Tuesday, March 31, 2009

I Can't Let It Get Me Down

"Frustration, Frustration...I can't let it get me down."

Yesterday was my first day back to work after two weeks of doing nothing. It was great, I went in at 7:30 am to work in the Kitchen and I finished at 12:45 but then came back at 2:00 till 5:30. It was nice to be active working with the kids and just being around people.

My sugar levels were decent yesterday, decent not normal. I felt pretty good except a few times I felt a little bit weird, but since I was sort of used to that feeling it didn't really stop me from doing anything. Just take a second to pull myself together and then keep on going.

My needles are hurting, I don't know why but for the past two days my needles are killing me! Twice I have pulled put the needle and I start to bleed. It's beyond annoying and the sting of the needle is enough to make you scream. I have to call my nurse tomorrow and I am going to mention this because I know that I gave myself needles before with less pain than what I am feeling now.

Today I was doing a lot of running around, not really accomplishing much but what the heck! It's nice to just get out and about! I printed off the pictures from the hospital so that I can begin working on my scrapbook. Once that's started I can scan some of the pages to show everyone.

If anyone is wondering why I put that quote of mine up top there, "
frustration, frustration...I can't let it get me down." it's because I've been getting these urges of frustration, if I think too much. I get myself thinking about the annoying needles and pricks, and then I get all gloomy, thinking how much this is going to change everything. But like everyone knows, I am not going to let this bring me down, diabetes is a part of me now, and I will embrace it.


Monday, March 30, 2009

Like a New Job

So I have been diagnosed now for just a bit over two weeks, and it almost feels like I've had this for awhile. I find even when I am talking to someone about Diabetes, it's like I've lived like this for awhile, when in fact it's completely brand new. I look at it this way, for those who might not understand what it's like to start a different lifestyle or have to change. It's like getting a new job, you don't know the people, the techniques, skills, or routine. Your first couple shifts are a little rough, you make mistakes, get embarrassed and frustrated and feel like you're not a part of the "group." But after a week or so, you begin to understand, learn and experience and all of a sudden you're included. This is exactly how learning you have diabetes is for me. At first, I had no idea what to do, or what even diabetes exactly was, but with time I learned more and experienced a ton and it's only been two weeks.

On Saturday March 28th I felt awesome! I didn't have many symptoms what so ever. I went to the grocery store with my mom, takes us a bit because we are reading labels, labels and well more labels and then I drove to Clinton's house. If you're wondering what exactly I am looking at when I am reading labels I'll let you know! Every food found in the grocery store usually has a nutrition guide with the listed ingredients and a breakdown of calories, carbs. etc. So when I am reading labels, I am looking at the Carbohydrates. Under the carbohydrates, sugars and fiber is listed. I have to see how many Carbs there is and minus the fiber and that will tell me how many carbs are in that specific amount of whatever it is that i'm reading. So here is an example: Carbohydrates: 20 fiber: 5 g Sugars: 8 total Carbs: 15 g Right now I am on a specific amount of carbs per meal, then that is broken down into points. Each 15g of carbs equals one point. For example: I am allowed 60 grams of carbs at breakfast, that is 4 points. Easy as pie? If it doesn't make sense it will eventually, because obviously when they first explained it to me, I was like what!

Anyways, now that I gave you all a lesson on carb counting. Let's talk about my time at Clinton's because when I was there we decided to go for a walk, and it was a lot of fun, but I worried a little about what my sugar was going to be like. We walked on a trail near the river and around his neighbourhood. We were probably out for a good hour and a half. As we were having fun, walking around, I kept in mind that there is a good chance that my sugar could go low since I am being active, and usually my sugar is lower between lunch & supper. When we got back, I checked my sugar, and I was 5.8. [ they want me to treat it if my sugar goes any lower than 5 ] So I was safe!

The important thing I learned that I should always be alert & prepared about what my body is telling me. I didn't feel anything and I was right, my sugar was fine. But when it doubt check! Like I said before, I had barely any symptoms yesterday, and I never even got nervous about going out to Dundas. Since I seem to get nervous lately if I am going somewhere, where I am unsure if I will be 'okay.' I think I am overcoming that whole nervous phase because I am becoming more comfortable with treating myself. I did get super tired at night, and had myself a two hour nap, but that gave the boys some time to talk about all the boring stuff that I am not interested in.

