Tuesday, December 6, 2011

It's Official!

 I haven't written a post in SO LONG. I have been so busy traveling and parenting and working...and well, just living life happily.

I read a great post today about letting your children live with diabetes. We have Lily's quarterly appointment in the morning and I am dreading it. I always wonder if her A1C has gone up. How are we doing with her management? Is she at risk for long term complications?

Then, I get on Facebook and see more blue candles. I chose not to change my picture this time. I said a prayer for the family of the last victim of diabetes. And I shut down. It's just too much sometimes to carry all of that worry. I check her several times a night usually and keep on top of her. I am having trouble in the dinner carb counting area and getting her postprandial numbers under control after dinner. That's my current nemesis. But I worry constantly about her teen years. It seems as though a lot of the deaths are happening between the ages of 11-21. I don't know why. It just scares me. So it was nice to read this post and have someone else verbalize what I am feeling most of the time!

On a lighter note...it's official...this D Mama is getting married!!! My love proposed last Friday at the airport in Tucson...on one knee and all in front of the world. It was amazing and romantic and I am just so damn happy! :) I'm excited to get our life started as a hitched couple! Of course...I can't stop staring at the sparkler either. Life is grand my friends.

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Monday, November 14, 2011

Are You Blue?

Today is World Diabetes Day! This day was named as a day of awareness for diabetes. November 14th is also Dr. Banting's birthday, the founder of insulin. So, Happy Birthday to the late Dr. Banting...thanks for keeping my child alive and not giving her a death sentence!

Diabetes rocked our world. Changed it forever. Within a 30 second time frame of hearing that word, diabetes, our world became about numbers. Every thought. Every action. Every breath...literally...became about a number. A number that will keep my child safe and healthy and breathing right next me...living her wonderful, little life.

So, I advocate and make people aware of this disease in hopes of saving other children's lives whose symptoms may go unnoticed. And in hopes of raising money for the research so desperately needed for a cure for my baby and the other 3,000,000 people in our country living with this daily.

Here are the facts, taken from the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation's website.

Fact Sheets: Type 1 Diabetes Facts
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease in which the body's immune system attacks and destroys the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas. While its causes are not yet entirely understood, scientists believe that both genetic factors and environmental triggers are involved.
Affects Children and AdultsType 1 diabetes strikes people at any age. It comes on suddenly, causes dependence on injected or pumped insulin for life, and carries the constant threat of devastating complications.
Needs Constant AttentionTo stay alive, people with type 1 diabetes must take multiple insulin injections daily or continually infuse insulin through a pump. They must also test their blood sugar by pricking their fingers for blood six or more times a day. While trying to balance insulin doses with their food intake and daily activities, people with this form of diabetes still must always be prepared for serious hypoglycemic (low blood sugar) and hyperglycemic (high blood sugar) reactions, both of which can be life-limiting and life threatening.
Not Cured By InsulinWhile insulin injections or infusions allow a person with type 1 to stay alive, they do not cure diabetes, nor do they necessarily prevent the possibility of the disease's devastating effects, which may include: kidney failure, blindness, nerve damage, amputations, heart attack, stroke, and pregnancy complications.
Difficult to Manage Despite paying rigorous attention to maintaining a meal plan and exercise regimen and always injecting the proper amount of insulin, people with type 1 diabetes face many other factors that can adversely affect efforts to tightly control blood sugar levels. These factors include stress, hormonal changes, periods of growth, physical activity, medications, illness/infection, and fatigue.
Statistics
  • As many as three million Americans may have type 1 diabetes. 1
  • Each year, more than 15,000 children and 15,000 adults - approximately 80 people per day - are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in the U.S.2
Warning Signs
Warning signs of type 1 diabetes may occur suddenly and include:
  • Extreme thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Drowsiness or lethargy
  • Increased appetite
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Sudden vision changes
  • Sugar in the urine
  • Fruity odor on the breath
  • Heavy or labored breathing
  • Stupor or unconsciousness
    Be aware! Wear blue today in honor of our loved ones!!!

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Thursday, November 10, 2011

The Lows...

Another life was lost this week. Another family woke up to the harsh reality that they will never hear their child laugh again. They will never walk her down the aisle or hold her hand in a delivery room. She was gorgeous, glowing, in the picture I saw of her. She was a person, I'm sure, with dreams of a future and many, many plans.

It gets harder and harder for me to talk about diabetes and I don't know what is going on with me. It gets harder and harder to write about it. I keep thinking I need a break but I think the realities of diabetes are just too much at times.

I hear people complain all the time. They complain about how hard their lives are...how much they have to handle around the house and how little time they have. I feel like screaming at them, "wake up and realize how lucky you are and quit bitching! You get to sleep at night without thinking your child might die!" I can't figure out if I am bitter or jealous or just fed up...or just really pissed at diabetes lately. I just don't know.

My life is amazing. My children are amazing. They are the biggest love I have ever known. They are so much bigger than life to me. It's indescribable how I feel when I touch them, smell them, hear them, watch them...they are angels. I have to catch my breath a lot when I just sit back and take them in...my girls. They are the most important thing in my world, without a doubt. You become somewhat selfless when you have a child. Everything shifts inside of you. It's awkward and beautiful and comforting and frightening all at the same time. The thought of losing one is just too much.

Because of that, I check her religiously at night. I monitor her numbers closely. If she is a certain number at 10 or 11, I am up at 1. If she is a certain number at 1, I am up at 3. If she is a certain number at 3, I am up at 5. I monitor how much insulin is working in her system and take into account how many carbs and the type of carbs she ate before bed. I think about what she did during the day...did she play hard and exercise a lot because that can cause a severe low at night, many hours later. Is it cold out? Her body works harder to heat itself up and that makes her lower. Do I need to do a temporary setting (basal) on her pump to ensure she stays a bit higher? Do I need to check her ketones if she is too high? And I am doing all of this thinking in the middle of the night so that my child will wake up in the morning.

Two nights ago, I awoke her at 2 AM to change what I thought was a bad site but it was just a miscalculation of carbs at dinner. But I woke her at 2 AM to shove a needle under her tummy while she cried. I then held her while she fell back asleep. I got up two hours later and two hours after that. Then, I was up at 5:30 AM to go to work.

