Friday, November 30, 2012

things that annoy me, and on a lighter note....

Most days when it comes to Diabetes, I don't think about it.  Wait, let me explain.  I think about it ALL THE TIME, but I don't really think about it.  It is just something I do.  I guess because I have been diabetic for sooooo long, the things I do are just a part of my every minute, of every hour, of every day, of every week, month and year.  You get that right?

So each morning I get up, test my BG and start my day with coffee.  I like my coffee with sugar (the real stuff) and cream, so I bolus for that.  About an hour later, once the grandkiddies get here, we have breakfast.  I test again and I bolus for that.

This morning, me and my meter were fighting.  Well actually it all started with my lancet.  Or maybe it was my finger.  I'll explain.

I decided that I was going to treat myself to a bagel and an egg with some cheese.  Carbs 41gr

I get out meter, insert test strip, choose my finger, poke hole, squeeze.  NOTHING.  not a drop.  I squeeze again.  a teeny tiny almost invisible speck.
I poke again.  More squeezing, still not enough.  Choose a new finger, poke again, squeeze.  NADA.  Deep breath.  Pick a new finger,  dial up the depth of the poke and press that lancet hard.  Yay!  We have blood!

Onto the strip goes the blood.  Onto the floor goes the meter.  
sorry it's so blurry!
This is what I see.  I know this is normal while waiting for the result but this just went on and on and on!

So take out strip, turn off meter and start over.  Insert new lancet into ONETOUCH Delica device, peruse fingertips for best looking one (read less holes and dots visible), poke AGAIN, hope for blood.  Strike a goldmine! No squeezing necessary! Test!

One reading, FOURTH POKE FTW!  This annoys me but I guess it could have been worse.  It could have been 4th test strip. 

On a lighter note......

Last week's painting
This week's painting

I have decided to clear out my spare bedroom and turn it into my paint room.
I have a few ideas of how this space will look when it is done.   We are hoping to get it done over the Christmas holidays.  A post for another day!

Have a great weekend everyone!  

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Good News Post!

Today my sister received the good news that the biopsy on her lymph nodes came back "all clear". Terrific news!!  She will now begin her radiation therapy sometime in January.  The Cancer clinic may still decide that she needs some chemo treatments, but that still remains to be seen.  I am very thankful for this awesome news!  Her and her husband have decided to spend the day together with their boys to celebrate!  They can now let out their collectively held breaths and look to the future.

Thanks everyone for your thoughts and prayers. <3

 In other (not so important) news, I visited my DEC (diabetes education clinic) the other day, and my A1c was 7.0!  I think thats my new all-time lowest!  We did a little tweaking with basals and IS, and I will download my pump later today using the new Diasend tool that my clinic is now offering.  

I am still seeing some lows at around 3pm, so a little more tweaking at that time of day seems to be in order.

Winter seems to have arrived here.  It's snowing a little right now.  Kind of puts me in the Christmas mood.  I am off today so I may pull out some of the decorations and begin the  job of bringing the joy of Christmas indoors!  I have been collecting snowmen for a number of years, but I think this year I will only be putting out some of them.  I have close to 200 different ones.  Some big, some small.  It's a big job and with a very busy 2 1/2year old granddaughter, who wants to investigate EVERYTHING, I'm going to try to keep them to a minimum.  We'll see! LOL!

Do you have any special decorations that you collect?  

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Wordless(ish) Wednesday....have you ever?

not  really sure what was going on on this particular day, but this is the first time I have ever encountered this!

normally, i keep a close eye on my pump when I know it is getting close to the time to do a site change.  I try to keep only as much insulin in my cartridge to last me just a little over 3 days(for corrections or cupcakes!),  so I never run out.  the alarm is set for 10units.  it would seem that i ignored that and decided to go for broke! good thing I was at home and not at work or out shopping or something!!

have you ever gone this far? 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


Just an update on my recent post regarding my sister.

She had a lumpectomy performed last Thursday, at which time they also removed 2 lymph nodes for biopsy.

The surgeon feels that he got all the cancer, and the nodes "looked good", whatever that may mean.

She is feeling good, and recovering at home.  She should have the results of this biopsy in 2 weeks, at which time her treatment options will be confirmed (radiation), and if the lymph nodes showed any signs of cancer, what the next step will be(removal and chemo).

I want to thank you all for your healing thoughts and prayers.  I am very grateful.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


Today is World Diabetes Day.  This is my blue shirt (which was given to me by my pharmacist last year on this day).  I am wearing this and have had a lot of comments so far!  ALL my family is wearing blue, even my husband!  

