Wednesday, January 28, 2009

50+ Questions

I found these questions on various places around the blogasphere. Feel free to play along if you'd like and let me know if you do. I'd like to read your answers.

1. What do you add to your coffee? Sweet n’ low and milk

2. What are you reading now? Killer Weekend by Riddley Pearson and When Mother’s Pray by Cherri Fuller

3. Do you own a gun? Nope, never have, never will.

4. Are you registered to vote? Yes and always exercise my right to vote that people fought and died for

5. Do you get nervous before doctor appointments? No

6. What do you think of hot dogs? I don’t like them but if I’m really, really hungry I can eat one.

7. Favorite Christmas Song? O, Holy Night

8. What do you prefer to drink in the morning? Coffee

9. Can you do push ups? Doubtful, I’m too lazy to even try.

10. What was the name of your first boyfriend/girlfriend? I was in 1st grade and his name was Mitch.

11. What’s your favorite piece of jewelery? Other than my wedding band/engagement ring it’s a jade ring that my aunt gave me when I was 16. My grandparents (her parents) gave it to her when she was 16.

12. Favorite hobby? Reading

13. Do you work with people who idolize you? Um, no I don’t think so. I don’t think anyone idolizes me.

14. Do you have ADD? No

15. What’s one trait that you hate about yourself? Have a hard time just relaxing and enjoying myself.

16. What’s your Middle name? Technically it’s my maiden name, but the middle name that my parents gave me is Elizabeth

17. Name 3 thoughts at this exact moment. When will my head ever stop hurting? Will Holden be able to practice tonight? How will Riley's sugars be at school today?

18. Name 3 things you bought yesterday. cheeseburger, french fries, Mello Yellow

19. Name 3 beverages you regularly drink. Mountain Dew , Crystal Light (or generic brand), grape juice

20. Current worry right now? Holden's knee

21. What side do you dress to? I don’t really know. I think either. (not even really sure what that means)

22. Favorite place to be? Home on my couch

23. How did you bring in the New Year? Home on my couch with my husband and Riley. Holden was in the other room with his girlfriend but came in to give me a kiss just after midnight.

24. Where would you like to go? To a tropical island, but one that doesn’t have a lot of people on it

25. Name three people who will complete this. Don’t know

26. Whose answers do you want to read the most? No one in particular.

27. What color shirt are you wearing? It’s a nursing scrub shirt: white background with different colored hearts on it.

28. Do you like sleeping on satin sheets? Couldn’t tell you, I’ve never done it.

29. Can you whistle? Yep

30. Favorite colors(s)? purple, yellow, green

31. Could you be a pirate? I’m too honest to be a pirate and I like bathing too much.

32. What songs do you sing in the shower? I don’t sing in the shower. I sing in my car, but it’s whatever song is on the radio at the time.

33. Favorite girls name? Lane and Savannah

34. Favorite boy’s name? Michael, Holden, Riley

35. What’s in your pocket right now? Cell phone, pack of gum, an antibiotic I need to take after I finally eat something

36. Last thing that made you laugh? Holden, it’s usually always Holden. The kid cracks me up.

37. Best bed sheets as a child? I don’t remember exactly. I’ve seen pictures of me sitting on a bed with Raggedy Anne sheets though.

38. Worst injury you’ve ever had? I broke my hand playing basketball my senior year of high school.

39. Do you love where you live? It’s OK. What makes it the best is it’s where my family (parents, grandmother) live.

40. How many TVs do you have in your house? Three, horrible, I know.

41. Who is your loudest friend? Judy

42. How many dogs do you have? One, Grace. She’s a pound dog. She’s nine.

43. Does anyone have a crush on you? Doubtful

44. What are the most fun things you ever did? Family vacations.

45. What are your favorite books? The Fountainhead, To Kill A Mockingbird, The Bible

46. What is your favorite candy? Reese’s cup

47. Favorite Team? Chicago Cubs

48. What songs do you want played at your funeral? It Is Well (With My Soul)

49. What were you doing at 12 AM? Trying to get to sleep

50. What was the first thing you thought of when you woke up? How lucky Michael was that his work had a one hour delay this morning.

51. Have you ever received an award? I received plenty of awards in high school. I received most of them for good grades. I don’t remember all of them. I remember receiving a Chemistry award for having the highest grade in Chemistry when I was a junior. I received a few sports awards for basketball too. At different times I received “Most Improved”, “MVP”, and “Best Offensive Player”. I haven’t received any awards since high school that I can think of.

52. How many browser tabs do you have open right now? five

53. Share a website with us.

54. Look at the wall to your right, what is on it? two windows, my front door, a shelf with a picture of Michael and I at our wedding on it and a candle.

55. Have you ever rescued/taken in a stray animal? Too many I’m afraid. The last one was a little kitten who we named Tom who was sick and had diarrhea all over the place. We took him to the vet and got him well and then he ran away.

56. When I say "Moo I'm a duck" do you think of a cow or a duck? a cow with a duck’s bill

57. If the Pillsbury Dough Boy got into a fight with Mrs. Butterworth who would win? And would anybody get hurt? Mrs. Butterworth would kick his butt. The Pillsbury Dough Boy is such a little mamsy pamsy. I’m pretty sure Mrs. Butterworth would put a hurtin’ on him (sorry, southern expression)

Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Number

By the time we arrived at Dr. M's office yesterday I had had decided that whatever "the number" was I'd deal with it and move on.

