Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Eat, Bolus and Be Merry

Sometimes I wish that it wasn't sugar. You know, it was something like green food colouring or onions because we all know that sugar is the absolute 'sweetest' thing out there. It is in everything - there are carbohydrates in everything - basically. Obviously, not everything but everything that I want to eat.  Especially around Christmas, from the delicious clementines to the advent calendar. When you think about it, everything is a diabetics enemy, and not that sugar is the enemy but when you consider how much effort we have to put into counting carbs for mindless things such as a tiny chocolate in an advent calendar (not saying that I am that all) it ends up being a task in a half for a diabetic to enjoy the holidays, or dessert, or dinner or breakfast, especially cereal. Why can't we just eat in peace!

Speaking of eating in peace, it is the time of year when you are going to be eating around people you don't normally eat around.  The holidays are awesome for being able to share meals and snacks with family and friends; however, there are always one or two that are slowly but loudly judging you as you put an extra helping of pie on your plate or gasping when they peeped at your meter and it read 25 mmol/L. WHAT! It's the holidays. Isn't twenty-five a magical christmas number anyways.

We know that people are overly concerned about our well being and we love them for that. However,  just as a forewarning; diabetics can handle the holidays without being told how to handle the holidays. And, yes, maybe we won't do a good job, and we will have high holiday numbers and feel crappy and maybe even lash out on you for no apparent reason; however we got this... unless we ask. We got this.

Let us have potatoes, gravy or hershey kisses.  Eggnog with milk.  Fruit cake (or not) brownies and pie.  Let us enjoy the holidays without feeling the guilt of being deemed the 'diabetic' at the table. Let us eat, bolus and be merry.


Tuesday, December 2, 2014

We are Tired

So I took a break from the blog. For a few reasons, one being that I needed a break and second, I had no time, despite taking a break.

The last time I wrote I was doing very well diabetes wise, I was rocking the CGM and I was even counting the carbs in broccoli (which to me is crazy.)  Of course the next week while still wearing CGM I was fighting myself in trying to control my blood sugars which were bouncing up and down for no reason. I was not allowing myself hardly any carbs because I was so frustrated with watching the line fly up then back down several times.  I was frustrated and I still am frustrated with diabetes; which makes me believe with all the technology in the world - diabetes will always be annoying.

Lately, I have been having a battle within myself in regards to my diabetes. As much as it has brought me so much, i.e experiences, friends, connections, jobs.  I still think it is slowly taking all of me. I hate to say that because I really attempt to be positive about diabetes, but I must admit there are moments, lots of moments where I just want to pass it off.  I don't even know if I could pass it off to my worst enemy, I would like to just blow it up. Blow up diabetes.

When I do my public speaking, or I meet with the empowerment group and see the faces of diabetes, I am reminded that I am not alone and likely not alone in my thinking. While we are grateful for diabetes supplies, access to insulin, healthcare and support - we are tired.  We are tired of shots, we are tired of pricks, pokes, pinches. We are tired of constantly judging ourselves for our numbers and what we put in our mouth. We are exhausted.

And while it's refreshing, for most of us have the support and the push to continue. We will always attempt to seek ways of motivation and improvement. We know it takes only seconds to test, but understanding that making the choice to not test is just as easy.  We, including myself have to remember that when we take the time to do those things, that we are showing our love for ourselves and that we are strong for deciding to take action.  But also to remember that when we lack the motivation; that we are not bad people for it. We can never let diabetes dictate the type of person we are.


Sunday, October 5, 2014

Feeling Awesome

At first when I got my CGM, my blood sugars were amazing. In fact, I think if I printed it off and handed it to a random diabetes educator, they would assume it was someone without diabetes. I was almost flat lining (in a good way) and was avoiding lows and highs like it was my job . . .  okay, I guess it is my job.

However, routine is a big secret in managing diabetes.  If you have sporadic days, that can lead to sporadic numbers.  Maybe this isn't the case for everyone but I think a lot of people could relate.  I am very much a routine person.  It's really the only way I can get things done.  With my job, as a Nanny it can be easy to get into routine because the girls are pretty structured now that they're in school.  I have free time during the day and if I didn't establish a routine in that time I would be doubling up on my data with Netflix and probably vacuuming so much, my carpet would disappear (I have that tendency when I am bored, weird I know.)

