Sunday, December 29, 2013

Blue Fridays 2013

Every Friday during 2013, as well as World Diabetes Day, I wore at least some blue in recognition of Blue Fridays and posted a picture. Below is a slideshow video I made from those pictures.

The song, "Hold Me, Jesus" by Rich Mullins, means a lot to me. When I'm feeling discouraged, this song helps to encourage me. I found it fitting to use that song in the video.

This is my first attempt at making a slideshow video. Considering, I think it turned out alright. Enjoy!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Best of the 'Betes Blogs for November 2013

This month I have been once again honored with selecting the Best of the 'Betes Blogs. Each month, nominations come in and someone (this month, ME!) gets the honor and privilege of selecting a few of the many awesome and amazing blog posts to highlight.

First I want to start with an apology. I'm not just a mom of five, wife of one, and Type 2 diabetic. I also work at one of our local public schools during the day and take six semester hours of graduate classes. That is why this December 1st post is being written on December 6th. Thank you for your patience and understanding. Now on to the blog posts!

Best Vlog:
Briley at inDpendence shared some amazing videos that she participated in with two other people with diabetes as well as a mom of a child with diabetes. These videos have some great insights about the feelings of dealing with diabetes as well as some helpful tips.

Best Use of Photography:
How can I decide between Sarah's creative way of keeping track of site placements and changes (La Osita Blog) and the adorable baby of Kim's baby for World Diabetes Day in her blue circle hat (Texting My Pancreas)? Luckily I don't! I decided to pick them both for this category!

Best Advocacy:
Martin at Diabetically Speaking gives some tips for dealing with changes in medical coverage and what he found out when his insulin went from preferred to non-preferred status. 

Best Post by a Type 1:
Jacquie at Typical Type 1 shares her feeling about being a member of the "diabetes mafia". Diabetes has its ups and downs, and it's nice to share it with a friend. Even if that friend lives in your computer or is someone you never met before, it doesn't really matter. We're all part of the club.

Best Post by a Type Awesome:
This poem by John at Neurotic City almost brought me to tears as he expresses a father's emotions when his child is diagnosed with diabetes and as she grows in confidence.

Best Motivational Post:
Loren has taken over the blog, Welcome to our Crazy Happy Life, previously written by his wife, Shamae, who passed away in October. What an inspiration!

Best Comments:
The email I got with the nomination didn't contain and specific examples, but I know from personal experience that Karen at Bitter-Sweet Diabetes gives plenty of encouragement.

The following categories didn't receive any nominations:
Best Recipe
Best Reference to a D-Celebrity
Best Story of a D Meet-up
Best non-D Related Post
Best Post by a LADA/ Type 1.5/ Not otherwise specified
Best Post by a Type 2
Best story of a D-mistake
Best Diabetes Art

A little shout-out to the other bloggers that were nominated as well as those who did the nominating:
(Yes, I did just put those in alphabetical order. Blame the teacher in me!)

If your blog was selected as one of the spotlight posts for November, you are welcome to include a Best of the 'Betes Blogs badge on your blog. Here is what you need to know to do that.

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Thank you all for the opportunity to read all of the amazing posts that were nominated for recognition! I promise that next time that I volunteer, I will make sure it's not two weeks before finals.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

NaBloPoMo Fizzle

I had intended to do NaBloPoMo (National Blog Writing Month), but realized that there were days I was posting rubbish just to make sure I posted. If you haven't noticed, I took a break from my blog and purposely didn't post because of this.

I had to take a step back and think, "Why do I write this blog? What is my purpose? Is it to post every day?" I write this blog as a way to share my life with Type 2 diabetes. I don't write it to impress anyone with my number of posts.

So that is why I stopped writing. I needed to get back on track with the purpose of this blog. It doesn't bother me that I didn't meet the challenge of NaBloPoMo. It bothered me that I felt pressured to do so.

Sunday, November 17, 2013


This was the end of one of the prayers we said today at church.
It spoke to me!

