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Let Faith Arise

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Has it really been a week?

Sweets has been sick for the last week. Nothing serious. But enough of a bug to keep her home from school. That always keeps us busy.

Then a couple of days ago I got some heartbreaking news from a dear, dear friend.

And I've been unable to focus on little else since.

My friend's name is Meri. Many of you know her or read her blog, Our Diabetic Life. Meri is one of the first people I met on this journey. She has four boys - aged 16-8. That in itself is impressive! Her youngest three boys all have type 1 diabetes. Now that is amazing!

Meri has been there for me countless times. She has rejoiced with me and been there for me during dark days. And now it's my turn to be there for her.

Meri's husband, Ryan, battled melanoma a few years ago. On Sunday, they found the cancer is back. Ryan has 6 tumors in his brain and multiple tumors in his lungs and abdomen.

To hear about this diagnosis from Meri herself, please click HERE. Do it now.... I'll wait.

Do you believe in miracles? I do. I see them every day. Life itself is a miracle. I think sometimes we think that God isn't in the miracle business anymore. We don't see seas parting and things of that magnitude. But I think that maybe it's that WE aren't in the business of LOOKING for miracles anymore. Miracles are all around us. We just have to look.

So I'm asking you to please, please pray for a miracle for Meri and Ryan and their family.

It doesn't matter if you only have a minute. It doesn't matter if you think you don't know how to pray. It doesn't matter if you don't know what to say. It doesn't matter if you're not sure about religion. It doesn't matter if you think God won't listen to you. None of that stuff matters.

Just do it. Right now.

It doesn't have to be perfect. It doesn't have to be long. Just ask God to heal Ryan. Ask God for a miracle. Right now. I'll wait.

I believe God hears us. I believe our prayers matter.

Maybe set a timer in your phone. And every time you hear it, pray. Pray for them every time you brush your teeth. Or take a shower. Or get in the car.

Please do this for my friend. Please do this for her boys.

Thank you...

To keep up to date on Ryan and their fight, please "like" the Facebook page "Schuhmacher Family's Miracle" by clicking HERE.

Life with Diabetes: A College Entrance Essay by an Amazing Young Woman

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Today I have something very special to share with you! 

I want to share with you a college admission essay written by a young girl with type 1 diabetes.  I'm not sure how many times I'm going to have to read it before it does not make me cry...

This essay is written by Stephanie Franer.  She was diagnosed with T1D at the same age as Sweetpea. 

Stephanie's mom works with J.  In fact, they have worked together a long time and J never knew about Stephanie's diabetes until Sweets was diagnosed.

Dianne is the very first person I talked to after Sweetpea's dx that knew what I was talking about.  I remember clearly talking to her on the phone after being home from the hospital a day or so.  And just having a conversation with someone who was speaking this new language (even though I barely spoke it at all) was one of the most comforting feelings ever. 

Dianne was able to tell me what it was like to have a 3 year old girl diagnosed with diabetes.  They also dealt with the crying and the fighting shots and pain of having your child ask you stop hurting her when you're only doing your best to keep her healthy.  It was unbelievably comforting and encouraging to know they had been in our shoes and that they were just fine.  That they were doing well and living life and making it all work. 

I think that having Dianne at work has been a wonderful thing for J.  I have all you!  I have some wonderful close friends and my parents who I can talk to about diabetes and know that they will understand.  I have all of you to tell me I'm not alone or I'm not crazy or that you've been there, too.  J doesn't really have that.  So having someone that he knows that he can talk relate to on a D level is a good thing!

God sends us angels when we need them the most.  And Dianne and Stephanie have definitely been angels to us! 

Dianne sent us this essay a while back because she thought we would be interested in reading it.  She was right. 

Stephanie's approach to life with diabetes is exactly how I hope Sweets will feel. 

I know that Dianne and her husband are so incredibly proud of Stephanie.  I am, too!  And I know you will be as well.

 Her words are raw and real and heartfelt. I know how hard living with diabetes can be.  And I applaud her outlook and ambition. 

        We wish you all the best as you begin your college career.  I know that you will be successful no matter what you do or where you go.  You are a fighter.  You are strong.  You are courageous.  You will touch the lives of others and they will be all the better for having known you.  You are an inspiration - not just to kids with diabetes (or Moms of kids with diabetes!) but to everyone! 
          Much, much Love...   and Thank you for sharing this with us!