Anyway, I've established a routine that worked for me and I've been successful thus far, dropping 4.5 pounds in nearly a week and a half. For me, it's not about the weight. I mean, I do want to lose weight - who doesn't. But, I am more concerned about feeling good, that's it. Just feel awesome.  

Blood sugars play a HUGE role in feeling awesome, trust me.  Like, it's unbelievable how awesome I felt when I was flat lining (in a good way) on my pump.  I felt like I could run around the block 100 times, and I didn't get frustrated, stressed, angry, annoyed...I just felt good.   However, we know that just because we establish a routine, eat well and exercise that doesn't mean you're going to have good blood sugars. If it was that easy, then we would all be scarfing down the healthiest foods, just to feel awesome.

I pretty much eat the same thing every day. Earlier I wrote a post about what my average day entails as far as food and while I switch it up (not breakfast) with different items in my smoothies, and a different veggies for dinner. Overall, my food intake is fairly similar, every and everyday.  So, you'd expect that your blood sugars would be the same each day, but of course not. We as diabetics, know better. It's not that easy.

I admit this morning, it was on me. I forgot to bolus (take insulin) for my breakfast. Honestly, I got to sleep in for the first time in forever (Frozen song just popped in my head) and it was glorious.  I ate a bit later in the morning and I also woke up with a blood sugar of 10 mmol/L which is abnormal for me (however I went low three times at night, thank you wine.....)   I corrected for the 10 mmol/L but in turn forgot to actually bolus for my food, shooting my blood sugar up to a lovely 20 mmol/L.   Hey, it's hard to remember to be a pancreas sometimes.

Now, that was my mistake, forgetting. However, the day before, I did exactly the same thing as always. I ate the same things, and did the same type of exercise routine, yet, I was literarily 14 mmol/L the entire day. I would admit if I did something wrong, but honestly, everything was the same.   My site was fine, my insulin was O.K.... there was no reason, and I instantly felt defeated because I knew how well I was doing, I knew what awesome felt like, and I wasn't feeling awesome.

It's amazing what blood sugars can do to your mood, your mindset, your ambition, motivation and self esteem.   You instantly blame yourself for a job not done right, when in reality, dealing with diabetes isn't an easy task, no matter how healthy you eat, or how much you go to the gym. It's about taking each day at a time, and accepting the highs and lows of diabetes and not taking the numbers to heart, but not ignoring them (there is a fine line...)  

So, as much as I was putting myself down for awful blood sugars and especially this morning when I wanted to scream at myself for forgetting to bolus, I took a deep breath and told myself, "It's not your fault..." and I forgave myself for making a simple mistake and also reminded myself that diabetes isn't a cake walk...and if it was, how difficult would that be...ugh cake.


Tuesday, September 30, 2014


Based on a comment from my last post I am going to go into more detail in regards to my low carb & CGM experience.  It has been about two weeks of attempting to eat low carbs and I had a sensor on for four of those days. Basically, I have never studied nutrition before (besides having an awesome friend who is a dietician and helps me out every now and then) so everything that I have been doing has been completely based off experience or Pinterest (not going to lie). So, what works for me, may not always work for you, just to keep that in mind!

I didn't change my breakfast routine too much other than instead of regular skim milk, I began using Almond milk, mainly because I use that in my smoothies and didn't want to have to buy two types of milk at the grocery store.  The unsweetened vanilla almond milk has very little carbs, which is helpful with maintaining a low carb lifestyle (I am trying to avoid the word diet...) 

So, breakfast is usually almond milk and multi-grain Cheerios which doesn't spike my blood sugar (and I know this because of my CGM!) It is just enough carbs (approximately 45 grams) to avoid a low at the gym, but also to keep me usually under 7 mmol/L two hours later, which is ideal.  I have been going to the gym about two hours after eating breakfast, so this has been working out perfectly. If my routine is changed a bit, it can be a bit tricky, but that's diabetes and life...

