Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Is It The Lack of Sleep Causing Bitch Blood Sugars Or Bitch Blood Sugars Causing Lack Of Sleep?

This post contains lots of ups and down blood sugar wise and is written by a woman who has been dealing with bitchy sleep/lack of sleep patterns, and bitch blood sugars for the past 4 days - all while dealing with this thing called life. 
Clearly I'm a little punch drunk, but I think (OK, I HOPE,) that some of you can relate.
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The past 4 days have have included 3 early morning lows in a row (even with decreased basal rates before bed,) and increased basal rates throughout the day because who the hell knows. The early morning lows certainly didn’t help with the mid morning highs, and there’s a chance that my scratchy throat and runny nose has something to do with the increased basal rates, too. 
Then there’s whole pre-menstrual hormonal thing going on. Sorry fellas, deal with it and you're damn lucky I didn't sneak in the word menses. ;)
And lets not forget the super miscalculation of Monday night’s dinner that resulted in a long stubborn high spell, combined with increased basals and a less then 20 hour old infusion site crapping out due to subcutaneous insulin overload. 
With all of the above - my sleep patterns have been really off - damn near non existent.
I plowed through yesterday and was exhausted last night. I went to bed at 10:40, (and between you and me,I fell asleep on the couch for 10 minutes at 7pm. And yes, I'm aware that catnap didn't help.) 
I would have gone to bed earlier, but the new infusion site not only kicked in with a vengeance - so did the rest of the insulin that I’d pumped throughout the day and I thought, hadn't worked. 
Sleep followed until just before 1:30 am. Then once again and what seems like a daily occurrence, I was wide awake. I tried to ignore it and even played my sleep app, but nothing helped. I ended up reading articles for a post I’m working on, (and maybe a little face-booking, because, WIDE AWAKE) until almost 4 am. 
I slept through this morning’s alarm, and woke up at 7:30. 45 minutes late and none to happy about it 

I like my sleep. I miss it. I need it. 

And I’ve found myself wondering out loud and on the twitter: Is it the lack of sleep that contributes to the challenging blood sugars or is the blood sugars that contribute to the lack of sleep? Does one influence the other and how the hell do I stop this from becoming a vicious cycle? 


 Also: I’m over it. 

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Bears. Beets. Battlestar Galactica.

Yesterday I received a press release touting a certain brand of beet juice as a way to prevent type 2 diabetes. This beet juice contained all sorts of magical and medicinal properties and claimed to cure what ails you
Look, I have no doubt that beet juice has lots of vitamins and might have some medical properties.
I believe that certain foods, spices and herbs are good for us.
Mint is great if your stomach is upset and Valerian/chamomile tea helps if you're having trouble falling asleep. 
Caffeine wakes me up in the morning and prevents me from bitch zombie like tendencies for the rest of the day. 
And turmeric is supposedly very good for inflammation, but I'd still check with my Dr. if said supplement interacted negatively with any of your current medications, including blood thinners. 

As far as cinnamon - it's always been one of my favorite spices since I was little and I'm not even going "there."

Lastly, I feel better when I eat foods that aren't processed and made with ingredients I can pronounce and aren't found in a chemistry class. 

 But HELL'S NO, I'm not going to tout beet juice as a preventative pre-diabetes or t2 measure, based on a marketing press release from a beet juice company that links said claims to one 'experimental sciences,' study - so stop spamming my inbox and taking up my bandwidth! 

Instead, I highly recommend that if someone you love is worried about developing t2, have them set up an appointment with an Endo who works with a Certified Diabetes Educator. 
If someone you know/love is concerned about pre -diabetes, have them click DoIHavePreDiabetes.Org and they take a one minute test that will give them the answer.
And then have them get schedule an appointment with an Endo.

And FTR, I seriously considered sending this as  the response to the PR.

Sorry Dwight, but beet juice doesn't cut it!
Photo credit and courtesy of Cheezburger.com 



Monday, January 25, 2016

And The Winner of The American Girl Diabetes Care Kit, Diabetesalicious Giveaway Is.....

And the winner of the Diabetesaliciousness American Girl Diabetes Care Kit, is....
I know I was supposed to announce the winner of the American Girl Diabetes Care Kit on Friday, but like much of the east coast, super storm Jonas messed with my jam in a major way - please accept my apologies~ 
For the record, coastal flooding in the winter is very real and very destructive and I do not wish it on anyone.

Luckily, I survived mostly unscathed, except for a busted water heater. 
With that being said, I'm pleased to announce  the winner of the Diabetesaliciousness American Girl Diabetes Care Kit, Giveaway is..........
Leigh Fickling! 
Leigh, CONGRATS and please shoot me an email (kellykunik(at)gmail(dot)com ,) with your mailing address so I can forward it to the folks at American Girl. 
And for those who didn't win, I will continue to look for fun giveaways here at Diabetealiciousness and good luck next time!
Lastly, big thanks to American Girl for creating such wonderful Diabetes Care Kit for your dolls and the children who love them - and for being so generous in providing a kit for the Diabetesaliciousness giveaway. 
American Girl 's Diabetes Care Kit is empowering and is an excellent diabetes teaching tool and I'm so grateful and glad that your company created such an amazing and wonderful Diabetes Care Kit! 

