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Diabetes Life Hacks - DBlogWeek Day 5

Share the (non-medical) tips and tricks that help you in the day-to-day management of diabetes.  Tell us everything from clothing modifications, serving size/carb counting tricks to the tried and true Dexcom-in-a-glass trick or the “secret” to turning on a Medtronic pump’s backlight when not on the home-screen (scroll to the bottom of this post). Please remember to give non-medical advice only! (Thank you Rachel of Probably Rachel and Kelley of Below Seven for this topic suggestion.)

This prompt seemed like it would be easy for me to write about but so far this has been the toughest to write about. I really cannot think of one diabetes life hack I do or came up with. I am pretty sugar free vanilla I guess when it comes to my diabeetus. 

There is one little hack but it is more about my DOC life. It's how I read blogs. Yeah, this will work.

So, I use a reader called The Old Reader and the reason why is because it allows me to Spritz the posts in my reader. 

If you don't know what Spritz is I would ask you to check it out but clicking on this link and checking out the demo at the top of the page. Anyhow, with Spritz and The Old Reader I can read blog posts a lot faster than before! Like way Way WAY faster! 

I sound like a salesman but I am just a huge fan. Anyhow, this was kind of a meh post for me to end the week on but thankfully DBlogWeek continues through the weekend so I have chance to go out with a bang!


Mantras and More - DBlogWeek Day 4

Yesterday we opened up about how diabetes can bring us down. Today let’s share what gets us through a hard day.  Or more specifically, a hard diabetes day.  Is there something positive you tell yourself?  Are there mantras that you fall back on to get you through?  Is there something specific you do when your mood needs a boost?  Maybe we've done that and we can help others do it too? (Thanks to Meri of Our Diabetic Life for suggesting this topic.)

I'll try again.

Those are the three words I tell myself all the time. For a long time I felt like a diabetes failure because I could never get it right. The fact is that the closest I can get to "right" is not perfect. Diabetes makes sure of that. 

So I try. I try my best every day. Some days I screw up before my first meal. And those days I know I will try again tomorrow to do my best. To bolus correctly and count every single carb. I will try to remember to check my bg before and after each meal and log it. I'll try.

I'll try because if I screw up then I cannot be too hard on myself. I have to give some room for error and mistakes. It happens, pretty much daily for me and giving myself the reminder that I can try again.

Now don't get me wrong, I understand the power of words and the last thing I want to be is a wishy washy type 1 right? So if I keep saying "try" then how will I ever acheive the numbers I want, the a1c my doctor would be happy about, and my weight where I want it?

If every mistake was looked at in failure I would never try anything because I am not perfect.

I WILL try. I DO try. I KNOW if I try I will get closer to where I want to be. I HAVE seen a difference now that I give myself the room to stumble. I CAN try harder. I WON'T give up trying. 

This is what gets me through the rough days and the not so rough ones. It works well for me.

Try it! ;)


What Brings Me Down - DBlogWeek Day 3

May is Mental Health Month so now seems like a great time to explore the emotional side of living with, or caring for someone with, diabetes. What things can make dealing with diabetes an emotional issue for you and / or your loved one, and how do you cope? (Thanks go out to Scott of Strangely Diabetic for coordinating this topic.)

This is a tough one to write about. Often the things that bring me down regarding my diabetes life change so thinking about which thing to write about turns into a depressing venture.

When I sit down to write I am reminded of diabetes and the complications it can cause because my feet are tingling. I can feel two shoes full of things crawling around and picking at my feet all the time. It is an awful feeling and a constant reminder of how my years of ignoring diabetes was not a two way street. 

Currently my bg is a little high. I can tell because I am so thirsty. I check my bg and I'm right, 209. When I am high I cannot help but wonder what other damage this is doing to me. Do I bolus to get it back down or do a wait to see where I am going? It can be so depressing thinking you finally know your body just to let diabetes mess it all up again. Am I going up or down or??

And then I remembered why my bg is high. I woke up at 5AM with a nasty low. A low blood sugar that I treated to stay alive has now gone past my target and I have ended up high. I try to save myself only to put myself in more danger? The constant back and forth of blood sugar numbers brings me down big time!