It's grueling but it is my life. I am used to it. The alternative...DEATH...is just not an option so I do it without complaint. We all do...all of us D Moms and Dads (my ex does the same) out there, the Night Stalkers as I like to say.

I want people to know what goes on in the house of a family with a type 1 diabetic. I want you to know so that you can tell people and they will tell people and the word will spread and maybe, just maybe...a cure will come along in Lily's life. That's all I dream of...every second of every day.


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Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Ad...

 I edited this post this morning after I reread my rant. Diabetes hits me hard at times. And reading the statistic on the ad hurt. It hit home. It made me feel sick and cry while I laid in my bed last night. No one wants to hear that their child has any sort of chance of EVER dying. BUT...the point of the ad is to raise awareness and get the Artificial  Pancreas and trust me...it's needed.

November is Diabetes Awareness Month. November 14th is World Diabetes Day. I have done nothing this year and this is the first year that I have ignored everything diabetes related. I have been trying to just live our lives and not let this all-consuming disease consume me. I have always had trouble with the all or nothing thing. If I choose to do something, I can't half do it. Not possible for my personality. So, with diabetes, I made it my world. My everything. My job. My mission. My life. I have trouble separating, or balancing, or whatever.

So, I have taken a break from blogging too. Even the Chronicle blog...right after I started it. I have been on overdrive with a new job...with the girls...with my life. And then, I read an email tonight with the JDRF ad for the Artificial Pancreas and I am pissed. I am seriously pissed off. I don't want to know that 1 in 20 people with Type 1 diabetes is going to die from a low blood sugar. I already don't fucking sleep. None of us do. I am so sick of the focus being on death. I want the Artifical Pancreas JUST LIKE EVERYONE. I want the awareness. I want the FDA to approve it. I don't want to hear that my child has a 1 in 20 chance of dying from going low. I can't hear that. I can't understand that. It is too much pain to deal with...it's too much pressure, too much stress.

I want those statistics to change and that is why I support the JDRF. That's why we walked. That's why I adore my chapter here. Something needs to be done to change that statistic. It can be read in a much less scary way...like 5% of those with type 1 will die from hypoglycemia. The 1 in 20 is much more powerful. But I don't ever want to see that ad again and I want to store it away in the "too scary to think about" part of my brain storage.



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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Sleepover Update...

 I have been so busy with the new job and the girls that I haven't had any time to write!

So, the sleepover went really, really well. Lily's numbers went from crazy high (580) to perfect all night. The mom checked her frequently, kept in contact with me all night via text, and was just pure awesomeness. Seriously awesome.

I was so thankful that I invited her out for drinks this past week. And I just love her. Adore her. We had so much fun laughing and talking all night. We stayed out too late, drank too much, and became fast friends. She is good people for sure.

And the best part...Lily has a new "BFF." We are reciprocating with a sleepover this Friday so that this little girl can go to the JDRF walk with us. Matt and I are having dinner with their family Friday night first. And...the girls are trick or treating together. I couldn't be happier. Big. Huge. Sigh. Of. Relief. from this D Mama.

What a night that was.

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Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Sleepover...

 Tonight is the big night. The sleepover. Aaaaaaccckkkk!!!!

Lily was invited to her first sleepover birthday party and after lots of consideration, a sleepless night, and tons of advice asked from my D friends and D Mamas...I decided to let her go. I spoke with the mother of the child whose party it is and she is happy to check Lily over night. Lily's numbers are never consistent overnight. I just did a basal test over night about a month ago and her basal was fine. Not so much now.

So, we woke up this morning, ate bagels and changed her site. We are still somewhat new to the Animas pump since we switched from the Omnipod and MDI all in this year. I am pushing the site in too hard or something because when I checked Lily about an hour ago...I got a big ol' 508 on the screen. Seriously?? Today?? UGH.

She is still going to the party after a site change, a huge correction, and a waiting it out period to see if she drops.

This is what the Inset looked like when I took it off. Nice. Super duper. Piece of shit disease!



I find myself feeling very envious of the other mothers that are just going to swing on by and drop their children off without a concern of what blood sugars will be doing, carb counting, insulin on board, being checked over night, dropping numbers, etc. etc. etc. She will be fine. Right? She will be fine...

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Friday, October 7, 2011

O.M.G...

 Today is a No D Day, started by Ninjabetic at The B.A.D. Blog, aka George Simmons, and I needed a break today so this is awesome!!

So, last night, we took Lily to Red Lobster because she wanted crab legs to celebrate her special day! I had already decided earlier in the day, and told the girls, that we would be indulging in dessert for our little celebration of a healthy life!

We ate dinner, shared lots of giggles, some great food, a little wine and milk, etc. Once it was dessert time, Lily grabbed the menu and started looking through the pictures. She let out a huge gasp when she looked at the chocolate cake that she had wanted earlier in the day! Look at this picture...

HOLY HELL! Lily couldn't believe how many calories were in this chocolate cake!! Granted...she is more aware of healthy foods than most...and certainly more so than a SEVEN year old, but damn! 1490 calories for a dessert?? So, you count that in addition to the dinner you just had you have probably met TWO days worth of caloric intake for an ADULT. I was flabbergasted (love that word).

The waitress came over and asked what we had decided on. Lily set the menu down and said in a very serious, grown up voice," It is ridiculous and really unhealthy to have a dessert on here that is that bad for you. I will have one small scoop of vanilla ice cream."

I looked at the waitress and said, "We will all have the same." Then, I started giggling. I told her how proud of her I was. She cracks me up! She is so aware of what she puts in her little body and wants to grow into a healthy adult. We talk constantly about how food runs your body, and exercise. I let her indulge on all things but in small amounts. I was totally excited that she made a choice to go with a healthier option all on her own though! So, she and Abby took their time devouring their ice cream and loved every bite!

 Abby

Lily


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Thursday, October 6, 2011

Year Four...

 In exactly 43 minutes, it will be Lily's anniversary with diabetes. She was actually hospitalized four years ago today but wasn't given the official diagnoses until October 7th. Some years, this day floats by without a hitch. This year, I sit here in tears, in the dark, in my den. My almost 8 year old is asleep in the room next to me...in my bed. Again. I miscalculated her carbs at lunch and she was high at dinner. So now, I am worried about her numbers overnight and that she might go low. So, I put her in my bed so I can hear her sweet breaths throughout the night. This disease is exhausting. It is all consuming. And it never stops. Ever.

