It’s time to get rid of the word ‘weak’ when talking about people navigating chronic illnesses. In reality, we are some of the strong, unique and resilient people in the world, and Madison Thorn is spreading that very message. She was fueled by a nasty protest sign and turned that energy into a thought provoking project highlighting other high risk humans like ourselves, a story that needs to be told.
People living with diabetes don’t just need the latest and greatest tech, they need real solutions to unique problems! Kayla Mattingly always knew she wanted 3-4 kids from thestart, but never imagined two of her four sons would be diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. She rolled with the autoimmune punches, but an insulin allergy has her family and medical team scrambling for solutions. Type IV Hypersensitivity to insulin is rare, but she has found a handful of other parents who are looking for answers.
In gearing up for this epic unicorn episode I sincerely reflected on the impact becoming a diabetes advocate has had on my life. Two of the first people I discovered were Kerri Sparling and Scott Johnson. I had found my people! Reading their stories and watching them present at various conferences gave me the courage to “really” find my voice. The podcast and blog posts have lifted a huge weight, one I didn’t realize was there. I am truly blessed.
Today, January 7th, 2021 I celebrate my 29thyear on this beautiful planet and considering the current shit storm of world events and quarantine I would normally be sad, BUT connecting with my diapeeps every Thursday during the Real Life Diabetes Happy Hour has literally saved my life. I would love for you to join me tonight or any Thursday you are free to pop in between 5 – 6:15pm CST. Please be sure to register – CLICK HERE.
This birthday pic was taken three weeks before I was diagnosed with T1D and celebrating with other people who “get it” is a reminder – I am not alone and you don’t have to be either.
Thankfully, many of us living with Type 1 diabetes have a supportive parent(s), but have we really taken time to think about how our diagnosis affected our loved ones. When Janet’s media kit fell on my desk, I knew I wanted to connect. Their story of strength and partnership as they navigated through this disease, both highs and lows, is a reminder – we are not alone. Continue reading →
I’m new to San Antonio, Texas and have thoroughly enjoyed soaking up the culture. On November 1st and 2nd they celebrate Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) which also kicks off Diabetes Awareness Month. As I researched and witnessed firsthand this beautiful ceremony a few emotions surfaced. My Type 1 diabetes diagnosis almost 38 years ago was literally a death sentence. For most of my life I’ve worn this weight alone, but my mindset has shifted with the current pandemic and political state of affairs/nightmares. Continue reading →
Can you imagine being diagnosed with T1D and five years later stating you’re in the best health of your life? In this episode, we’ll be learning more about my new friend from the land downunda’, Astra-Lia ‘Ozzy’ England. Several years ago, Ozzy would receive news from the doctor that would shake her world; a T1D diagnosis. In a matter of weeks, she went from living a relatively normal life (albeit with Celiac disease) to being put on insulin therapy. Her fiery personality and unapologetic curiosity about life with diabetes made her the perfect guest.
You don’t have to hide, let’s have the tough talks. In this episode you’ll learn why this is so important with guests Matt Tarro & Brandon Denson the Founders of Bolus Maximus. Matt and Brandon have created this community with a focus on filling a major void in the male community, the need for vulnerable connections for men dealing with diabetes. Both diagnosed at later ages, they know first hand how diabetes can get in the way of your goals and plans. Now they are on a passionate mission to help those grinding through this disease. Let’s jump right into their stories and start talking about some hard truths and good advice.
The Real Life Diabetes Virtual Happy Hour has brought SO many interesting PWD together. We thoroughly enjoy basic pub talk, poking fun, cracking jokes, live music, embarrassing some of us crappy trivia lovers, etc. Recently I connected with a woman who wowed me with her written word skills.
* I feel confident you will enjoy this reading as much as we did. Continue reading →
The battle against diabetes doesn’t have to be done alone, we need community. That is the mindset of today’s guests (yes plural!) the Diabuddies App Founders, Amy, Sarah and Charlene. As we dive in, you’ll learn how these ladies’ experience with diabetes led them to create something ALL people living with diabetes can support. Continue reading →
I’ve hardcore quarantined since March and recently started to feel the impact it has on me mentally. I miss my friends, I miss strolling the aisles of Target, I miss spending too much time looking at fresh produce, I miss brunch and definitely miss happy hour at a local watering hole. As I shed tears writing this post, I thought – why not do something about it. Continue reading →
For newly diagnosed T2D, it might be overwhelming and many fall into diabetes denial. In an effort to change this mentality, Tracey shares an authentic story of how a question from her daughter was the “aha” moment to take things seriously. In this episode, Tracey unapologetically shares her story because there is no shame in the game! Diabetes is a family affair and her energy, lifestyle choices and overall mentality is hopefully contagious – in a good way.