Prayer and music calming my heart.
Peppermint tea settling my stomach.
Working on finding that comfort.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Homework Saturday

Yes, this is me today.
This week, I've been dealing with other schoolwork, my daytime job, 
tutoring, my own children, housework...
So today I have a research paper, quiz, and a report on group work participation.
I'm also dealing with an ear ache.
I also have a large family who enjoy doing things on Saturdays.
Like listening to Christmas music while baking cookies.
Like watching Star Wars DVDs.
Guess grad school mama will be heading to the library to at least get my quiz done.
The paper may take me to another quiet location after dinner.
Taking it one step at a time.
(I'm kind of liking this format for today's blog.)
Edited to add: And sometimes illness causes you not to get done what you intended to do.
And you deal with what comes and move on.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

World Diabetes Day 2013 #wdd

My wonderfully supportive hubby helped put up my World Diabetes Day flag this morning and took this picture.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

World Diabetes Day is approaching!

Thursday is November 14th - World Diabetes Day. In honor of this, I plan to wear blue every day this week.

Yesterday was Veteran's Day, so my outfit of red, white, and blue involved a red shirt, white scarf, and blue socks. (Black pants in case you're wondering.)  Today I am wearing a long sleeve blue shirt, a blue scarf with white birds flying, khaki pants, and blue-gray socks.

I've been doing great with my goal of wearing at least some blue every Friday this year. I don't expect everyone to do this, but I would love it if you could join me in wearing blue every Friday in November (Diabetes Awareness Month) or at least this Thursday (World Diabetes Day).


Sunday, November 10, 2013

Silent Sunday

Kind of like Wordless Wednesday... Perfect for a grad school mama!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Not Cheating Today

Ok, yesterday's post wasn't written yesterday. That picture of my cat wasn't taken yesterday either, though it feels like it.

Here is a picture of my cat taken just a few minutes ago when she jumped up on my lap begging for attention. My crocodile geckos are in the tank lit up over my shoulder.

So this post is honestly written on November 9th with an honest picture taken the same day. Hey, what do you expect from a mom of five kids who takes six hours of graduate classes while working during the day? Perfection? HA! Not on this blog!

Friday, November 8, 2013

NaBloPoMo Cheat Day

Ok, so it's not an official cheat day, but I'm making it my own cheat day. This post was actually written on October 9th but I'm changing the date for the posting to October 8th.

Shhh! Don't tell. I want it to look like I didn't miss any days.

We'll pretend my cat did it!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

PWD vs Parent of CWD

PWD = person with diabetes. 
Parent of CWD = child with diabetes. 

Which would I rather be? I'd rather be a PWD hand's down. I can't imagine being the parent of a CWD. I worry about my kids enough as it is. Now I do know that if any of my children wound up being diagnosed with diabetes that I would do what I needed to do, but I hope and pray that never happens. 

I think parents who get up several times a night to test and retest, plan meals and schedules, count carbs, and do all of the things they need to do are amazing. I know they're "just doing what needs to be done." It's still amazing! They have mama worry/guilt at a whole 'nother level!

As a PWD, I don't have to sit at home worrying if my kid has too many or too few carbs, if glucose levels are high or low, if someone got into the Halloween candy, etc. I know what my diabetic is doing every single moment of every day - because I am that diabetic. Now I will say that I am blessed that my mother is still around and she still worries about me, but she also has a different diabetic that she cares for 24/7 - herself. Yes, we were both blessed with Type 2 genetics. However, as people who like to be in control, it is somewhat less stressful for each of us to be the diabetic instead of the parent responsible for the care of a diabetic.

Tonight as I get ready for bed, I plan to say a special prayer for all of you parents of children with diabetes, regardless if they're young children, teens, or adults. Whether newly diagnosed or an old pro. May God bless you and keep your CWD safe!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

I'm tired. I worked today then had my on campus grad class tonight. So in order to keep up my momentum with NaBloPoMo, I'm dubbing tonight "Wordless Wednesday"! Here are some of my favorite diabetes-related pictures:

Monday, November 4, 2013

Homework Helpers

 As I sit here working on my homework, a little visitor arrives. She walks over my pens and highlighters, steps on my notebook, then settles on my lap. Josie seems to know when I am stressed and need her snuggles. Even when I don't think I do.

Right now she's laying on my left hand, forcing me to type one-handed. Thankfully years of snuggling my babies while online prepared me for this.

Of course as I sit here with a cat laying on my homework with her head resting on my hand, it brings back fond teenage memories of my childhood cat, Scaredy Cat. He was also a "homework helper" like Josie. He loved to lay right on top of my math papers whether spread out on the floor or ottoman. His timing, like Josie's, seemed to always be when I needed to take a break from studying and just relax for a little while. Of course I would never (and probably won't even now) admit to it. It seems as if these homework helpers seem to know what we need.