We went through the usual routine. Riley was weighed and he had his height measured. Then he pricked his finger and the blood was sucked up into something that looks like it should be part of his lego Star Wars collection.

Then, we waited. I wasn't really nervous. I knew there was no need to be. I knew his A1C wasn't any better. I was just hoping it wasn't any worse.

Dr. M walked in and gave me a tight little smile. I knew then that the number wasn't any better.

She went through the usual stuff. She asked about Riley's health and our family's health. She talked with Riley for a little while. She asked him if he was eating like he wanted to. He replied that he was. She asked him if he'd had any lows lately and he nodded his head. She asked what he did and how did he feel when he was low.

Her last questions was: "Riley is there anything that diabetes keeps you from doing that you want to do?"

His reply: "Nope."

This brought a little smile to my face.

Then, she looked at me and Michael. "His A1C is 7.9." I felt the tears build up behind my eyes. "Which that is in range for his age. It's under 8.0. But, I'd like to see it lower."

"Me too", I said. I had stifled the tears. There was no reason to cry. It wouldn't do any good. Plus, I didn't want Riley to see me cry.

She sat about looking at his sugars over the last two weeks. She saw the lows. But, there were also plenty of highs.

It's not like he was on the lower end all day and then dipped down too low. Usually, he was high and then went low.

Over-correction? Maybe. Diabetes just being it's sucky self? More likely.

We sat in her office over an hour with her pouring over his logs. She asked a million questions.

What does he usually eat? Can we add a little protein here? How often is school calling because of his sugars?

Riley had not gained any weight since his last visit. She looked back and said average weight gain in a year was about 5 pounds and that since last December Riley had gained exactly 5 pounds. She said we couldn't come back at the next appointment without him gaining any weight.

She suggested feeding him a little more food throughout the day. She asked where we thought we could add some carbs. She looked at his log and saw that his carbs were, by far, the lowest at breakfast. "Why don't we up his carbs here? You can give him more cereal."

I gave her a wary eye. I'm not big on low carb eating for my kid. But, over the years I have learned that the only way for Riley to have decent sugars in the morning is for him to eat lower carb at breakfast. By that, I mean he usually eats around 25g carbs at breakfast.

"I guess we can try it." But, I'm sure the way I said it Dr. M knew I was very skeptical.

She poured over his logs again. She saw his mornings numbers and decided that we shouldn't mess with the morning carbs.

I said, "How about this? How about I feed him when he's hungry?"

She smiled. "That sounds good. A lot of times in the most structured families this gets forgotten."

Sometimes Riley will come to me and tell me he's hungry. I often make him wait until it's "time for him to eat". Now, I'm not. If he's hungry, he eats. If it's an hour before dinner, he can have an apple to get him through.

I know it sounds horrible. But, for the sake of the numbers, I would give him some sugar free jello (no sugar, no carbs, no calories), which I'm sure did nothing for his hunger. Or, I'd let him eat a cheese stick. Again, when I'm hungry I don't want no stinkin' cheese stick.

In the midst of the diabetes and the numbers I forgot that he's a growing little boy.

So, after over an hour Dr. M made a few basal suggestions, but not many. She was almost just at stumped as me. Besides, now that he's having these lows, his basals need to be decreased some. And, with an A1C of 7.9 it's hard to decrease anything. It's not that I changed basals right before his appointment either. The last basal change was about 2 weeks ago.

"These lows come at very random times. It's hard to see where to tweak his basals"

"Tell me about it," is all I could say.

Before we left Dr. M told me to see what I could do with his basals and if I got frustrated to call her. She could at least listen and understand my frustrations, she said.

As I stood up to leave Dr. M said something that reminded me why we make a 6 hour trek to her office every three months.

I was pulling on my coat as Riley quietly played with toys in the corner.

Dr. M said, "Mom, turn around and look at your son. He's happy. And, he's healthy. You've done a great job. You have a healthy, happy kid."

It's very frustrating to work so hard, to pour so much time and energy into something and not get the results you were hoping for.

But, as I turned to look at Riley I realized I do have what I was hoping for. I have a happy, healthy kid. A kid who when asked said that diabetes doesn't keep him from doing what he wants.

I've got to learn to stop focusing on the number and start focusing on the big picture.

" Not everything that counts can be counted. Not everything that can be counted counts."

Those words are on a sign in Dr. M's office. I like them and am going to try to focus on remembering that not everything that counts can be counted.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Mommy Check Up

Tomorrow is my "mommy check up". No, I don't have a doctor's appointment. Riley does.

We will make the 6 hour round trip to see his endo tomorrow. She will check his A1C. We get to see how well I've done as a mother of a child with diabetes.

His last A1C was 7.8. I was very disappointed because I'd been keeping him in the low 7s. Yes, he's had a few growth spurts that made his sugars go crazy. Plus, he would spike every single day at school, usually in the 300s. But, I should have been on top of it more than I was.

It wasn't until around Christmas break when I finally reigned in some of those highs. Then he was put on Prednisone. So, he ran high again for a while.

I've started logging sugars every day and looking for trends. I've been using Kevin's excel log book again. Today I printed out the past 2 weeks worth of sugars.