Today was very exciting because I got to meet with Chloe Steepe who is the founder of Connected in Motion. She created a group for people who are young adults with type 1 diabetes since a lot of type 1 diabetes stuff is directed to children. We met at the Blue Dog Cafe this morning and we ended up staying there for almost three hours just talking about how we were diagnosed, what type of things we went through and the ideas that we have for raising money etc. etc. It was really neat to talk one on one in person with someone who knows how you feel and has been where you've been. It's almost like having a twin, because here you were feeling like you were the only one peeing every half hour, drinking litres and litres of liquids, losing massive amounts of weight and feeling odd and really you were not alone. There was someone who felt the same way out there. It's great knowing that.I really enjoyed my time with Chloe, and can't wait to meet again. I learned so much but didn't feel like I was sitting in an office getting educated about my diabetes. If you want to check out her website, go to www.connectedinmotion.ca It's a really great site with some great pictures too!

Anyways, after the meeting I didn't do much besides call a couple people to tell them how excited I am for what's to come. Basically I am excited to be so lucky to get to meet amazing people, and do some amazing things. I always wondered, "what makes me so special, what will make me stand out." Now I know exactly what that is. I'd like to thank everyone who plans to participate in the walk and/or sponsor me in the walk. There is lots of time, and I'm so glad in one week I have almost 10 people participating so far. That's amazing guys!


Saturday, March 28, 2009

A New Purse ?

Yesterday was a very busy day because I was creating the event, creating the tiny clip about diabetes and trying to organize a few other things I had in mind. I am really hoping to get North Park involved with some fund raising ! My Nurse from Diabetic Education, was very excited about my idea and even went about giving my email to all her patients that are from North Park! So hopefully one or more are interested in helping me get North Park involved.

As far as my sugar yesterday, it was pretty good. I had a major headache in the morning, so bad that I could barely think straight, but eventually went away. I drove to Cambridge to go shopping with Clinton and I didn't feel any symptoms. One thing about going shopping that was obviously different than before I had Diabetes was that I had to watch the time, no not because the mall was going to close soon [ well that too! ] but because at this point I am on a strict
carb diet, in which I have to have two snacks. I always have my snacks at 10:30 a.m and 8:30 pm So while at the mall, we had to stop and I had to eat the snack that I had packed in my purse.My purse is full! Needles, meter, strips, finger poker, snacks etc. etc. this is a good excuse to get a new purse?


Thursday, March 26, 2009

A List of Events

I want to say thank you again to everyone who has reached out and given me feedback, information and encouragement. I want to thank Lauren Walton today because, before this I didn't really know Lauren, besides being good friends with her cousin Brian, and having given me information about Fanshawe a few months ago, we were pretty much strangers. Lauren has given me great inspiration and information regarding Diabetes, and I couldn't have asked for anything more out of a girl that didn't even know me from the next person. It is really appreciated that you take your time to write to me, really thank you.

There are so many people that I could centre out and thank, and since I am writing about everyday I will probably do this the odd time. I do want everyone out there to know that I think you guys are all the best of people. People who can take five minutes of their day just to read about my day, which is not exactly the most exciting of days, but hey!

So Tuesday was a pretty good day, I had an eye appointment which at first I was nervous to attend. The reason being is that I know Diabetes can cause complications of your eyes. When I got there, they did the normal test, and I had before noticed being on insulin that my vision was becoming better. Well that was true, but the one thing that changed was that my eyes were having a harder time focusing, he gave me eye drops that will help with that, it's like a once a year thing. I also was given eye drops because he said my eyes were extremely dry! So I have eye drops for that too. I was given two sets of contacts, first being a lower
prescription for the first two weeks, then a little higher for the next two weeks, then eventually my regular contacts. Apparently my eyes will just go back to the way they were before I had diabetes. No big deal! I have been wearing glasses since grade 7, so I didn't expect anything spec-tacular.

Anyways the real news is about Wednesday! I attended the
JDRF - Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Symposium. I asked Clinton to go with me, and he really wanted to go. We got there and the lady, Anne Martin knew me right away and explained to some of the girls that I was recently diagnosed and that they were pleased that for being only diagnosed two weeks that I was already getting involved. There was so much information available at this symposium. First off there were a bunch of sales reps for different pumps/meters/needles etc. so we found out tons of information on those and even got some free stuff, always a plus. Clinton was awesome to have there because he was so interested in all of it, so he thought of all the questions to ask! I was pretty amazed about how caring and interested he was.

