Saturday, July 30, 2011

When All I Could Think About Is Food...

I have a serious problem. It is a problem that I have had for a very long time, much longer than I have had Type 1 Diabetes. It is an addiction that I just can't kick and having it, on top of having diabetes is making life just a tad bit harder. What is this problem, you ask? A food addiction and I don't see it going away any time soon.

I am a compulsive over eater. I eat when I'm hungry. I eat when I'm not hungry. It really doesn't matter. I think about food constantly and I always go for that second helping.

Before I was diagnosed, my biggest issue with my addiction was, of course, gaining weight and, well, eating crap that I shouldn't. I ate fast food--a lot--and that can't be good for anybody. I never really cared much, though. I just ate whenever I wanted and never thought much about what was going into my body. Life was good, I'd say. I still look back on those days with envy. Nowadays, I have to care, and sometimes, frankly, it really sucks.

When I went to go see my nutritionist recently, she told me that average women who are diabetic usually consume about 30 to 45 grams of carbohydrates per meal. My eyes widened like a child who had their favorite toy taken away from them. She explained a lot about serving sizes and which foods had 15 grams of carbs. I almost laughed, but I also almost cried at the same time. There was no way, I thought. I could easily eat 75 to 100 grams of carbs, and probably still want more. I really, didn't know what to say. The worst part about it is the fact that all my favorite foods have the most carbs. Pasta and especially potatoes. How depressing.

I do realize that I can eat these things. I just have to take enough insulin to cover what I ingest. Easy fix, sure. I'll just sweep the "30-45 gram" rule under the rug. If only it really worked that way. I used to eat a bowl of mashed potatoes, and 2 hours later have a plate of french fries. Taking all that insulin can't be good. Of course, eating all that food can't be too good, either. Sometimes, though, I just don't know when to stop!

I guess I just really miss the freedom I used to have. I used to just eat. Now I have to think about what I am eating and prepare myself for it. I can't just eat a candy bar on a whim. I have to take a shot. Ice cream (yes, Wendall), I have to take a shot. My glory days are over, it seems. But are they really?

What I realize now is that all of this has a silver lining. Eating healthier. Thinking about what I eat. I don't just look at carbs now. I look ate protein and fat content. I look at vitamins. It is almost like I am budgeting. Everything that I eat has a purpose now. Everything that my food is made of has a function and it does its job, as long as I eat what my body needs. It goes without saying that everyone should adopt this outlook, not just a diabetic like myself. Everybody needs to eat healthy and give their body what it is craving.

Now, I haven't fully gotten to the point where I am eating great. I still go for the mashed potatoes. I still get that second helping of my favorite recipe of fettuccine alfredo. I still crave, well, crap. It will be a long road until I get to the point where can eat 30 to 45 grams of carbs and feel satisfied. Until then, I am not quite sure what to do. If anyone has any tips at all, please comment. I need any advice that is willing to be given. Thank you in advance.

One more thing I wanted to add before I end this post. I just wanted to let everyone know that I made a Facebook page for my blog and if you enjoy reading my blog, I invite you over there. I feel silly saying it like this but please "Like" me! =) Here is the link: The Late Diabetic on Facebook

Thank you for reading!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

What Have I Got To Lose?

I went to the clinic today. I had made the appointment a few weeks ago with the nurse practitioner for a diabetes check up. I went in with two clogged ducts in my eyelids, one being infected, and an infected big toe. Why am I telling you this? Well, had I been an average person, these ailments would not have me worried so much. But alas, I have Type 1 Diabetes, which means that I do worry, and I am worried. An average person would have went in, got some meds and be sent on their way. Me? I left with 2 more appointments--one with a podiatrist, the other with an optometrist. Ugh.

I have had all sorts on infections in my past, but ever since being diagnosed two years ago, every single time I get any type of infection, I red flag them in my mind--especially when I get them on my feet. I am sure you have read all about my catastrophic dog bite. (If you have not, you can read all about it here.) When the doctor mentioned the word "amputation", I will not lie, it scared the crap out of me. Who wouldn't be scared? Now, every little thing that goes wrong with me, I think the worst.

I do realize that not everything is going to be life threatening, or even limb threatening, but my imagination has a tendency to run wild. And it does. Every time. I used to think I was invincible, but I have met a few people who made me come to terms with the fact that I, of course, am not.