            My name is Stephanie Franer.  When I was three years old, I was diagnosed with Type One Diabetes.             
            I don’t really remember anything before my diagnosis.  Even in my earliest memories, I was diabetic, almost as if my life began at that point.
              At first, I thought it was fun because I didn’t understand.  I loved the attention.  I went home from the hospital and reality slapped me in the face, even at the age of three.  I eventually realized that this “game” I was playing was actually permanent.  This was real life. 
            Diabetes makes you grow up really fast.  I gave myself my first shot when I was eight.  I tested my own blood sugar, wrote it down in my log book, did calculations for my insulin, and gave myself shots before the age of ten. 
            I became bitter and angry.  I asked questions and wanted answers people couldn’t give me.  Why me? Why did I have to be different? 
            By the time I was eleven, I was obviously different from other children.  I was thin and gangly with glasses and braces.  I was very smart, and on top of all that, I was diabetic.  I was more of an adult than other children because I had so many responsibilities.  In some ways, I never got to be a child. 
            Other kids made fun of me.  At my school, being smart wasn’t cool.  I sat at home and cried multiple nights every week.  I couldn’t focus on my school work, I couldn’t stop arguing with my parents, and I couldn’t connect with kids my own age.
            When you grow up fast, you don’t like to ask for help.  You feel like you can handle all of your problems on your own.  It’s so hard to learn or grow without help. 
            I was destroying myself trying to get rid of my differences: the things that made me unique.    
            Then, I went to camp.  Camp Korelitz is a summer camp for children with diabetes.  It was stunning.  I had never been around so many diabetics in my life. 
Everyone had to test their blood sugar and take insulin.  For one week, everyone was the same.  For the first time, I was happy and hopeful.  I finally had a reason to be thankful for this thing that seemed so wrong. Each summer, I became closer with other campers, who are now some of my best friends.  I wasn’t alone, and the feeling was beautiful.  Every year I looked, and still look, forward to that one week where everyone is the same.
            Slowly, as the years went by, the bitterness ebbed away and I became optimistic.  I’m often told that optimism is one of my most prominent personality traits.
            In high school, I was still different.  I was an inherently good kid because I had already grown up.  I became thankful that I hadn’t been like other children from my grade school who were not very good people.  I began to realize that being different wasn’t a curse.  It was a gift.
            I chose to make friends with my differences. 
            I realized something: life is rough, but you can always handle it.  Asking “Why me?” doesn’t solve your problems.  Besides, my differences are wonderful.  I truly believe that I am the kind of person who can take something unfortunate and terrible and make it beautiful. 
            I am now a counselor at Camp Korelitz.  I want to change my campers’ lives the way camp changed mine.  I want them to take their trials and make them into something beautiful, something to be proud of, because they really are.
            There’s talk about cures for diabetes, but honestly, I can’t be cured.  Physically, I probably could.  However, after fourteen years of living with this, there will always be some part of me that is inherently “diabetastic,” and I’m more than okay with that.
            I want to become an endocrinologist and specialize in diabetes care so I can show diabetic children that life with this disease isn’t terrible or impossible.  I want to use my story to show people that your differences aren’t a weed you need to kill.  They’ll flower into something amazing if you let them.

Was that not amazing?!?

Kids with diabetes are just the most awesome kids ever, right?  And they grow up to be the most incredible adults ever, too!

Thanks again to Stephanie and Dianne for sharing this with us!

Let's show Stephanie and her family know just how wonderful they are!  Leave them a comment here...


We Have A Winner! Crimson Clover and Thirty One Giveaway

Monday, February 20, 2012

We have a winner!

Thanks for hanging in there with me today!  We had stuff to do this morning that kept me away from the computer most of the day.  And I KNOW you are dying to know who won!

So I won't keep you waiting any longer!

We ended up with a total of 110 "real" comments.  And the lucky winner was #102!

And that would be....


Jen, you have 48 hours to contact me at to claim your prizes!

If you didn't win....  take heart!  You can still get BOTH of these incredible prizes!

To order your own Diabetes Necklace from Crimson Clover, just visit Tia at her facebook page and you get one of your very own!  While you are there, take a look around...  Her stuff is AMAZING!  So be ready to fall in love with LOTS of cool pieces!  I sure did!


To order your own Thermal Tote (or any other amazing product) from Thirty One, you can check out my page here.  Keep in mind that when you order your incredible Thirty One products from me, 25% is donated to JDRF.  The new catalog is now out and there are TONS of beautiful prints and styles!  And until the end of February, for every $31 you spend, you get 31% off any item!  These make great teacher gifts...  and the end of the school year will be here before you know it!  I'm ordering bags for Sweetpea's cheer coaches as their season ends in a few weeks.  Who doesn't love bags?!?

Also, I'm always willing to do a fundraiser for YOUR walk team or organization!  If you raise money for JDRF, DRI, Dr. Faustman...  If you do the Walk to Cure or the Ride to Cure or even another event...  If you are trying to raise money for a diabetic alert dog... As long as the money is going to Diabetes Research, I'm willing to give you my 25% commission!

And...  Stay tuned!  I have a VERY EXCITING giveaway that I'm hosting in March.  And trust me... this is going to ROCK!  I can't say more right now - just that it will involve TWO of my favorite diabetes retailers who are teaming up in their awesomeness!!!! 

Thanks for playing!