A friend of mine (newly diagnosed Type 2), is wearing blue today.  She found $10 in the pocket of her blue sweater and sent me a facebook message thanking me for the fashion advice!! LOL!

Are you wearing blue today!!

And Happy Birthday to Dr. Frederick Banting!  I send you a million thank you's!  

Monday, November 12, 2012

Not a pretty story, but please give it a go

Hello Everyone

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend.  

Before I get into today's post, I would like to say that yesterday was Remembrance Day.  For the first time I can remember, the store where I work actually stopped, the Store Manager recited Flanders Fields, and the whole store, customers and all observed a moment of silence.  It was quite amazing.   

I would like to thank 2 of my cousins for serving my country in the Canadian Armed Forces for over 30 years a piece.  And for all of those who have lived, and fought and died for our countries, I thank you.

And now, onto another type of fight.

My younger sister is 44 years old.  She was diagnosed with Grave's Disease in May of this year.  Her neck was swollen on both sides of her thyroid, and her Dr. recommended she see an Endocrinologist, who diagnosed her.  She was put on medication for her heart, and another for her thyroid.  The heart medications was because her heart had been racing for so long she could have suffered a heart attack at any time.  The thyroid medication obviously to slow down her thyroid.  

The swelling has been going down on one side but not the other.  They were playing a waiting game.

In the meantime, her Family Dr. passed away.  She met with a new Dr. closer to her home, and he was in agreeance with the Endo to wait and see with the thyroid.  It was, however, time for her yearly mammogram.  We have a family history of breast cancer.  My mother's sister and neice, and on my dads side, my grandmother.  My sister is my half sister.  We have different fathers.  Because of this, she has been have a mammogram yearly since she turned 40.

This year, she went to a different clinic for the test, due to the new family Dr.

The results of the mammogram came back.  She knew that she had what is called "microcalcification", but each year things looked the same.  This year her new Dr. thought things looked different.  So she had another test.  After getting her past results and comparing them, it was decided that a biopsy was in order.  

Her husband took her to the hospital where the biopsy was to be done.  It should have been about an hour appointment.  What followed was a 4 hour catastrophe.  While doing the biopsy they nicked an artery.  Blood started shooting out through the small incision, and all hell broke loose.  No one really knew where the blood was coming from.  They were packing her with gauze in an attempt to stop the bleeding.  After moving her from one room to another, all the while attempting to get this bleeding under control, a surgeon was called in He had his finger on the bleed and was applying such force while they prepped her for the surgery that she had a fist-sized bruise.  My sister is a little person.  But she is strong.  She didn't complain while all this was going on.  She was finally sent home, told to rest, and not use her right arm for anything for a few days.  This was in October fight before our Thanksgiving.  She was told it would take about 2 weeks to get the results of the biopsy.

In talking to her over Thanksgiving weekend, I got the feeling that she thought the results would not be good.  She said that the whole biopsy catastrope was a bad omen.  She was sure of it.  She was also worried that the swelling of her thyroid had something to do with it.  Her and her Dr. had discussed a biopsy on her thyroid before any of this had happened and now she was sure it was all connected.   We all told her she was silly.  Don't worry about things you have no control over.  Wait and see, we told her.  Everything will be fine. 

Have you ever heard the saying "hurry up and wait"?  Well for her, the next 2 weeks dragged.  She has since told me that she did everything she could to keep her mind off of it.  Finally the day arrived and she called the Dr's office.

The person she spoke with gave her the good news!  All was clear.  NO CANCER!!  She would continue to have mammograms every 6 months from now on, and they would keep a close eye but all was good!  She was so thankful!  She called everyone and shared her good news.  We all let out our collective held breath and thanked God!

Great news right?  But wait, we're not done yet.  

The next day she was driving to work from the lab.  She had had her normal bloodwork done for her thyroid condition.  She pulled into a gas station to answer the call after the third time of it ringing hoping her sons were ok.  

It was her Dr's office asking her to come in, the Dr. would like to speak to her.  She asked why?  What was going on, and was told again, that the Dr. needed to speak to her.  She said ok well I'll be there right away, as she was only about a block away.  