Shortly after being diagnosed, a man became one of my coworkers. He had one leg. Everyone stared at him, and I, being the understanding person that I am, looked passed it, and he eventually told me that he lost it to Diabetes. Another man, who I have mentioned before, had a few of his toes removed, and then his entire foot. He eventually lost his life. It is so sad and so so scary to think about. I don't mean to frighten anyone, though. I really don't.

I know, that things like that happen to those who have poor control over their diabetes. People tell me all the time not to sorry so much because these are circumstances where their blood sugars were too high for way too long. Well, let me tell you, when I was bit, I had dreadful control, so it was definitely something that could have happened.

Now that I am in control (for the most part, at least) I am calming down a bit. I don't freak out over everything. Just over some things. Like my big toe. I am quite attached to it, thank you, and I would like to keep it.

Thanks for reading and thank you for your comments!

Monday, July 25, 2011

I Just Can't Get It Right

Last month, as you all know, I turned over a new leaf. I really started to focus on my health and my diabetes. It was seriously a night and day change. I was excited. My boyfriend, family, nurses and doctors were all excited. I even started this blog to keep myself going. I was doing so well. My blood sugars were down (sometimes too much, but we all know that.) and I was completely ready for the long haul. Until recently.

Recently, I have been getting very discouraged. I was keeping a log book for a while, but I skipped a week and I just can't seem to get myself back into the habit. I still test, as I should, and take my shots like I should be doing. There is a problem, though. Something went wrong. It is as though the dosage of insulin that used to be perfect for me, has failed me for the past week or so. The other day, I went to sleep with a blood sugar reading of 85. When I woke up the next morning, it had skyrocketed to a shocking 150--for no reason. No reason that I can come up with, at least.

Today, I woke up a bit late, so I had no breakfast. I didn't check my blood sugars, either. It wasn't until after 3pm when I actually ate something. I checked my blood sugar, and again, it was in the 300s. The night before that, I ate a banana before I went to bed. A banana! I could understand a little bit of a spike, but this was ridiculous.

I mentioned to one of my diabetes educators that I tended to go low while I was at work, so she told me to lower my dose on the days that I worked. I tried that, but it was as if that tiny unit deduction I made resulted in a radical high blood sugar reading a few hours later. It was awful. I felt like no matter what I did, I couldn't win! Either have my sugars drop too low, or have them skyrocket! Where is my happy medium?

I am really at a loss of what is going on with my body. What does it want from me? I wish it would just let me know! I feel like I am failing as a pseudo pancreas. It is becoming an extremely difficult job to keep up, and I feel as though I am not qualified for the job. I hope I don't get fired!

Thank you so much for reading and for your comments.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Where To Stick It

As you all know, I am not one of the fortunate ones that is hooked up to a pump. I do it the old fashioned way. Well, at least the most recent old fashioned way. I have the pleasure of sticking myself with needles every time I eat and than one more time for good measure (My Lantus, that is.) It can be extremely inconvenient at times, but you gotta do what you gotta do, right?

When I was first being taught how to inject, I must admit, I was scared. I had the nurses do it the first few times, and I would cringe. I had to look away. Surprisingly, though, it didn't hurt. I didn't even feel it. This gave me enough courage to finally volunteer to do my own. The nurse showed me all the possible areas of the body I could use, but I found that the stomach was the easiest. She told me that I had to rotate around to different parts because after a while...well something happened. I wasn't quite sure what, but from the sounds of it, it wasn't good. I do understand now, but back then, I just smiled and nodded.

When I was one my own to take care of my own injections in the real world, I found that I was only comfortable doing it at the bathroom. I was embarrassed. I didn't want anyone to see me. Not even my mother. I am not exactly sure why I felt like that, but I felt that way, never-the-less. I suppose I can partly put the blame on my immature brother who would tell me that he didn't want to see it. It wasn't that he didn't care about me. He just got grossed out. I understand, but it still made me feel very insecure. Nowadays, I really don't care what he thinks. He has just got to get used to it.