(The picture here is of Josie, taken right after she had walked across my notebook, before she used that hand as a pillow for her head.)

Sunday, November 3, 2013


I love pancakes. The idea of a nice hot stack of pancakes with butter and syrup makes my mouth water. Or pecan pancakes! Oh wait, maybe chocolate chip pancakes with miniature chips sprinkled over the circles of batter on the griddle. Yum!

Diabetes Police: Woman, you have diabetes. You can't have pancakes!

Me: Says who?

DP: Don't you know that pancakes = carbs. Aren't carbs evil in the lives of diabetics?

Me: Haven't you heard the phrase "moderation not deprivation"? I can eat whatever I want. I can have ice cream. I can have cake. I can even have pancakes. Now I admit that I shouldn't have two large stacks with regular syrup pooling around the edges. I usually have a short stack with a little sugar free syrup. However I do occasionally splurge and add some chocolate chips.

DP: Oh now you've done it!

Me: What have I done? Admitted I'm human? I admit that sometimes I do indulge and eat more carbs than I should. Knowing that I'm not taking oral medication or insulin. Knowing that I'll have to bring my glucose levels down with some type of physical activity. Did you see my to do list for today? I need some extra carbs otherwise I'll be dealing with a sudden low.

DP: I guess you might actually know what you're doing.

Me: You think?

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Update on My Life

I don't share everything about my life here. Let's face it. We all deserve some privacy. However, I do share a lot. I've obviously shared about my diabetes. I've share about going to grad school. I've also shared about my life as a substitute teacher and YMCA drop-in nursery worker.

Well parts of my life have changed. I no longer work at the YMCA except for occasionally as a sub in the nursery. My grad classes got in the way of that schedule. School comes first! I'm also no longer a substitute teacher. I'm now working as a paraprofessional/teacher's aide/program assistant (whatever you want to call it). About a week before school started, I was asked if I would be interested in applying for this position. If I didn't want to apply for it, they wanted to see if I would be willing to sub in the spot until they hired someone. The job? Helping with sixth grade choir first period and then working with the reading intervention teachers the rest of the day.

Repeat that please. Did you really just spell out to be almost word for word my ideal job, second only to a full-time teaching position? The only part I hadn't thought of before was working with the choir. However as someone who sang in high school and college, still enjoying to sing with the radio or at church, this was an added bonus.

So of course I applied and was given this amazing opportunity. Many of the things I'm learning about in my masters program to become a reading specialist I am able to apply in my job. I'm also able to bounce ideas off the two reading teachers I work with every day. Although I miss some parts of substitute teaching like working with teachers at every school in our district and getting to know the children at those schools, I don't miss the phone calls at 6:00 a.m.

I wake up every morning excited that I get to do this job. Yes, there are some mornings I'm dragging, especially if I've had to stay up late to finish a homework assignment. I am blessed to do a job I enjoy and work with some wonderful students and amazing teachers.

Friday, November 1, 2013

It's NaBloPoMo time!

This month is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), but it's also National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo). Given my busy schedule of working at the school (more on that later), six hours of grad school, five kids, a huband, and the desire for sleep, I have opted to participate in NaBloPoMo.

I'm looking forward to this kick-start back into blogging.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Dear Fast Food Restaurants,

When we order diet soda, it isn't because we want to drink it. We know the controversy about artificial sweeteners. We also know the controversy about soda in general, but it's nice to have a treat of a carbonated beverage now and then.

Please don't mark the soda diet and tell us that it's diet when it actually isn't diet. Sometimes we can't tell just by tasting it. Sometimes we suspect but are distracted or think our taste may be off that we trust you.

Yes, we trust you! We understand that you work for minimum wage. We understand that you work long hours, sometimes at two (or more) jobs to make ends meet. We understand that some people order diet that don't need diet. Actually some of them may be healthier if they added a few pounds.

Regardless of all of this, please consider the following: Many of us that order diet soda do so because we have diabetes. Regular soda makes our glucose levels rise. Sometimes dangerously, sometimes not. If a customer orders diet soda, please be certain that the drink you hand them is actually sugar free.

If there is even a small doubt in your mind, please don't think it's no big deal. It is! It is a very big deal!

Please think again when you have a customer order a diet soda.