Lunch has been the same as well; and there's a coffee thrown in between breakfast and lunch that is just coffee, sweetener and a little splash of almond milk, so I haven't really been bolusing for that at all... even though I think technically it would be like 2 carbs.  For lunch, I have been making smoothies and I have become quite creative with them, just so that I don't get bored.  So I have used coconut, chocolate almond milk, spinach always, carrots, peanut butter, frozen strawberries and even bought some pumpkin to try and make a pumpkin smoothie...'tis the season. Usually on average the carbs for the smoothies are under 30 grams of carbs.  The annoying part is figuring out how many carbs, so I have been just writing down the amounts of things and typing it into my Fitbit App so that it does the nutrition for me. If anything, it's helping me improve my math skills, which are below normal I am sure.  

Snacks usually involve an apple, cheese strings, or baby cookies (if I am feeling like I need cookies...always) and if I am low at anytime I try so, so hard just to have a juice box. A healthy juice box that taste like water, but whatever.  It's about 14 grams of carbs and 60 calories, so I think that method on its own is going to save me about 1000 extra calories a week. 

For dinner, I try to eat the least amount of carbs. I have found it's almost become like a game, what can I make that taste good but has hardly any carbs and thanks to the internet, it's really not that hard. Lately I have been making things like, egg plant pizza, and portobello mushrooms with cheese and sauce.  I have attempted a few other things, but really try to stay under 20 grams of carbs for dinner.  I then have a "dessert" or snack shortly after which is usually apple and peanut butter or greek yogurt. 

Then that's it for carbs/food.  I have been trying to drink 2L of water a day which has really stopped me from wanting to eat as much, it has really cleared up my skin (it wasn't really ever bad, but I feel like I can notice a difference) and it has stopped me from drinking little to no diet coke (I KNOW!) I think that the water drinking is also helping with keeping awesome blood sugars since I am flushing out my body - but I'm not a doctor so I am basing everything I notice off, well what I notice. 

I was asked, "Why I choose to do a low carb lifestyle" and I guess that's because I can now see with CGM what carbs do. And I know it isn't just carbs because the other night for no reason my blood sugar shot up to 14 mmol/L. No idea why.  But, carbs, that is something I can control and if I am eating little carbs I feel as though I have more control over my diabetes; which is a great feeling.  It's hard being a pancreas, so if I can make it easier by doing something that is pretty simple, then you bet I am going to do it. 

I can say that I am sure with a combination of the CGM, working out daily, low carb/healthy eating and the water drinking, I have 10x more energy than before.  I feel like I have control which is amazing.  

I have included some of the graphs from my insulin pump along with a snapshot of my "Fitbit" App, something I recently got and fell in love with. I suggest you look into it! 

So, now to drink some water. Cheers! 


Saturday, September 27, 2014


It's been awhile since I wrote.  I wish I had a super good excuse besides "life gets busy" but that's about all I can come up with at this point. But here I am again and going to attempt to put 'blogging' back into my routine.

The biggest statement I have for today and I want to shout it, so I will do so via CAPS.


And I mean, that sounds like a big exaggeration like, "this cake is going to save my life.."well I guess that could also be a true statement. But seriously, CGM is going to save my life and prevent a whole lot of complications that people with diabetes are constantly reminded of.  You know, the leg, the eyes, the...list goes on.

CGM for those that do not know, is a continuous glucose monitor.  Basically I am going to copy and paste what Medtronic has to say because I'm an English Major and stopped doing science in Grade 10.

"CGM is a way to measure glucose levels in real-time throughout the day and night. A tiny electrode called a glucose sensor is inserted under the skin to measure glucose levels in tissue fluid. It is connected to a transmitter that sends the information via wireless radio frequency to a monitoring and display device."  Found on

Itt is basically checking my blood sugar throughout the entire day and letting me know what is going on with my body. Because, if you really think about it,  if you check your blood sugar the recommended four times a day (this is what is required by the Ontario government for pump coverage). If you're checking those four times, you're only getting a snapshot of a total of four seconds of your diabetes day.  If you were 10 in the morning, 6 at lunch, 14 in the middle of the afternoon and 9 before bed, how do you know you're not missing undetected highs etc. You really don't! 

