Saturday, July 16, 2011

Weekend Meme

It's Saturday, and we have nothing on the calendar. NOTHING! Nowhere to be, no one expecting us, no schedule to race to keep up with. So I find myself browsing the DOC, and I came across an old post from Hannah over at Dorkabetic. She put together this fun little alphabet meme, which I hope she doesn't mind that I've stolen.

Happy Lazy Summer Saturday!

Age: 41

Bed size: King. Don't understand how married couples can sleep in anything but.

Chore you dislike: Dusting. It just gets dusty again, so why bother?

Dogs: Love them. Grew up with Max, a smart poodle mix, then had Beau, a stupid lab mix. Got Molly before Grace was born and she died last fall. No dog now, but will probably get another one some day.

Essential start to your day: I'm a snuggler, so some snuggles from hubby are a must.

Favorite color: Dark blue

Gold or silver: Probably silver, but like most girls married in the 90s, my wedding band is yellow gold.

Height: 5’4", but I wear heels a lot.

Instruments you play(ed): In 5th grade I wanted to learn to play guitar but broke my thumb after two lessons, when Karen closed it in the bathroom stall door.

Job title: Instructional Assistant in a kindergarten class.

Kids: Three: Grace (future movie producer or CEO, definitely in a position to boss people around), Little Sister (future self-proclaimed movie star and Olympic swimmer), and Little Brother (future famous rock climber and race car driver).

Live: Just north of Boston.

Mom’s name: Marie Antoinette. Yes, I'm serious. (hi Mom!)

Nicknames: I grew up with my family calling me Pam Soup, or Soupie, or just plain Soup. No idea where this came from.

Overnight hospital stays: Only for my three complication free deliveries.

Pet Peeves: Food that goes to waste, the fact that my husband's phone apparently NEVER acknowledges when I call, and being called "Mrs. Dunn" by the young, cute lifeguards at the pool. Way to make a gal feel old!

Quote from a movie: "Just keep swimming!". Finding Nemo

Righty or Lefty: Southpaw

Siblings: Two older sisters and an older brother... could you guess I'm the baby?

Time you wake up: Need. More. Sleep. 6:30am on work days. As late as possible all other days.

Underwear: Yes (not sure how this was intended)

Vegetables you don’t like: Cooked green peppers... blech!

What makes you run late: I'm a procrastinator at heart. That, and deciding which shoes to wear ;)

X-Rays you’ve had: Broken thumb and finger, two separate occasions

Yummy food you make: Shrimp Scampi

Zoo animal favorite: Polar bears, though I feel really sorry for them in captivity.

Happy Weekend Everyone!

Thursday, July 14, 2011


Grace had her quarterly endo appointment this afternoon. Things have been chugging along here... swim team, Barton camp next week, vacation the week after that. Her 90 day blood sugar average was pretty good so I expected a decent A1c. I'm EXTREMELY happy with the 6.3 result, especially since we've been able to decrease the number of lows she's had.

But the best part of the visit was while we were waiting in the play room for our appointment to begin. Grace was sitting at the craft table working on something. Next to her was a boy who looked to be either slightly older, or very tall for his age. After downloading the numbers from her pump, the nurse returned the pump to Grace and she reconnected. A few minutes later her pump chimed, to alert her that she forgot to un-suspend it. At the sound, both Grace and the boy next to her simultaneously looked to their left hips to check if it was them making the noise. The boy looked at Grace and asked who it was, because it didn't seem to be him. Grace, beet red, acknowledged it was, in fact, her.

I couldn't help but laugh... the sight of two heads moving in unison to the alert from an insulin pump was priceless.

The administrator of the play room said it happens all the time :)

Saturday, July 2, 2011


I have a new favorite piece of jewelry. It's a necklace my husband gave me (after I saw it in a store and HEAVILY requested that he buy it for me;)). It's a blue circle of sea glass attached to a silver chain. Think, international symbol for diabetes. I love, love, love it.

And now I can't get it off. I put it on last week to wear with a fabulous white tank top. Apparently I linked the clasp onto a funky link, and now the clasp won't open back up.

My daughter is trapped in a life with diabetes. And now I'm trapped in a diabetes inspired necklace. Oh, the irony!

Side note: A great big THANK YOU to whoever nominated me for the Best of the Betes award! I've been woefully absent from the DOC lately, and when I checked in today, this is what I saw! I still think it's crazy that anyone out there actually reads my ramblings, but now I think I've found some inspiration to ramble on again! So thanks, and stay tuned...

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Happy Birthday, Gracie!

Ten years ago today, at 1:32 in the afternoon, you entered my life. You weighed 7 pounds, 14 ounces and I was petrified of you. I loved you with all my being, but didn't have the slightest idea of how to take care of you. You cried.. A LOT... and were never interested in falling asleep in my arms. But after a few months we seemed to figure each other out, and you morphed into a pretty easy baby.