A diabetic customer

Sunday, September 22, 2013

It's good to be humbled!

 Yesterday I participated in the American Diabetes Association's Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes. This is a picture of me with my Red Strider hat and shirt. The sign I am kneeling next to read, "Red Striders rock! You are why we walk!"

While we walked, it hit me. I am a Red Strider. These people are walking for ME!

I looked behind me and saw all of the people not wearing Red Strider attire. Those people we not just walking behind me. They were behind me in more ways. Ways that humbled me.

These people raised thousands of dollars to help find a cure for ME. These people took time out of their Saturday morning for ME.

After I took this picture, I started crying. My youngest two were walking with me. I told them that all of those people walking was a humbling experience.

What does humbling mean, Mom?

It means.... it means.... *pause due to tears I'm trying to hide*

Mom, what does it mean?

"It's when you realize that other people are more awesome than you are," is all I could get out.

These people that were behind me are awesome. They didn't have to be there. They didn't have to raise money. They did this because they are amazing.

At last count, this walk has raised a little over $30,000. Unfortunately the goal was more than twice that. Thankfully donations are still being accepted. My goal was to raise $1,000 and I'm half way there!

Why do I walk? I walk for not just me, my children's future, and those with diabetes. I also walk as a thank you to those who reminded me to be humble yesterday. Those who helped remind me that there are people in this world who are awesomely amazing. People who go above and beyond - just because they want to.

Thank you to those people!

If you would still like to make a donation, please click here.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Is tomorrow Christmas?

When I was a child, Christmas Eve was filled with anticipation and excitement. My mom always told us that the sooner we went to bed, the sooner Christmas morning would arrive. One year, my sister and I went to bed at 5:00 pm only to be disappointed when we awoke to find out it was only 9:00 pm.

Tomorrow I walk toward a cure for diabetes. Just like Christmas Eve, I'm feeling excitement and anticipation. Tomorrow I will meet so many people who either have diabetes or care about people with diabetes. Two of my children will be joining me as the other members of my family had previous commitments. Although they can't be there, I know that they are supporting me. I know I will feel them walking with me tomorrow.

Please consider donating if you're able. Your donation is like a Christmas present for all of us. Not only will your donation work for a cure, but also provide information and support to those with diabetes while we work toward that cure. Together we can make a difference!

Click here to donate!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Will You Walk With Me?

This Saturday, I will be traveling to an American Diabetes Association Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes.

Will you walk with me?

If you're able to join your walk in your area...

If you're able to join our team at the walk or as a virtual walker...

If you're able to sponsor me, one of my teammates, or any walker...

you are walking with me.

Walking with me involves finding a way to support the American Diabetes Association helping find a cure as they offer support and education to those currently dealing with diabetes.

Whatever way you are able to walk with me, thank you!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Today is #dblogcheck day!

Check out some diabetes blogs today!  Maybe find some you haven't read.  Revisit those you haven't read in a while.  Of course check out your favorite diabetes blogs!

Follow the hashtag #dblogcheck on Twitter and check out where this idea started at: A Consequence of Hypoglycemia “I Think We Need A Check In Day“  Thanks, Chris!!!

I have to finish the final project for my grad summer class today, but I'll try to sneak in a few comments here and there.  This is exciting!  Chris put it nicely as he said, "#dblogcheck is not about pageviews, it's about building a stronger community through interaction."

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Depression and Diabetes

It is said that people with diabetes (PWD) run a high risk of depression.  Even with good control, diabetes is a tough thing to deal with on a daily basis.  Let's be blunt here: Diabetes sucks!  Really, it does.  Even with a great medical team, awesome friends, and an amazing family for support, it's understandable why many PWD deal with depression on some level.  Would I consider myself clinically depressed?  No.  Do I have some days that are harder to deal with than others?  You betcha!  No one would know it though.  I'm overall an upbeat person.  However there are days that are harder than others.  I get angry.  There are times I may overdo the carb control and exercise and other days where I just want to eat a whole package of chocolate chip cookies.

Mental illness and depression are looked at negatively in our society.  Almost as if it's the person's fault.  It is no one's fault!  Below are two videos.  The first one I was introduced to today.  It's a speech given by a 19 yr old young man, wise beyond his years.  The second video is a a song that means a lot to me.  It gives me hope.  It gives me something to hold on to.  Even if you're not a believer, everyone needs something that gives them hope.  My faith in God and belief in the Savior give me that hope.  Enjoy!

