Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Fun with music

I saw this meme going around a while back and I'm just getting around to joining in the fun.

Put your music playing thingy (Ipod or whatever) on random and answer the questions with whatever song pops up.

How am I feeling today? Respect--Aretha Franklin

Will I get far in life? Cleaning Out My Closet--Eminem

How do my friends see me? Black Betty--Ram Jam (ha, ha, funny)

Where will I get Married? April 25, 1992--Sublime (I believe the question was where not when.)

What is my best friend's theme song? The Time Warp--The Rocky Horror Picture Show

What is the story of my life? Catchafire (Whoopsi Daisy)--Toby Mac

What is/was high school like? Falling In Love(Is Hard on the Knees)--Aerosmith (How appropriate!)

How can I get ahead in life? Mr. Jones--Counting Crows (Hmm, I don't know a Mr. Jones. Maybe I'll meet one.)

What is the best thing about me? All Apologies--Nirvana

How is today going to be? Shine--Newsboys

What is in store for this weekend? Another One Bites the Dust--Queen (We are going to the AAU basketball state playoffs this weekend. So far, Holden's team is undefeated. Could this mean that another team will "bite the dust"?)

What song describes my parents? Mama Kin--Aerosmith (Funny, and also my favorite Aerosmith song.)

To describe my grandparents? Zero--The Smashing Pumpkins (OK, that one's not funny.)

How is my life going? Landslide of Love--Newsboys (Awww, that's kind of nice.)

What song will they play at my funeral? Just A Girl--No Doubt (That one made me laugh my butt off.)

How does the world see me? Party On The Mountain--The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band

Will I have a happy Life? Blessed Be Your Name--Newsboys (Nice)

What do my friends really think of me? F.I.N.E.--Aerosmith (OK, that's funny
because of what F.I.N.E. stands for = F'd up Insecure Neurotic Emotional --those words are not in the song by the way, just the title)

Do people secretly lust after me? Cry Me A River--Aerosmith

How can I make myself happy? Add It Up--The Violent Femmes (Count my blessings maybe?)

What should I do with my life? Love Fool--The Cardigans

Will I ever have children? It's A Sorry World--Tim Wilson (What does that mean?)

What is some good advice for me? So Alive--Love and Rockets

How Will I be remembered? OPP--Naughty By Nature (OPP stands for Other People's Property. What?!?)

What is my signature dancing song? Love Shack--The B52s (Funny, I can't sit still when I hear that song.)

What do I think my current theme song is? Slam--Toby Mac

What does everyone else think my current theme song is? Testosterone--Bush (They think I'm a man?)

What type of men/women do you like? Blister In The Sun--The Violent Femmes (Gross!!)

What's missing from my life? Because of You--Kelly Clarkson (But, I'm not trying to blame anyone:-)

Will I become rich? Leave the One I'm With--Usher (Ha!! Oh, that is too funny. I love you, Michael.)

Does someone have a crush on me? Somebody Told Me--The Killers (No they didn't)

How will I die? Walk This Way--Aerosmith with Run DMC (What I'm going to follow someone off a cliff or something?)

How often do I get angry? Chain, Chain, Chain--Aretha Franklin

What is my favorite thing to do? Clint Eastwood--Gorillaz (Ewww, I don't even like Clint Eastwood.)

Oh, that was so much fun. I invite anyone to join in the fun that would like to.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

We're home

We have arrived back home safe and sound. We had a great trip. Riley's numbers weren't great, but that was to be expected with the long car rides and decrease in his overall activity. He got up in the 300s a couple of times, which he hasn't done in a while. We will be going to the state tournaments next weekend, so I can use what I've learned about car rides and adjust basals and maybe we'll do a little better. Also, he has an endo. appointment Friday, so I'll be discussing this with her and get her input to fine tune his basals for the car ride. We will be going to a different part of the state, but it's about the same distance away as we went this weekend.

Well, you may have gathered from the fact that we're going to states next weekend that we did well. We did. We only had to play two games and we won both of them. We won the first by 26 points and today's game by 11 points. Holden played very well. I have a sore throat right now from all the yelling I did.

We did a little site seeing this weekend after Saturday's game. I am going to post a few pictures and see if anyone (besides family) can guess where we were. The first one to guess correctly gets a virtual pat on the back.

This is the view from the car window on the way to the game.