The hardest part though? When I am out in public. I tend to go out to eat often, whether it be fast food, a mall food court, or a restaurant. I always had to run in the bathroom to take it--and that would be after I ate because I never knew how much I was going to eat. After a while, I just gave up all together and didn't take it at all. I felt, I think, that it was unsanitary no matter where I took it--especially in the restroom. If I took it at the table, I would get awkward looks from strangers. I shouldn't have cared at all, but I did. I even felt uncomfortable doing it in front of the people I was actually with. They wouldn't give me strange looks though. I think it actually gave them an opportunity to bring up my disease without feeling bad. They would squint at me a little and politely ask me if it hurt. I would assure them that it did not. Every so often, that ended up being a lie.

I guess I got a little too comfortable injecting in the stomach. My skin got tougher and sometimes my syringes would dull. That is when it hurt. It would hurt so bad, it would bring a tear to my eye. The nurse told me I need to throw away the needle after ever couple, if not every, use. As a broke diabetic, I found that to be an impossible task. There was no way I could afford to keep buying them. I had to stretch out my supply for as long as I could. So I get used to the pain sometimes. I have since began to move around my injection sites. I started on my thighs. I guess I will start having to go to the bathroom again to do it.

I still do, though, inject in my stomach while in public. I don't care about the stares anymore. It's something I just gotta do. If anyone asks any questions, I just let them know: I left my pancreas at home.

Thanks for reading and the comments!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Out Of The Water

It is so refreshing to realize that I am finally at the point where taking my injections and testing my blood sugar levels has become routine. Testing is the first thing that I think of when I wake up, and the last thing I think about before I go down for the night. Ok, well maybe not the last thing, but it has become part of my nightly ritual and it never fails.

Back in the horrible days of last year, I rarely tested. After a few days of peeing constantly and dry mouth, it would finally occur to me to take a look. Of course, I would be so high, that my meter would just say "high". I would take some insulin to get it down, and not think about it anymore. When I ate, I wouldn't even think of taking a shot. Not at all. Once in a great while, I would take it--but only afterwards because it was a complete after thought.

Let me tell you, I was sick all the time. I was nauseous constantly for two weeks at a time. There was never a moment when I wasn't tired. And most of all, I felt like I was starving. It crossed my mind, but hadn't fully set in that I was feeling so horribly because my sugars were high. A few times, I was actually convinced that I was pregnant. I secretly hoped I was, but of course, I was not. Two months ago, I went through a terrible stint of migraines. They were so bad that regular over-the-counter pain killers weren't cutting it, so I had to get a prescription. My eye-sight also started to get very bad. I remember, I was filling out a whole bunch of applications one night and it got so bad that at 10 o'clock at night, I told Troy that we had to run to Walmart to get a pair of magnification glasses.

When I finally decided to start getting better, I started checking my blood sugar levels again. Then, I got sick again. I was consistently in the 400 range and I would take insulin to correct it, only it wasn't working. It would not go down, no matter how much I took. I got a little scared so I called my aunt, who's a nurse. She was worried so she picked me up and took me to the Emergency Room. They gave me and IV full of fluids and anti-nausea medicine. They told me they wanted to admit me. As crazy as this sounds, I refused. They told me I might die. I did not care. Well, I did, but I had thins feeling I could get myself out of another case of DKA without any help. I signed the papers and went home. The truth is, I should have stayed, but I was so uncomfortable and depressed that I wasn't in my right mind. I told some people on a forum I am a member of, and they pretty much scolded me for what I had done. I hated that.

In the end, though, I did get myself out of the water. That one episode of DKA got me on the ball completely and for good. My blood sugar levels have changed so dramatically and I am so proud of myself. I have new goals and a new way of thinking. I feel 100% better and I am ready to take it on full force.

I now count carbs in my head while I am thinking about eating and take my shot. I test 2 hours after, then 4 hours after, just to be sure. I do realize now that I am not invincible. I do not recommend anyone doing what I did, so please, if you are reading this, do not follow in my footsteps. It will not lead to anything good.

Thanks for reading and thanks for your comments!

Monday, July 18, 2011

The Case Of The Backward Immune System

As any Type 1 Diabetic would know, this disease is not, as previously stated, a result of an unhealthy lifestyle. It is an auto-immune disease that attacks the islet cells inside the pancreas and stop them from producing the insulin that is necessary for sugar distribution throughout the body. I am living and breathing the consequences of a screwed up auto-immune system. In more ways than one.