At first glance they look pretty good except for Monday. We took a 4 hour trip to see some basketball games. Riley spent 8 hours in the car. Then he sat and watched basketball for about another 6 hours. I expected highs so I increased his basals. It didn't work.

Finally, I decided it wasn't a movement problem but a site problem. He'd run high for several hours before I figured it out. If we hadn't of taken the stupid trip I would have caught it earlier. I just kept attributing it to his inactivity.

Like I said, at first glance the numbers look pretty good. His blood sugar average last week was 145. So far this week it's 174 (thanks to Monday). If you take Monday out of the equation it's 145.

I wish it was that easy to just take out the numbers we don't like....

Upon closer inspection and looking at the graphs and the numbers I realized that while the 145 looked good it wasn't really. He went low 6 out of 7 days last week. 6 out of 7!!!

How did I not notice until I printed it out on paper? How did I not realize the juice supply was getting low? It's amazing how I just lived through it all and didn't really take notice. And, it's scary.

So, I'm thinking now I need to decrease some basals. I'm going to wait until tomorrow and see what Dr. M wants to do.

At least he hasn't been low today. His high for the day ( as of 7:30 PM) is 158. His low: 81. Yes, it's been a splendid day. But, the day ain't over yet....

Sorry that this post is kind of rambling. I'm a little nervous about tomorrow.

I'm hoping for an A1C less than 7.8. If it's more than that I'm not sure what I'll do. I'll probably break down crying in Dr. M's office.

I know, I know "an A1C is just a number". I've said that to others before. When I see that someone else's child has a higher A1C, I don't judge. I just say "You know what, this disease is hard and dealing with growth spurts is hard. It will get better." When I read of an adult with a higher A1C I don't judge, I just think how hard all the juggling of every day life is and how much harder it must be with diabetes thrown in the mix.

But, when it's my child....

That A1C is more than just a number. Right now, for me, that number equates to good parenting. A high one means failure to properly care for my child.

But, by the same token, when Riley's A1C was 6.6 I wasn't patting myself on the back. I was worried that he ran low too much.

Because right now a 50 is not just a number. It's making my child feel horrible. It's depriving his organs of needed sugar. It affects the functioning of his brain.

And, a 358 is not just a number. I see it as nerve/kidney/eye damage. Damage that I'm causing. Damage that I can't get back.

I'll let you guys know how things go.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

A Plethora of Pictures

It's been a long time since I've posted any pictures. So, I decided to bombard you guys. Plus, I promised Chris some holiday pictures.

We'll start with the summer.

It was filled with a lot of days spent at a local beach club.

Some T-ball

Some goofiness

A trip to Ocracoke which included seeing the wild ponies.

Riley's first ride on a ferry.

Of course he went low from the excitement.

And a dip in the ocean.

October brought a "celebration" of Riley's 3rd D anniversary with a trip to the movies and Riley's favorite restaurant.

As well as Holden's last school homecoming.

Next, Holden attended Snow Ball with his girlfriend of almost 3 years, Brittaney.

Riley's school Christmas party. (notice the ever-present sugar machine)

Next, came Santa.

Riley's stuff.

Holden's stuff.

Santa's stuff (which included water for the reindeer)

Playing the Wii...

Some more gifts...

"Stop looking at me swan!"

I recently wrote of the demise of Riley's beloved fish Nemo. This was Riley's ode to Nemo.

We've been home the last two days for snow days. I've been sick both days. This morning I got up and made Riley breakfast and went back to bed. When I got up he took me in his room to see what he had done for me. And, somehow, I started to feel better.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Pumpy the 8th

Riley's 8th pump will be delivered today.

Wednesday night it alarmed that the battery was low. It was a surprise since it hadn't been that long since I'd changed it.

I removed the battery cap and pulled out another wet, soggy battery. This is the same thing that happened last time.

I cleaned out the battery compartment and popped in a new battery. I went through all the rewind/prime stuff and the pump was working again.

I tucked Riley into bed and called Animas. A few minutes later I got a call from a very nice rep. She got me to unhook Riley and go through all the trouble-shooting stuff.

She had me inspect the pump and when I did I noticed several cracks in the battery compartment. That explained the wet battery. Riley wears his pump in the bath, so water had seeped in earlier that night at bath time.

She advised me not to use the pump and to go to our back up plan. But, as soon as I was off the phone I hooked Riley back up. Unless the thing dies I'm not going back to injections.

While we may have had 8 pumps in a little less than 3 years, there has only been one that completely died and we had to go back to injections for a day.

Before the lady got off the phone she went through the instructions about how we would receive the pump and how to return the old one. I just let her talk. I didn't tell her that I was a pro at getting new pumps and returning old ones.

We've had this pump longer than any one pump so far. I looked back at my post and we got this current pump in September of 2007. We've had this one long enough that the OK has worn off of the button.

Next March it will be time to renew the pump because the warranty will be expired. I just hope this one lasts until then and there won't be a Pumpy the 9th.

(While we're on numbers, I just noticed this is my 401st post. That's a lot of complaining about diabetes.)

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

My List and Motivations

I have a list of things I've been thinking about or jotting down since before the New Year started. I have things I want to do. Things I want to accomplish.

I thought maybe putting them in writing here would help keep me motivated. They are not really New Years resolutions as much as they are things I want to work on. Or is that what a New Year resolution is?