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

American Girl Diabetes Care Kit Review & Giveaway

Very cool and incredibly detailed, American Girl Diabetes Care Kit~
Two years ago, the then 11 year old Anje Busse created a Change.Org petition asking American Girl to create a line of Diabetes accessories for their dolls. And that's exactly what American Girl did~
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Like everyone else in the DOC, I was thrilled when I heard the news that American Girl had created and was launching the American Girl Diabetes Care Kit for their line of “Truly Me” Dolls.  
I reached out to AG and they were kind enough to send me my very own American Girl Diabetes Care Kit. 
My very own American Girl Diabetes Care Kit~
The kit comes fully loaded with diabetes accessories and I am so incredibly impressed with the details and thought that went into creating the diabetes accessories.
The logbook has a stitched back binder, the insulin pump has a clip and arrow keys, and from the BG number on the pump’s screen, I've come to the conclusion that it also has CGM capabilities.   
The tube of glucose tabs look just like the tubes of glucose tabs I keep in my car and my gym bag. 
The medical ID bracelet is pretty and perfect for a young doll with Type 1 diabetes. Sidebar: I believe that an American Girl Doll who wears a medical ID bracelet will encourage the little girl who loves her, to wear their own medical ID bracelet/ necklace. 

And I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE that American Girl included an insulin pen in their Diabetes Care Kit because just like real life, your diabetes may vary and not every little girl wears an insulin pump. 
The kit’s meter has a test strip already inserted, the number on the screen matches the number on the insulin pump, and a lancing device. 
All the diabetes accessories fit nicely into the kit’s carrying case, which has a working zipper and ID Card all ready for you and your doll to fill out. FYI: when I spilled water, I discovered the kit’s bag was water resistant.
And now for more awesomeness: The folks at American Girl have generously agreed to Diabetesaliciousness American Girl Diabetes Care Kit, giveaway. 

How to win: leave a comment on the blog stating why you’d like to win an American Girl Diabetes Care Kit  - the winner will be announced on Friday afternoon and will be chosen by Random.org. 

Who can win: Anyone with diabetes no matter the age, or who has a child/loves a child with diabetes. 
Also, if you're a T1 parent/auntie/uncle, godparent with diabetes, I think that the American GirlDiabetes  Care Kit is an excellent teaching tool for the children in your life to learn about living with diabetes! 

**Please make sure you your blogger ID contain your email address, or leave your email address in your comment. If I can't contact you, or if I don't hear from you by Midnight on Monday, January 25th, I will be forced to choose a new winner. 

American Girl Diabetes Care Kit costs $24, comes with a blood sugar monitor, lancing device, insulin pump, insulin pen, medical bracelet, glucose tablets, log book, I.D. card, stickers, and a carrying case. 
The kit is available at americangirl.com, at all American Girl retail locations, or by calling 1-800-845-0005

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Diabetes Annoyance #993,599 & Considering Myself A Lucky Duck~

Because even though it was incredibly annoying, I'd discovered the issue while it was still only an inconvenience and before it turned into a major problem. 
And every now and then, I think we need to remind ourselves that diabetes annoyances and inconveniences are just that - and be thankful that they didn't turn into the huge problem they had the potential to become~ 
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My blood sugar was 278 post meal and right before bed last night, which was really strange because I'd eaten salmon, veggies and a bit of sweet potato for dinner, and that meal usually has the opposite effect on me. 
 So I grabbed my trusty pump to do a correction bolus, but decided to take a peak at my less than 3 hours old infusion site, first...  and I’m so glad I did. 
Because when I lifted up my shirt and looked down, I saw purplish skin peaking through the clear plastic window part - and I was not amused. A lump had formed under the skin of the new site and I knew what had to be done.
11 pm, a second sight change before bed (not optimal, but necessary,) a waste of a precious resources including; abdomen real estate, a pricy infusion set, and insulin, and all I wanted to do was go to bed. 
I pulled out the site and of course it started bleeding a bloody trail, because why wouldn’t it?  
I cleaned up, scrubbed the blood off my fluffy, warm sweatshirt and changed my site, did a correction bolus and then decided to be useful. In the grand scheme of things, I knew it could have been so much worse - the past week had been a reminder of that. 