I have another condition that ails me that I have not yet mentioned. I have a skin condition called Psoriasis. I have had this awful disease since the ripe age of sixteen. It is genetic, so my mother has it, and so did her mother. My children (who are not yet in existence yet) will most likely have it as well. It is actually common for diabetics to have Psoriasis, come to find out, since it is another outcome from a confused immune system. For those of you who aren't familiar with Psoriasis, let me explain just a little. When you get a cut on your skin, a message is sent from your brain to your immune system to heal the skin. When you have Psoriasis, there is no cut on the skin, but the auto immune reacts anyway, building up more and more skin resulting in ugly scales.

I have it on my legs. They tell me the best thing for it is the sun and to go out in it. Ha! I find it hard to even wear shorts out in the summer. The stares and the comments are more than I can take sometimes. I have been known to wear jeans all summer long. I hate it. People think I have something that is contagious. People are ignorant. People are hurtful.

That said, I have come to the conclusion that I have an immune system that is completely backwards. Now that I have Type 1 Diabetes and Psoriasis, I have come up with an analogy. My immune system is like a country who attacks its allies and gives aid to other countries that are thriving. It is a complete waste of resources! Wow.

While research is being done for a cure to both these diseases, everyone is focusing on the symptoms, and results from the initial problem. The Dermatologist gives me ointments for my skin and tells me to soak in the sun. My other doctors give my insulin to cover what my pancreas can't. It works, but it doesn't cure it. It just helps me live from day to day. The underlying problem is my immune system and I think there needs to be more focus on trying to fix that problem. My two diseases aren't the only auto-immune diseases. There are plenty more where that came from. If they could just develop a cure for that, I think that many of us would be A-OK.

Could be me just dreaming, though.

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

I'm Diabetic and I'm Proud

There is no question that I am very open about my diabetes. As you all can see from my other posts, I have no problem talking about even the most personal feelings I have about the whole thing. It is part of my life now, and it will be for the rest of my life. Well, unless they find a cure which "may be in the future" as I have read so many times. Hope...false hope, but it doesn't even matter. I have to live with it and I have decided that it is ok, and I might as well embrace it. Some people, I have noticed, are extremely private about the matter. To me, just like a personality trait, it is part of who I am. It is part of how my body works. Why hide it?

I had a comment from someone a few posts back replying to my problem with getting low blood sugars at work. He explained that he doesn't tell anyone about it that doesn't have to know (i.e. only very close friends and close relatives). No one knew about his condition at work or anywhere else and he was extremely proud. I suppose to each his own, right? Well, that may be, but hiding it from so many people can be  awfully dangerous. What if something happened? I imagine, if this person is so intent on hiding the matter, that he does not wear any sort of identification card. (I don't either, for that matter, but one day I will.) If he ever got so low that someone had to call 911, what would the person say to the paramedics? What would happen. Goodness knows that I don't even want to think about it. Nothing has happened to him in the 50 some-odd years that he has had diabetes, but that is what I call living on the edge. At least, I seem to think so. Once again--to each his own.

Now, I am not saying that I just bring it up to everybody I meet. That would be more like starving for attention. "Hi, nice to meet you. I'm Mary and I have Diabetes! Wanna talk about it?" I do think it is important to tell people, especially coworkers, that you have it. If it get's really busy at work and it is time for lunch, someone needs to know that once I take my insulin, I gotta eat. You know what I mean? I don't care if they are sick of the "whole diabetes thing" that some unfortunate individuals call it. That is just how it is. Go ahead, roll your eyes. It doesn't bother me one bit.

I don't just talk about it for safety precautions, though. Today, I felt a bit shaky, so I grabbed a mini juice box (15g of carbs per juice box, by the way. Perfect!) The customer I was taking care of noticed and asked if I had diabetes. We began talking about it, and three others joined in. They talked about people they knew with it, and best of all, they asked a lot of questions. They understood Type 2, as many more people do, but getting to teach them how Type 1 works was actually exciting for me and they were very interested in learning. I cleared up many of their misconceptions and misunderstandings. It was honestly a great conversation.