Here they are in no particular order:

1) Clean out all the closets in my house and get them organized. (How am I doing? I've gotten one organized and cleaned out. It's the one in my living room. I did it before the New Year even started. It was unreal how much junk had accumulated in that one closet. When I drug it all out it nearly filled the living room. Anyway, one down, many more to go. I'm motivated though. Whenever I open the living room closet to hang up a coat I smile. It's so nice to have it organized and know exactly where everything is.)

2) Clean out/ organize my kitchen cabinets and drawers. (I haven't even started on this one yet. My motivation is the same as above. When things are disorganized it adds to my already stressful life when I try to find something I need.)

3) Manage my money better. (I've started on this one already. I threw the credit cards away a long time ago. Most of my bills are automatically deducted from my checking account so I don't even have to think about them. But, we spend way too much money on food. I've come up with a budget and am going to try to stick to it. My plan is to pay off medical bills and such so we can really save up some money. I really, really want a house of my own. I know we won't have one until I learn to actually balance my check book once in a while. So far I have a budget and I've stuck to it. I even balanced my check book today. I've stopped using the debit card except for gas. Every thing else I pay cash. It makes it easier to keep up with everything. My motivation is saving for a house.)

4) Get Riley's A1C to 7.0% or less. (His last A1C was 7.8 which is the highest it's been in a long time. We've been as low as 6.6 before and I'd love to see that number again. I've already started on this. I have started logging his sugars at least every other day and making basal adjustments every 3-4 days or so. I've gone back to using Kevin's log sheet. I used it a long time ago, but just got out of the habit somehow. Seeing those sugars on a graph and pie chart really help me narrow down where I need to make adjustments. We see the endo again on the 23rd. I don't plan to see much of an improvement by then. But, by the next appointment in April I want to be well on the way to a 7.0. My motivation, of course, is a healthier Riley.)

5) Take a trip with Holden. (I've looked into a few things I think he might enjoy, but money is a factor, especially since I'm trying to save. I won't go into details of what I'd like to do just in case he reads this. My motivation is spending time with my big boy and getting in some bonding time before he goes away to college.)

6) Spend more time in prayer. (I've started on this one already too. I used to pray every night before sleep but often times ended up asleep instead of in prayer. I also have done little "dart" prayers throughout the day when certain things pop in my mind. Now, I have made it a habit to pray anytime I'm driving in the car. I turn off the radio and just pray. I have a prayer list and I pray for the things on that list every day. I add things here and there. Some of you guys are on that list for needs you have mentioned. I've always believed that prayer is a powerful thing. I believe that when people pray, things happen. I still pray several times a day whenever something pops in my mind. My motivation is to have a closer relationship with God.)

7) Make a chore chart and perform those chores on a daily basis. (Right now my house cleaning is mainly done on Saturdays. Of course I straighten up and do laundry every day, but the bulk of the cleaning is done on Saturday. I have a friend who cleans a different room of the house every night. This is where having a little house comes in handy. I haven't started on this one yet and probably won't until basketball season is over. My motivation is having more time to spend with my family on Saturdays.)

I think seven is quite enough. Of course, there are more things I'd like to do. I would love to lose about 20 pounds, but I really don't have the motivation for that right now. I'm trying to stick to things that are important enough to me that I know I'll at least try to do them.

As things happen I'll try to keep you guys updated.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Calling All PWD and Parents of PWD

I am working on a project and would love to get some input from you guys, the ones who live with Type 1 diabetes on a daily basis.

I want to know what you wish the school nurse knew. What would you like for them to know about you and your child? For those with diabetes what do you wish they knew about you?

I would also love to get some personal stories from parents or kids (or you guys who used to be kids with diabetes that are now adults with diabetes.) Do you have any good stories about your school nurse? Any bad ones?

Thanks for any input you can give me.

Please send me an email with your comments:

I may have more detailed questions in the future. Right now I'm looking for the direction I should take with my project.

Thanks for your help.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Goog Bye Old Friend

Last night after I tucked Riley into bed I asked Michael to go in and feed Nemo, Riley's fish.

Michael went into Riley's room and a few moments later I heard Riley crying. It wasn't his usual cry. This cry seemed more urgent.

I jumped up off the couch and ran into his room. When I got there I saw Michael with Riley in his arms. They were both looking at the fish bowl.

Nemo had died.

Riley got him for his birthday almost 3 years ago. His bowl stayed in Riley's room and Riley would talk to him from time to time.

I know it sounds strange, but Nemo was like part of the family. Anytime you went into Riley's room he'd swim over to the side of the bowl as if to see what was going on. If you got close enough sometimes he'd puff himself up to make himself look all big and bad.

Riley cried for a good solid 30 minutes last night. When his dad flushed him down the toilet Riley insisted on watching. When he sobbed, "Goodbye Nemo", I lost it.

I wasn't so much crying over the fish as I was crying because Riley was upset. I will miss him though.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Why We Blog

I was sitting in a meeting today with other school nurses.

The nurse next to me leaned over and said that her daughter is in daycare with a little girl who is on a pump.

She said the daycare told her that the little girl's sugar was in the 400s and the mom said to give her insulin and that was it.

The nurse went on to say that if it were her child she would have taken her to the ER.