The past couple weeks I have been working my butt off (literally)  at the gym every single day, and trying to eat healthy. Doing so, I have reduced significantly the highs that I had been having.  Noticeable changes include my eye sight which is amazing, clear and my eyes are not bothered as much as well as my energy levels.   I have been attempting low carb meals and have been pretty creative via Pinterest in trying new recipes or making up my own. 

I put the sensor (for the CGM) on yesterday and I am in love. Honestly, in love. I have worn sensors before for example, during my climb up Kilimanjaro. However, I am reminded of the benefits that any glucose monitoring can have for a person with diabetes (not to mention their parents or caregivers) Being a Nanny to a type 1 diabetic who was a glucose monitor - I can also state that it is extremely helpful.  

Either way I am feeling good about my diabetes
right now and my overall health and success in finding a routine and balance in my life. Of course not all the pieces of the puzzle have come together, but who has their whole puzzle finished at twenty-four anyways.

Now to find the money to continue using them.... hmmm. 


Sunday, August 17, 2014

My Heart Goes Out

I have spend the past couple weeks really thinking about my diabetes.  Half because I am meeting new people and having the conversation of, "I have diabetes" which comes out because I feel like every single thing that I do in my life has been a result of diabetes or some weird connection. Diabetes has become a huge part of my life, but that's what diabetes is all about - taking over.

Cruise 2009
Recently I have had two people in my life pass away that had type 1 diabetes, one being my Uncle Bill and the other being a friend I met in Australia at the diabetes conference. I must say, that my Uncle didn't pass away from diabetes, but my friend Reg did, and it really hit home.  Firstly, my uncle was the one that taught me a lot about type 1 diabetes when I was first diagnosed.  Only a couple weeks into my diagnosis we went on a cruise and he guided me through the mess of carbs I had on my plate from buffets and even my very first low in Mexico on the way to the Mayan Ruins.  It's hard to lose someone, but I found it difficult to process the fact that he was a fellow type 1 diabetic. I felt as though I was the only one left with type 1 diabetes in the family (my Dad's cousin had always passed away due to type 1 diabetes complications/situational related).   It made me think about diabetes in a light I had never thought about it before, deadly.

When I found out Reg had passed away as well from diabetes complication, I was in shock and found myself once again pondering how diabetes can just take over like that. I mean, I don't need to ponder to hard to know that it is easy to lose grip of diabetes.  It's exhausting being diabetic and I am not even exaggerating. It's not easy and when you hear of the horror stories, as much as we attempt to screen them out, we know them.  We hear about them, we feel the effects, we may have brushed up against them.

My heart goes out to my family and Reg's family as well.  I use their lives as motivation to keep doing what I do, and try harder with my diabetes management.  Checking more often, being conscious of what I am doing, i.e giving myself insulin, carb counting better.  I've admittedly earned a lot this summer, and they're not lessons that come easy.


Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Stolen Patience

Diabetes stole my patience.

Well, maybe I never had patience.  I am not really sure. I guess we all have some level of patience whether that is the fact we can wait until payday before attempting to borrow money or we wait to text someone until after noon. Either way, my level of patience decreases immensely as my blood sugar rises and slowly I feel myself losing my control.

 I know I am losing my patience and have attempted to breath. Like, yoga breaths the ones they make you do before and after you begin and end...well I think you have to do that breathing throughout the whole process, but I only remember to do so when they tell me.  Either way, I am attempting to recognize the fact that when my blood sugar is high my tolerance for people, things, animals, sounds, and just about anything you can think of is low.

I'd like to think that before diabetes I could have handled anything, but obviously that isn't the case. I can't completely blame diabetes for this lack of patience, although as one with diabetes might be aware, it's super easy to blame diabetes for personal flaws.  I just know that this particular 'impatient' feeling is from diabetes. I see it in other diabetics, I see it in E, I see it in my friends with diabetes, I feel it.

It's incredibly hard not to let diabetes define my personality. As I am not diabetes, but an individual living with type 1 diabetes. But, when it grabs a hold of you in every which way, it's hard not to let diabetes boss you around, because let's face it, it isn't me bossing you around it's my high blood sugar or maybe it's not even my blood sugar, maybe it's frustration with diabetes itself.