This is Riley and me having fun at the mall.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Gearing up

We will be leaving tomorrow for our first trip away from home since Riley was diagnosed. I'm looking forward to it, but I must admit, I'm dreading it a little too. Just the stress of making sure I'm not forgetting anything important, that we have enough supplies. I worry that his sugars are going to be up from sitting around so long in the car. Maybe once I get everything packed and we're on the road, I'll feel better. I hope so.

We leave in the morning for an AAU basketball tournament. It's 5 1/2 hours away. It's in a place I've never been before, so I'm a little excited about that, although I don't know how much time we'll have for sightseeing.

Anyway, wish us luck. I'll leave you with a picture of my favorite basketball player.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Happy Easter!

Wow, what a long day. But, it's been absolutely wonderful. Easter is my favorite day of the year. I have always loved Easter (even more than Christmas). For one thing, it happens during my favorite time of the year,spring Also, the reason for Easter is the foundation of my Christian faith, the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The day started with a visit from the Easter Bunny. He brought several things but Riley's favorite was an Incredibles frisbee that came from The Dollar Tree. Yes, we could have saved a lot of money and just bought him something for a dollar and he would have been happy. Holden's favorite was the gift card he got. It's hard to buy things for a teenager.

Then, it was off to church.

Then, off to my grandmother's (Granny's) house for some good eating and an easter egg hunt. (Holden drove us there.) Riley had a lot of fun hunting eggs and playing with my cousin's little girl. His sugars did OK. He was very active and went down to 72. I suspended his pump and gave him a total of 33 grams of lifesaver gummies. Even after all of this his sugar never got over 233. I really expected it to go up much higher than that. Let me just say it again. I LOVE THE PUMP!!!

Then, it was off to my in-law's for some more food. There Riley got to play with my nephew. He was a little less active and we didn't have the lows that we had earlier.

All in all, it has been a wonderful day. I am just so blessed to be alive and to have my sons and my husband. I love days like this. The day was just wonderful. The weather was nice. We had a little rain shower, but it only lasted a few minutes and then it was beautiful sunshine again. So, happy Easter to you all. I hope your day was as great as mine.

(Just to let you know, I just got a new digital camera so until the newness wears off I may be bombarding you with pictures until I get it out of my system.)

Saturday, April 15, 2006

I, meme

I got this from daysgoby. I thought it was pretty neat.

I AM: a mother, wife, daughter, nurse

I WANT: a cure for Type I diabetes

I WISH: I could stay with Riley and not have to work

I HATE: when people look down their noses at others

I MISS: life before diabetes

I FEAR: losing one of my children

I HEAR: the Cubs game on TV (go Cubbies!!!)

I WONDER: how many licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll Pop :-)

I REGRET: not going to pharmacy school

I AM NOT: organized

I DANCE: never

I SING: in my car

I CRY: at sad movies and TV shows



I WRITE: only in my blog

I CONFUSE: myself (quite often, I'm afraid)

I NEED: a good night's sleep

I SHOULD: read my Bible more

I START: laughing when Holden or Riley does something silly

I FINISH: all the food on my plate (most of the time-bad habit, I know)

I TAG: whoever else would like to play

Friday, April 14, 2006

Some good news for a change

I was thinking this morning about how when Riley first started the pump I was posting all the time about his bad numbers. Well, his numbers haven't been bad at all lately. He's had a few higher numbers, but all in all his numbers have been great. I know that this can be temporary, so I'm enjoying it while I can. I thought since I shared the bad numbers with you, maybe I should share the good ones too.

We haven't had to adjust his basals in a while, other than the occasional decrease for a low or exercise. He's eating well. I can tell that he feels so much better than when his sugars where in the 300s.

Blood sugars:

198- 1:00 PM
96- pre-breakfast
175- snack
116- pre-lunch

229- 4 AM
163-supper (had pizza--check out how his sugar did)
98- 2 hours after pizza- he got a little snack and a basal decrease for one hour
130- 3 hours after pizza
148- bedtime snack

So far today, his sugars have been:

215-2 AM
111-5 AM (pump suspended)
106- 6 AM
110- pre-breakfast

So, after all those horrible posts about the pump in the beginning, the words "I love the pump" are now heard quite often in this house, followed by a huge grin, and a whispered prayer of thanks.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

World toilet day

This is to add to my previous post. My birthday is also know in some places as World Toilet Day. What an honor.