It took all I could muster not to rip her a new one.

All I did was sneer at her and say, "It happens."

It's all I could say. I was so mad but, she's a co-worker and I do actually like her so I just let it go.

I think I might ask the lead nurse if I can do a little presentation to the school nurses about Type 1 diabetes.

If a nurse feels this way imagine what the teachers at Riley's school must say behind my back. He was in the upper 300s two days in a row at school .

I don't really know where I'm going with this and I don't really know what to do about it. Maybe we could all gather the whole world together and let them know?

I guess blogging is the closest we can come to that.

Answering My Own Questions

Thank you guys for your responses to my last post. They have really helped a lot. Mostly they have made me realize that I'm not alone and that maybe I'm not doing things so badly after all.

It was interesting to see how many of you eat cereal for breakfast. I've always heard that's a big no no (even though that's what Riley eats).

I thought I'd share my answers to the same questions.

1) What do you/your child eat for a typical breakfast? (I’m looking something relatively low carb that would be of interest to a 6 year old and doesn’t require a lot of time to fix. I barely get to work on time as it is.)

Riley used to eat cereal for breakfast. I’d switch the brand every once in a while, but not much. The cereal and milk usually ranged around 25-28 g carbs. The past few mornings he’s eaten mini sausage biscuits (24g total) and he’s been high at lunch and even higher a couple of hours later. I’m wondering if the fat and protein in the sausage is doing this. So, he ate cereal again this morning. I only switched to give him something different, but he complained and wanted cereal anyway.

2) How often do you typically change your basals? (I know this will vary greatly for everyone.)

I’d say it’s at least a couple of times a month. But, I think I should be doing it more often.

3) If you test 1- 1/2 hours after lunch and you’re in the 300s and your pump says you have enough insulin on board to cover the sugar do you override the pump and give insulin anyway? If so, how do you determine how much to give?

It depends on what Riley ate. Sometimes I override (like the last two days at school when he was in the 300s and the pump said not to give him any insulin). And, sometimes I wait and see if it comes down with the insulin he has on board. I have no formula for how much I give.

4) Do you or your child stick to a routine pretty much all of the time? (ex: breakfast , snack, lunch, etc at the same time every day.)

He is in a routine at school. On the weekend he’s not in as much routine. He used to be. He used to eat his meals and snacks at around the same time every day. Now I’ve gotten to the point that if he’s not hungry I don’t make him eat. He ate a much later supper than usual last night because he wasn’t ready to eat yet.

5) Do you count carbs by measuring with measuring cups or do you weigh your food to find out carbs?

I measure every single thing (except at restaurants). I don’t weigh but use measuring cups. Or if it’s chips or something like that I figure out how many carbs per chip and count them out one by one. I really need to invest in a scale.

6) Do you bolus before, during, or after meals?

Some of all. I prefer to bolus before if I know he’s going to eat everything. But, I never bolus until the food is in front of him and he’s getting ready to eat. If we’re at a buffet or something like that I’ll wait until after. Occasionally I’ll do it during because I’ll see that he likes it and is going to eat it all. He gets bloused after at school.

7) Do you log sugars every day?

No. I used to. I used to be obsessive about it. I’ve always said how important it is and I do believe it’s important, but just got out of the habit. It’s one of the things I’m working on for the New Year. I’m starting to use Kevin’s excel logbook again and I’m going to purchase a cord for the Freestyle Lite so I can just download his sugars onto the computer.

8) How long do you wait for a pattern before changing basals? (For example, I look for a three day pattern and make adjustments by that.) If you do this, do you wait 3 more days and if the numbers still aren’t responding adjust basals again? ( I feel like maybe I’m not being aggressive enough with the changes?)

Already said I wait for a three day pattern. I have increased again after another 3 days, but usually wait at least a week before making more changes. I really feel like I’m not being aggressive enough with my changes. I think changing every three days may be what I need to do until his sugars start doing better.

9) How much do you increase basals at one time? Do you do it by a certain percentage or just for one part of the day?

I usually see what part of the day he’s running high and change that first. I’ll change a couple of different basals at a time usually. I don’t change by any certain percentage. I used to increase by 0.025 but have found that’s not doing the trick anymore. So, now I go up by 0.05 at a time now.

10) Do you have different basal rates for different days (for example a weekday basal rate and a weekend basal rate)? If so do you use the weekend rates for long weekends and holidays?

Yes. Riley has a weekday rate and a weekend rate. When he’s not in school he’s on the weekend rate. For some reason at school he needs a big increase in his basal from 11 Am to 2 PM that he doesn’t need when he’s not in school. Riley also has 8 different basal rates in every day.

11) If you /your child is at a birthday party and you/their sugar is high do you/they skip the cake and goodies or eat anyway and bolus for the high too?

I let him eat the cake. There may have been once when I didn’t. I feel guilty about it every time though. I know it’s not what’s best for his body. But, it is probably what’s best for his mind.

12) Do you think I’m completely insane for wanting you to answer all these questions?

No comment. I don’t want to incriminate myself.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Help Me Please I'm at the End of My Rope

I cried about diabetes today for the first time in a long time. It came out of frustration with a disease that I just can’t figure out no matter how hard I try.