We got home from dinner tonight and Lily was so excited to show me an invitation her new friend at school gave her. She is turning eight next Saturday and invited Lily to a sleepover party. My heart sank. Part of me says to let her go and have fun and be a kid...the other part thinks she is too young, I don't know the parents or the child, and can I keep her safe? So, I am at a crossroads here. My gut is to let her do this and let her be a little girl like the rest of her class. I won't sleep a wink that night and that is okay...but will she be okay? I am pretty sure I will feel this way the entire time she is out from under my roof throughout her life. That in itself is a lot to deal with.

So, I find myself in this dark place every now and again. It doesn't happen often but when it does, I need a good cry and a strong shoulder to lean on. I just need for those around me to understand and to "get it." Life is not all perfect for anyone, diabetes or not. I usually work my ass off to stay positive about our life...it is a great life after all. But guess what? Sometimes diabetes gets the best of me. Sometimes I look at Lily and I just want to literally scoop this disease out of her...and beat the shit out of it. Sometimes I look at her and I think of all of the hurdles she is going to have to face and I want to shield her from it. And I can't. It's life. It's her beautiful, wonderful, imperfect life. The fact that SHE has to live with this forever is what makes me cry. I was staring at her at dinner in amazement at how big she is getting and how smart she is. How beautiful she is. How responsible and mature and loving and sweet. I was playing with her little hand and the tips of her fingers are covered by little holes where I pierce her skin ten times a day. And the severity that I am keeping her alive hits me. And the tears start.

So, we celebrated living a healthy life in spite of diabetes today. I kept it together all day. I was in the shittiest of moods and I didn't know why. I get it now. It hits me sometimes. Plain and simple. It hit me today. It's been four years. Four years of kicking ass and living well. And we will do it again tonight and tomorrow and every day after. I just needed a break to let the emotions flow...



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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Twenty Years Too Many...

The day had finally come and I could barely drive to the airport, I was so excited! Not only was I getting to see my amazing boyfriend after a month, I was flying to Reston, Virginia for my twentieth reunion from high school. How did twenty years go by? Wow...And I had not been to Reston in ten years. That is even crazier.

I had the best time while living in Reston. The friends I made in elementary school through high school were just so much fun and we really grew up together...grew into who we are today. There is something so warming about being around people that have known you since before puberty even hit!

We spent the first night at Lakeside Inn saying our hellos for the first time in a decade or more. We spent all day Saturday having some down time and doing some shopping. We then went to the reunion. It was so nice to see everyone! No one has changed, everyone is just as beautiful as they were in high school, and everyone seemed to be happy! That made me very happy...to know that my oldest friends are doing so well. We all have kids, we have all been or are married, and we have all matured into being just adults...there were no feelings of trying to keep up or trying outdo...just plain and simple fun!

For those that don't know...I met Matt in junior high. We then went to high school together but ran in different crowds. We reconnected on Facebook of all things last year and the rest is history. So, it was especially fun to make this trip with him.

Now, I am home and waiting to start my new job on Monday! I am so looking forward to what lies ahead. Things are very exciting right now. I am looking forward to my future and that is SUCH a nice thing!!! Now if only I could get some motivation! This weekend killed me. I am not twenty anymore and don't do late nights well...only to come home to diabetes-induced late nights! I need to catch up!

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Monday, September 26, 2011

A Day of Promotion...

 I have a few favorite things that I want to share just because I'm in that kind of a mood today! I woke up all giddy today...so here goes....

1. Prairie Creations: These are my absolute favorite things. I wear my children's fingerprints around my neck every single day. They send you a mold kit, you make their prints, mail it back and you get your pendants just a short time later. They are very reasonable as well. Shop Here.

 My personal necklace (the M is not part of it)

2. Vidalia Chop Wizard: Matt got me this and I am addicted. I can chop anything very quickly and it doesn't make a mess. It's easy to clean as well. Totally recommend this time saver! Chop Chop.

3. Chan Luu: These are a little pricey but this is my favorite accessory to wear. I can wear my bracelet with jeans and a tank or a fancy dress. I also love to stack my bracelets so I mix this one with all of my other little nuggets. Shop Here!

 My Chan Luu

4. White Noise Machine: I go to sleep at night listening to Ocean Waves. I grew attached to these machines by listening to them over the baby monitors I had for the girls. Now, I can't sleep without it. It is so soothing and it really worked with my girls.
Click here!

5. Posh Blocks: I haven't gotten mine yet but the girl that creates these is making one for me with Lily's name and it will be decorated with the Diabetes Blue Circle. I will post pics as soon as I get mine in the mail! I especially love the Holiday blocks and can't wait to order those! Look them up on Facebook and "Like" the page!





6. Big Buddha: I have had so many of these purses! I used to love the super expensive brand purses until I realized that I like to change my purses out a lot. So, I buy a cheaper version of funkier purses and trade them out often! Shop Here!

7. Simplehuman Sensor Soap Pump: This is a total luxury that Carolyn gave me, but boy do I love it! I just stick my sponge under there and clean, clean, clean. Those of you that know me well know how I love to clean!
Pump Away!

8. Colorix Crayons: These are the prettiest crayons and make all of your children's art stand out. The finished product is perfect for framing since the colors are so bold! See them here!

 By Lily Coan, 2009

That's it for now! Enjoy shopping!!

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Sunday, September 25, 2011

Judgement Day...

There has been a word I use repeatedly in my blog...judgmental. This is big for me. Huge. I do not, and will never, understand why people feel the need to judge others actions. I have several people that are close to me that really think they are not opinionated and pass no judgement when in reality, these are the people that are the most opinionated and pass the MOST judgement.

Let me explain my version of judgement. I am not talking about seeing someone in a hideous outfit and making a comment. I think this is something that everyone does. It's human nature. I am talking about looking at decisions that someone you love makes that they feel are good for them, and that you feel are not so you pass judgement. Hardcore judgement. It is wrong. Period.