Friendship #FAIL

Thursday, February 16, 2012

I have a confession.

I've become a sucky friend.

For reals.

Don't believe me? Let's look at a few examples.

Exhibit A: One of my friends celebrated her birthday at the beginning of December. Her 40th birthday. Then we celebrated Christmas. And I JUST gave her her birthday and Christmas presents. It's FEBRUARY. And she lives down the street. Ridiculous.

Exhibit B: Another friend celebrated his birthday and I ALWAYS call him. ALWAYS. But life was crazy that day and so I thought I'd call after I got Sweets to bed. But then she was low. And then she was LOW low. And by the time I got her up and stable... I forgot.

Exhibit C: Yet another friend's birthday... I had found a card that I thought was perfect. I go to send her the card and realize that she had moved and I didn't have her new address. So I figured I would just CALL her on her birthday and I could get her address then. Yeah.... I didn't have her new phone number either.

I used to have it all together. Perfect presents delivered on time... Cards, calls, staying in touch....

Now? Notsomuch

I never expected that Diabetes would affect my friendships. I mean, it's not ME who has diabetes. Why would it matter?

But it has. And it does. And I'm tired of pretending it doesn't. I'm tired if pretending that everything is the same as it always was.

It's not. I'm not.

I used to eat lunch in the staff lounge. I work with an incredible group of people. We were always more friends than coworkers. But I've stopped eating with everyone else. It's nothing personal. It's not that I don't want to get to know the new people. Its not that dont still love everyone. It's not even that I spend half my lunch time checking blood sugar, counting carbs and dosing. It's that lunch is the ONLY time during my day that I get even a few minutes by myself. And I NEED that time.

And let's be honest... I have trouble sometimes relating to others. I'm just so far removed from the dating scene. I can't relate to going on trips - alone - with my husband and friends. My life is very different. And I just don't have the energy to put into it.

By the time we get everything done in the evenings and we get Sweets to bed, I'm just so tired. Sometimes, a LOT of times, the LAST thing I want to do is talk on the phone.

I can't just get a babysitter and go to dinner.

Sometimes I think Sweets needs to do things with Ally and Brianna- other kids with D, other kids who do what she does, other kids who don't make her feel like the odd man out. And sometimes that means cancelling other plans.

I have trouble with small talk because I don't know what it's like to send my kid to school without worry and fear. I don't know what it's like to be able to let her spend the night at a friends house. I don't know what it's like to drop her off for a lesson or a birthday party.

I often feel like I don't fit in anymore. Like I'm pretending when I try to.

I'm tired of pretending.

Now, it's not like I'm alone on this island. I have a couple of good friends who try so very hard to get it. They have learned how to care for her. They know what it's really like. They truly see the ugly side. I feel like they still get me. I don't have to pretend with them. I don't have to explain when I'm so tired I can't keep my eyes open or when I'm feel like screaming over a number or an episode of tears.

That is priceless.

We have a little group of friends who we can hang with it. And it feels normal.

Also priceless.

And I do need to find a way to pull it together so I quit missing important occasions. I don't WANT to be a sucky friend. I'm just still struggling to find some balance.

It's just so different than I expected. I completely underestimated the impact Diabetes would have in every area of our lives. And after almost 3 years... I just thought I would have had it all figured out by now.

I'm finally to the place where I'm tired of pretending it hasn't changed things and it hasn't changed me.

No more.

No more feeling guilty that I'm not who I used to be.

I may not be who I used be and I may not be what I once was. And that's ok.

I'm someone new.
And I'm working on figuring out what that means.
I'm working on doing it right.

And I know that those friends, those people in my life who truly matter, won't mind.
They will forgive my forgetfulness. My lateness. My falling off the radar. My silence.
They will know that I still love them. And I still care.
They will know I'm trying.
And... They will stick with me through the highs and lows. In every sense of the word.


My Favorite Things: A Valentine's Day GIVEAWAY

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day!

In honor of this day...
And because I love you all SO very much...
And because I want to say THANK YOU for reading and for your support and love...
And because we just passed 300,000 hits in 18 months (which has me totally floored, btw)...

I'm doing a GIVEAWAY!

And what better to give to my wonderful readers than some of my FAVORITE things?!?

The first AWESOME prize is compliments of Crimson Clover.

I first saw this necklace on Shannon from The New Normal Life's Facebook page.  And I fell in LOVE.  I just HAD to have one of these!  It's been ordered and I can not wait to get it! YAY!

Lucky for you, Tia of Crimson Clover is giving one away to one of my lucky, lucky readers!

Tia is a D Mama herself.  She has TWO children with type 1 diabetes.  And she STILL finds time to create these amazing pieces of jewelry!  Here's what she has to say:

"Crimson Clover is about making and creating fun jewelry while bringing awareness to Juvenile Diabetes. I don't think that should be a secret. It's what I do, it's what I'm passionate about, and I think people like to know they are supporting a cause and what they are supporting. It's what I fight for every single day of my life and I'm able to do something I love while doing it. It has brought me in touch with so many wonderful people who I would have never met otherwise. It has brought awareness to a disease that affects 2 of my children. It's my mission and my journey and thank you to those who are on this ride with me."