Friday, June 28, 2013

Werther's Sugar Free Caramels (product review)

This spring I was contacted by a representative for Werther's candies, asking if I would be willing to try out their sugar free candies. They were hoping to get opinions from some of my friends, too.

I like candy!  These were sugar free.  Sure, why not!

I received a cool box with the four different sugar free flavors:  Classic Caramel, Cinnamon Caramel, Caramel Apple, and Caramel Coffee.  I also received a nice looking candy jar.  It was small, plastic, with their logo on the side, but cute with the lid.  The candies were kind of sparkly inside when the light hit it just right.

Everything was looked over and admired.  Then it was time to try some candies.  Of course my kids helped me sample.  Every flavor was tried at least once.

Classic Caramel - smooth and simple

Cinnamon Caramel - like a red hot with the smooth taste of caramel to calm it down

Caramel Apple - reminds me of those green apple suckers with caramel on top that I used to get

Caramel Coffee - We're not coffee drinkers here, but this one was a hit with me and my 11 year old.  Not overpowering.

I shared all of the flavors with coworkers the next day.  Everyone seemed to love them.  These caramels don't have a sugar free taste, but they also don't have an overwhelming sweet taste either.  Smooth is a good adjective for the Wether's sugar free caramels.

Now the negative.  Since they are sugar free, they need to get their sweetness from somewhere. Isomalt.  Sugar alcohol.  Now the body doesn't see this in the same way of regular sugar, so (for me) it didn't cause a blood sugar spike after three pieces of candy in a row.  However it's good that I stopped at those three pieces.  You see, for some, sugar alcohols can have some nasty intestinal side effects.  I don't know how else to say it but straight out.  For some, diarrhea and other tummy upsets can occur.  Luck for me, all I got was a tummy ache.

Yes, we continued to sample and share these yummy candies, passing out coupons, too. But we made sure to let people know about the sugar alcohols and not to eat too many at once.  Moderation, my friend!

Mr. Hope admiring the Werther's sugar free candies

Disclaimer:  I was contacted by a representative of Werther's through my blog.  The candy and candy dish were sent to me free of charge in hopes that I would share on this blog my honest opinion.  All of the opinions are my own.

The Type 2 Experience

I've posted several times that I sometimes feel alone in my diabetes journey.  My family is awesomely amazing in their support, but sometimes you need someone who has walked in your shoes.  Someone who has been there.  Someone who really understands.

The DOC (diabetes online community) has always been very important to me through this journey.  We've laughed together.  Cried together.  We've supported each other.  There was only one thing.  Most of the DOC consists of people with Type 1.

Please understand that I have nothing against Type 1s.  They're awesome!  Amazing!  It was a Type 1 who was the inspiration for me to start blogging.  However there are times when you want to talk to someone whose struggles are closer to yours.

Sometimes you need the support of someone who is your type.

Then last month I was contacted by Bea Domínguez with the idea of a Type 2 collaborative blog. A group of us started discussing the possibility. The idea took off and The Type 2 Experience was born! There are currently seven of us contributing: Bea Domínguez, Lizmari Collazo, Kate Cornell, Mike Durbin, Rachel Foster, Bob Pedersen, and yours truly.  We each bring out own experiences and perspectives.  Please stop by for a visit.  Click on the authors page to read a little more about the people writing at TT2E.  Links to our personal blogs are there as well.

Welcome to our (diabetic) home!

Friday, May 31, 2013

Here We Go Again

Next week is full of transitions.  It's the last week of school for my younger four.  Also the last days of substitute teaching for the school year.  Monday starts the summer session at the university.  I'll be taking seven hours - two classes.  One classes is research methods.  Three semester hours in four weeks!  The other class is on middle school education.  The last class I need for my middle school endorsement.  Four semester hours in eight weeks.

Add in my work schedule at the Y plus tutoring and spending time with my five kids and husband.  There you have a busy summer schedule!  I'm a little nervous but also very excited!

My hope is also to get into an exercise routine.  My goal is to get my next A1c below 6%.  Going to the Y or just for walks around the neighborhood needs to be part of my daily routine.  We have a dog who needs to lose some weight, so I think she'll be joining me on some of those walks (she's a little wider than this picture).  She had a herniated disc in Spring 2012, so it's important that she keep her weight down.