I have learned a lot in the last few years of my life, from diagnoses of diabetes in my child to this very morning. No one ever knows the full story. No one is privy to all of the facts and information in every relationship and situation. Most importantly, and it has taken some therapy to get this one and is a work in progress, no one knows what is best for you but YOU. My therapist told me last week that I have had some very toxic  people in my life...some very negative, unhappy people that will never fully be happy for me. Therefore, I need to stop seeking advice and looking for approval from them because I will not get what I am aiming for...which is acceptance and understanding. What I consider to be unconditional love. A love that is trusting that you know what is good for you and what is not. I have too much faith in people understanding that when you are angry, you never give the full side of a story. That when you are upset, you vent. So, I made my bed and I will continue to lie in it...but I will do so very quietly.

The one thing that I keep thinking about this morning is how happy I am inside. That's a very strange thing given what is going on in my life right now with work. But I am truly happy. And it is apparently noticed.

I spent Friday primping. I had my usual hair appointment that costs me a damn fortune but I love the lady who cuts my hair so I continue to go...and then I had my wax appointment...same deal. The lady who waxes me has become a friend of sorts. I just love her. I love how chaotic she is and I love that even though her life is a constant mess, she is still just a loving, carefree, sweet, nonjudgmental person. We get pretty cozy during that hour and I've been going to her for over a year so we have definitely shared it all with each other. So, I am laying there and she is asking me what has been going on and I start diving into what has been on my mind with feeling so heavily judged and how upsetting it is that it is changing the way I perceive these relationships now that I have realized what they really are. She stops and looks at me and says, "honey, you are a genuinely happy person. It oozes out of you these days. You are strong and confident and have a good head on your shoulders. I love you coming in because I tell you all of my crazy shit and you just listen." She then started crying. My wax lady has had the roughest of years. She is such a good person. And she has no one believing in her. I am sure she has made tons of mistakes along the way but she tries...hard...to be a good person. And she accomplishes just that.

So, I am working on not forming a "committee" every time a decision is to be made concerning my personal life. I don't need that committee after all. No one knows what I need but me. How many times in your life do you think maybe you have missed out on an opportunity to do something you have really wanted to do because everyone around says it is not good? Do you feel like the people that are doing the heavy judging are really the unhappiest of  people? I feel like these judgements are a reflection of their own unhappiness...and that makes me sad for them. Very sad.


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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Blessed...

 I am blessed...



With two beautiful little angels that never cease to amaze me.

With a gorgeous house to call my own, that I bought for myself and for my girls.

With a handful of very good, very loving, very supportive friends.

With an education that will get me far.

With good health for me and my kids (albeit one nasty little D)

With the capability of remaining positive even in hard times.

With confidence and strength.

With a family that loves me.

With a beautiful little furry shadow (Scooter).



And with a man by my side that loves me unconditionally and truly gets me.

Life has been good to me, even with the rough patches I have grown as a person and I have learned so much!

I am feeling hopeful and optimistic today and just very, very blessed with all of the wonderful things that life has offered me!

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Sunday, September 18, 2011

Perfect Sunday...

 Summer has been brutal in Texas. It hasn't rained in two months in Houston and wildfires have been rampant on the outskirts of the city I love so much. Well, yesterday, the skies opened. And in true Texas style...you know we do everything bigger in Texas...they OPENED. It felt good. You could hear cheers and excitement all over town. It rained. It rained all damn day...the hard, smelly, yet peaceful rain. It was amazing.

A lot happened this week and I haven't fully explained how amazed I am that when you think you are being handed shit to deal with, you might actually be getting a gift of sorts.

Tuesday morning, I woke up, got the kids off to school, kissed the boys (my dogs) and left the house. I had a meeting with my CEO at 9 AM. I was working a contract job doing recruiting/marketing for a pediatric therapy group. I was supposed to go on permanently the next day. I was worried sick about Reilley and had a vet appointment for him that evening. The vet had called and asked me to bring him in earlier since he sounded so bad. I couldn't.

I was working somewhere that had zero flexibility. Zero. I literally punched a clock, even at lunch. I am not accustomed to this type of environment and didn't care for it much. Well, my CEO laid me off that morning. They were eliminating my position because of the budget cuts in healthcare. They were laying off several people and closing most open positions. Figures.

So, I left. I immediately went home and got Reilley. He was all I could think about. I got the news of his cancer one hour and five minutes later. I got laid off and found out I had to put my dog down all before lunch on Tuesday. This has become normal for me as of late...to just have it all rain down. It's cool. I am a strong person and I can handle it. I was pretty pissed at the world though, I must admit.

Well, things were not going well Wednesday morning when I was saying my goodbyes to my beloved pet of 13 years, when I got an email that I was praying I would get. I was getting an offer from a company that I had been speaking with for some time. It is an amazing and exciting and lucrative chance to do something that I absolutely LOVE. I get to network, build relationships, and put my overly-energetic self to good use doing something that will not only be challenging, but VERY rewarding! The news couldn't have come at a better time either.

So, as my emotions calmed some...the girls and I started to adjust to life without Reilley. Scooter is adjusting too and is getting more attention and love than he ever has. Things were going along pretty well. I have been very frustrated at diabetes. Frustrated at all the change we are all facing constantly. Just frustrated in general. Then, I get on Facebook and learn that another life has been lost. Another innocent girl that diabetes robbed of life. I cried for a while when I read her mother's words. And I made my girls sleep with me last night. I slept so close to Lily that I could feel her heart beating next to me.

I awoke this morning to rain. The sweet, soft sound of rain on my windows. It was dark and so peaceful in the bedroom with my beautiful girls sleeping next to me and the dog at my feet. It was then that I realized I have been looking at this week all wrong. I am lucky. I am so lucky to have what I do. And I am lucky that life works itself out in mysterious ways at times.

You see, I am happy that I was laid off on Tuesday since that gave me time to be with Reilley and mourn that loss. It gave me the time I need to focus on my family and keep us together. I am happy that I found out I am getting an offer on Wednesday so that I could really focus on us and not be worried about finding a job. I am able to do this with a clear mind. I am happy that I didn't have to quit my other job as I thought I would have to do. I didn't want to leave anyone in a bind. I am happy that I am getting the job that I wanted so badly...one that I will be able to do things that I love doing and make really good money while doing it. I am tired of not being able to make ends meet at times.

