Saturday, February 22, 2014


Her fingers looked a bit sore this week.

It's probably the nice, dry, hot air blasting from our furnace.  This is an issue that tends to happen every single winter.   I deal with it by trying to dip the kids in lotion and have even asked them to use vaseline on their hands to help seal in a bit of extra moisture.

Mostly, it works.  However, once we hit February, I am at a loss.

It is time for spring to come back.  Time for a bit more moisture in our air.  Time for these little fingers to look less chapped and poked.

Beside booking a plane to the next tropical destination available, does anyone have ideas to share?

Friday, February 21, 2014

Missing Manners

Sometimes what I see in the world is so bothersome, the only appropriate response is to say so.

Dear Miss Manners,

Clearly you do not have a need for a 'medical application', as you categorized Type 1 Diabetes in your recent response.  I say this because there is only one reason for your words and that is IGNORANCE.   As a mother of two children with type 1 diabetes, which is an auto-immune disease that causes the pancreas to stop making insulin and thereby requires insulin-dependence for life, I am shocked that you would tell your readers that the only acceptible place to perform blood sugar checks is in a bathroom or out of sight of others.  Perhaps it is time for you to be educated and to know that Type 1 Diabetes demands constant blood sugar checks.  This need happens almost every two hours a day or as warranted by symptoms.  There is no regulating Type 1 Diabetes nor is there time to wait on most days.  In fact, suggesting that patients living with Type 1 Diabetes should go to a bathroom is not only a concern to their health in terms of timeliness, but also, a terrible instance to send a person living with an immune disorder into a space that is riddled with the worst and most contagious types of bacteria.  Consider this, would you eat in a bathroom?  If you say no, why would you send a patient with a compromised immunity to a bathroom.  Most of all, to suggest that someone living with Type 1 Diabetes should hide their living saving diagnosics is akin to teaching them shame.  For my daughters and for all of the other brave individuals living with Type 1 Diabetes, one can only hope that you never have to know what they go through minute by minute, hourly, daily, weekly, monthly and for the rest of their lives.  Good manners would be to show kindness and compassion for the next person that you see testing their blood sugars.



Owner of

If you would like to see the full article, here it is.  Miss Manners Diabetic Testing

If you would like to send a response too, you may send it to this address:

Friday, February 14, 2014

Carb-Free Love On Valentine's Day!

Carb-Free Love :)

 It's Friday and at our school, that means early release day for the students.  

Because of the early release on Friday, that also means that yesterday was our 5th grader's Valentine's Day classroom party.  She celebrated by exchanging cards with classmates and munching on her own dry cereal snack (carb-counted and kid-approved!)  from home.

The Valentine's Day party went as smoothly as it ever has.  No overwhelming amounts of mystery carb foods or sugary treats.  Just a fun day with friends and love-notes and one, small pre-planned snack.

Our 7th grader had no classroom or school celebration this week.  Oddly, she didn't even mention missing the hoopla of the elementary or early middle school days.  She instead teased her little sister for having to write a few Valentine's to (ahem!) boys.

Oldest daughter won't celebrate at school but she will celebrate by coming home and receiving a little home-made card from her sister and parents.  Most likely, as a family, we will enjoy a board game, some cuddles and maybe even a Friday night movie.

Valentine's Day has once again, become a simple holiday to enjoy a moment with a loved one. 

In kind of the way, it has been for most of my life.  

I point it out because if you are reading this and are feeling a bit overwhelmed with cookies, chocolate, candy and mystery carb-counting, just know that this is limited time of life for you and your little one.  I say this because I hope that if you are in the middle of the young years, you can take a moment and savor the delight of the children around you celebrating in high candy style.  Take pictures of your child and be sure to get in a few too.  Laugh, be merry and expect a few wonky blood sugars later.  It'll all be OK.  

It is truly the shortest time of life...

And when you get home tonight, enjoy your own carb-free family Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Team Captains

Valentine's Day just a few years ago

I remember discussions from seasoned parents that had lived through the childhood years with type 1 diabetes and forewarned us 'newbie T1D' parents that 'One day, your child will also move on to independence.'  While it wasn't a surprise when it started to happen, it still (and continues) to catch me off-guard.   My kids are growing up and stomping that diabetes monster in the process.

Who knew???

Sometimes seeing IS believing.

As predicted, both of my girls have grown quite a bit over the years. One is noticeably older than I ever remember thinking would be possible!

This sweet girl is oldest daughter...

Valentine's Day, 2011

And this young lady is also oldest daughter...

