery), he bought me two pairs of slacks to help build up my wardrobe when I start substitute teaching this fall.  My older two had helped sort for our church's rummage sale, so they were able to pre-shop a bit while helping.  The oldest bought me a round throw pillow that has a cat's face on it because of the new kitten.  The second one got me a skein of yarn and some wooden knitting needles.  I don't have any wooden needles so I was excited about them.  The youngest two made me birthday cards which is always a special gift.  (The middle one was camping with her Girl Scout troop and came home Sunday afternoon - present enough for me!)

We had German chocolate cake with coconut pecan frosting.  My favorite!  (Yes, I bought it and said, "This is the cake I want." hehe)  After cake and ice cream, we sat around and watched TV.  I was thankful that my blood sugar levels were behaving for the festivities.  Yes, a little high, but better than I was expecting.  As I blew out the candles, I wished for two things.  That seemed fair since I had two candles, a 4 and a 0.  I know you're not supposed to tell, but I'm going to need help with these wishes. 
  1. A life-time of happiness for my children
  2. A cure for diabetes
I'm so blessed to have reached 40 yrs old and look forward to the next 40 yrs!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

My birthday list

Thinking about what I want for birthday, my list sounds like hearing Amy Grant sing "Grown Up Christmas List."

  • Peace in every nation
  • End to poverty and hunger
  • Happiness always for everyone
  • All diseases cured - diabetes included
Of course that list will take a while, I've asked for one thing that's as close as I can imagine to peace and happiness - a kitten.  Yes, my main birthday wish is a new cat for our family.  My hubby has been reluctant.  When our cat passed away last summer, he wasn't ready to get another cat.  I gave him time.  As the pain eased up, the bliss of not having a litter box took over.  I guess having his wife and several of his children ask over and over (plus his wife sending him pictures of cats from our animal shelter's website) finally broke him down.  On Tuesday he agreed to getting another cat.  By Tuesday afternoon, I had visited the animal shelter and had one picked out.  We visited a couple more times then we brought her home on Thursday.

Josie is a pretty little girl, a calico with subdued gray on top with tan spots and a white belly.  She loves to sleep on my lap which I hope will continue because I'm really hoping for a lap cat.  With five kids and two dogs, she's not lacking playmates.  I've had to institute forced naptime for the kitten, though more because of the kids.  I feel she needs to have occasional breaks from their play.  We have an area in one of the bathrooms set up for her with a litter box, food dish, bed, and toys.  Thankfully there's a part of the bathroom that we were able to put up a baby gate just high enough off the floor so she can get under it but the dogs cannot so she has some space away from them (and they can't snack on her food or her box).  When we're not able to supervise her or I feel she needs "naptime" away from the kids, we close the bathroom door.

Today is the last day of my 30s.  I have all I could want - my husband, my children, and my new kitten.  Of course I'd also love world peace and a cure for diabetes.  Maybe next year!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The last week in my 30's

On Sunday I will be 40 years old.  Yes, the big 4-0!  It's hard to believe that I'm *gulp* that OLD!  Of course my children are having fun with it, teasing me that I'm ancient.  Some days I feel like a teenager inside, though my body is very much feeling its age.   I've decided that I'm not going to let myself get depressed about this milestone, rather embrace it.  I've decided to celebrate my age and I'm not ashamed to tell people my age. 

Some of the things I'm grateful for over the last 40 years:
  • My parents. We might not have agreed about everything as I grew up, but I'm thankful for your love.
  • My husband.  Your love and devotion mean everything to me.
  • My children.  Proof to me that God exists.  You are my miracles.
  • My friends.  Whether long time friends or a new friendship, IRL (in real life) or online, you mean a lot!
  • My health.  Although I have diabetes, it doesn't have me!  I am thankful that I have the health and stamina to enjoy life with my husband and children.
Most of all, I am thankful to be alive!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Easter and the diabetic

Two years ago, I ate all the Easter chocolate I wanted.  Why not?  I could!  I was a normal woman approaching 38 years old.  I felt a little sick and sluggish but I figured that was just the way my body reacted to the amount of chocolate I had eaten.  Little did I know that the next day I would get a phone call from the nurse letting me know that I had Type 2 diabetes.

I don't remember much about last year's Easter to be honest.  I don't remember how I handled the candy temptation.  I don't remember what the Easter bunny left for me among the chocolate bunnies and jelly beans.

Today I went shopping for the Easter goodies.  The kids and hubby each have their own chocolate bunny. There is also a variety of other candies including Snickers, jelly beans, Hershey's kisses, etc.  For my chocolate treat, the Easter bunny will be bringing me one of my favorite Kashi treats - yummy granola bars covered with a layer of dark chocolate and coconut.  YUM! 

This afternoon I was in a mood.  It's hard to describe.  I felt saddened that there was something I need, something that was missing.  I wandered around the store for a while after putting in my cart the things I needed.  I felt that there was something missing, but I had no idea what it was.  While talking to hubby later, I actually teared up.  Some days I feel that my mood swings caused by diabetes are worse than PMS.  My sugar has been off since last night when I decided to have pizza last night for dinner.  I'm usually ok with thin crust pizza, but this was a thicker, carb-heavy crust.   I know better than to have this pizza, but it tasted so good.  I need to find a compromise between eating what I want vs keeping my sugar in check.  I've decided that I either need to stick with the thin crust place that works well for me or get a big salad and only have one piece of the glucose-raising pizza.

My wish is that some day all people with diabetes will be able to eat all the special treats that come with the special days with their family.  Here's praying for a cure!