When she arrived she was ushered into his office.  He came in without delay and sat down.  He had her folder in his hand and as she said, a  "funny look on his face".   He told her he had some news for her regarding her biopsy.  She told him that she spoke with someone from his office just the day before and was told that everything was fine.  He told her everything was definitely NOT fine.  He had just received the biopsy results that morning and it showed what is called Invasive Ductal Carcinoma.  She remembers sitting back in her chair stunned.  How can this be??  She was told the day before that all was well?  What the hell was going on??  The Dr. told her that he didn't know what happened the day before and he wasn't sure who she had spoken with but whomever it was should never have said anything.  

They must have been looking at an old mammogram, not the biopsy results which had just come in.  He apologized profusely but sternly told her that this needed to be taken care of right away. No delay.  She must meet with a Surgeon to discuss her options and they needed to move on this.  

Needless to say, she was shocked.  Imagine being told one day that everything was fine, and then the next finding out you do, in fact, have Cancer?  

I can't even begin to imagine how she must have felt.  She says it was like being hit by a Mac truck.  Not to mention she was all alone.  Oh how I wanted to rip that person who told her all was wells face off.  I'm sorry but seriously?  This isn't like a little thing.  This is a H.U.G.E. thing.  

So this week, on Thursday, my little sister is going in for a lumpectomy, and a biopsy on her lymph nodes.  This will be followed by radiation therapy 5 days a week for 5 weeks.  And if the lymph nodes are affected, likely a full mastectomy and chemotherapy will follow.  

I know that there are people of all ages,  all over the world affected by Cancer each and every day, and there are many worse types. 

But please,  say a little prayer for my sister?  She's the only one I have.       


Thursday, November 08, 2012

Let's talk about Food!


This can be a Diabetic's nightmare.
You know what I'm talking about.  Trying to decided what to eat.  How much to eat.  How many carbs are in what we decide to eat.What will be the effects on our blood sugars.  For Type 1's doing the math for bolusing that, hopefully, will keep everything level.

Some days it's definitely a nightmare.  I swear I could eat the exact same things, at the exact same time every single day and never get the same results on my blood sugars.  

I am trying to eat more sensibly.  I am trying to eat "low carb".  I am trying to get more exercise.  I am trying to use portion control.

Portion control can be fairly simple when using a "portion plate".  The Canadian Diabetes Assoc.  in my town  gives one of these plates to each newly diagnosed Type 2.  

It helps them get a better grip on serving sizes.  I use a *Starfrit scale to help me determine the carbs in my meals.  It has a handy little button that when I input a code that relates to a certain food, will tell me the amount of carbs. But I still find I need help in picking lower carb foods. Foods with a low GI (glycemic index).  Those things that don't cause a spike in my blood sugars.   Doing that, along with eating the right amounts of foods should help me accomplish my goals of keeping my bgs in normal range most of the time, and of losing a few pounds.  
Another way to determine how much food to eat is by using your hands to estimate portions.  For example; a medium apple, about the size of your fist has about 15grams of carbs.  A piece of bread equal to the size of your hand laid flat is about 15grams of carbs.  Pasta about the size of your fist (or 1 cup) is equal to about 30grams of carbs.  Vegetables, other than root vegetables such as potatoes, corn, generally don't have carbs.  As much as you can hold in both hands is a good serving size.  A medium size potato, or about a cup of mashed is approximately 30grams of carbs.  As for protien, a portion the size of a deck of cards is a good size.  So if you don't have a scale or a measuring cup, or a portioned plate, you can certainly use your hands to determine the amount of carbs you are having. 
Making healthy choices is just what is says.  Choices.  Try to eat foods high in fibre, as this helps to avoid spikes in blood sugars after meals.  Eating lots of veggies is always a good thing.  Choosing the real fruit over fruit juice is much better for you.  Juice is great when fighting a low blood sugar, but it actually will increase your BG faster than the real mccoy.  Eating meat alternatives such as lentils, beans or tofu is another good idea.  Fish is something you should try to eat at least twice a week according to the Canadian Diabetes Association "Just the Basics" handout also recommended by Canada's Food Guide.  Don't forget that dairy is important.  Try to choose lower fat milk and milk products.  Keeping your sodium intake to a minimum is also important for Diabetics, due to the higher incidence of heart attacks and strokeincluding high blood pressure.

We all know its' okay to eat a cupcake with blue icing and unicorn sprinkles along with a side of ice cream every now and then!   But overall, making healthy food choices is a good habit to get into!

How 'bout you?  Are you making healthy food choices?  Do you use a scale to measure your foods?  Does it help you determine the amount of carbs?  What do you do when you go out to eat?  Do you ask if they have a nutrition guide or just SWAG you carb count?