I am wrapping up this decade with one last longepisode, but I promise, it is worth listening to the very end and entertaining if nothing else. The theme of this episode is knowing the difference between being a constant, and being a pest. Monica backs this motto by providing actionable items and tips to help us relinquish fear and get involved. Her demeanor is calm and her voice is soft, but her words are powerful and changing lives for all people living with diabetes. Continue reading →
Yesterday, in a bit of a panic, I reached out to friends and family because I was scared, really scared. The ugly cry kept me from sharing my real fears – was it just a gallbladder episode or something worse? Within an hour, I was headed to the ER, but not before packing a bag – insulin, needles, pen needles, extra sensor, skin tac, tester, test strips, healthy snacks, low BG snacks, journal, phone charger and head phones. Continue reading →
Chris and his wife Candace are honest, vulnerable and a little sappy at times, but are the perfect reminder there are still good ones out there. You know, the ones who support you and your diabetes through the good, the bad and a serious hypo while educating their three kiddos along the way. Together, they resonate love, compassion and a supportive partnership and are role models for us all – diabetes or not. Continue reading →
After reading the Cali’flour Kitchen cookbook from cover to cover, I knew Amy Lacey would be the perfect guest to wrap up diabetes awareness month. Her desire to bring back dietary normalcy, especially her family’s pizza nights, after her auto immune diagnosis was the driving force behind Cali’flour Foods – the first cauliflower pizza crust. Her brand will bring pizza back into the lives of people like me, who live with Type 1 diabetes. Continue reading →
I was honored to be chosen as one of ten Patient Voice Contest winners for the DiabetesMine Innovation Summit. During the two day event, I was surrounded by industry leaders, tech gurus, genius creators of diabetes apps, and many fellow advocates. This Summit coalesced the mother lode of advancements in diabetes management, and a few of the brave souls in attendance took time to chat with me. Though our interviews were brief, each guest radiated an optimism and passion for helping to better the lives of those of us living with diabetes, and I hope their energy inspires you as well.
This globetrotting T1D just embarked on a 12-month remote year journey with a focus to reach one million people living with diabetes. Her candid approach, charismatic attitude, and ability to touch on hot topics will transform lives and prevent diabetes burnout. With 39 1/2 years of experience and a handful of degrees, Dr. Jody is an expert in all things diabetes making her the perfect guest.
It was just by chance our paths would cross at a T1D kiddo and parent support group. I rarely attend and Rebecca and her husband James were guests that evening. When we split off into another room, Rebecca shared her heartfelt story to the parents and there was not a dry eye in the room. For many of us who have lived with T1D for decades, sharing the impact this disease has on our state of mind can be difficult to recollect, much less share. Rebecca found the courage and is turning a life altering experience into a philanthropic dream.
Last December, Anne came to the rescue, offering help during my insulin crisis while in San Antonio, Texas. She, like many people in the DOC (diabetes online community) stayed in contact with me while I resolved the problem. She is a leader in the diabetes community and her wealth of knowledge has helped so many T1Ds and their families.
Recently, Mayor David Holt declared a pride week in my home town of Oklahoma City. It made me think – do I know any LGBTQ T1Ds? Yep, and not only is she my friend, she is one of the only people I know that has had diabetes as long as I have – hence the title – T1D dinosaurs. We are a rare breed and it was thrilling to sit with Bonnie and share what life was like 35+ years ago growing up with this disease. Bonnie and Jennifer did a fabulous job sharing how managing diabetes is sometimes a group effort.
I’ve been preparing this heartfelt episode for quite some time, and after months of research and polling friends & family, I am thrilled to announce Patreon, a phenomenal and trusted membership platform. All of the Real Life Diabetes podcast episodes will remain free, but members will receive perks. There are five tiers – all of which are affordable so I hope you will take a moment to check it out.
My adventure to Arkansas, as one of the first Real Life Diabetes “taking the show on the road”, was a smashing success. This couple had me tearing up within the first hour and laughing out loud at the same time. They were welcoming, kind, a ton of fun and not scared to share very personal stories of living, as a couple, with Type 1 diabetes.