Regardless more and more I am realizing this impatient truth that diabetes has marked me with.  This frustration to get things done now, or not at all. This phase of giving up before I should, this gut feeling like I am losing control of my diabetes or
of myself.


Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Dating Game

I've written about diabetes and dating before. When I was first diagnosed with type 1 I was seeing someone, so they got to learn with me as I learned how to give myself injections, check my blood sugar and carb count.  After that relationship ended and I started dating again, I began to strategize how I was going to tell people that I had diabetes.  Now that I am back in the 'dating world' I once again am wondering how I am going to approach the situation.

I am very open about my diabetes (obviously) and if anyone goes googling my name to find out more about me, they're going to find endless pages of "Kayla & Diabetes" from my blogs, to the meme page, as well media outputs. So, 'hiding' my diabetes isn't an option and frankly, I obviously don't want to hide something that is such a huge aspect of my life.

I have talked about dating with the teens I meet with a bit, actually, I learned that it is called 'wheeling' now.  So while we have discussed 'wheeling' it is a bit of a different game from high-school to post university.  You're dealing with a different type of people (hopefully) so you have to assume that the people you may be going on dates with or getting to know have some understanding of diabetes even if they're not sure what type of diabetes you have.

I have found that my approach is to be upfront about my diabetes from the get go because if you think about, if the person can't handle you talking about diabetes or the fact that you're living with diabetes, they're not worth your time. And you move on from there.

I have made my life around diabetes, but that is not what I am all about. It's funny; however, how much make or break qualifications have to do with diabetes such as if you're going to ask if I can eat that every 5 seconds, than no.

Diabetes has made me who I am today and has given me more than half of my best stories, if you're going to date me, you're going to date diabetes too...


Sunday, July 13, 2014

We All Need Somebody To Lean On

It can be hard to figure out what you're supposed to do. I mean, we pick something to study in college, but that doesn't really mean anything when it comes to afterwards.  I have a beautiful framed diploma that hangs above my desk but other than that, I am left wondering what's next.  And while I've vowed not to plan as much anymore, I can't help but know that in some extent I need to plan enough to make sure that I am O.K, mentally, physically, financially.

I have been debating going back to school in the near future. I'd like to give myself at least a year to gather my thoughts, do some things I've wanted to do and really give myself a well deserved break from essays and deadlines.  I have also been trying to find my place in the diabetes world. Which I guess isn't something most people do, but I know that I have a place and I was given type 1 for a reason (so cliche) but truly, I want to make sure that with this 'sweet gift' I am doing something good and giving back to the community.

What this meant for me was beyond my blog or climbing Kilimanjaro, it was actually meeting with people with diabetes and listening. I often tell my story at symposiums or conferences, but when it comes down to it each person living with diabetes has a story to tell and sometimes those people that don't get to tell their story too often are left feeling without a doubt alone.  I wanted to create a safe place to talk about diabetes. A place without parents, without associations, without judgement, fear, or interruption.

While I'd like to meet with all the diabetics, I decided to concentrate my time and efforts on one group in particular.  Teens, teen girls to be exact. I wasn't a teenager with type 1 diabetes but I was a teenager and while it was a few years ago that I left teenage-hood I feel like I can still remember the stresses of grade 8, high-school - the bullies, the boys, the girls, the grades, the pressure, the body image issues... all of that.  Now living with type 1 diabetes, I can be empathetic to the teens that are not only dealing with all the issues I listed above but also diabetes.

I have hosted two free sessions thus far and while we are a small group, I can feel the support that connects us and I truly hope we can grow. As my dream would to have a close knit group of teen girls that can laugh, cry and share together and for me to be a person they can tell ask questions, feel safe around and most importantly know that they can count on.

Because let's face it, 'we all need somebody to lean on'


For more information please visit: T1 Empowerment on Facebook or email

For a recent news article on the group please check out:

Tuesday, July 8, 2014


Taking some time to do Yoga! Which is a great way
to force yourself to reflect without distraction.
It is good to set time aside in your day to reflect and while most of us do this in bed which can often lead to restless nights due to us suddenly remembering that we have to pick up a parcel or pay a bill, I purpose that we spend more time during the day reflecting to avoid this issue.