So many people in this world don't get it. I just read an article yesterday, as many of you did, by this guy Wendall and his opposing of and ice cream social for Diabetic children (Read it here, if you are interested.) He was so ignorant about the entire subject matter that he really should not be writing about it at all. There are so many more people out there that really need to understand the disease and how it differs from Type 2 Diabetes. I wish diet and exercise were the answer. Truly, I do. It is the answer to leading a healthy life, yes, but it won't cure me, sorry.

In closing, I would like to ask you a few questions. Are you private about your Diabetes? Do you feel that certain people just need to know? Or are you completely open about it? Let me know! Thanks for reading!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Ups and Downs Of A Diabetic

Just like almost every woman out there, I have always been concerned about my weight. I still remember, back in middle school, complaining, along with my friends, in gym class about how fat we were. This guy in our class came up to us and asked "why are you girls always complaining about being fat?" and he proceeded to point us out, one at a time "you're not fat, you're not fat you're not fat". Then he pointed to me and said "you're not that fat." I could have died. That's the kind of thing that sticks with your forever. He was right, though. I wasn't that fat. I just wasn't skinny, and that was fat enough back then.

Through the years, I have had my ups and downs. When I was 21, I weighed 150lbs. and in a few months, I had actually lost 20lbs. I was so proud of myself that I bought myself a whole new wardrobe. It wasn't long until I gained it all back and my new clothes had to be stored away. I kept all those jeans for years, knowing, or at least hoping, that I would one day fit into them again. I began gaining weight like crazy and finally hit 170lbs. (Just to put all this into perspective, by the way, I am only 5 feet tall, so 170lbs. is pretty big.) Then, I got diabetes.

I guess it's no wonder the doctor's thought I had Type 2, because of the weight gain and poor eating habits. That's when all the weight came off. I got down to a size 6 jeans, but only briefly. When They figured out they were wrong, they put me on insulin and that stuff makes you gain weight, let me tell you. The sad part was that I couldn't decide what I liked better--being healthy or being thin. I chose healthy--at least for a little while. When I started to lose control again, I started losing weight as well, but this time, I thought it was because I was poor and couldn't afford much food. The past 4 months or so, though, in my vat of denial, I really did lose a lot of weight. The jeans I had been storing away for so long fit me for a while, but they ended up being too big for me. I got down to a size 2/4 and I was very excited. Too excited. I bought more pants for myself. When everyone commented and asked how I did it, I didn't want to tell them it was because I wasn't taking my medications. I just told them I was eating right. What a lie--to them, and myself.

Once I got myself back on track with the Diabetes, though, what would you know? I'm gaining weight again. I am actually embarrassed that I boasted about my weight loss. I am also very depressed about it. I know, I know, it is vain and I shouldn't worry so much about it, but after being so happy, I feel like I let myself down. At least I am taking my meds now, though. Once I am comfortable enough with what I am supposed to be doing, I will worry about how to lose weight. For now, I will just enjoy being healthier on the inside.

Thanks for reading and your comments.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Not So Alone Anymore

When you have an illness like Type 1 Diabetes, as I have been saying (and most people with it should already know) it is hard to feel like you are not alone. Before I was diagnosed, I only knew two people that had it. One was a 2nd cousin, who suffered a few amputations before his eventual death. I did not fully understand why it happened, since I was so young, but it scared me that something like this could happen to someone like that. The other person I knew was this 16 year old guy that I used to know when I went Job Corps. All I remember was he would have to go into the office at night and take a shot of insulin. Once again, I didn't understand it. I asked a lot of questions and he was fine to answer them. He had had it since he was a child so he was used to it. I still felt bad for him. Now-a-days I wonder how he could have done it when the Wellness Center and the RAs had to keep his meds locked up. I would go insane if I didn't have my insulin on me at all times.

After I got diagnosed, though, I ended up getting two new jobs. The first one was at a movie theater. One night I was working and this girl I worked with took a cup and filled it with soda. She started to gulp it and looked at me. She said "It sucks being diabetic". All of the sudden, I heard the angels sing. Haha. I didn't just nod, I practically hugged her. I let her know about my little secret and she was so excited. She told me that there were three other people that worked at the theater that had it. It was such a relief.