I often feel like I've failed, but I try to recommit to my goals (like exercise, watching my carbs, blogging, etc.) even if it feels like the 100th time.  I refuse to give up! What are some goals that you have?  Do you also sometimes feel you're needing to recommit to the same goals over and over?

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

When Life Gets Busy

I feel bad that I didn't finish off the WEGO Health HAWMC.  I got 22 days in a row before life got busy, and I had to put my blog off to the side.  Right now I have three papers and a quiz in the works.  I do plan to finish the posts for the blog challenge from April, but they'll have to wait.

One skill I've had to work on as a mom of five is to prioritize my time.  Right now, school needs to be my writing priority.  Thank you for understanding!

Image source: here

Monday, April 22, 2013

Day to Day (#HAWMC)

Please please please... PRETTY PLEASE...
I still need more guesses for my Misinformation post. Click here to read it and guess!

Today's WEGO prompt: Write about something ordinary that's inspiring to you, something simple, perhaps overlooked, that fuels your activism.

Honestly, this prompt is so easy for me, which is what makes it easily overlooked.  The "ordinary" thing that is "overlooked" that "fuels [my] activism" would be - my family!  More specifically, my children.

My children are my inspiration.  I know that, due to genetics, their chances of developing diabetes is high.  I am not just being an advocate for me and the other PWD (people with diabetes) that I know, but I also feel driven to advocate and educate on behalf of my children.  If I can make a difference now, I hope that I have made a positive impact on their future.

If trends continue as they are, when my children become adults 1 in 3 people will have diabetes.  How much higher are their chances with diabetes on both sides of the family?  I won't play the guilt game with myself. I'm going to concentrate on what I can do.  Advocate and educate.

This fall, I will be attending an ADA Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes.  This is another way I can honor my children, by raising money to help advocate and educate.  Help support those with diabetes.  Help search for a cure!

Please consider making a donation to the walk here.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Adversity (#HAWMC)

Please please please... PRETTY PLEASE...
I still need more guesses for my Misinformation post. Click here to read it and guess!

Today's WEGO prompt: "The flower that blooms in adversity is the rarest and most beautiful of all." -Mulan
True or false?  When do you bloom best?

I feel this statement is very true.  Although I don't like being in such situations, I know that I shine when it's important.

As a college student facing a deadline. As a mother who has 20 minutes available to get groceries to feed her family of seven that evening. As a substitute teacher with a difficult student. As a person with diabetes who is having a hard time coping with the disease or the misinformation of others.

It's during these times that I surprise even myself.  Some of my best papers are written the night before (glad my professors don't know about this blog).  I am actually a more efficient shopper when I have a time limit.  In the three years I've been a substitute teacher, I rarely need to call the office for assistance with a behavioral matter.  During the last five years, I've learned that gestational diabetes was just a warm-up for what I've had to deal with as a person with Type 2 diabetes.

It's through my need for information and support that I found the DOC (diabetes online community).  It's through my need for reading how others with diabetes deal with their own adversity that I started this blog.  It's through this adversity that I've made so many online friends that I hope to someday meet face to face.

I don't enjoy the struggle, but sometimes through the determination I feel to overcome - I bloom!

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Diabetes Burnout (#HAWMC)

Please please please... 
I still need more guesses for my Misinformation post. Click here to read it and guess!

Today's WEGO prompt: (There were two prompts)
1- Write about burnout. What does it feel like? What are your burnout triggers?
2- What gets you OUT of the pit of despair when nothing is going your way?

During this month, many of the prompts list two options.  I pick the one that inspires me.  However, for today's prompt, I feel one leads into the other.  I don't feel it's fair to talk about burnout without also talking about what helps me out of it.

I will admit that I fall victim to burnout quite often.  I get tired of watching carbs. I get tired of exercising. I get tired of being "Super Diabetic."  I already play the role of "Super Mom" so wearing two capes weighs me down.

When I experience burnout, I just want to sit around, feeling sorry for myself.  I want to eat as much thick crust pizza as possible without throwing up.  I want an large chocolate shake.  Too often, I pretend like diabetes doesn't exist.  Yes, it scares me when I think what I'm doing sometimes.  For example, I just ate two servings of mashed potatoes for dinner.  Yes, I regret it.  Yes, I'm beating myself up about it!

