7 Thoughts To Let Go Of Before 2015

Introspective

1) It’s all my fault.

This can be the default response to any result caused by diabetes. At the end of the day, we’re the only ones in control. We can control our reactions but we can’t always control the circumstances.

2) No one understands what I go through.

Everyone has problems. It’s fine to be upset, angry, and frustrated. It’s never okay to pretend like no one else understands a struggle. People can help us, just give them a chance. Continue reading

Bring This Dish To New Years Eve To Start The Year With More Friends

Sweet Potato, Black Bean, Avocado, Mango Bowl

This bowl delivers just what everyone wants after a month full of stuffing, fudge, turkey, and pie–an explosion of taste not involving sugar or butter. It’s quick, incredibly nutrient-rich, and full of the slow-digesting, fiber-rich carbs. Perfect for a New Years Eve party or family get-together, try out this recipe from The Engine 2 Diet. Continue reading

Tuesday Topic: Health Tips My Ass

Insurance

Not long ago, I changed my medical insurance plan because ONE of my doctors did not accept my existing package.  4 hours later and an increase of $70 a month – my policy changed.  While spending hours on the site, I opted to receive weekly health tips for diabetics.  I’ve enjoyed the tips because it gives me the laugh until you cry moment each week.

Tips from Blue Cross & Blue Shield:

  • BCBS: Limit the holiday treats you enjoy. Don’t eat too many sugary sweets.
    • ME: For love of all things holy – you shouldn’t be eating sweets.  Moderation – there is nothing wrong with a sliver of pie or half of a cookie.

Continue reading

Art & Diabetes = A Masterpiece with a Message

Begaye Piece

Super Size Angels by Marwin Begaye

I’m an A+ house sitter and while overseeing a friend’s home over a series of weekends, I grew fond of a particular print in her hallway.  One day while strolling down the hall I stopped dead in my tracks – that angelic figure is a monitor with a test strip and a reading of 356!!!!!

Monitor - Begaye

After further investigation, I noticed the needles and bottles of insulin.  This piece is about diabetes! Continue reading

Five Books That Shaped My 2014

the-alchemist-quotes-deep-wise-sayings-universe

I like to think that books allow another mind into my own. Life’s about growth. To me, books can be that stimulus. These are not books written about the diabetic journey. These are books about life. From my experience, diabetes goes as my life goes.

2014 was a year to remember, with these five books serving as my guide:

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

I walked away asking myself one question: “Will I do everything in my power to chase my dreams? Do I have what it takes?” Through the eyes of a young shepherd looking for his treasure, it encourages you to join the journey.

The War of Art by Steven Pressfield

This was a gut check. Steven Pressfield identifies Resistance as enemy number one–the force pushing us to settle. A must read for anyone doing anything. Continue reading

Tuesday Topic: Is Your “Real Range” Putting You At Risk For Complications?

Diabetes Complications

So, this is touchy. Just thinking about an A1C test can make your pulse go up. It defines us. Should it? There’s an argument for both sides–but at the end of the day–yeah, it goes a long way towards determining future complications. In speaking with my CDE (certified diabetes educator), we broached the likelihood of complications topic. This was my question, “What’s the A1C number where complications (foot, kidneys, eyes) are unlikely?” She responded by saying 7 or below.

Alright, according to this calculator, we need to be averaging a sugar of 153 to make it happen.

It seems straight-forward. Keep your sugar below 153 and life is good. Here’s where it gets dicey.

We all have a number–a number where we feel our best. Energized. Competent. Compassionate. That’s the real number. That’s the number that stands alone outside of our targets. This number has been sculpted from years of diabetes education, lessons learned, scars, and regret. For me, I feel like I can save the world at 140. Below it, I wouldn’t say that I feel low, but I would say that feel anxiety. Above it, I feel alright until about 180. Continue reading

Surrender To Your Spiritual Side

mind body spirit image

After an incredibly busy couple of weeks, I chose to take a “mental health” day.  As I delved into numerous articles and posts I had been hoarding in hopes of one day reading, I finally chipped away at the stack.  My first article was published in October by the AARP focusing on Type 2 diabetes.  Shortly after reading it, I phoned my mother and reached out to Ryan and a fellow DDG writer.  The article touched on how important, yet how rarely your mental state and spirituality (vital for a healthy lifestyle) are talked about.  So in a time of holiday craziness, this post is short and sweet because I feel the message is clear and a good one to start your Monday. Continue reading

Damage Control: Keeping Your Cool When Low

Keep Your Cool When Low

Picture this. You walk into a party, feeling like you own the place. You’re witty. You’re striking up conversations like Jimmy Fallon. Then, paranoia hits you. Thoughts like these flood your mind — “Why did I wear this? This looks ridiculous. Why am I even here? Should I just go home?” Before this runaway train fueled by low blood sugar sends you off into self-loathing, let’s get you back on track. Follow these tips to salvage evenings, meetings, and conversations while in the hypoglycemic zone.

Don’t be afraid to let people know that you’re low.

This seems relatively straight-forward but then again, is anything straight-forward when low? Even if you just met this person or group, say something like this, “Excuse me, but I have diabetes and could use some sugar. Would you mind if I stepped away for a moment to find some?” This is fairly formal. For the more informal scenario, go with this, “I can barely understand what I’m saying, nevertheless what you’re saying. I’m going to find something to eat or drink.” Ignore the paleo guy in the background telling you that carbs are bad for you. Continue reading

Tis the Season to Call in Sick

sick woman at work

As cold and flu season is upon us, a few days ago I was reminded that having T1D can be a bit stressful this time of year.  I currently have four employees and they’re dropping like flies.  One of them recently contacted me to say he wasn’t feeling well.  I had been around him earlier in the day and thought he looked a little pale so I encouraged him to go home.

Fast forward five days and I’m working along side my newest employee.  She abruptly jumps up and exits the room.  I didn’t think much about it as we were in the middle of an exciting project and she could have been eager to pull something from storage.  Upon her return, she looks like a zombie.  She shyly admits she had just thrown up.  My first thought is, “Are you pregnant?”, but quickly remember that is inappropriate to ask.  THANK YOU filter for working today.  She assures me she feels better and thinks it might have been something she ate earlier in the day.

Soon after the vomiting episode, the head cold employee joins us and nonchalantly mentions his cold was actually the flu. WTF are you doing here!!!  He promises me he is no longer contagious and is eager to work.  This scenario sparked a conversation I’ve only had a few times in my life – Continue reading