While working there, I did get a second job at a waterpark for the summer. I was on the cleaning crew which meant I was out in the sun walking all day long. It wasn't bad but when I got too hot and dehydrated, I would also get very low. I had to take frequent breaks. There were two others that were on my crew. One was a 16 year old girl. I asked her for the time and she looked at this peculiar device that was attached to her side. I didn't know what it was, but the other person on the cleaning crew had the same exact device on his side. I thought, at first, that it was just part of work and that I was to get one. Nope. They were insulin pumps. All three of the people on the cleaning crew had Type 1 Diabetes. It was actually quite humorous since our job was the toughest in the entire park. It was nice to know that I wasn't alone.

Since I left those jobs and went back to school, I haven't found anyone else with it. I was hoping to, but to no avail. Not that I have been asking around. That would be weird. I have finally turned to the internet. Through Twitter, Facebook, and now Google+, I have found a vast network of T1's who refer to themselves as the DOC (Diabetic Online Community). As I am just beginning to branch out, I don't know these people too well yet, but I will. The ones I have been talking to are very nice and welcoming. They are the reason why I wrote this blog in the first place. I wanted to thank them all for being there. For merely existing. Thank you, guys. You know who you are.

Thanks for reading and your comments. Thanks for your support. Thanks for everything.

Monday, July 11, 2011

My Boyfriend And The Lying Meter

It is never a good thing when your glucose meter goes crazy. My glucose meter is my security blanket and if it isn't working correctly, it is like driving blind. I swear the my meter is doing just that. For the past 2 weeks, it has been giving me odd--very odd--readings. Sometimes it works fine, but other times I would test myself and think "that can't be right" so I would retest right away and get a completely different reading. One time, I was feeling low, so i tested--199 it read. Just to be sure, I tested a second later--60. Last week, I was feeling low and I tested--32! I thought it had to be wrong so yet again, I retested and it said I was 55. This has happened quite a few times and it really began to worry me. I called the company and they said they would send me some control solution. Until then, I was completely unsure if I could even trust me meter anymore. It was like a friend who was lying to me and then a second later saying "nah just kiddin man, you're right." What a shame.

While I waited for my solution to come, I decided to check it my own way--to take an innocent Non-diabetic victim and stab their finger and see what my meter read. This victim was of course my boyfriend, Troy. It would have worked in theory, I suppose, but things did not go well. At all. Why, you ask? Because Troy is, yes I will say it, a baby! He was all for it until I had his finger in my hand with my torture device (you would think, at least) and I swear he almost cried. Wait, I think he may have. I was like "I have to do this at least 4 times a day. Man up!" I guess that didn't work. Needless to say, he didn't go through with it. All I did was laugh at him. I asked him how he acted at the doctor's and he said something stupid about getting a lollipop. Boys. Did I say boys? I meant men, I swear.

Anyway, I got the solution in the mail today and finally tested my meter. Wouldn't you know? It was spot on. I was so disappointed because I knew it was messed up. What I think I am going to do is, next time it starts acting up again, I will get out the control solution and test it then. That'll show them! Or else I will call them up and tell them their solution is defective. Either way.

Has this ever happened to anyone? Do you have any ideas of what may be happening? Please, let me know! I want to know that I am doing things correctly. Thanks so much for reading and thanks for the comments!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Sometimes I Just Forget!

I've never been one to follow through with things. I guess you can say it is in my nature to get all excited about something, do it for a week, and forget about it. It is definitely one of my downfalls, but I am trying to change that--especially now that I have a reason to stick to something. I am struggling, though. It's gonna be hard.

Taking medication was always difficult for me to do on a regular basis. I got prescribed anti-depressants quite a few times and would take them for a week and never take them again. Did they work? Who knows? I didn't take them long enough to even notice. This is one of the reasons I never took birth control pills. Ok, that's a lie. I did once. I took them for a little less than a month and suffered the consequences for abandoning ship. If you are female, I think you may know what I am talking about. If you aren't, just stop thinking about it and move on. Trust me, you don't want to know.

Now that Diabetes has swept into my life and taken over, I have had to really work hard at not fall back into my irresponsible tendencies. I did for quite a while and look where it got me--almost dieing without even realizing what I was doing to myself. Throughout the time of my denial phase, I was constantly sick and tired. I don't know how my boyfriend dealt with me like that. I couldn't even imagine how many times I must have gone into DKA. I knew it. Did I do anything about it? No. I didn't care. I thought I was invincible. I did luck out though (I'm still here, aren't I?) but that is not the way to do things. All I have to do is thank my lucky stars and move on. I don't want to ever do that to myself again.

