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 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 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


 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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, 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, 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 long as you know to do it with respect!

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