Photo: New pump arrived (wearing pink skin) and old pump ready to be mailed out.  It lived a good life!
Yesterday, almost Valentine's Day, 2014
With her new pump to replace the failed one.  Nothing stopped her from managing her t1d!

This little baby girl is youngest daughter....

Youngest daughter, 2011

And so is this adorable young lady...

Youngest daughter, last week, 2014
Another party with a carb count for waffles - yes, she rocked it!

I pause and reflect that this is not an isolated moment.  As the school year has rolled on, I have noticed an even greater amount of transition and change from both of my girls.

Oldest daughter has moved into the role of independence smoothly and effectively.  She has not only been managing her care during the time she is away, but taking a lead with ensuring that her sister and her friends are safe.

As I packed her bag for a recent "Good Citizenship Party", she scanned the label of her two-liter of soda to ensure that the carbs were identified (a carb zero kind) and that it contained no gluten.  She said, "I want to make sure that H. can drink this, mom.  Sometimes, people forget and that isn't fair."  We decided that the best course of action was to make sure that the soda stayed safely in her locker until the party started so that no one at the school randomly gave it to other kids first.  In this way, at the very least, oldest daughter and her friend would have one thing to enjoy at the party.

And it worked.  The text that I received that afternoon was full of teenager acronyms and emoticons that I deduced were very happy indeed.  With a little planning ahead, one diabetes-savvy kid, many best friends and a whole lot of fun was had!

The same has been happening all week with swimming.  Her physical education class includes a three-week segment (daily) in the school's pool.  The first day was a touch rocky as oldest daughter missed the feeling a low from a strenuous work-out.  Only when she hopped into the car did she feel the rush of symptoms.  After seeing the resulting 53 mg/dl on her meter, did she realize that having plan for a snack was not only needed but necessary.  Happily, each day after, with the addition of a bag of graham crackers has her blood sugar stayed stable.

While the first day wasn't great, she rebounded by taking charge of her diabetes.  She didn't let her diabetes take charge of her!  Pretty amazing stuff happening.

My youngest daughter has a Valentine's Day party in the classroom and an afternoon field trip planned to visit the local Roller-Skating rink.  I sent her off this morning with a brand-new infusion site, new insulin and two bags of snacks for the classroom party.  One bag with pre-measured, carb-counted and labeled cereal and one bag with the teacher-instructed amount of  'two cups of your child's favorite cereal- to be mixed in with others to make a fun Valentine's Day snack'.  

Youngest daughter and I firmed up a solid game plan.  She decided that she would eat her own bag of cereal and had no interest in the classroom mix (her choice).  She would test her blood glucose and text before eating and wanted me to know that she would also text again before getting on the school bus to go roller-skating.

We also brown bagged a lunch, gave her $6.00, and few extra snacks for her to take on the bus to the roller-skating venue.  She added some glucose tabs and a few quarters for a locker to store her purse and diabetes supplies once she was skating.

Then, we high-fived each other.

Because to make this life work with type 1 diabetes, it is truly a team effort.

Who knew that the team captains would become my girls?

Monday, February 10, 2014

Reflections From A Child

I picked her up from school this afternoon.  It wasn't any different from any other day this winter.  The weather was cold, sharp and brisk.  As we ran to the car, she held my hand and said, "I am so glad that I can run!"

The comment was cute and I answered, "Me too!  Our tootsies are freezing!  Run!"

As we hurried to shut the car doors and warm back up, she said, "I saw a sad movie at school today.  It was about kids that had to get a bone donor and lots of treatments."

Thoughtfully, I buckled my seat belt and tried to understand what she was saying.  Sometimes it is like that.  I don't want to answer until I know where the conversation is heading.

"Oh.  How was that for the kids in the movie?" I asked giving her a little encouraging smile to keep the conversation flowing.

She quietly said, "It was awful.  The kids became so sick and had to go to St. Jude's.  One boy had to get a bone transplant from his sister.  He had to have treatments and more treatments and it wasn't good.  It was cancer."   Her emphasis on the last word was solemn.

I realized what she was trying to say and gently corrected her.  "Bone MARROW treatments?"

"Yes", she said.  "That's it.  Bone marrow.  I have a math book to work on to raise money.  It is for a St. Jude's Mathalon."

She held her breath for a second and then said, "I know we need a cure but can we help the other kids too?"

I kept the car in park and unbuckled so that I could give her a big squeeze.

"Yes, we can help them too."

Sometimes, I think that I am luckiest mother in the world.