World Toilet Organization

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The World Toilet Organization is an organization dedicated to issues involving toilets and sanitation. It is based in Singapore and, as of 2004, includes toilet associations from 17 countries around the world, from Russia to the United States to Australia to Japan [1].

Every year, the World Toilet Organization sponsors the World Toilet Summit. This has been held in various places around the world:
2001 - Singapore
2002 - Seoul, South Korea
2003 - Taipei, Taiwan, Republic of China
2004 - Beijing, People's Republic of China
2005 - Belfast, Ireland

The World Toilet Organization promotes the celebration of World Toilet Day on November 19 of every year. [2] [3][4]. It is also setting up the world's very first Toilet College in Singapore. The first classes will begin in October 2005 and will be held at the Republic Polytechnic. [5]

This is neat

I got this from Jamie's blog. I thought it was kind of neat.

Go to Wikipedia and type in your birthday. Don't include the year. Record three events, three births and three deaths that happened on the day you were born.


-1863- Abraham Lincoln delivers the Gettysburg Address at the military cemetery dedication ceremony in Gettysburg Pennsylvania.

-1978- Jim Jones leads members of his Peoples Temple Cult in mass murder-suicide. The bodies of 914 people are found in Jonestown, Guyanain in South America.

-1998- Lewinsky Scandal: The US House of Representatives Judiciary committee begins impeachment hearings against US President Bill Clinton.


-1917- Indira Gandhi, Prime Minister of India

-1933- Larry King, American television interviewer

-1961- Meg Ryan, actress


-489- Pope Anastasius II

-1828- Franz Schubert, Austrian composer

-1988- Christina Onassis, daughter of billionaire Aristotle Onassis

OK, so no one I know died on my birthday. The only one I had heard of was Franz Shubert. There were a couple other neat events on my birthday. In 1954, Sammy Davis Jr. lost his left eye in an automobile accident. Also, in 1979, the Iranian Hostage Crisis ended when Ayatollah Khomeini ordered the release of the 13 American hostages being held at the US Embassy in Tehran. I guess that makes up for no one famous (that I know) dying on my birthday.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Why we chose the pump

I was on the CWD chatroom yesterday and there was a couple of mom's up there who had a lot of questions about the pump. I thought I would post a little about the pump and why we chose it for Riley at such a young age. (These are not in any particular order.)

#1) The ability to give tiny, tiny doses of insulin. The pump has the ability to give as little as 0.05 unit of insulin for a bolus. That's 1/50th of a unit. It just blows my mind that I can give such a tiny amount of insulin. When Riley was on injections, the smallest we could give was 0.5 unit (and that was not accurate dosing. His syringes measured everything in one unit increments. So, you really had to guess as to what a half was.) I had drawn up 0.5 unit before when he was on injections and squirted it into my hand just to see how much it was. It was the drop about the size of the head of a pin. So, once again how the pump can give such little doses just amazes me.

#2) The ability to adjust basal (background insulin). Before the pump, Riley was on Lantus as his background insulin. He took 1.5 units at breakfast. That dose was supposed to last for 24-36 hours. I really don't think it did most of the time. In theory, he got the same dose of background insulin for every hour of the day. With the pump that dose can be adjusted to fit his needs. I think most people are on a couple of different basal rates a day. Riley starts out from 12 AM-3AM with a basal of 0.075 unit per hour. Then, from 3AM-8AM, he goes to 0.025. That's because his sugar tends to drop quite a bit during this time. When he was on Lantus, we had to wake him a lot of times in the middle of the night to eat, because his sugar was too low. Not anymore, if his sugar is too low in the middle of the night now, I just decrease or suspend (stop) his basal for a couple of hours. So, you can completely stop giving him insulin if the need arises. This has happened before between the hours of 3-8AM. He's already on the lowest basal rate possible. So, I've had to completely stop the pump in the middle of the night before because I couldn't give him a lower rate. This hasn't happened but a couple of times. Not nearly as much as it did when he was on injections.

From 8AM-12PM his basal is the highest it is all day, .150. If his sugars are going to run high it's usually between these hours. From 12PM-3PM, he goes to .0125. His sugar also tends to drop late in the afternoon, so 3PM-9PM, he's at .075 again. Then back up to .10 from 9PM until midnight. So, you see that you can be very precise with how much insulin he gets at certain times of the day.

I will also mention adjusting basals are useful for periods of activity. This has come in handy for Riley, but not as much as I think it will for teenagers. Riley is pretty much always active. The only time I decrease his basals are if we go to the park and he's running around a little more than usual. But, with older kids and teens the pump can come in handy for sports and other activities.