I've been feeling so much better since I hopped back on the band wagon. No more migraines, no more nausea. I haven't had to use my awful-looking magnification glasses once! My boyfriend, Troy, must be relieved.  The struggles aren't over yet, though. For the past few days, I have been getting lazy. The log book I am supposed to be keeping is beginning to grow holes in it. I was going really good for about 2 weeks and wouldn't you know, I began to push it aside, insisting (to myself) that I would remember everything and write it down later. Yeah, that didn't happen. I keep telling myself that I will just start it again tomorrow. I'll right down breakfast and lunch but forget dinner. I really need to get back on the ball! I have also had a few things to eat without taking insulin. Not good at all. I started getting high blood sugars again and I struggled to get them back down. I did though.

I have decided that I really need support. Not just from friends, family, and Troy, but from other individuals living with Diabetes. I am opening myself up here, in hopes that I can find others out there who feel my pain. Thank you for your support and Thank you so much for reading and commenting.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Do I Really Need a Babysitter?

So as some of you know (if you have read my earlier blogs), I had been broke and out of work for quite a while and I finally got a job 2 weeks ago. It isn't anything special. Since I don't have a car of my own, I had to find something within walking distance, and out of utter desperation, I walked to the gas station on the corner and landed myself a fine job as a cashier. I only have 2 full days (Fridays and Saturdays) that I work for 10 hours from 5:30am until 4pm. So far, everyone is very nice and I am doing very well, but I am becoming a bit concerned. Since I am working so much on my feet in a fast-paced environment, my blood sugars tend to drop while I am working. Often I have had to step a side and have someone take over for me while I get my sugars back up. They completely understand.

My concern, though, is that one of these times, I am going to be alone with no one there to take over for me. Sure, I can have something right there next to me at all times just in case, but if I have a long line of people, I'm not going to be able to sit there and take it easy while I get back to normal. I'm not sure what I am going to do. I don't want to have to demand someone there with me at all times because I feel like I am asking too much. What if they just can't do it? I am really worried that they would let me go if I start making a fuss, so I have stayed quiet. Should I just not take as much insulin and risk getting too high? I don't know. What should I do?

If anyone has any advice, comments are definitely welcome! Thanks for reading and thanks for your help!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

The Art Of Making Your Carbs Count

If there is one thing you should know about me it's this: I don't know anything. Well, maybe somethings, but for the most part, it's gone over my head I guess. Things that I thought I understood have turned out being in the category of "well not quite". My biggest issue I am having right now is counting my carbohydrate intake. It is so overwhelming to me that my mind goes blank sometimes. When I do actually count correctly, it is shocking to see the amount of carbs in the size of the meal I usually eat. I cringe, but I still eat it. Where's my will power? I'll look for it. Hopefully I find it.

Way back when, during diabetic boot camp while in the hospital, they made it sound so simple! For some reason, I could do it and I was even to the point where I was able to order my "room service" for each meal with the correct amount of carbs they were wanting me to eat. It wasn't so bad. I was a pro! The educator was impressed that I learned so quickly. Then they let me go home..

Now, the one benefit to being broke is the fact that all the cheap, processed foods all have the carb amounts right on the side of the package. Of course, the real nutritional value is absent--but that's a whole different blog all together. It sure did make it simple to count them. Balanced meal? Perhaps not. One time, I made a package of mashed potatoes. I ate as many carbs as I was allotted--all with mashed potatoes. No green veggies. Not even protein. I all of the sudden, knew nothing.

Here I am, now--2 years later. I am starting to count again in order for the dietician to figure out my insulin to carb ratio. This time, I know a little better than to fill my plate with mashed potatoes. I try to eat balanced meals and I try to actually cook rather than eat from a package. It's a whole new ballgame with that, though. Now I have to figure out if an actual potato is large, medium or small--likewise with fruit, or anything else. I must be dense because I don't get it! When I count, do I include the vegetables in the count? What if I had lasagna or some other casserole dish? Ahh! It makes me want to hide. Or worse than that--give up.

I think I'm going to have to have another visit with my dietician--soon. Until then, I might lose my mind.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

There Are Some Days...