I’ve been holding onto this post for awhile, but while geeking out on Netflix documentaries, I stumbled upon Brené Brown’s – A Call to Courage. Damn her! I’ve been a huge fan of Brené and find she pops into my life exactly when I need her. It is time for me to be vulnerable… Continue reading →
This fearless forty something T1D does an incredible job of sharing her story. Cynthia is a T1D veteran who has challenged and/or been fired by an endo. or two, faced diabulimia head on, fearlessly experimented with the newest medications on the market and laughed at the thought of being a high risk, geriatric pregnancy. Continue reading →
The Diabetes Daily Grind and Real Life Diabetes podcast is growing and in order to do so, we need help. We’re pursuing every avenue possible and hope you will take time each day to vote until April 1, 2019. CLICK on the link below to vote and please share with the world!
After a long hiatus, I’m back and doing my best to use new technology… I chose to kickoff this new wave of podcasts with a “hot topic“, insulin affordability and accessibility. The DOC (diabetes online community) has been harping on this for ages, but as the topic is now international news after a recent wave of “published” deaths due to insulin rationing, it was time to chat with the author of Insulin’s High Cost Leads To Lethal Rationing, Bram Sables-Smith.
Oklahoma is thankful to have an upcoming state senate candidate who in not only a second generation educator, but the parent of a child recently diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. In this episode we touch on her son’s diagnosis, insulin affordability & accessibility, and Carri’s day to day life on the campaign trail with three kids. Please note – this is not a political plug, but just an opportunity to have someone in her shoes share life with managing the real world and a child with Type 1 diabetes.
It’s funny how the thing you set out to do ends up being done to you. We had one goal when launching Diabetes Daily Grind back in 2014–give real support for the diabetes life (it was once ‘diabetic life’, but we got with the times, thanks to Kelly McKeever). I had it all figured out, the whole living with diabetes thing. I’d write articles for the website about how to run marathons or how to go vegan, dispelling all this great wisdom to help others, and it would be a fun, creative outlet. Turns out, I didn’t even know what real support was, because I’d been missing it all along: community. Turns out I needed the real support. Continue reading →
As promised, the Diabetes Daily Grind is happy to share what’s on the horizon for the blog and the Real Life Diabetes podcast while catching up with one of our favorite guests. Over a few glasses of wine, Amber has a heartfelt discussion with Trish, T1D parenting badass to two sons with T1D whose fighting the good fight on Capitol Hill as a diabetes advocate. Continue reading →
An hour before her emcee duties at the Harold Hamm Diabetes Center’s Connect+Cure Gala in OKC, Nicole Johnson joined us and shared her perspectives since winning Miss America in 1999. From the surprising career trajectory afterward, to dating and diabetes scenarios, we embraced the whole journey. Per the usual flow of the show, many laughs were had, and we all got to know each other. Continue reading →
How does chronic disease inspire me? I love my life, regardless of the type 1 diabetes I’ve shared my life with for the last 46 years. Yet, there are a few things about type 1 diabetes that I do mind: Continue reading →
We’ve all heard it before: wow, how can you do that? You’re so strong. You’re so brave. You’re so courageous, ad nauseam. I have people staring at me while I take insulin injections, like curious little puppies trying to get the best view. We’re hailed as warriors, and that we should strut around like diabetes is a badge of courage on our arms. AND it IS difficult; it’s the most difficult thing I’ve ever done. Continue reading →
It’s a little bit after six in the morning, and I find myself, as I do most mornings, at work at Remington Park. The sun is just peeking over the horizon and the racetrack is beginning to come alive. Horses snort and buck on the mechanical walkers, grooms move to and fro saddling and bridling the ones headed to the track for training, farriers and jockey agents and veterinarians begin their morning rounds, while the trainers and assistants organize their days. I sit in my truck sipping coffee, having completed my early morning chores and preparing myself for another busy day. A quick glance at my Pebble watch brings a smile to my face, as I see the impossibly straight line and the reading of 113 mg/dL, which tells me that my daughter is sleeping peacefully in her bed as she has all night, and is safe. Continue reading →
Lets get something straight – I don’t like you one bit. I wouldn’t wish you on my worst enemy, and my heart breaks every time I hear of a newly diagnosed kid. Most days I really wish you’d just disappear, but it’s been 28 years now… you don’t seem to be going anywhere, and frankly hating you is getting boring.
Since you like to change things up on me ALL THE FREAKING TIME, I thought I’d shake it up a bit and tell you why I love(ish) you. I bet you didn’t see this coming.