What can I do about it once it's done though?  What's done is done.  Is there really a point of beating myself up over something I can't undo?  (Well, not without being accused of having an eating disorder.)  All I can do is pull myself up by my bootstraps and move on.

How do I get the motivation to move on?  Sometimes through my family.  My hubby is great and very encouraging. However, often it's nice to talk to someone who has been there.  Quite often I'll lean on members of the DOC (diabetes online community).  Usually I'll post on Facebook or Twitter asking for some support.  Sometimes I'll write on my blog.  Even if no one replies, getting it out helps a lot.  Sometimes I'll go to the Y and walk around the track or walk on the treadmill.  Drinking a glass of water or a Diet Coke also helps (water is always the healthier option!).

The most important part of burnout, regardless of condition or situation, is realizing you're not alone, even if it feels that way.  Everyone goes through burnout.  EVERYONE!  Keeping that in mind, remember that "You can do this!"

Friday, April 19, 2013

Vintage (#HAWMC)

Please... I still need more guesses for my Misinformation post. Click here to read it and guess!

Today's WEGO prompt: Post a vintage photo of yourself, with a caption about the photo and where you were in terms of your health condition.

This is my 8th grade school picture.  At the time, the only thing I knew about diabetes was that my grandfather had it.  He was still alive at the time of this picture.  He had either lost one or both of his legs.  I was blissfully ignorant in my early teens.

Little did I know, a little less than 25 years later, I would find myself diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.  Back then I was a stick.  Probably underweight actually.  Definitely not a kid that doctors would warn about the possibility of diabetes later in life.

Sometimes I envy this young teenager.  I had no idea the struggle that would find me later in life.  Would I want to warn my younger self?  I don't think so.  There was nothing I could have done to change my diagnosis.  Why ruin that sense of innocence?  Overall I'm happy with where my life is right now and wouldn't want to change it.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

I take it back... (#HAWMC)

I still need more guesses for my Misinformation post. Click here to read it and guess!

Today's WEGO prompt: Write about a time that someone said something to you that they wished they could take back. Did you forgive them? Why or why not?

Shortly after I was diagnosed, a man that I've known for years responded to my recent diagnosis by saying, "We're watching our weight so we don't get it [diabetes]."  I was stunned and couldn't respond.  Did he just call me fat?  Yes, I admit that I'm a little overweight, but not fat or obese.  Definitely not a weight that would warrant diabetes.  Did he apologize? No, but I don't think he realized that he said anything wrong.  I never let on that he hurt my feelings.

I've forgiven him in my heart and I'm pleasant any time I see him, but I do admit that his comment still stings a little.  I don't think I'll ever tell him.

Although I'm not mad at him about the comment, I remember it not out of bitterness, but to educated others about things not to say.  Even if I was obese, that isn't something to say to someone with diabetes.  It basically blames the person for their condition.  No one did this to him/herself and no one deserves any chronic condition.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Worldless(?) Wednesday (#HAWMC)

I still need more guesses for my Misinformation post. Click here to read it and guess!

Today's WEGO prompt: Go to to create a word cloud or tree from a list of words associated with your condition, blog, or interests. Post it!

Diabetes may be part of my life, but it's not my whole life!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Misinformation (#HAWMC)

Today's WEGO prompt: Tell us three things that are true about you, your condition, or your health activism. Tell us one lie. Will we be able to tell the difference?

Let's see...

  1. I married my high school sweetheart after dating for over six years.
  2. I started to get involved in the DOC (diabetes online community) after searching for more information about diabetes and getting fed up with misinformation.
  3. I plan to some day change career paths and pursue diabetes activism full-time.
  4. There are three main types of diabetes: Type 1, Type 2, and gestational. However there are many other types.
I think I'm going to make you wait until tomorrow for the answer.  Feel free to post your guess in the comments below!

Image found here.

Monday, April 15, 2013

We interrupt your regularly scheduled blog post... (#HAWMC)

In light of today's events, I would like to take a break from tonight's scheduled WEGO prompt and post something from the heart.  Thank you, everyone, for your understanding!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Share the Love (#HAWMC)

Today's WEGO prompt: Thank a few of your fellow Health Activists for what they have done. Call them out by name or twitter handle. Share your love.