I take such pride in watching you become the person you are. You are timid but fiercely independent. You try your hardest at everything you do and are a good friend. You are a rules-follower and love structure, and definitely need some alone time every day to center yourself.

And you are brave. Nothing has shown this more than how you deal with your diabetes. You get sick of it sometimes, and yell and scream and cry. But so do I. Sometimes you're embarrassed by it, but other times you wear it as a badge of courage. You seem to be developing the sense of, "diabetes is something I have to deal with, but it's NOT who I am," and I love that.

Ten years ago today I never would have guessed we'd be on this diabetes journey together. But here we are. And I am in awe of how gracefully you handle it.

I never could have guessed how absolutely perfect your name would be.

I love you.

Saturday, April 30, 2011


Grace's Type 1 Diabetes diagnosis two years ago has altered the course of her life. She is not the person today that she would have been were she not diagnosed. But this is true for everyone - events happen in our lives that weave their way into the fabric of who we are.

As such, Grace's diagnosis has altered the course of everyone in my family's lives. We are all affected in some way. Lately , it seems, no one more so than Little Sister. She's struggling, and I'm not quite sure how to help her.

It started soon after dx, when we saw a sharp increase in her mood swings and temper tantrums. Little Sister has always been my "go with the flow" girl. But she began to be more of a challenge.

Then, about a month ago, she told me she was having trouble seeing the blackboard at school. With her 8 year old well visit less than a month away, and no reports of headaches or other problems with her schoolwork, I decided to wait till then to have her vision checked. Two weeks ago after a cursory vision test my pediatrician referred us to a Pediatric Optometrist at Children's Hospital.

Last Thursday was the appointment. After an extensive eye exam and administration of dilating eye spray we had to wait 20 minutes for full dilation. I was confused by some of the answers Little Sister gave during the exam, so I had her wait in another room while I talked to the doctor.

"Is she faking?" I asked. "Well, yes and no," was the answer.

Apparently, in a desperate attempt to pull some much needed attention away from her diabetic sister and baby of the family/ only boy brother, she's manifesting vision problems. Of course, that's MY take. The doctor said it seems as though she's under a lot of stress, and that's turning an extremely minor deficit in her up-close vision, one that most children would compensate for and outgrow as their eyes mature, into a far-sighted eye strain. When her eyes are tired, such as at school after reading or writing a lot, when she looks up things get blurry. When she was looking at the letters during the vision exam, at first she couldn't read any of them. After a series of different lenses were used she still couldn't see. Then all the lenses were removed and, what do you know, she mysteriously COULD see the letters.

It's all very confusing and upsetting. The doctor said it's actually quite common. The solution is we're getting her glasses to wear at school with an EXTREMELY low prescription. She'll see a slight difference, but her eyes won't become dependent on them. They're almost like a placebo. Then we go back in August for a follow-up and hope this bit if TLC has helped, and corrected the problem. We've told her that the glasses will fix the blurriness and heal her eyes so she won't have to wear them forever.

I can't help feeling like I'm failing her. She is my light, my heart, my joy, my everything, and yet I've failed to show her enough love. This stupid disease has sucked so much of my time that I've lost track of the needs of my daughter - the one without diabetes.

Little Sister is now a different person because of Grace's diagnosis. I only hope I can get her back on track quickly and help her grow into the amazing person she's destined to become.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Another First

Change is hard. Especially for my rules-following, structure-loving oldest child. So when our CDE suggested we try Grace's arm for infusion sites, I had little faith she'd be on board. Up till now we've only used her bum. We tried her stomach once, but pulled it immediately because it hurt so badly. It's not that her bum is in bad shape - it's fine. It's just that as Grace gets bigger there's more real estate at her disposal. So we talked about it. I showed Grace this picture for inspiration from Wendy's blog. And she did it. Didn't even flinch. My brave girl.

Friday, April 8, 2011


Diabetes just doesn't make sense to me.

I get that it's a condition that comes with tons of variables. But there are certain tenents that should hold true, at least most of the time.

Like this one... physical activity lowers blood sugars.

An thus, the converse should hold true... less physical activity than normal results in higher than normal blood sugars.

Except when it doesn't.

Let me explain.

Long car rides make Grace's blood sugar drop... a lot.

It's happened time and time again. We get in the car for an extended drive and her blood sugars always fall. If I follow the "rules" her decrease in physical activity should require an increased need for insulin. But no.

Could it be a leftover from the years she suffered from carsickness? Is her body still sent into internal turmoil in the car, but instead of it projectiling out of her mouth it's expressed in her crazy numbers?

I don't know. What I do know is that it's so hard for me to ignore the shoulds, and go with my gut.