Rolling into the second half of my 34th year of living with Type 1 diabetes, I can’t help but reflect on what has led me to my current state of T1D affairs. It wasn’t until meeting fellow Diabetes Daily Grind co-founder, Ryan, that I began talking about my life with the disease. This journey has brought on an incredible number of “ah-ha” moments, recognition of suppressed anger and “moving on” milestones. Continue reading →
Living with diabetes is far from easy–checking BGs multiple times a day, giving yourself insulin injections, and changing pump sites every three days (at least you’re supposed to…). I was diagnosed with T1D at the age of two. Luckily, I was raised by wonderful parents who taught me very early on to be independent, giving my first injection at the age of four and learning the carb vs. insulin ratios at six. Continue reading →
It started three weeks ago. I was sitting at my desk at work and was overcome with a feeling of dizziness, lightheadedness, and a terrible headache. I know what you’re thinking but no, it was not low blood sugar. My symptoms continued and progressed for the next few days. Continue reading →
It’s a stretch to say, as a person with diabetes, that I’ve always been on top of my health. The truth is that I struggle with diabetes burnout often, and I am not afraid to admit it.
In life, no one ever wants to admit that they are struggling or hitting a rough patch in their lives. No one wants to show weakness or sadness to their peers for the fear of being judged or looked down upon. THAT is the mindset that I have been battling since my diagnosis. Continue reading →
I’m fairly new to the diabetes community, in comparison to the number of years I have had diabetes and to how long I’ve known other people with diabetes. In numbers, I’ve had diabetes for 22 years, I’ve known other people with diabetes for six of those years, so I didn’t know anyone at all, other than myself, in my network of people for 70% of my life. Continue reading →
Recently I returned from a whirlwind trip to Washington DC, where I advocated for Type 1 Diabetes with folks from all over the U.S. Our primary mission was to garner support from our state’s (Oklahoma) senators and representatives for the renewal of the Special Diabetes Program, and to cover the JDRF stance on the ACA. I was blown away by many aspects of the trip, and would like to share with you my top 10 takeaways, in countdown form. Continue reading →
If you’ve followed the DDG since it’s inception, you know I’m not one for change, so when I finally took a leap of faith – it was much needed and WAY overdue. I’ve feared tapping into the T1D technology for a number or reasons, and want to come clean as to what led to this fear and my jaw-dropping, eye-opening discoveries once I took the leap.
At the age of 21, I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes during my first semester of graduate school. I was a go-getter, an over-achiever, and on track to take the career world by storm. The months leading up to my diagnosis were painful, as my pancreas began to deteriorate, unbeknownst to me. Slowly, my energy levels depleted and I struggled to find an ounce of motivation to complete the simplest tasks. My body had been hijacked. Continue reading →
I penned this gory article because I can guarantee that we’ve all transformed into otherworldly creatures at some point in our diabetes lives. Many are embarrassed about the other faces our ‘invisible disease’ has. Why should we be ashamed? Let them roam free! Continue reading →
When seeking diabetes healthcare, it’s rare to find a person who delivers advice that he or she has felt. In speaking with Kim, you know she lives and breathes every word of her life lessons with a no fear philosophy. Ryan and Amber went to school. Continue reading →
In less than a week from our last podcast conversation with Clayton McCook, he managed to “close the loop”, by himself, with the help of many (including the NightScout Community). His focus is singular: restore as many childhood moments to his daughter’s life as possible, without diabetes hovering in the background. He walks us through the “closing the loop” steps and his bigger motivations. As a parent of a person with diabetes, if you’ve ever thought about tinkering with your gear to allow the CGM and pump talk, Clayton stands as proof that it’s possible to pull it off with determination, love, and a small desk somewhere. Continue reading →
As a person with Type 1 diabetes, I’ve been frustrated in years past with the lack of advancement for the treatment of this disease. It wasn’t until about five years ago that I decided to stop complaining and take action. I asked myself the question – why aren’t things changing and what can I do to help? I did a bit of research and with the help of my regular physician, I was added to a list of diabetes related trials. I had no idea what I was in for, but knew it was something I had to do. Continue reading →
I spent an unnatural amount of time trying to start this post – wondering how I’d weave the tale of diabetes supplies lost and broken during my two-year stint in Ukraine. Looking back on a few instances, I could have done a number of things better or differently to improve an outcome or expedite solutions. However, I didn’t. In a previous post, I mentioned my “diabetes doesn’t control my life” mantra. I’m proud of my how I control my T1D, but I’m sure I’ve managed to terrify several medical professionals with my “put some duct tape on it” approach to T1D troubleshooting. I can’t help it! Continue reading →
You never know when you’ll run into someone who shares a similar life philosophy, but after a chance meeting in college, Mark Carter resurfaces on Okie soil. He’s real and doesn’t hold back about his love of Equal and Chik-Fil-A. In this episode, our longest one yet, he shares his journey of being an ambassador for people with diabetes who don’t have a voice. If you’re brave enough to listen to the whole thing, we hope you’ll leave with the thought – is diabetes a blessing or a curse?Continue reading →