But it is more than just taking time throughout the day to pause and think, "Did I do everything I wanted to do today."  "What can wait until tomorrow."  "Is there any new things to add to my to-do list?" "Of course there is!"  We also need to take the time to reflect on what we've accomplished in the day and not constantly focus on what did not get done.

I am a go-go-go-go type person. I don't really like sitting around and if I am sitting I am doing ten other things as well.  As a nanny I am constantly on-the-go too as keeping a four year old entertained takes a lot of energy and creativity. Perfect, because that's what I am all about. However, once I arrive home, I don't seem to turn off. I will plan to watch a show or movie, but end up windexing while watching, or rearranging my desk. Sitting and watching T.V while doing nothing at all, what is that?

I want to try and take more time out of my day to reflect on what I have accomplished and remember that I am doing this all while managing my diabetes. Which, being a nanny, and a caregiver to two pancreas's that's a lot of work!  I need to appreciate my own efforts and the energy that I put in each day. I need to remember that when it is time to go to bed, the things that need to get done will get done and the things that got done, well they got done!

It's important to listen to our bodies and our minds when you need those reflection breaks. Like a puppy (trust me I know!) we need to reward ourselves when we do good, remind ourselves that we are 'good' and doing 'good' and be a bit more carefree with what gets done and what can be tomorrow's task.


Sunday, July 6, 2014

Inner Happiness

My mom recently sent me an article about relationships/loving yourself. It had a great point, you can't expect to find happiness in other people, not until you find happiness in yourself. And by happiness, I don't mean that day you found a ten dollar bill rolling across the parking lot, or the day your hair actually looked half decent for more than a few hours. Happiness that is within so deep, and so bright that it radiates throughout you and sparkles in your eyes.

Meet Cola! 
I've been working on a lot of things recently. While I feel as though I have landed an amazing job, nannying, and my apartment is looking and feeling like home, there is much work to be done in finding all what makes me one hundred percent happy with what I have, where I am and who I am. Digging for happiness within can be difficult, because it is much easier to go buy a dress and feel happy than to sit down with yourself and find 'happiness' in your mind.

The article my mom had passed along talked about inner happiness and loving oneself, and truly it makes sense; how can we love others without first knowing that we are perfectly fine with ourselves? And we must know that by adding to us, isn't to fulfill a void. While this post isn't about diabetes really; it does come into effect because learning to love myself comes with learning to love my diabetes & loving diabetes as much as I want it to be an add on, it is totally apart of me and I cannot neglect nor deny that.

My summer began a bit off, but with strength, determination, friends and well, a new puppy in my life; I am beginning to realize that spending time with yourself isn't a sign of loneliness nor sadness, but rather the gateway to personal happiness, knowing yourself, and the first step to accepting the things we cannot change, and improving on the things we can.

P.s while it may appear that way, Cola did not fulfill any kind of void, he added to my happiness.


If anyone is interested in reading the article my mom sent:

Friday, July 4, 2014

Stop Planning!

The other day during a conversation, I began to wander in my thoughts. Because this person was going on about their plans. Their plans for their life, what they were going to do, and not what they were going to do tomorrow, but in years. Unpredictable years. Years that this person knew were going to involve change and movement, yet still planning for the future, every detail.

Now, this usually is me. Planning what meals I am going to make for the next 365 days, planning how many kids I want and when I want to have them, planning for where I want my wedding to be, that wasn't even a thing. Planning for a future that I had no concept of, because no one knows their future, and every day our plans change like the weather. Yet we still log onto pinterest and plan for these life moments that may or may not happen, and if they do, maybe we won't want pink bridesmaids dresses or five little girls, maybe we will want to skip the wedding and travel around the world.

I am not mad at the planners in the world because deep down inside I have to know there is a bit of a planner inside me. However, I have come to realize that life is unpredictable. Had I known I was going to get diabetes in my future, my life and perspective may have been much different. Learning to roll with the punches isn't always easy in life, but we have to understand that with change comes new experiences, new people and a new perspective; which isn't such a bad thing.