Riley’s sickness coupled with Prednisone over the Christmas holidays made it pretty much impossible to test basals like I wanted to. He’s run high, higher, and highest lately and I feel guilty that I’m not doing something right, that I’m not paying enough attention. His last A1C was 7.8, the highest it’s been in a long time. We have another appointment this month and I’m sure it’s still that high or higher.

You parents (and PWD) out there know where I’m coming from. It’s frustrating when your best just isn’t good enough. It makes you question if you’re doing the best at all.

I’m going to ask a few questions and I would love a response from you guys. I know that diabetes is very individualized and that what works for some may not work for others. I would still like to see your answers. They may point me in a direction I haven’t tried yet. I know that some of these questions will not pertain to people that are not on the pump. Just answer whatever questions you can. Please post any answers you have by comment or if you’d rather send them by email that would be fine too. (My email is in my profile.)

1) What do you/your child eat for a typical breakfast? (I’m looking something relatively low carb that would be of interest to a 6 year old and doesn’t require a lot of time to fix. I barely get to work on time as it is.)

2) How often do you typically change your basals? (I know this will vary greatly for everyone.)

3) If you test 1- 1/2 hours after lunch and you’re in the 300s and your pump says you have enough insulin on board to cover the sugar do you override the pump and give insulin anyway? If so, how do you determine how much to give?

4) Do you or your child stick to a routine pretty much all of the time? (ex: breakfast , snack, lunch, etc at the same time every day.)

5) Do you count carbs by measuring with measuring cups or do you weigh your food to find out carbs?

6) Do you bolus before, during, or after meals?

7) Do you log sugars every day?

8) How long do you wait for a pattern before changing basals? (For example, I look for a three day pattern and make adjustments by that.) If you do this, do you wait 3 more days and if the numbers still aren’t responding adjust basals again? ( I feel like maybe I’m not being aggressive enough with the changes?)

9) How much do you increase basals at one time? Do you do it by a certain percentage or just for one part of the day?

10) Do you have different basal rates for different days (for example a weekday basal rate and a weekend basal rate)? If so do you use the weekend rates for long weekends and holidays?

11) If you /your child is at a birthday party and you/their sugar is high do you/they skip the cake and goodies or eat anyway and bolus for the high too?

12) Do you think I’m completely insane for wanting you to answer all these questions?

Thank you in advance for any advice you can give.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Another Meme

I found this meme over at Allison's and couldn't help but participate.

Rules: Bold: Things that you have done.
Italics: Things you would like to do but never have.
Normal print: Things you have never done/would not like to do.

1. Started your own blog: On November 19, 2005, 2 weeks after Riley’s diagnosis

2. Slept under the stars: I went camping once when I was about 8 or 9. I didn’t really enjoy it and don’t plan to try it again.

3. Played in a band: Does Guitar Hero or Rock Band count?

4. Visited Hawaii: This is the #1 travel destination on my list.

5. Watched a meteor shower

6. Given more than you can afford to charity: I did this several years ago when the town I lived in was ravaged by a flood. My house was fine, but three houses down the water was up to the ceiling. I went home every day after work to piles of soggy mattresses and soggy personal items on the side of the road. It was depressing. My church took up money for those affected by the flood. I gave more than I could afford. A few weeks later a totally unexpected check arrived in the mail for the exact amount I had given. God is good.

7. Been to Disneyland/world – I went to Disney World when I was 13. I would love to go back and take Riley some day. I always wanted to take Holden to0 but never did.

8. Climbed a mountain; sounds like too much work to me

9. Held a praying mantis

10. Sang a solo (in the shower): I don’t sing in the shower. I save that for my car.

11. Bungee jumped

12. Visited Paris- Michael and I were talking about this just last night. I’ve never had any desire to visit Paris.

13. Watched a lightning storm at sea. – I think it would be beautiful.

14. Taught yourself an art from scratch.

15. Adopted a child: I used to have this desire, but I can’t say that I do anymore.

16. Had food poisoning.

17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty: I’ve never even been to New York.

18. Grown your own vegetables. : I’ve grown tomatoes before, but that’s it.

19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France – Again, no desire to ever visit France.

20. Slept on an overnight train. – I’ve never even been on a train, but would love to experience an overnight train trip.

21. Had a pillow fight.

22. Hitch hiked

23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill. - I’ve wanted to, I’ve just never done it. Call me too honest for my own good.

24. Built a snow fort

25. Held a lamb- I’ve petted one at a petting zoo before.

26. Gone skinny dipping.- I'm afraid my body has passed the point of no return on this one

27. Run a Marathon – Another thing that is just too much work.

28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice

29. Seen a total eclipse

30. Watched a sunrise or sunset.

31. Hit a home run

32. Been on a cruise – This is what Holden wants for graduation, a family cruise. He’s not getting it though. We just don’t have that kind of cash.

33. Seen Niagara Falls in person

34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors

35. Seen an Amish community – Got stuck behind a horse and buggy too.

36. Taught yourself a new language.

37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied. – When I first graduated from college and was still living with my parents while working full-time as a nurse. In other words it was a long, long time ago.

38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person

39. Gone rock climbing

40. Seen Michelangelo’s David

41. Sung karaoke: I have a very small desire to do this. I really can’t sing but still think it would be fun. I’d have to be in the right company to do it.