Don't you just LOVE this?!?  I knew you would!  Now you should really go check her out on Facebook where you will find LOTS of other beautiful things just waiting for you!  Make sure you have time to look, though...!  You can get lost in all the bling!

That's not all, however!

I'm also giving away another one of my favorite things!

The NEW Cinch-It-Up Thermal Tote from Thirty One - in the Aqua Circle Spirals pattern!

I LOVE the Thermal Totes from Thirty One.  We have a ton of them and they ALL come in handy.  We use them as a D supply bag - especially when going to the pool, the zoo, the park or anywhere else it might get hot during the summer!  We also take them to the beach and use them as a carry on supply bag on the airplane.  There's pretty much no place that we DON'T take this bag!  I love that I can throw our supplies in with a ice pack and we are good to go during those hot summer months!  Of course, I also use them for lunch bags, too!

I especially love this bag because it's a little bigger than the regular thermal tote AND it has handles that are big enough to throw over your shoulder!  That makes for easy carrying when you're on the go!  I also love the pattern of this bag - it's not exactly the diabetes blue circle -- but it's pretty close!

Here's what you need to do to make these two amazing gifts YOURS!

1.."LIKE" Crimson Clover on Facebook!  You can even leave her a little note telling her how awesome her jewelry is and that The Princess and The Pump sent you!

2.  Leave me a comment before midnight (EST) Sunday, February 19, 2012.  Include your first name (comments left with out a name will be eliminated).

** You MUST leave me a comment on this blog to be entered.** 

3. To earn extra entries for the giveaway post a separate comment for each: 

     * Tweet about this giveaway, then leave a comment
     * Facebook about this giveaway, then leave a comment

     * Blog about this giveaway, then leave a comment

     * "Like" The Princess and the Pump on Facebook and leave a comment telling me you've done so - or that you already"like" me!

     *Become a Google "Follower" and leave a comment telling me you've done so - or that you already are!

- You MUST leave a comment for each separate entry (ie. one for the basic entering, one for tweeting it, one for linking it on facebook...)

- No duplicate comments are allowed and will be eliminated.

- Winners will be selected via random draw at  

- Winners' names will be posted here on The Princess and The Pump on Monday, February 20, 2012.

- After a winner is named and posted, the winner will have 48 hours to send a message to me at   If I do not hear from the winner within 48 hours, I will select a new winner.  
Good Luck!!!


Happy Heart Day

Monday, February 13, 2012

Today I'm going to share with you a video that I made last year for Valentine's Day.

This year - what with illness and broken bones and such - I just didn't have time to make a new one.

BUT... the thing is that nothing has really changed. Our kids still have diabetes. You still have diabetes. PWD and CWD are still amazing awesome just the way they are.

The only NEW thing, really, is that I could add a ton of new faces to this video.

But let's not focus on that. Let's ignore that sadness and frustration and instead just celebrate the awesomeness of our kids, our friends, our families, and ourselves.

Because you are all amazing.  Just the way you are!

Have a wonderful Valentine's Day! You are so very special!


The Rest

Saturday, February 11, 2012

I was really intrigued by the questions in last week's Five Question Friday...
So much so that I spent an entire post writing about just ONE of them!  But I wanted to answer the rest - and see what you had to say about it, too.  So here we go...!

1. What have you done recently that you are proud of?
See this post....

2. What is your favorite way to work out? Or if you don't workout, what are you wanting to try?
I LOVE Jazzercise!  LOVE!  I love to dance and the music is great. I love the routines.  It reminds me of cheerleading in high school which I also loved...  And it's a GREAT workout!  I used to go every day.  In fact, I was seriously thinking about becoming and instructor when I met J.  
But, alas, Sweets was born and it was hard to be away from her after having been at work all day.  Then, once she was JUST getting old enough that it wasn't such a big deal...  When we were JUST getting to the place where she would be with me all day at school so going for an hour in the evening would be fine...  She was dx'd.  And it just flew out the window.  
I miss it.  And I know I'll go back one day.  But for  now, I'm hitting the treadmill.  I like that, too.  And she can play in the basement while I walk.  I'm also learning to love the bike.  I've been doing 2-3 miles on each since January - about 4-5 times a week.  And it feels good!  I haven't noticed that I've lost weight.  (BOOOOO!) BUT... I do notice that I feel stronger.  I do notice that it's now easy for me and when I started it was NOT.  So I'm proud of that.  And I'm going to keep going! 
I just decided that I'm never going to not be tired.  It's never going to be as easy as it once was.  I just have to DO IT.  I've found great motivation on Pinterest.  Check out my Fitness Inspiration here.  And here are few of my favorites...