So next time you go fretting about plans or the future remember that things don't always go to plan, and that's the fun of it all, you never know what's next and if you haven't tried to predict it, you won't be disappointed.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

What's Worse....

After a visit with the allergist, my whole view on medicine and doctors changed. I didn't know what to believe, where to turn, what to think. My stupid hives that covered my body, once believed to be that of stress or food, became so much more as he began to go on about how I needed to see a blood doctor (hematologist) due to some abnormal blood work.  This same doctor had mentioned about an under-active thyroid, but after further tests that has been dismissed. So I did have some doubt heading into my appointment today.

I was semi prepared to see the 'C' word around me at some point, as the allergist had mentioned the 'C' word before. I was mad at him for mentioning the 'C' word because no one likes that word and it seemed unnecessary, at least until he had some facts.  I didn't realize that going to this appointment today I would be surrounded by the 'C' word, in fact the building I went into had the word in it, the posters, the booklets, the signs... it was everywhere.

I could feel myself getting sick. My head was burning and tears were welling up in my eyes. I was only there to see the hematologist, yet it seemed like I had something worse... and I hate saying worse because I know that real people deal with the 'C' word everyday and I hope to them, something is worse than the 'C' word, because no one wants the ultimate worst thing... For instance, having diabetes, to cheer myself up I think of what is worse, what could have happened, what I could have had instead... and to be honest my worst was being flashed in front of me.

I walked around the hospital like a chicken without his head, until I found a seat by a fish tank.  It seemed calming and I was trying not to look like an idiot and start crying as I was surrounded by those that actually had the 'C' word.  I was given a booklet about the 'C' word and ultimately became confused as if I had instantly progressed upon arrival.  But no, she let me know, "we give everyone this booklet..."  interesting.

I saw a nurse who was super excited, turns out it was his 51st birthday, so I get that, meanwhile I am trying to keep calm as he asks about any history of 'C' in my family or any history of blood disorders, when I responded with 'not that I know of' to the latter, he said, "so it's just you with little blood disorder."


Little Blood Disorder?  Little? Blood? Disorder?

I was now full on confused how was my state changing with each chair I sat on.

Finally after 3.5 hours I got to see a doctor. All in all, I think it went well, they went from wanting to do a bone marrow test to scratching that and doing a skin biopsy (of my hives).  To be honest, I kept thinking, can you guys just get your S^&t together....

I learned something valuable today. As I don't know my healths state right now. I know that there were lots of people there fighting hard. I saw tears, I saw flowery bandanas covering woman's heads that were bare, and I witnessed a bell ring, people get up and clap and a woman jumping for joy (I am assuming she's 'C' word free or did her last round of Chemo, because yes that clinic was beside mine).  I walked out being positive but keeping a piece of my heart (and skin literally) in that clinic because for a moment I realized that what I thought was 'worse' isn't just a thought, it happens, it happens to the young and old, there are people every day going through the struggle that I just imagined as 'worse'. I saw life and I saw hope, I saw sadness and fear...I saw more than I imagined I would see and felt more than I ever knew I could feel. We need cures, we need hope and we need compassion for those living with what's 'worse'.


Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Twists & Turns

It's official I have graduated! Which seems strange because as I sat there waiting for my name to be called, I began to wonder where the time had gone.  How it feels like a millions years since high school, yet I feel like the journey to today went by like a speeding bullet. I can hardly remember all that went on in those past few years, or even believe that some how I made it through, got all the essays in on time, or even thought of that many essays topics to write on. It's amazing.

I have been writing a lot about new chapters and how I plan to take on the days of the rest of my life. However, at graduation one of the speakers said something that stuck with me and I feel like I have been trying to remind myself of this, but with her reiterating it, it really hit home.  Don't plan the rest of your life, or set too strong of goals, as you never know when life can change, twist and turn and you'll have to change your plans.  How true is that, and how great is that at the same time. We don't need to plan ahead so far in advance that we know how many children we're going to have, what colour we're going to paint the laundry room of our first home or what age we'd like to retire. We can just live in the now and plan for tomorrow, not for fifty years down the road. Enjoy the moment.