Ultimately, the thing that brings me down is the fear of dying too early on in my life. My wife, children, and family have gone through enough turmoil and pain in their short time on this planet and I do not want to be the cause of more.

By the time I was 18 I had lost all of my grandparents, my father, and was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Those losses dramatically affected my life. Choices I made and motivations were all shaped around my loved ones lost and my diagnosis. 

Am I going to make my daughter's wedding day a sorrow filled one because I cannot walk her down the aisle? Will my son and his son someday go through this blog to get to know the grandfather he never met? Will my wife remarry and move on once I am gone? What about my sisters and my mother? 

Dying does not scare me. What scares me is what will happen in the wake to my loved ones. 


Poetry Tuesday - DBlogWeek Day 2

This year, Diabetes Blog Week and TuDiabetes are teaming up to bring out the poet in you! Write a poem, rhyme, ballad, haiku, or any other form of poetry about diabetes. After you’ve posted it on your blog, share it on the No Sugar Added® Poetry page on TuDiabetes, and read what others have shared there as well!


I turn around,

It's what was taught, what was known, nothing was shown.

I turn around,

Keep the peace and aim to please, all kept at ease.

I turn around,

A wall to hide the other side, my wounded pride.

So the looks and the glares the constant stares pierce my soul more than this hole,

So I squeeze and I bleed and I frown. I turn around.


I turn around,

to draw it up, that flicking sound I try to drown.

I turn around,

to lift my shirt, to drop my face in case it hurts.

I turn around,

for fear of fear that others share of something I have no choice but bear. 

Can this fortress I have stop the stab and the sound?

I look around and I wait, hesitate, I turn around.


I turn around,

Half a spin, come back again like nothing's changed.

I turn around,

palming the waste and tools I used kept out of views.

I turn around,

wondering why the public eye can't see me cry.

For years I hid as a kid, stayed stealth and hurt my health,

so now I stand and I draw and I stab and squeeze and I bleed and I cry if I need,

But I can't and I won't be ashamed or afraid or put down cause I won't turn around.


Change the World - DBlogWeek Day 1

Let’s kick off Diabetes Blog Week by talking about the diabetes causes and issues that really get us fired up. Are you passionate about 504 plans and school safety? Do diabetes misconceptions irk you? Do you fight for CGM coverage for Medicare patients, SDP funding, or test strip accuracy? Do you work hard at creating diabetes connections and bringing support? Whether or not you “formally” advocate for any cause, share the issues that are important to you. (Thanks go out to Kim of Texting my Pancreas for inspiring this topic.

My Aunt is struggling. She has type 2 diabetes and has made some serious changing to her life to fight back. But lately it seems everything she does is never enough and this continuing spinning of her wheels is bringing her down.

When I read the prompt for today's post it made me think of my dear aunt and what she is going through. She started to eat right, skip snacks and sweets she sould sneak now and then, and started exercising. It has gotten to the point now where she will skip meals to keep her blood sugar down. 

Why? Why would she do this? Because of insulin. Or I should say, insulin injections.

The fear and disappointment she feels makes me terribly sad. After talking to my cousin about it she said that her mom is so scared of going blind and losing her limbs that she thinks starting insulin is the end of her life.

I explained to her that high numbers are what she needs to worry about, not taking insulin. Insulin can help her keep her numbers in tighter control which could help her avoid complications. Insulin is not the enemy or a punishment for a job poorly done. 

This is what really grinds my gears. Doctors that threaten with insulin. Doctors that say, "if you don't do _____ you are going to end up on insulin!" So what happens if you do need it? Are you being bad? Are you to blame? Are you a failure? 

Why not let PWT2D know that doing all they can may not be enough and if it is not then insulin may be needed. We are not there yet but if the time comes you may need to take shots to control your numbers. Say something like, "our goal is to keep your numbers as tight and steady as we can! We can work with all the tools we need as we need them but you are not alone! We are going to get through this together!" 

Those tools may be change in diet, pills, exercise, insulin, and who knows what else! There is a way to approach it that does not make the patient feel like a failure or that they are getting what they deserve. 

No one asked for diabetes and no one wants complications from it. And I know that this sort of "motivation" does not actually motivate. It makes me shut down, give up, and find a tub of ice cream to dive into.

Insulin is not an enemy or a punishment!