After we got to meet all the people we got to listen to a number of speakers, including Dr.
Schatz who informed us about the new research going on, and Chloe Steepe, who has programs directed to young adults, such as myself. There was so much to be learned from every ones story. One story that really touched both Clinton & I was a story about two twin girls, and one of the twins was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes just as a baby, and wore an insulin pump. With all the cute cases and designs, her twin sister wanted to wear one too. Not being diagnosed she wore a pump to be just like her sister only to find out a few months later that she too had type 1 diabetes.

One thing I would like to touch on in this note is the Walk to Cure Diabetes in
Brantford. It is not until June 28th but they encouraged us to start planning now. I am going to have my own team and I am hoping I can encourage as many people as I can to come walk with us or at least donate to the JDRF. It is so important to me to raise money for this because this is my future. I want to be as involved as I can, because I feel like it's something that I can really promote. I will give everyone more information about this walk once I register.


Monday, March 23, 2009

Diabetes Daycare

Day eight, wow. Time goes by pretty fast when you're keeping busy, and I sure have been keeping busy. Not in the way that I am running around to the gym, or running around with the kids at work, instead I am planning my meals & figuring out when to give myself insulin and sorting out my symptoms.

Today I went to 'Diabetes Daycare' and basically what that is, is a one on one consultation with a Nurse or Dietitian. They go through basic information, remind you of what you've read over a million times and let you talk about how you feel about what's going on and such. My mom went with me, and together I think we could now write a book on Diabetes!

Basically I learned what to do when I get sick such as the flu. Everything changes when you're sick and have diabetes because you need to change your insulin accordingly ALSO people who have the flu tend to not want to eat as much or don't want to eat solid foods, so that would change things as well! Let's just hope I don't get sick and have to worry about this! I got another meter, in case something was to happen to my old one. The meter I got first is pink [ I asked for a pink one] and the second one I got today is green! I also got another meter to test ketones, which are found in your urine or blood ... (ketones are bad!) Another great thing that I got today was a paper about a seminar/workshop that is going on about Diabetes on March 25th! The RSVP date had past but the Nurse, Judy, told me that I could probably call and tell them I was just Diagnosed and they could get me in! SO, I called the lady today and she was such a nice lady and put me on the list as well as Clinton. I had asked Clinton to come with me and he was happy to come. He really is interested in all of this, and I couldn't ask for a better person by my side at this time in my life. So I will be doing that on Wednesday!

I am really excited because it will open so many more doors of information and things to experience. A lot of camps/clubs for type 1 diabetes are related to children under 14, but a young lady named Chloe started a foundation to give more support to people 14 and up. Which is great! I am really excited to get involved with all of this. I never really was apart of a club or sports team or anything like that. So it's kind of nice to be able to go to events/workshops that are directed towards something you're truly an expert about and are familiar with!

My sugar so far hasn't been that bad. The nurse has raised my insulin before meals so that should get it down to normal levels. They still suggest I do not go to the gym this week, but starting at the end of this week I am on call for work! Can't wait to get back!

Today has been great so far, I have had no headaches, stomach aches, dizziness etc. I am making my supper all by myself today since my mom is on nights so that should be fun. For you who don't know about Diabetes I am told to watch my carbs, I am only allowed so many carbs per meal. So I have figured out exactly what I am going to make tonight, and then Clinton is going to enjoy it too.


Sunday, March 22, 2009


Everything is going well, my sugar is sort-of-kind-of going down, but still is high compared to where the doctor's would like me to be. We figure we need to up my dosage of insulin. I have my, 'diabetes daycare' on Monday and I am looking forward to learning more about this, even though I have read so much and heard so much I feel like an expert already.

It's kind of nice to know so much about a subject. Before this, I had pretty much just general knowledge about things, ya I could tell you how to scrapbook or how to bake cookies but nothing so technical such as Diabetes. So in a way it makes me feel a little smarter and have a little more confidence when talking to people. It's kind of strange.