When it rains it pours. This is true. But sometimes, that is a beautiful thing if you just see it in the way it is meant to be seen. I have never claimed to be a religious person and not sure I ever will be but this is definitely my version of God.


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Saturday, September 17, 2011

My 30!



1. The illness I live with is: Type 1 Diabetes, I am a mama pancreas...my 7 year old has T1D.

2. I was diagnosed with it in the year: Lily was dx'd on October 7, 2007 at 3 years old.

3. But I had symptoms since: One day before. Lily was only 350 at diagnoses.

4. The biggest adjustment I’ve had to make is: Losing control of something. Acceptance that this cannot be controlled. I am still struggling with this.

5. Most people assume: That we have things under control. Ha! That is HI-LARIOUS!

6. The hardest part about mornings are: Racing the clock. Giving insulin early enough. Getting everyone, including myself, out the door on time with all D stuff done.

7. My favorite medical TV show is:  I am more of a forensics/murder/mystery kinda girl so I guess Body of Proof would equate in my book?

8. A gadget I couldn’t live without is: My cell phone. It's glued to me for multiple reasons...to keep me in contact with anyone that has Lily and my boyfriend lives out of state.

9. The hardest part about nights are: Getting up to check Lilyboo. It's hard to drag myself upstairs but I am convinced if I don't, she will die. Morbid? Yes. But true nonetheless.

10. Each day I take 1 pills & 0 vitamins: She takes only insulin every second of every day. It's her life saver. Literally.

11. Regarding alternative treatments I: Zilch...but it makes me SUPER happy when people inform of how to "cure" her (sarcasm here folks).

12. If I had to choose between an invisible illness or visible I would choose: Invisible for sure. I love that she blends.

13. Regarding working and career: It's hard to work full time, be a single parent, and a pancreas all at once. I am still figuring out how to balance all the balls but it gets easier each day. Lily wants to be a doctor and a rock star and an actress. Maybe she'll be an actress/rocker that plays a doctor on TV? Who knows.

14. People would be surprised to know: Not much. I tend to put it ALL out there and get my ass chewed frequently for it. 

15. The hardest thing to accept about my new reality has been: It's not new for us. We are 3 years and 11 months in. The hardest part in the beginning was mourning the death of a "healthy" child and watching my friends just drop their kids off at camp, daycare, playdates, even ballet...something I could no longer do without tons and tons of background work and then 100% fear.

16. Something I never thought I could do with my illness that I did was: She has done and will continue to do it all.

17. The commercials about my illness:  We really don't see too much commercials on the Disney channel.

18. Something I really miss doing since I was diagnosed is: Eating without doing math.

19. It was really hard to have to give up: Nothing except just life without diabetes...without thinking about something 24/7/365.

20. A new hobby I have taken up since my diagnosis is: Blogging!!

21. If I could have one day of feeling normal again I would: We do feel normal for the most part. I guess of whole day of not stabbing my child's beautiful skin with a lancet would be nice.

22. My illness has taught me: Everything. Everything. I have learned not to judge. I have learned to be more sensitive to others needs. I have learned a form of patience. I have learned to live with multiple factors dictating my every move and that of Lily's. 

23. Want to know a secret? One thing people say that gets under my skin is: "What's that thing on her?" Meaning her pump. I hate it for her. She feels uncomfortable.

24. But I love it when people: Tell her it is so cool that she has all of these gadgets!

25. My favorite motto, scripture, quote that gets me through tough times is: Just the word hope. I have it tattooed on me with blue circle. I love having hope...it gets me through a day.


26. When someone is diagnosed I’d like to tell them: Your child is going to live a long, happy, healthy life. Just slow down, accept it, take it all in and life will return to not being all about D.

27. Something that has surprised me about living with an illness is: How much my girls have learned about healthy food and the good choices they make for what they eat!

28. The nicest thing someone did for me when I wasn’t feeling well was: Lily's whole class made her cards when she was diagnosed and all of the moms got together and bought us tons of books on D. It was a nice show of support!

29. I’m involved with Invisible Illness Week because: I love being part of the DOC and I want to educate people on what it is like to live with D.

30. The fact that you read this list makes me feel: As though I have accomplished part of my duty to make people aware of life with D!


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Friday, September 16, 2011

All Time Low...

 I am about to kill diabetes. Well, I would kill it if it were tangible. That in itself is not fair...to have to fight a war against something that you can't see or touch or anything else. This year has wreaked havoc on Lily's numbers! She has always been very well controlled and still is to a certain degree but all of the switching from the pump to MDI and back to the pump has us baffled and grasping for some normalcy.

Did I just say that? There is no normalcy with diabetes. I am cracking myself up over here!

We are all over the place though so I am going to grab the reins and reel this jackwad of a disease back in. She was high when I went to bed last night so I corrected and she declined and awoke at 62. At lunch at school, she was a tad high and when she got off the bus, she was 43. And lethargic. And sweating profusely. That hasn't happened before. My hands started trembling while I was trying to check her after treating her to make sure she had come up. She had. And she is fine now. Thank God.

I, however, am not. I am pissed off at diabetes today. Totally. And I have had a very rough week with my dog dying. I feel like I am not getting what I need emotionally right now either. The cup is running empty today and I am tired of it all. I found a paper Lily wrote for school on Wednesday and it was about how much she loves her dogs but "Reilley is dying today." Big. Huge. Sigh. I wish I could take any pain from my girls.

BUT...I worked out! I worked out hard and it felt like pure Heaven! I crave healthy food constantly. Some of my favorite foods are quinoa, fresh veggies, and baked fish. I actually don't like fried food or fast food. It makes me feel sick so I don't know why I have eaten it the past few months. I am going to start taking the time for myself that I need to cook and exercise. Two of my favorite things in the world to do! This mommy needs some self-motivation this weekend!

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Thursday, September 15, 2011

I am DROOPY...

 I have TOTALLY been slacking the last year in the healthy department. How in the hell did I get here? I was working out a lot, eating super healthy and pretty much NEVER drinking...if I did drink, I had two and that was it.

I am a firm believer in You Are What You Eat. Your entire body is a machine basically and the parts only run if they are taken care of and fed properly. I lack in energy lately. I am tired. I am missing those natural endorphins. I am bloated 24/7. I am all loosy goosy. WTF HAVE I DONE???