#3) He can eat when he wants and what he wants. Now, that being said, I don't let him eat sweets but very rarely. That's how he ate before he got D. I didn't let him eat sweets often. They are not good for you or your teeth. But, the thing I like best about the pump and eating is he can eat 10g carb. at a meal or he can eat 50. It doesn't matter. The pump can bolus accordingly. When he was on injections, his carb coverage was 0.5 per 25g carbs. This meant that if he only wanted 15 g of carbs, you couldn't give him any insulin (because you can't give less than .5 unit). If he didn't get any insulin at all, his sugar was sure to go up too much. On the other hand, if he decided to eat 40g, he had to take only 0.5, but that wasn't quite enough to cover the carbs he ate. Once again, high sugars. I do not miss the days of crying and begging him to eat more so I could give him insulin. Or trying to get him to stop eating so he wouldn't go over 25g. I am so glad those days are over. Now, he eats, I dose, we're done. There is no arguing. If he eats 1/2 sandwich, it's OK. If he's really hungry and eats 1 1/2 sandwich that's fine too. His pump will figure out how much he needs to cover whatever he eats and dose accordingly.

#4) Less needle sticks. When Riley was on injections, he was getting anywhere from 4-5 per day. That was about 28-35 needle sticks a week. (Oh my, that sounds like a lot when I put it that way. I can't believe we used to do that.) Now, his needle is changed every three days. That's 2-3 needle sticks per week. What a difference. But, we are checking his sugar more often since the pump, so there are more finger sticks than before.

These are just a few reasons why we chose the pump. This is an individual decision for each person/family. First, you have to make sure your child wants the pump. I know some don't. Holden has a boy in his class with D. He's 15 and has no desire to try the pump. Riley decided he wanted the pump as soon as he found out he wouldn't have to get stuck with needles every day.

There are negatives with the pump also. They are a lot of work and they are more expensive than injections. But, I wouldn't give this pump up if someone paid me. The first few weeks were hell (to put it mildly), but it was worth it. Even though the pump is more work, I'm actually less stressed than I was when he was on injections.

On a side note, today is Michael's birthday. I just want to wish him a happy day and many, many more to come. ( I love you Michael Alexander.)

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Six months ago today

Six months ago today at this time Riley was sitting in the floor watching TV and eating a frosted strawberry poptart and drinking a big glass of apple juice. I was straightening up a little and getting ready to go to the grocery store. After he finished with breakfast, he got on the couch. He had finished his apple juice and asked for more. I obliged. He sucked down the juice in no time and asked for more. I was in the bathroom brushing my hair. I came out and looked at him. I said, "Why do you want more juice?" He just looked at me and said, "Mama, I'm sooo thirsty." Red flags went up in my head. I had a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach. This just wasn't normal for him. So, I checked his sugar with my machine I use at work and the rest is history. (to read the story of his diagnosis go here, my first post)

Fast forward six months, Riley is now playing a video game (Star Wars). He just finished eating a pancake with sugar free syrup, mixed fruit, and caffeine-free Diet Mt. Dew. My how things have changed. He's now hooked up to a machine that delivers insulin about every 3 minutes. He's already had his finger stuck twice today (3 AM and pre-breakfast). He's had his morning dose of insulin.

I started thinking last night that today would be six months and I started crying. All the memories of that day came flooding back and I just couldn't help myself. I remember feeling numb that day. I guess I was in shock. I really had no concept of how much life would change. Even though I'm a nurse, I kind of thought they'd just tell us how much insulin to take and we'd check his sugar and give his insulin and that would be that. If only it was that easy. I quickly learned there is no set dose, that it adjusts almost constantly. After Riley got his first doses of insulin (Lantus and NovoLog) his sugar dropped from the 400s to the 50s in an hour or two. Just a taste of what we would be dealing with in the following months.

Since his diagnosis, we have had 2 different endos (with a combined total of 3 visits), a pediatrician visit, and numerous visits to the pharmacy for strips and insulin. They know us by name there now. I've had many a sleepless nights, lots of highs and lots of lows (literally and figuratively) , and I've done quit a bit of crying over the last six months. I've probably cried more tears over the last 6 months than I have the rest of my life combined (with the exception of the baby years). I used to never cry. Usually the only time I cried was when I watched a sad show on TV. I didn't cry over our lives. We were happy. We were healthy. I guess we still are. It's just that this disease has a way of wearing you down. My crying has decreased quite a bit from what it was when he was first diagnosed. I cried several times a day back then. I used to just look at him and burst into tears. I don't do that as much anymore. Sometimes I look at him and I'm overcome with sadness, but I don't cry as much anymore. I've even cried a few happy tears over the last six months. Sometimes I look at him smile and I'm just overcome with the emotion of how lucky I am to be his mom.