3. If you knew you best friend was cheating on spouse would you tell?

Yes.  Because she has specifically told me to tell her!  (We were playing a game of "Would You Rather" one night and that came up!)  I would hate it.  I would NOT want to do it.  But I would because she told me she would want to know.  And would never want her to feel embarrassed or humiliated because everyone knew but her.  

Then I would help her go buy a big tarp and a shovel.  Just kidding...  I'd help her take him for every cent he has while making his life a living HELL.  And THAT is the truth.

4. If you could afford a live-in maid or nanny, would you have one?


Well...  I don't really want a live in one.  I like my privacy.  I don't like people just stopping by without calling.  I like to hang in my jammies and then I feel like a loser.  I don't think I'd every feel comfortable with a live in maid or nanny.

My first thought is that I'd LOVE a nanny to do night checks so I could sleep.  But let's get real....  I'm not I'd ever trust the person.  Unless she was also a RN.  Or endocrinologist.  Or had T1 herself.  And even then...  I don't know.  I could sure use the sleep... but I don't know.  I trust J completely.  I sleep like a baby when it's his night.  But she's HIS kid.  He loves her like I do and I know he takes excellent care of her.  An outsider - no matter how great - just doesn't love your kid they way you do.  So I don't think so on the nanny.

Now the MAID... Oh HELL YES!  Not a live in one.  Just one that comes and cleans.  J thinks its a bad idea because it isn't teaching Sweets important lessons about responsibility and such.  I get that.  And he's not wrong.  But we work all day long.  And we come home and are pancreases and parents and the house work...  it just doesn't get done.  And when we DO happen to have a free minute - I don't want to spend it cleaning the toilet.  But it hangs over my head constantly that it needs to be done.  I hate it.  So I'd love a maid.  LOVE.  We can teach Sweets about responsibility in other ways!

5. Do you stress out about birthdays (specifically the age) or do you enjoy them?
No stress.  I enjoy!  
Maybe that will change when I'm 40.  But so far...  no stress, all fun!
Maybe it because all of my friends and my hubby are a good 4-5 years (or more) older than me so I'm always the youngest.  I don't know.  To me a birthday is a day to eat cake and get presents.  What could be stressful about that?!?

And, a bonus question from Scott, that I wasn't brave enough to put in as a regular question...answer at your own risk, or not at all! (Or something...)

Bonus: Lights off or on?
Off.  I don't need the lights.  I can do it in the dark.
J prefers the lights on.  He can't see what he's doing in the dark so he always turns on a lantern.  


I'm talking about testing blood sugar.  What were YOU thinking?!?

Seriously, my PARENTS read this blog people!  Geesh!  :)

Ok!  Now it's YOUR TURN!  Tell me....  What do YOU think?

Seriously - I wanna know!


Diabetes Photoshop

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Diabetes Photoshop.

It's alive and thriving on the internet. 

And it can make you feel about the size of a blood drop on the end of a pinkie finger. 

You know what I'm talking about. You see the pictures and updates on Facebook or blogs or Twitter.  The ones that show perfect numbers, straight lines, and superb control. 

Things like this....

And this...

What you DON'T see in these pictures is what I like to call the DMama Photoshop... 

Did you notice how it the above pictures almost all are of the 6 hour graph - NOT the 24 hour graph??  Wonder why??  It's because if I took the picture of the 24 hour graph it would NOT be as pretty.  I'm sure there's a high or a low or a spike or something hiding just beyond the cutoff point.... 

And that no hitter?  Yeah.  ONE time.  In almost THREE YEARS.

And I think it's important to remember that... 

That these pictures full of flowers and hearts and great numbers and flat lines don't tell the whole story.

And that no matter HOW great a pancreas you may be...  we all have days where the graph is just UGLY.  But you don't see pictures of that as often, do you? 

Pictures like this....

Oh yeah. 

Those are some nice spikes and crashes, huh?  Looks like some kind of sick amusement park ride. 

But it's reality.  If I never saw things like this it would probably mean that Sweets didn't have diabetes.  And she does... so...  sometimes she's high.  And low.  And both in a 6 hour time period.

You just don't always SEE that online. 

And what you DO see...  

It's not that you're not happy for these people who someone how seem to tame the beast better than you can.  It's just that it makes you feel like crap!  Especially if you're in the middle of a rough patch where nothing is making sense.  It can make you feel like a failure and be very disheartening. 

For the record, these are our pictures.  I took them.  And I probably posted them to Facebook.  I'm guilty.

But I have to say that when I'm the one doing the posting, it's not because I think I'm such a great pancreas.  It's more because I'm excited and I want to share! 

I believe in celebrating the good moments - not just in Diabetes but in life in general.  So I post my pics and allow myself to feel happy and proud.  Those good numbers took a lot of hard work!  And a little luck.  And I also like to look back at them when things are not going so well as a reminder that it WILL get better and that I CAN do this!