I want to be back where I was a year and a half ago and no one can get me there but me. I have complained and whined about it for one full year. I honestly just didn't know where to fit a workout in. I went back to work full time and the girls wanted me home right after work. I can't go before work since I can't leave them home alone. I had a 30 minute lunch break. This was just not a priority.

Well, it is now. I am in a position to have more time to work out and to be able to work out at lunch now. There are no more excuses. I went a decade without eating fast food and I am going back to my own rules that YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT.

That's it. I am going for the gusto. I am not and probably never will be a heavier person. I am genetically pretty small so don't get me wrong...I am not complaining about my weight here. I am complaining that I have let myself get unhealthy. That I am eating greasy food and that I am not giving my body the exercise it so desperately needs. I loved working out. I loved the energy it gave me. It was a favorite part of my day and I gave that up. UGH!


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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

He is 91...

I keep repeating this to myself today...he is 91...in people years. He has lived a good, long, fun, happy life. He has been the best sidekick one could ever ask for. So, then why is this so damn hard?

My dog has cancer. Sucky ass cancer. And it's everywhere probably. I know for sure he has a HUGE mass in his tummy and one on his liver and pancreas. Fucking pancreas...hate that stupid organ anyway.

He quit eating about a week ago but was still playful, so I was still hopeful, and in denial. I begrudgingly took him to the vet this morning. And I got the call one hour and five minutes later. He is terminal. They can't even operate. He will starve to death very quickly and has begun to do so already. One month ago, he was playing frisbee in the yard with Abby. So quickly. It's hard to wrap my head around. So, I turn to writing as usual. I have one more night with him.

I have had him for 13 years. He came before I met my ex husband. That's how long I have had him. Since I got Reilley, I have been married, divorced, had two children, gone through a diagnosis, etc. etc. etc. And he has been this little bundle of joy the whole time...there to comfort me and curl up next to me just at the right time. He also knows when I need my space and during those times, he just lays right next to my bed...every night for 13 years.

It's going to be an adjustment for us...me, Lily, Abby and Scooter. The girls and Scooter have known no life without him. I hope Scooter doesn't try to starve himself. Another adjustment. I hope I have the energy for this one. I am worn out and exhausted from too much change. I am OVER IT. I am ready for some down time from the emotional ride 2011 has brought us.

So, he is 91 years old. He has lived a good, long, fun, happy life. We will be okay. We will get through this too. We will keep on going as we always do and we will land on our feet stronger than we were yesterday.

 First Day Home 1998
Last Day Home 2011

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Thursday, September 8, 2011

Sisterly Love...

My mind is dancing with all that we do as parents. We love our children, unconditionally. We help mold them into good, loving, contributing members of society. We guide them down the paths that we think are best for them and help them up when they stumble down that path. We do all of these things because of this love that we have...this primal need to give them the best life that they can possibly have. We sometimes take them for granted. We get very busy in our daily lives...cooking, cleaning, working, etc. We hear them in the background saying "Mommy. Mommy. Mommy." Yet we don't always answer because our minds are so preoccupied with what we are doing. We are human, after all.

This Wednesday was one of those moments that I was so proud of the little people my children have become. I had Lily's 504 meeting at school. Her teacher told me a story. The sweetest story...

That morning, Lily came in to class and was very distraught. She immediately went to her teacher and told her that her little sister was hysterical crying...all by herself...and no one was hugging her. Abby was just standing in the hallway to the Kindergarten wing and she was crying. She was saying that she missed her mommy. Everyone was moving around her doing what they do...a Kindergartner crying the third week of school is not uncommon.

Lily's teacher let her walk over there to give Abby a hug. Another teacher told Lily she couldn't be there. Lily was not giving up. She went back to her room and informed her teacher of what happened. Her teacher then called Abby's teacher and told her what was going on. They sent Lily back over. Lily got her little sister and held her hand and hugged her. She brought her back to her 2nd grade room where Abby was able to watch the morning announcements with her big sister.

I am sure Abby felt very special. She has a great big sister after all!

Only problem now is that Abby did it again this morning and went to get Lily to watch announcements with her. So, I had to have a little chat with them tonight that this was not going to be a regular thing.

Sometimes it is precisely these little stories that keep me going with my girls. Parenting is hard. It is tiring. It is frustrating and disappointing at times. But it is by far THE MOST amazing thing I have ever done in my life. And I am loving every damn minute of it!

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Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Relationship Factor...

I've been thinking about diabetes and relationships lately. This topic has come up quite a bit recently with my D friends here in Houston. Does diabetes impact your relationship with your spouse or significant other? Do you often fight about how to manage diabetes or place blame for crazy numbers?

For the longest time, I never thought that this disease affected my marriage. I will stand by the fact that diabetes was not the cause of our demise but it did play a role in the added stress it brought to an already sinking ship. Moods were altered at stressful times when diabetes was involved. We also handled situations very differently. I tend to remain more calm when things are going awry with this stupid disease. My ex handled things much differently and still does.

Diabetes can wedge itself in between just about anything and I think it's really difficult to push it out once it has found it's comfortable spot in between you and your partner. It is so easy to blame someone for a 400 on a meter. When in reality, it could be an insane number of things that caused that number. And even if it was what you fed your child, lesson learned and move on. Placing blame helps no one. It only exasperates the situation at hand.

Dealing with your child's fears, dealing with other people's judgements, dealing with the loss of a "healthy child," feeling alienated from your friends because your life takes so much planning and worry, etc. can easily be transfered to stress that is transfered to be taken out on your partner. We have ALL done it. I am divorced and still have to talk to my ex about Lily constantly. The battle still ensues at times. It's hard. But we tend to make it harder.

I think it's important to remember that we are all on the same side. I think it's important to have a "20 minute rule" (a timeout for tempers to cool). I think one of the MOST important things you can do is turn TO your partner for help and to vent instead of AGAINST him or her. Grab a glass of wine, sit at a table, turn everything off, and focus on hearing each other...just for 10-15 a day if that's all you can do. I think you'd be surprised at how much this will help your relationship and relieve some stress.