42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt

43. Bought a stranger a meal in a restaurant

44. Visited Africa: This is number 2 on my list of places to visit. I want to go on an African safari.

45. Walked on a beach by moonlight. – I’ve done this many times. I live on the coast.

46. Been transported in an ambulance: When I was in a wreck when I was 18. I wasn’t really hurt all that badly, but they transported me anyway because my car was totaled.

47. Had your portrait painted.

48. Gone deep sea fishing.

49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person

50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris

51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling

52. Kissed in the rain

53. Played in the mud. - I have two boys.

54. Gone to a drive-in theater. - I was a little girl but I have faint memories of it.

55. Been in a movie

56. Visited the Great Wall of China

57. Started a business – I just don’t know what kind I want to start.

58. Taken a martial arts class

59. Visited Russia

60. Served at a soup kitchen

61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies

62. Gone whale watching.

63. Gotten flowers for no reason- - thank you Michael

64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma- I haven’t done it in a long time. I’m going to try to get back to donating regularly again. It’s such a simple thing to do and you can help save a life.

65. Gone sky diving

66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp

67. Bounced a check

69. Saved a favorite childhood toy

70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial

71. Eaten Caviar

72. Pieced a quilt

73. Stood in Times Square

74. Toured the Everglades

75. Been fired from a job

76. Seen the Changing of the Guard in London

77. Broken a bone- finger when I was 7 (I smashed it in a car door); hand when I was 18 (playing basketball), and another finger when I was 27 (trying to catch my dog by her collar)

78. Been on a speeding motorcycle- I don’t even want to be on a non-speeding motorcycle.

79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person- It must be an awesome sight to behold.

80. Published a book- much like the business , I don’t know what I’d write about

81. Visited the Vatican

82. Bought a brand new car- I’ve bought 4 brand new cars. ( 5 if you count Michael’s car which I help make payments on.)

83. Walked in Jerusalem

84. Had your picture in the newspaper

85. Read the entire Bible

86. Visited the White House

87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating- uh, gross

88. Had chickenpox- I was in kindergarten. I don’t remember it.

89. Saved someone’s life.- I’m a nurse. It comes with the job.

90. Sat on a jury- It was kind of interesting.

91. Met someone famous- I guess it depends on who I’m meeting.

92. Joined a book club

93. Lost a loved one

94. Had a baby. – two to be exact

95. Seen the Alamo in person

96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake

97. Been involved in a law suit

98. Owned a cell phone

99. Been stung by a bee

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Year in Review


One of Holden's friends who he'd known almost his whole life got into a wreck and was unconscious for a while. He is also one of the youth at church. He turned out to be OK after a while. It took him a few days to completely wake up and he couldn't play basketball for several weeks due to a concussion. I'm so thankful that he turned out to be OK. He was 17 at the time.

Holden played 9 basketball games.

I had my yearly physical. I was found to have some "female problems" and would have to start taking monthly shots. I was not pleased.


Holden played four more basketball games.

Holden turned 17. We celebrated a few days later with lasagna ( A rare treat at our house due to what it does to Riley's sugars.)

We had a Valentine's super at church. The men cooked for the women.

Riley went on a field trip to see a play. He rode a bus there. The teacher called me on the way to inform me that Riley's sugar was 42.

My Granny celebrated a birthday.

I had my first injection that I mentioned before. I didn't have any side effects for a while.

I attended a Teddy Bear Fair with Riley. It was another school field trip. I went because after the fair they went out to eat pizza. I knew I needed to be there to bolus for this very tricky food.

A girl that I had known since she was born was killed in a wreck. She was 21 years old. Her sister and I were the same age and always rode to school together growing up. When Holden started school she and he would ride together. Her mom and I took turns taking them and picking them up. I still think about her mother often. I know the holidays were especially hard for her.

Riley got the flu. Yes, he'd had his flu shot, but it didn't work. I was terrified that he'd end up in DKA but it turns out he didn't do so badly. He did miss almost a whole week of school though. The rest of us took pills to hopefully keep from getting the flu ourselves.


Riley had been pumping for 2 years.

I got my second injection. By now I was having some side effects. (hot flashes)

Michael and I celebrated our 8th wedding anniversary. I finally gave in and took a trip away from Riley. Although we were really only 2 hours away it was still hard to leave. It was the longest I'd been away from Riley and the farthest I'd been away from him since his diagnosis 2 1/2 years earlier. Michael and I had a great time and it was nice to get away for a little while.

I was lunch bunch mom at Riley's school. I showed up and monitored the kids while the teacher got a break. Not only did she get to eat her meal in quiet she also didn't have to worry about carbs and insulin for a change.

I attended a party of my cousin's son.

Riley started soccer practice. He had one game in March.

We had our spring revival at church.

I helped host a St. Patrick's Day party at Riley's school.

I attended Riley's Easter Egg Hunt at school.

Riley saw the endo. His A1C was 7.2.

We attended another Easter Egg Hunt at church.

Holden celebrated his re-birthday (the day he became a Christian.)

We ate Easter dinner at my Granny's.

Riley had blood work done to check for celiac disease.


Riley had 8 soccer games.

Riley went to the dentist.

I got a kidney stone. I'd never had them before. It was very painful, but not as painful as child birth as I'd heard other people say.

I got another injection and had another ultra sound for my problems. The side effects were worse and it turns out the injections didn't actually fix the problem.