In some ways, life has changed drastically over the last six months, and then when I look at it from another angle, life hasn't really changed all that much. We still do all the things we did before. Diabetes hasn't changed what we do. It's just made me carry of bag full of "goodies" with me everywhere we do go. We never leave home without "his bag". It is said everytime we leave the house. "Do you have his bag?" Maybe we should name the bag. His bag is chocked full of the must haves for PWD. There are a few syringes down at the bottom, glucagon, supplies for his pump, his sugar machine, snacks, a box of juice, a fast food carb book, ketone strips, his pump holster (it has the Animas phone number on it), and a few toys (men) for Riley to play with (OK, I guess that's not a must have for most PWD.) I'm sure there are probably some used test strips in there too. I go through and clean it out occasionally. There are usually a few bloodied cotton balls in there too. We also have a notebook (purple) that goes with us everywhere. I keep all of his records in there. I also have a list of foods and carb values in there that was given to me, well, six months ago today.

Anyway, I'm feeling a little sad today, but there's some happiness mixed in there too. Reliving his diagnosis is not fun, and to think of how care-free life used to be isn't so great either. But, we've come a long way. Riley's sugars are the best they've been in the last six months. We were lucky enough to find an endo that would listen to me and help me get him on the pump. I know I had quite a few negative posts around the time of the pump start, but now, I really do love the thing. I've become kind of attached to it. It's my buddy :-) I am truly blessed in so many ways that I couldn't even begin to name them all. My biggest blessings are my children. They are happy, and they are healthy. What more could a mother ask for? ( Oh, yeah, maybe a full night's sleep. That would be nice.) But, other than that I have everything I need and then some.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Getting comfy

I'm starting to get a little more comfortable with the pump. While there is still a lot I don't know, I feel like I know a little more than I did.

I've gotten more comfortable with decreasing his basals with exercise. For example, last night Holden had a basketball game. Riley usually plays a lot on the bleachers. I checked his sugar an hour after he had supper just because of all of his activity. He was 106. I decreased his basal by 50%. Then, I took into account that he still had plenty of his supper insulin in his system, so I gave him a juice box too. After his temp basal ended (in an hour) he was a wonderful 133. Yeah!

Then, last night, well actually 6 AM this morning, he was 84. I took into account how much his sugar usually drops between 6-8 AM and the fact that he probably wouldn't eat for another 2.5 hours and suspended his basal for 1 hour. Then at 7:00 AM, he was 91. So, I resumed his pump and just decreased his basal by 50%. He woke up at 8:15 with a sugar of 97. Yeah, again!!

I'm just celebrating a little, because I finally seem to be in a "pump mindset". Not too long ago if his sugar was 84, I would have woken him up and given him a cracker. This time, I thought to adjust the basals and it actually worked.

I really am liking this pump more and more. We haven't had any set problems in a while. His sugars the last couple of days have pretty much been in range. Our only sugar that is consistently out of range is 2 hours after his breakfast bolus. I think a carb adjustment is in order. Also, his nighttime (6-8 PM) sugars are running a little lower than I like, so maybe a little basal adjustment will do the trick. I just feel like it's finally starting to click with me. Like I finally get it. I still have a lot to learn, but this is the first time that I've just been really happy with our decision to go on the pump. His sugars have been good enough lately that I'm letting him have things I wouldn't have before. For example, we ate at a buffet for lunch. They had ice cream. I always tell Riley no, but today I said yes and just bolused him for it. We'll see what it does to his sugar. I guess I won't know until I try.

In other news, Holden's team has won their last two games. He's really starting to get in a groove with his team too. It's like this AAU thing is starting to click with him.

It's a beautiful day here. (78 degrees). Holden has baseball practice in a little bit. (a rec. team) Then, I'll probably cook something on the grill for supper and maybe watch the final four games tonight. All in all life if good. The next time I'm down about sugars or the pump, I'm going to try and remember days like this and remind myself that it will be like this again sometime.