On Friday March 20th, It had been a week of being diagnosed. Wow, it went by so fast. Yet some of the days sitting at home felt like they dragged on forever. But on Saturday I got to go to Clinton's house, which was so much more fun than when I am alone here. His family is super supportive as well as himself and that makes me feel so much more comfortable about this situation. I must add that I feel like I total pain in the butt when I am there and I know I will feel like a total pain in the butt everywhere I go for awhile. I feel bad that they have to measure my food, try to figure out what I can eat.. so on. I know soon it will be second nature to them but for now it just feels like I am a big pain! But Clinton's dad said, "you've always been a pain in the butt, so what's the difference."


Thursday, March 19, 2009

Oh Yeah !

It's been my fourth day at home and that may seem like I would be used to what I have to do, but still I find myself getting frustrated. For the most part I am getting familiar with eating regular meals and giving myself insulin at the given times.

I have found myself falling asleep earlier and then having to be woken up to take my insulin, and there is nothing worse than having to be woken up. It kind of makes me think of the things we take for granted. Things like eating whenever we want, and whatever we want. So many times during the day I walk up to the fridge to grab a snack and think "oh yeah..." Also being able to do whatever you want without consequences, everything I do now will alter my blood sugar.

Eventually this will all be so normal but for right now it just still seems like a dream. As far as my sugar goes, for the most part it is going down. Tonight it is the highest it has been since I've been home but earlier I was doing quite well. I am looking forward to going back to work and the gym, since that was what I would normally be doing this week.


Monday, March 16, 2009

First Steps

As everyone probably knows I spent four days in the Brantford General Hospital. The only thing I didn't post, besides the random pictures and updates of when I would be coming home, was what I was there for. Since everyone is asking, which is so understandable, I thought I would sum it all up on a little note. I was thinking I've got so much on my mind from all this, why not write a note about it once and awhile and then at least I could have some feedback and maybe find out someone out there is in the same situation I am, and I didn't even know it!

On Thursday March 12th I went to the doctor for blood work. The reason for this was because my mom had some weird feeling that my sugar was high. The reason for this was because I was constantly drinking water or milk. By constant I mean, chugging at least 5 water bottles between 8 am - 12 pm, drinking at least one bag of milk myself a day. I also, which everyone noticed, lost a bunch of weight. Basically I was burning off my fat and muscle rather than my sugar, which is not good! Things like that made her suspect this.

Friday March 13th, I got a call from my doctor's office that my sugar was 24, which is very high. So I was sent to emerg. and I stayed from Friday afternoon till Monday Afternoon. I was diagnosed with Type One Diabetes [Juvenile Diabetes]

At first I didn't realize how serious this was. I think that the whole thing went over my head and especially because I was not feeling sick like most people with sugar that high do. Basically they told me that my pancreas isn't working anymore so I will be having to give myself insulin rather than my body giving it to myself.

In the hospital it felt so weird, because here I was sitting in a hospital bed, not feeling any different than I normally did. Except I was being injected in the stomach every four hours, [ even four in the morning!] and I had to prick my finger to check my blood sugar. All the terms and explanations confused me, but with the books they gave me I managed to get a good idea what was happening.

They doctor's said that my attitude was positive and that was the best thing. I got to give myself the insulin in my stomach and prick my finger myself. It was weird because I had never given myself a needle before and I had never had to prick my finger to make it bleed.

Now that I have been doing it for about five days, it still doesn't feel normal to do this, but it is starting to make sense on why I have to do it. Now that I am home, I find it a little harder, just because I don't know everything about diabetes yet and neither does my family. So we are working together to get it under control since my sugar is still pretty high up there [currently 17.9] The food of course is much better at home compared to the hospital, but now I have to count my carbs, and I am only allowed so much, and it's very frustrating.

I don't like that this has happened, and I know that there is worse that happens to people, but when it comes down to it, it's hard to get used to. I got very upset today twice just because I started thinking about it so much that I was driving myself nuts. I have dots on my fingers, I have tiny holes in my stomach, I can only eat this, I am hungry, I don't feel great. It's all going on in my head, while my body is trying to get back to normal.

I hate to feel like I am complaining especially because I don't want to bug the people that are helping me out the most.

On that note, I would like to thank everyone who visited me during my stay in the hospital, it really made me feel so much more comfortable being there and with all the goodies everyone left me, I had lots to do! I really appreciated it.