Also, remember you are not alone. No relationship is perfect and no one is so special that these things don't directly affect them too. If someone claims to have a perfect relationship where they get along 24 hours a day, there is a truth that is untold somewhere. It is healthy to disagree...as long as you know to do it with respect!

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Monday, August 29, 2011

Dreaming of better weather...

I woke up this morning dreaming about Fall. It was 109 degrees yesterday in Houston, record heat. It's so hot that I walked three houses over to my neighbor's and I was dripping in sweat and swear I smelled bad by the time I got to her door. Walking to the grocery store and back to my car was a miserable experience.

Heat makes me irritable. It makes me groggy. It makes me thirsty. It makes me want to stay inside. I am so ready for the Fall to get here. I want to take the girls on a bike ride and have them enjoy our swing set in the yard. I want to sit out on my patio in the evenings and read my Kindle and drink a glass of wine.

But mostly, I want to wear my bad ass boots.


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Saturday, August 27, 2011

The Burbs...

 One of the best and most difficult decisions I made was to move to the burbs. I am so happy I made this choice for my girls and for me. I have been so welcomed to my neighborhood. I have only been living here five months and have some great new friends. It's good for the soul to be around good people. There is no comparison or keeping up with the Joneses here. It's just plain fun. And that we had last night.

It was my turn to host our little monthly get together for the ladies of my street (and some from other streets in the hood). We did a Passion Party. I have never been to one and wasn't sure what to think. It was fun...hilariously fun. We drank, ate a bit, laughed our asses off, and just had a good time. And it was so needed. I can tell that friendships will be long lasting with this group of ladies.

My girls have become better friends with their kids as well and that is exactly what I wanted for them...to live somewhere that they can run a house over and have a whole slew of kids to play with. They literally run to the bus stop each morning to see their new friends. They make up dance routines together. They dress alike. They wake up asking if they can go play. It's a whole new world for them and we are just loving it!

So, to my Better Than Bunco (because we'd never actually play) ladies...thank you thank you thank you for welcoming us into your humble little circle! xxooo


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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Survival of the First Week...

 We have pretty much successfully made it through our first week at a new school! There have been no real issues. There was one low the first day of school and one low today after school. Only one number over 300 after school one day and none at school. No one got made fun of, hurt, cried, or felt uncomfortable. The bus driver let them out at the wrong stop one day but turns out that was planned so they could run in the rain...not a good thing but pretty damn cute (the stops are literally a few feet apart). They are making friends easily and feeling like neighborhood kids. I have not seen this many smiles ever I don't think! Which makes me smile, inside and out.

Diabetes at school is going well. The only thing that was changed was the buddy system to the nurse. The teachers were sending Lily and her friend Austin (also type 1) together as buddies. Austin's mom and I thought this wasn't such a great idea in case both kids were low. Paranoid? Maybe. But they are only 7 years old.

So, I couldn't have asked for a better week for the first week of school! I think this move was a good thing...for everyone.

It's mommy time this weekend with a party at my house tomorrow night with the neighborhood mommies...we are putting a little more passion into our lives! Good time are going to be had!


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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

DWD...

 Funniest thing happened today and I had to share...

I took Lily to the eye doctor (thankfully up the road just a bit) since she was complaining of headaches sometimes when she reads. I have been attempting to do this for a month but can't find the time so tonight was it. I decided to get my eyes checked too since I get what I can only describe as "tired eyes" when I read my Kindle or am on my computer or phone (which is a lot).

So the doctor checked us both out and turns out, I need some sort of reading type glasses with a technology lens specifically for "tired eyes" or strain basically. Great...I was secretly a little excited since I found some really cool frames the other day while making appointments.

Well, dumb shit doctor dilated both of us. We were literally the blind leading the blind. I drove home cursing him that I was going to get a DUI...or a DWD (Driving While Dilated). I couldn't see my phone so I just kept pushing names that looked like my ex so I could tell him the outcome (sorry Dad). I was attempting to text people back as well...why I don't know because I couldn't see shit.

So, we get to the light by the house and I am going on and on about how I am going to get dinner ready when I can't see anything and I realized no one can read Lily's pump. Lily was dilated too. She is all in the back seat thinking it's the coolest thing ever with her fake sunglasses on. Given the day I have had, I was not thinking this was the coolest thing ever. Thank GOD for neighbors. We went to a friend's house and she administered the pump. I then got home to find a bottle of my favorite wine on my front step with a sweet card wishing me all better. The same friend that left the wine told me to watch myself cry in the mirror since it heightens the drama...still giggling over that!

This was just so ironic that I spent all night fuzzy eyed after I have spent months fuzzy eyed. I have to say that I although I am broken-hearted, the shame on you post was about believing in a relationship...and having it not be what I thought it was. I am not going to go into detail but it is not as it sounded...I still love him and we both have a rough road ahead of us and I am sad we won't be going down it together. My dad told me tonight that I have spent months worried and fretting over what was to become of us with a pending move and so many miles apart. He also pointed out that someone having to "give up everything" to move for someone else only leads to resentment. He is right.

And I have not unpacked my baggage. I have left it all wadded up in a corner. I need to see what this world is about on my own. I need to find my happiness again...my strength...right now sucks but it won't be so fuzzy forever.

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Monday, August 22, 2011

The Switch...

I have been stuck in a bubble. A bubble I can't seem to penetrate. I bob around in this bubble half-functioning in my daily life. I am tired. I am stressed. I am confused. I am heartbroken. I am worried. Through all of this though, I remain hopeful.

I hope for a peaceful existence for me and my girls. I hope to go to bed at night with a smile on my face and not a tear on my pillow. I hope that each day brings more positive energy to me and my heart heals a little more. I hope that I can trust that love is on my side and not against me...trying to teach me some sort of life lesson. I hope I regain the insurmountable courage and strength that I once possessed for all things. I hope my five year old can help me understand what she is going through that makes her not want to sleep alone or be away from me. I hope that diabetes doesn't claim my oldest child...my little girl that brings me the purest form of love. I hope I can find a way to make ends meet and still enjoy my life as a single parent. And I hope I can just learn to find happiness from within...to control the paths my thoughts take me down. The unwanted territory that I often get led to.