Don't get me wrong...  I'm not saying that we shouldn't post our pics!  I think it's a good way to celebrate and encourage each other!

I just think it's important to keep in mind that you're never seeing the whole picture. And that you just shouldn't compare yourself to another.

I'll leave you with this quote that I just pinned to my Diabetes board on Pinterest.

We all have good days.  We all have bad days.  Regardless of how it might look online!


Another Type 1

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

This week, Sweets got another Type 1 diagnosis.

Except this time it has nothing to do with the pancreas or blood sugar or diabetes.

This time it has to do with bones and fractures.

On Friday, Sweetpea was outside at recess enjoying the beautiful, mild weather.  Until she fell off the playground equipment.

Luckily, I'm right there in the same building.  So it was only a few minutes later that she was brought to my room.  I knew something was wrong as soon as I saw her.  She was in tears.

Sweets is usually pretty tough.  She usually just hops right up and says, "I'm fine!".  She hates bandaids.  Never wants to stop long enough to get looked at.

But not this time.

This time she had tears streaming down her face.  Her face was as white as a ghost.  We asked her to move her arms and she could - but she couldn't make a muscle with her right arm.  And when I touched it, she screamed.

I knew.  I grabbed our stuff and we took off for Urgent Care.

Of course, Sweets wanted nothing to do with this.  As soon as she realized that something was wrong, she kept saying that it didn't hurt anymore and she was fine.  Yeah, right....

At Urgent Care, they took an x-ray of her arm.

This was not fun. 

It wasn't as bad as the day she was diagnosed and it took 5 adults to hold her down and get the IV's and lines and ports inserted into her little arms.  When she was crying and screaming for us to stop and quit hurting her. 

But I'd say it was second place.  And that's something from a Mama who has lost of count of times she's had to hold her child down for shots and IV insertions and blood draws and such while she cried and screamed. 

It HURT.  And it was just me and the nurse so I had hold her arm down in the right place so they could get the picture. 

The screams were ugly.  I was crying by the time we left that room.

Sure enough - it was a broken elbow.  She managed to break BOTH of the major bones in her arm right at the elbow. 

That night they put on a temporary cast and gave her sling and we made an appointment for Monday to get her "real" cast on. 

Right away, her blood sugar took a hit.  She started to climb and just kept going...  At first, I'm sure it was trauma.  Then it was the Motrin.  And the fact that her activity level suddenly decreased quite a bit.  We are still working with things... trying to figure out just how much we are going to need to increase basal and when.  The Urgent Care doc told me it shouldn't affect her diabetes.  Yeah... I guess not technically but we all know how activity affects things...  Just another piece of the puzzle!

You might be wondering... did diabetes play any part in this accident?

I don't THINK so.  HOWEVER....  The first thing Sweets said to me when she came into my classroom that day was that she felt low.  I looked at Dex.  It said 200.  She had about an hour of active insulin left so I knew she should have been fine.  But not more than a minute later, Dex beeped double down.  I tested and she was 150.  A few minutes after that she was 120.  I gave her juice and that stopped the drop and she held steady at 120.  So....  was she dropping and did that make her more unsteady and caused the fall?  I don't know.  I guess it's possible.  But it's not like she was actually LOW. 

We spent the weekend sleeping on the couch with Sweets.  She was not comfortable in her bed so I moved her into the corner of the couch and was able to prop her up with pillows and give her some support.  She spent the day Saturday taking it pretty easy.  But by Sunday she was ready to move!

J and I were SO NERVOUS about Monday.  The Urgent Care doctor had told me that the break was in a very tricky place and that it would be important for it to get set and heal properly the first time so she was sending us to a specialist.  J's nephew just broke his wrist a few weeks ago and they had to knock him out to set it.  That's great - but we all know that it's a lot more difficult when you've got T1 in the mix.

We decided that we would be prepared.  We didn't let her eat after midnight and we watched her bg all night so that it didn't drop too far and needed to be treated.  Monday morning, I thought I was going to throw up.  I had to hide it, of course, because I didn't want to scare Sweets.  But the memory of that x-ray and not knowing what was going to happen had me scared.

Luckily, it did not need set or adjusted!  The doctor told us that it was a type 1 fracture and that meant she didn't need pins or surgery.  THANK GOODNESS!  We laughed - the first time type 1 was a good thing to hear! 

Off came the splint and on went the "real" cast!  Sweets chose pink, of course!  She really wanted purple but it wasn't pretty.  And she really liked the blue... but it was so dark that no one would have been able to write on it.  So pink it is!  Four weeks in that pretty pink cast.  She will get it off the day after her birthday!