For the next 15 minutes, I transferred the clothes from my bedroom hamper into the washing machine - one less step for tomorrow nights laundry. Put away the clean dishes that had been drying in the dish rack and cleaned my kitchen sink so it was all nice and shiny, then prepped the coffeemaker with the next morning’s coffee and water. 
All I would need to do when I woke up was turn it on. 
I set the alarm clock on my phone and plugged it in for a charge, then grabbed the copy of  “The Goldfinch,” from my desk, sat in bed and finally cracked open.
26 minutes later and deep into what I think is going to be a very great book, I checked my blood sugar. 215 flashed on my glucose meter - things were going in the right direction and crisis averted, I was tired and ready to go to sleep and now I could.
Plus I finally had a chance to start "The Goldfinch." WINNING.  
And lucky for me, I fell asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow.
This morning went off without a hitch, except for the 19 degree temperature and howling winds - and I am a lucky duck, indeed~ 

Oh, and speaking of lucky ducks - tomorrow there's a giveaway on the blog ;)  

Friday, January 15, 2016

A Week Filled With Tears

This week has and had me crying for others  - people I loved and never met, people I loved and knew and or know. 
This week had/has me screaming "fuck cancer," from the top of my lungs and in quiet whispers
For me, this week wasn't about diabetes
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So much loss and heartache this week because of cancer. 
Famous names that we grew up with, who inspired and entertained us in the process.  
And people we love from our very own Diabetes Online Community.  A funny, beautiful, smart, brave little girl named Kate , whose mom is a DOC friend and fellow t1.
Over the years and because of the DOC, I’ve had the pleasure to watch Kate grow, become, and then bravely battle cancer. And like many, I was thrilled when I thought she was out of the woods - and heartbroken when I suddenly found out she wasn't.
Writing blog posts took a back seat this week, because every time I sat down to write - no words would come.
This week had me continually in tears and reminded me that cancer doesn’t care about your age, income, or remission status. 
This week brought back the hurt of cancer taking my uncle 6 months ago and reminded me of friends who are currently battling cancer, friends who have loved ones currently in the trenches or who lost loved ones in battles past.
This week reinforced the fact that cancer doesn’t care if you’re a rock star; actor, a familiar voice, a friendly face from the past, a husband, or a little four and a half year old girl who loved dinosaurs   


This morning I did something that made me feel like I was somehow helping.
I went to http://www.stillbrave.org/donate.html, a site designated by Kate's family, and made a donation - it wasn’t large because I’m on a budget - but it made me feel like I was doing something to help. 
If you can donate, great. If you can't, I understand and that's OK. 
But please take a moment and stop by Prayers For Kate's Facebook page  and send your love,prayers and support to Kate's family - they need it. And do the same for other families in your circles who are currently dealing with cancer, or who know the loss that cancer brings first hand - because we are in this together.
Xoxo. 

***Late last night I was informed of another little boy with connections to the DOC who passed away from cancer and I will update this post when I have more info.

Monday, January 11, 2016

On This Day In Diabetes History: Leonard Thompson - The Boy Who Lived

Leonard Thompson  - First Person With Diabetes to receive insulin .
Photo courtesy of "Brought to life," Science Museum of London
It was 94 years ago, today (January 11th, 1922,) that Dr. Frederick Banting gave the first injection of insulin to a 14 year old Canadian boy named Leonard Thompson.
Thompson, at a scant 65 pounds and near death, was drifting in and out of a diabetic coma in Toronto’s General Hospital. 
His parents were beyond desperate and allowed their son to be injected with the experimental drug known as insulin. The first injection caused an allergic reaction, but two weeks later (and after James Collip developed a refining process,) on January 23rd, 1922, Leonard received another injection that and his life was saved. 
Leonard lived until the age of 27, and passed away from complications of pneumonia and yes, diabetes most likely played a factor in his death.

In 1923 Banting and McCloud won the Nobel prize for the discovery of insulin, which by then was being produced at a lightening speed rate - and people with diabetes 
no longer lived with a death sentence. 

94 years later, millions rely and use insulin daily - and people with diabetes have gone on to live wonderful lives and do incredible things. 

But people with diabetes still struggle. 
We struggle with the cost of staying alive with diabetes
We struggle with our insurance companies and the exorbitant prices we pay for our life saving elixir of life and the cost of our life saving diabetes technologies. 
Many struggle because they lack insurance. 
Many people with diabetes struggle with complications, the fear of complications, and the judgement and lack of compassion that having complications brings from others outside and inside the diabetes community. 

Most people with diabetes struggle with the emotional aspects of living with diabetes 24X7, 365 days a year, 

And 94 years after the life saving discovery of insulin, people with diabetes continue to struggle with the fact our disease is misunderstood by so many - and we are still waiting for a cure.

However, no matter the struggles we face or live with, people with diabetes are incredibly grateful to Doctor Banting, Charles Best, George McCloud and James Collip - and to the boy who lived named Leonard Thompson - the first of our diabetes tribe to receive insulin and lived to tell the tale and inspire others.