There are so many wonderful people within the DOC that I don't know if I could just pick a few.  There's Kim at the You Can Do This project, helping people know that diabetes doesn't have to keep you from doing what you love.  There's Cherise, Scott, and George at DSMA (Diabetes Social Media Advocacy), doing their own advocacy but also coming together as an awesome team, leading Twitter chats and online radio shows.  Of course I've mentioned Kerri at Six Until Me several times - my inspiration to blog.

We may not have the same type of diabetes, but that doesn't matter so much.  These people and so many others have inspired me, encouraged me, challenged me.  Without them, I wouldn't be the person I am today.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Diabetes Poetry (#HAWMC)

Today's WEGO prompt: Write a health acrostic for your condition, hashtag, or username. (Acrostic = poem where every letter of a word serves as the first letter of a word or phrase i.e. DOG = Digs Others' Gardens)

RFamHere's Diabetes Acrostic

Reason to fight
For family
Members of DOC
Heavy at times
Everyone needs a cure!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Hindsight (#HAWMC)

Today's WEGO prompt: What have you learned about being a patient/caregiver that has surprised you?

This picture answers the question better than any words I could write:

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Diabetes and Technology (#HAWMC)

Today's WEGO prompt: Write about your favorite health iPhone app. OR Write about your favorite social network. Do you love Twitter? Facebook? Pinterest? Why?

This was a hard one for me.  First of all, I'm an Android gal.  So I could write about my favorite Android app..  I also enjoy social networking.  I'm on Facebook every day, Twitter about ever other day, and Pinterest at least once per week.  Should I approach this from the Sue the diabetic side?  Sue the mom of five side?  Sue the grad student side? Or Sue trying to escape for a little while side?

I think I'll touch both questions, touching briefly on any side that applies.

My most used app would definitely be Facebook.  I check it first thing in the morning, just like someone might check their daily paper.  Of course that would also filter over to my favorite social network.  Next in the realm of Android apps, not including email programs and texting, I would probably have to say my favorite health-related app is SparkPeople.  I have it on my Kindle Fire, but not on my phone right now.  I've been a member of that site for several years and really like it.  The app lets me enter in my food and exercise while on the go.  I don't have to try to remember everything until I get home.

Probably the one thing that helps me keep organized is my Google calendar.  I love that I can sync it with my husband's calendar and he can sync mine on his calendar.  This is a godsend for a family with five kids!

Well I guess I'm going to stop writing here.  Today is my birthday.  Although I would like to make it a totally lazy day, I do have two short papers to write.  A friend of mine sent me to following picture of a cake on Facebook.  Oh how I wish it were mine!

You all already know what I'll wish for tonight when I blow out my candles.
A cure!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Wordless Wednesday (#HAWMC)

Today's WEGO prompt: It's often hard to like pictures of ourselves - post your favorite picture of yourself.

It's a really goofy picture, 
but it shows me having fun and laughing without care.
That's why I like this picture!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Caregivers (#HAWMC)

Today's WEGO prompt: Patients, what advice or tips do you have for caregivers out there – professional or otherwise!

My "caregivers" would include my Type Awesomes and my primary care physician (PCP).  The main piece of advice I have is: LISTEN!

Don't try to fix me, don't tell me what I'm doing wrong, and, most of all, don't blame me.  Just be there for me.  I can't be fixed.

I know what I'm doing wrong.  Most of all, I don't need to be blamed.

Listen to me.  Let me rant.  Tell me that it's ok to be mad/sad/angry/frustrated.  Give me a hug.  Wipe my tears.  Give me a back rub.  Give me chocolate!

Tell me that you're there for me... NO MATTER WHAT!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Diabetes is a Blue Boy Beta named... HOPE??? (#HAWMC)

Today's WEGO prompt: If your health condition (or the health condition of a loved one!) was an animal, what would it be? Is it a real animal or make believe?

Yesterday I went to the pet store with my youngest to buy her a replacement beta fish and a new fish for my middle child.  While we were there, I picked out a fish of my own.  I thought it would be nice to have on my desk when my eyes needed change of focus while working on schoolwork.

Of course I got a blue fish.

And I named him Hope (with the encouragement of a mom of a CWD).

So my diabetes is a male beta fish named Hope.

Yes, it's a boy fish with a girl's name.  Get over it.  Who said anything about diabetes makes sense?

For those that are wondering, my doctor said my numb toes are more than likely not a result of diabetes or poor circulation.  Looks like it's probably from how I grip my toes when I walk.