She was such a trooper!  What is upsetting her the most is that she can't do gymnastics and we had just scheduled a gymnastics birthday party that we had to cancel.  We've got something else planned now - but that's still a little disappointing.  She's worried about cheer... she can't jump or tumble.  She can still do the cheers and she went and did that tonight.  She was upset because she can't wear anything with long sleeves - and so her turtleneck that goes under her uniform won't work.  Luckily, her BFF is such a sweetie that she told Sweets that she would wear her uniform however Sweets had to wears hers.  Is that not the sweetest thing? 

But she's determined to figure this out and make it work.  She picked up a pen and just started writing with her left hand.  She suggested taping her paper down since not being able to hold it was making it harder.  She did her cheers with one hand.  I still have to help a lot - she needs help with going to the bathroom, getting dressed, putting on her coat, fastening her seat belt, opening things...  But she's TRYING!  She told me the other day, "No, Mom.  I got this."

What really got to me was Friday night when she started crying out of the blue.  "What's wrong?" I asked her.  "I'm scared I won't be able to hug you!" she said.  We're making it work!

The strength and courage and determination of our T1 kiddos just amazes me!  I really don't know if she would have handled this with as much grace and strength and perseverance as she has if she didn't have T1. 

So, that's what WE did this weekend!  What about you?!?


Be Proud

Sunday, February 5, 2012

This post started out as a Five Question Friday. But... The first question took on a life of its own.... Sometimes that tends to happen!

The question was...

What have you done recently that you are proud of?

This quote has been making it's way around Pinterest and Facebook. I love it - and I'd have to say that it is something that I'm most proud of right now.

Being a Mom is hard enough.
Working full time is hard enough.
Being someones pancreas is hard enough.
Having a child with a broken elbow (more on that lovely turn of events later) is hard enough.
Everyday LIFE is hard enough.

But when you have all those things going on at once? Well, let's just say I'm surprised I'm not in a padded room by now. (Although if the room included a comfy bed, HGTV, books, and alone time... Sign me up!).

And some of you dealing with even MORE...  financial stress, other health related stresses like celiac disease, epilepsy,  and more, divorce...  the list goes on and on. And each one of those things are hard enough.

But - surprisingly, I'm not in that padded room. I just keep going. And trying my best to hold it all together. 

We ALL do that. And we should ALL be proud of ourselves.

It's not often someone says "I'm proud of you" just for living your life. But it's something we need hear, isn't it?

So.... I'm proud of you!

I know you'll probably say that it's nothing and you don't really have a choice...

But you do.

You don't have to get up in the night to check on blood sugars.
You don't have to research new diabetes technology.
You don't have to work hard.
You don't have to diligently count carbs.
You don't have to make sure the kids are bathed.
You dont have to tweak basal rates.
You don't have to basal test.
You don't have keep an eye on the cgm.
You don't have make 504 plans.
You don't have to train people in D care.
You don't have to make playdate sheets.
You don't have to keep your cell phone attached to your hip.

You don't have to do any of it. Not really.

But you do. Because you're an awesome parent. Because you love your kids more than anything in the world. Because you want to give them the best possible chance for a long, healthy, happy life.

The rest of the world looks at this life and those that REALLY get it would totally understand if we fell apart.

And from time to time we do.

But we pull it together and keep going. With no end in sight.

And we do it not because we are getting paid big bucks.
Not because of all the fame.
Not because it's oh-so-glamorous.

Not because we have to.

We do it because we love our kids. We do it because we're just that awesome.

And that's something to be proud of!


Omnipod: Seven Months In

Thursday, February 2, 2012

As you may know, we switched from a tubed pump to the Omnipod about seven months ago.

I haven't posted too much about the pod or our transition or how it's going... until now!  I really wanted to wait and make sure we had some time under our belt before giving you my thoughts.

So....  How's it going?  Do we like it?  What's the scoop?!?

To keep it short and sweet, we LOVE the Omnipod!  LOVE!

But you probably want to know a little more than that - right?

So let's break it down...

My Concerns Before Switching and How They've Played Out...

One of my concerns with switching to the Omnipod was the basal rates.  With Sweetpea's previous pump, the smallest basal rate you could program was 0.025.  With the Omnipod, the smallest basal you can program is 0.050.  That might not seem like much, but when you're a little girl who is rather sensitive to insulin - it IS a lot.  We ended up having to pretty much change everything.  All her basal rates changed.  That meant all her carb ratios changed.  It was like starting over from scratch.

Was it horrendous?  Sounds like it would be, right???

But it wasn't.  It was smooth sailing!  Honestly, I think it was the best thing that could have happened to us.  Her numbers were crap.  Let's be honest.  A large part of that was us running her higher - per our endo's orders - after the severe low/seizures.  Part of it was us being too scared to see a double digit number during the night.  And part of it was that after that experience her blood sugars were just nuts.  Plain and simple.  There was no pattern, no rhyme or reason... for a long while.  So starting over from scratch ended up being a great thing.

The difference in the basal rates has been a non-issue.  I expected it to be a problem that we would have to work to solve.  But it wasn't.