There are some days when I'm ok. I do what I have to do to get by. Sometimes I take it hour-by-hour and it is the only thing that keeps me going. I make the motions, which are almost routine for me now, and I keep moving. My diabetes is always on my mind and it takes precedence over everything in my life. But it gets hard sometimes.

There are some days when I want to give up entirely. These days I just want to curl up in a ball in the corner and cry. I want to hide away from the world. I feel so alone in the world and I feel sometimes that nobody really understands what I am going through. Sure, I know a few people online that do, but in my day to day life, I am the only one. It gets lonesome. It gets scary. Having diabetes take over my life is exhausting.

But there are some days when I wake up and I realize that my life isn't so bad. I am taking care of myself and know that one day, my diabetes won't rule my life. It will just be part of who I am. I realize that I am not alone at all. I have a loving family who will always be there for me. I have a loving boyfriend who I look at everyday and know that I want to live for as long as I can because having him in my life is the best thing that has ever happened to me. I want to live and I want to be happy. The days that get me down always pass. I just have to remind myself every once in a while.

Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

So Many Appointments, Too Far Away

When you have a chronic illness such as Type 1 Diabetes, as you can imagine, you have a LOT of doctor's appointments. I went from barely going to the doctor's to going once a week--at least. I am sure that they will eventually dwindle down when my blood sugars are better controlled, but as of right now, I feel like I live at the clinic. Not that I mind it too much. I am just glad that I am being taken care of and I feel like I have an excellent group of supporters that I can turn to when I need them.

The problem? Well, you see, I don't have a car. I live with my boyfriend who does have a car, but unfortunately there are days when he has class and using it is just not possible. I do have another option, which is using my mother's car. She lives close by and every time I need to use it, I have to sleep over her house that night and take her to work in the morning. Those days are actually a blessing to me because for about half a day, I have the freedom with the car to do what I want! It's nice, let me tell you.

It is getting to the point, though, where I have so many appointments, that I have a sleepover at my mom's once a week. My boyfriend gets sad and depressed when that happens. It isn't like he doesn't understand, because he does, but it still gets him down. At least I know he misses me and that he cares.

Tonight is one of those nights. I have to wait for him to come home from class just so he can drive me over to my mother's. I feel so pathetic when I have to do this. It is so frustrating not being able to just drive to the places where I need to go. I can do without the hassle. I have enough things on my mind that I am worried about and transportation shouldn't be one of them. Anyone have a car they want to give me? Just kidding. I think.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Barbecues and Indulging

I would first of all like to say that I am very proud of myself lately with keeping my blood sugars in control. I have been keeping an eye on it and am doing better than I ever have before. I went to the endo last week and she was so excited about it that she wanted to take another A1C just to see how low it was compared to the last one, which was 13. Not good. They say that it should be lower than a 7, so that is my goal, now. 7. She decided, though, that it was too soon to take one, but if I keep this up, it will be excellent. It is always a great feeling to know that you made your doctor excited.

Today, though, I was nervous. It was the 4th of July and for me and everyone else living in the USA, it was filled with great food off the grill and a lot of fun. I went to my mother's for a little cookout and there was so much food that I got a little overwhelmed. Since I love to eat, I would hate to restrict myself, especially on the holiday with so much to eat! I took my shot of insulin and had a great time. I even gave myself a little extra after when my mom brought out the cupcakes. a few hours later I tested myself and I guess my estimates were right on the money because I was in perfect range. I'm getting good at this!

I got a little worried and depressed today, though. If the 4th of July was like this, I can't even imagine what it will be like when it comes to the holidays this winter. Especially when my specialty is making pies. I really want to be able to enjoy myself without having to worry so much about my sugars getting too high. It is just so much easier on a day-to-day, hour-to-hour basis. When it comes to feasts, though, all bets are off. How do people do it? The main course, the finger foods, the cookies, the pies.... Add some alcohol beverages into the mix and you've got yourself a messed up diabetic. Sure, it's half a year away, but it will get here before I know it and I want to be prepared. If anyone has any tips, feel free to leave a comment and share your wealth of knowledge and experience! I am ever so thankful that there aren't too many holidays in a year or else I would go crazy.

I think I did really great today and tomorrow, it is back to work and back to my normal diet.

Thanks for reading, guys!