I am human. I am passionate. I am made of many, many layers. I refuse to hide behind a happy face and let all of these things manifest inside. I tried that and it did me no good. I am flipping my switch today. Flipping it back ON. I am going to let the light shine again and realize that there are some things in life I simply cannot control. I control what I do about these things and I want to look back on my life with pride and say I did the right thing always for me and those that love me. THAT is how I need to be defining my life. That is how I penetrate the bubble and move on from here. I have made a deal with myself today that I will no longer exist in another shadow but live in my own light. The only key to fulfillment and happiness, in my opinion, is loving who you are and knowing you have not jeoparized your worth! What better gift can a mother give her children after all, than that of a happy and healthy mother?

    I Like this quote I dislike this quote“A man is but the product of his thoughts what he thinks, he becomes.” Mahatma Gandhi

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Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Preparation for School...

Tis the season for new backpacks, school supplies, new shoes and tax free shopping. I can't believe summer is over. It's over and I never had one. I also cannot believe my daughters are in 2nd grade and Kindergarten. When the hell did they grow up and when are they going to STOP?

Getting ready for a new school is a task that will leave you reeling with worry...will the girls make friends quickly? Will they get the best education they possibly can? Will I get used to the new rules and times (those of you that know me know that I am NEVER on time anywhere...no comment, Matt). But throw diabetes into the mix and it is a whole new set of worry. Will they keep an eye on Lily? Will they notice if she is low or if her pump quits working? Will they send her on her merry way to the nurse without a buddy? Are the doctor's orders correct? How long will it take to get our 504 in place and how the hell do you get it in place anyway? Arrrggghhh!!!

I tend to worry anyway but this is ridiculous! The girls had been at their private school for the last three years so starting school was like going home again. Now, we went from a school of 350 total to 980 total. Wow. Wow. Wow. BUT...they will do just fine. Lily is not the only diabetic (there is another 2nd grader and a 5th grader). Both of them make friends easily and never get in trouble so at least we have that.

I am going to end tonight by having a beer and doing something relaxing to get my mind off of the first day of school that is lurking around the corner! Today is a special day after all...

Today has been one year. One year since I left a comment on Facebook about back fat of all things. A comment that led to a friendship that led to a romance that led to a love like no other. A year of new beginnings. A year of building. Building something special that started with a solid foundation of friendship and respect. A respect that has been tested in the worst of ways at times. Our building has collapsed and been rebuilt...and now it is stronger than it ever was in the first place. It keeps us together and protected from miles and miles of distance, even in the worst of storms.


One year. 12 months. 365 days. We have grown and flourished into something pretty damn good and I hope we continue to weather the storms together. Happy Anniversary my love.

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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Rambling Thoughts...



Men and women are so different. It's more than Mars and Venus. Women want what we seem to think are little things: affection, support, help around the house and with the kids, and love. Men want what they think is simple: financial security and freedom to be who they are. Women often define themselves by how they treat others, the accomplishments their family has made, how their relationship is going, etc. Men often define themselves by the level of their success.

So, tell me this...how the hell are we supposed to live peacefully and blissfully when we see the world in such different ways? I am trying really hard to learn to communicate better and not to get upset when I feel misunderstood or my boyfriend isn't responding to my excitement about something like I think he should. But it seems like an impossible feat. Men and women are SO different. Even as children, the little boys run like crazy, climb on everything, and stay in a constant state of dirty. Little girls are usually a bit more reserved and like to look fancy. I am speaking generally here, of course. It just never ceases to amaze me. I watch my girls play with boys and they just think and approach tasks in such a different manner!

I imagine all of these little souls living their lives all over the world...each one wanting to find that other little soul that makes them feel special and loved, and that they can shower with their affections. Once you find another little soul that you click with...there is a lot of learning and understanding and compromise that comes along with it. I used to believe in soul mates and now I believe in finding the perfect combination of love, passion, friendship, and respect. I think one of the most important aspects of a relationship is learning how to fight without hurt. That and as a friend pointed out, conflict resolution. It is very easy to go round and round with an argument...for years. I did it for ten years to be exact while married...without anything getting accomplished. This wise friend also pointed out that if two people don't argue ever in a relationship, someone is holding back and that is not healthy.

It feels good to be in a relationship with someone who allows me this exploration. He allows me to try to discover and realize HOW to be in a good relationship and he takes the journey with me. I'm sure I am not easy to figure out. At all. I am a woman, after all.

And on the diabetes front...I am still going to blog about diabetes, of course. It is a huge part of our life. I have just needed a little break lately. I've been seriously stressing about the working mommy guilt and school starting with a new regimen, all of the blue candles, etc. etc. etc. I was really scared to go to bed last night because Lily was only 142 and she had dropped some the night before. So, I got up every couple of hours and checked her after I adjusted her insulin. She was fine after the adjustments but I am exhausted to the core.

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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Exciting week...

A few very cool things went on this week. One, I got to be on the Parents magazine website for a nomination for the Best All Around blog for moms. Just to be on their site is pretty darn cool...it's very hard to vote because they make you register but if you feel like voting, there is a big pink button to the right of this post. There are several blogs that raise awareness for type 1 diabetes, which is something my family lives with 24/7, so I am really hoping one of them wins!

Also, there is a site that I have been lurking on for a while called www.topmommyblogs.com I finally got the balls this week to fill out the request to be on their site. It is not something where you can just register your blog...there is criteria involved and someone actually takes a few days to scroll through your blog and make sure you are a fit. I got an email tonight that Meal Mommy was accepted!! I absolutely love to write and it's so fun for me to do this blog so this really meant a lot! So, this one is super easy to vote for since you don't have to register (and there are tons of cool blogs there!). You click on the button to the left and that's it! You have voted! I would certainly appreciate any votes you can swing my way over there too! It's not a competition, it's how you get featured.

Thirdly...and I am about to sound like a groupie, because I am...but my favorite blogger EVER read my blog and commented. I am still sitting on cloud 9 over here.

The last and NOT least very exciting thing is that Abby met her Kindergarten teacher today. My baby is going to Kindergarten. I am sure I will be posting Monday through many tears and wine. We also had the opportunity to meet the nurse for Lily and she was AMAZING. So, I am feeling a bit better about the transition to a new school with D in the mix.

Thanks for all of your support!