Our transition to the Omnipod was really smooth.  And her numbers have NEVER been better. Part of that was just tightening control again.  But now that we're about 7 months in... her average blood sugars have never been better.  Her 90 day average right now is 165.  Her target bg is 150.  I'll take it!

Another concern I had when we switched was the way that the Omnipod calculates IOB.  It is very different from the way that her old pump calculates IOB.  And I really thought I'd have some issues with  this - as I did use the IOB feature a lot.  I thought I would have to really work with it and it would take some getting used to.  But again - it was a non-issue.  I thought that we would just enter everything as a correction bolus and that would replicate the IOB feature on the other pump.  But I never found the need to do this.  She never went low.  We had no problems with corrections.  Personally, I've never missed it once.  I hear from the grapevine that the new pods will how all IOB instead of just correction IOB.  That will be nice - but I'm guess I won't notice the difference.

I was a little worried about the size.  She's a LITTLE girl  With no fat (how unfair...).  But again - non issue.  She wears her pods on her tush.  That's the only place she has room and fat.  And it's been fine.  She doesn't have pod rip off - even during gymnastics and cheerleading and tumbling all over the couch at home.  They stay on her quite well.  In fact - they stay on her almost TOO well! And we are able to hide them under her clothing and they are pretty much invisible.

What Have We Found We Like About the Omnipod?

Ummm.... Everything?!?

I really can't put into words how happy we are with the Omnipod!

I LOVE the PDM.  I love how it keeps your records and averages. 

I love the light on the end of the PDM so you can see when you're doing a fingerstick at night.  It's a small thing - yes.  But small things can make me very happy, too!

I love that we don't have boxes and boxes of supplies!  I really like that it's all in one compact little pod.  Site changes are much easier (and really, I thought they were pretty easy before).  Sweets will be able to do this on her own anytime now.  I love the automatic insertion!

We used to get bent cannulas ALL THE TIME.  I blame her very little body fat and the fact that she was scared and would tighten up all her muscles.  We landed in the ER many a time due to the bent cannula.  We have not had ONE bent cannula with the pod.  This could be due to a different cannula, different insertion or just that she's not as scared.  I don't really care.  I'll take it!

The short time we had the pod when it was still warm enough to swim was fantastic!  Sweets would ALWAYS go high because she wouldn't wear her pump in the water.  But with the pod - bg stayed nice and steady.  A little basal reduction and we were good to go!  And I can not WAIT to hit the beach!  WOO HOO!

But the best part - hands down - is that Sweets is happy as can be!

SWEETPEA loves the Omnipod!  And that means more to me than I can say! 

For some reason, she is not as scared of the pod.  I think it is because she can't see the needle.  We can put the pod on her and she can take a minute to relax.  In fact, she can push the button herself so she has a little more control over the situation.  Site changes are no big deal.  And that is a BIG DEAL!  Because for all the years we used the previous pump, they were awful.  That is why we did them at night.  Because she would freak out and cry and scream and we'd end up with bent cannulas and  bad sites.  It is SO NICE to do a pod change and have it be drama free! 

The other thing that Sweets loves about the pod is that she can hide it.  This began right after she started podding.  It came up during a tennis lesson over the summer.  The kids were asking her what Dexie was.  Why did she wear that thing around her waist.  She didn't like that.  She didnt' want to talk about it.  And the great thing was that we were able to take Dex off during her lesson and the pod was hidden under her clothes... and no one could see a thing.  The same thing happens at gymnastics.  And it's pretty well hidden under her leotard.  And she gets to feel normal.  And that is worth is weight in gold!  We really love that the pod can be easily hidden under ANYTHING!

I love that she is happy with the pod.  I love that she feels like she has some control over that part of her diabetes.  After a few months, we DID ask her what she thought and if she preferred the old pump.  Her answer was that she likes the Omnipod - for the reasons I've already mentioned.  Her happiness is important to us.  And even though J and I are really happy - if she had disliked the pod we would have switched back.

I'm really glad that we decided to try the Omnipod and see how we like it!  Because we LOVE it!  I can honestly tell you that I can not think of a reason we would go back to a tubed pump. 

Seven months in and we couldn't be happier!  I feel very blessed to have found a pump that is working so well for Sweets!

This post is my OPINION.  No one asked me to write about our experience and I am not being compensated in any way.  This is simply MY opinion and MY experience with the Omnipod.  This is in no way intended as medical advice.  If you are considering the Omnipod, please consult with your doctor and endocrinology team.  This post is no way meant to say that any one pump or type of diabetes management is better than another.  This is simply MY OPINION.  I can not guarantee that the Omnipod will meet all of your needs or that you will be as happy with it as we are.  After all, "Your Diabetes May Vary".  Your choice of diabetes management is a very personal thing.  Therefore, I will not tolerate comments that are disrespectful.  Thank you!

For more information on the Omnipod Insulin pump click HERE.



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