Michael had a birthday.

I attended another field trip with Riley to see the play Sleeping Beauty.

Holden attended the prom. Since he was a junior his class was in charge of holding the prom. Michael and I chaperoned. Michael was a valet. I think right about that time was when I started thinking about Holden becoming a senior and leaving and going off to college.

Michael started playing in an adult soccer league. Holden later started playing also.

Riley went to the doctor for a sinus infection.

Riley's school had their annual Spring Festival. He sang and then played some games.

Riley started T-ball practice.


Riley had 4 T-ball games.

The family went to a local children's home to help clean up the grounds.

I helped paint the backdrop for Riley's kindergarten play. The play was held the next week. Riley was an adorable panda bear.

I provided a dessert for the teachers at Riley's school to show appreciation for all they do.

We had a mother's day supper at church. And, I cooked a mother's day supper for my mom.

My little man turned 6. We celebrated by going to a Japanese steakhouse. It's his favorite place to eat.

I helped decorate for Holden's athletic banquet which was held the next day. I was once again confronted with how old he's getting.

I once again helped out Riley's teacher and helped with lunch.

I attended Riley's end of the year party at our local beach club.

I quit my job at home health.

We attended Holden's academic banquet.

Riley went to the doctor twice. He was seen 3 times in 6 weeks for a sinus infection. The last round of antibiotics finally cleared it up.

We attended a birthday party for my cousin's little girl.


I attended baccalaureate service at Holden's school. He was a marshal.

I attended graduation at Holden's school and cried thinking about next year.

I attended the graduation ceremony for Holden's friend who had gotten in the wreck in January.

I had my last day at my job that I had been at for 10 years. I cried all the way home.

I started my school nurse job.

Michael and I attended a wedding for one of his co-workers.

I helped with my church's Bible School.

I sold my piano that was given to me as a Christmas present when I was 9 years old. It was taking up too much room and we needed the money.


My mom and dad celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary.

I had the whole month off because school nurses don't work in the summer!!

I had another ultra sound. It turns out the problem I have needs surgery. But, not immediate surgery. The doctor said it was up to me when I wanted it. He told me when I got tired of the pain to come in and we'd schedule it. (I haven't scheduled it yet.)

Riley went to the endo again. His A1C was 7.4.

I helped out with Bible School again.

My family and I attended a mission trip. We spent time at a couple of children's home as well as a nursing home.

We spent a day at the beach. Riley rode on a ferry for the first time.


I took my certification test to become a school nurse.

I started back at my school nurse job.

My dad had surgery for a growth that was in his throat. The doctor informed us that he would send off a sample but he was pretty sure it was cancer.

Michael and I went and helped at a clean up day at our church.

I helped with Bible School again.

We took another weekend trip to the beach.

The kids went back to school. Holden was now officially a senior.


My dad went to the doctor and got his test results: Stage 3 cancer of the throat. He was told he'd have to undergo radiation for 5-6 weeks.

Riley joined church and became a Christian.

A week later we rushed Riley to the emergency room because he was having trouble breathing. He was given an inhaler and placed on Prednisone which wreaked havoc on his sugars.

I found out that I passed my school nurse certification exam!! ( It was a HUGE relief.)

My daddy celebrated his 59th birthday. He got his markings for radiation on the same day.

Daddy found out that in addition to radiation he would be getting chemo also.

Daddy started his radiation and chemo.

Riley started soccer practice and games again.

We went back to the local children's home to help them clean up their grounds again.

We attended the local county fair.

Riley was baptised.


Riley continued with soccer practice and games.

Holden took the SAT.

Riley's 3 year diabetes anniversary.

We took Holden to tour the college of his choice (almost 4 hours away from home).

We went to fall revival at our church.

We attended Fall Festival at Riley's school. I worked a booth helping kids paint pumpkins.

Holden started basketball practice.

Riley had another endo. appointment. His A1C was 7.8 (the highest it had been in a long time)

My daddy continued with chemo and radiation. It was making him sick. He couldn't eat. He couldn't talk. His hair was falling out. On top of all that, he got pneumonia and spent a week in the hospital.

We took Riley to Trunk or Treat at our church.


Daddy finished up with his radiation and chemo!!

Michael and I went to a work/clean-up day at the kid's school.

Riley continued with soccer.

Holden started playing basketball. He dislocated his knee cap in the first game and had to sit out a couple of games.

Holden applied to college.

I attended a cousin's wedding.

I attended the funeral of my cousin's husband's dad.

I celebrated Thanksgiving at my Granny's house.


Holden's basketball games continued.

Holden was accepted to the college of his choice. (Did I mention that it's almost 4 hours away?)

My mom celebrated her 58th birthday.

Riley attended 4 birthday parties in 1 week.

We took Riley to a local Christmas parade.

We attended a church Christmas supper as well as the church Christmas play.

Riley was plagued with wheezing again and was once again placed on Prednisone just in time for Christmas.

Michael and I went Christmas shopping.

I attended Riley's school Christmas party.

The kids and Michael and I all got out of school for 2 weeks.

My dad was declared cancer-free!!!!

We had a wonderful and blessed Christmas.

Wow. Looking back at all that I realize why I'm so tired all the time.

I wish each of you a very happy new year!!!!