I'm happy for all my peers that have also graduated as we all know that it isn't an easy journey to get through post secondary especially with all those little twists and turns that may have changed our plans along the way. 


Friday, June 6, 2014

Grow & Learn

It's been a full week of watching 'E' and I am starting to see diabetes in a different light.  Dealing with type 1 diabetes on my own is much different than helping someone manage their diabetes and I say helping because 'E' is pretty self sufficient in the fact that she actively participates in taking care of her diabetes such as reading the numbers on her monitor and asking questions or telling me about her insulin pump, site, monitor, meter, etc.

I find that when we know our own diabetes it is really easy to become slack and not be as worried as we are for other with type 1 diabetes. I notice it all the time online when people write a question or share a story about their diabetes and people are quick to judge or give advice that they may or may not follow themselves. We all know how to take care of our diabetes because we are explained how to from day one and the amount of resources seem almost overwhelming. However, like I mentioned we can easily ignore the truths and push through our day.

'E' inspires me to check more. Even though she wears a monitor and we don't have to check as much, she encourages me to check mine more. Like, seriously, gets my meter out, puts in a strip and holds the lancet over my finger ready to go. She even will cock it back again when we are done and say, "it's ready to go for next time you check.." How awesome is it to have a mini type 1 to not only inspire me to keep checking and keeping taking care of myself, but also for me to help her. We have each other.

I want to be healthy, I want to embrace diabetes, I want to continue to grow and learn and this was exactly what I needed to keep pushing me in the right direction.


Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Small Details

I recently read a quote in the book 'Happier at Home' that read:

"The true secret of happiness lies in taking a genuine interest in all the details of daily life" - William Morris

I must admit when I first read it, it didn't catch me. But the more I skim past the pages, it stands out and I begin to realize that even if it isn't the true secret, or the without-a-doubt pathway to happiness, I would like to think that approach to details in daily life is an excellent way to go about living and overall being happy with each passing day.

Wild flowers I picked on a walk the other day! 
Life can get pretty mundane after awhile, especially if you work a 9-5 office job. I can only relate this to the time I worked in an office one summer as a student, and felt like the time I was spending could have been put to better use at times. But that's exactly that, I think that is where unhappiness is found. If we know what we are spending our time on is with less potential than we expect from ourselves. When we know we could be doing better, when we know that it can work, but details need to be tweaked in order to fulfill our happiness. I am not saying quit your 9-5 job; however, I think based on the Morris quote, if we approach our days with the most detail, the most focus, we can truly change our outlook on what we do and how we do it, leading to happiness (I would hope...)

I can also relate this to diabetes because it is so easy to get caught up in a routine with type one, because basically it is just a cycle. Although it throws curve balls at us, we know it's going to throw curve balls, so the thrill of those is almost routine like.  However, being detail oriented when it comes to diabetes, I believe can change your mindset about what living with diabetes is about. I have tried very hard to put diabetes into a perspective that is much different from what a doctor sees.  I get that I have to check my blood sugar at least four times a day to get a check from the endocrinologist approving me to continue with an insulin pump, I get that I need to give myself insulin before I begin my meal, but what we can do with type 1 diabetes is outstanding. If we pay attention to the details throughout our daily lives (which is 80% taking care of our diabetes and 90% trying to do other things with diabetes) than maybe, just maybe we can make peace with our diabetes.

In saying this, I am not suggesting that we become obsessive over our diabetes, but simply pay attention to what we are doing. Don't rush through the process, do it with confidence and move on. Allow diabetes not to be a burden in your life (although on a practical side, it does take a lot of our time, money and tears) but fight past that mindset and allow it to be a part of your lifestyle.  It's super easy to make diabetes enemy number one, but I believe that is a waste of energy and a source of unhappiness. 

So, overall, I am going to keep this quote in mind all day and attempt to focus on small details of daily life that maybe we miss because we are too busy. I am going to take the time to check my blood sugar when I should, actually look at food carb counts, pay attention to how I feel.  Enjoy the sun and the heat, pay attention to those around me and what they need and enjoy the special bits of the day that often go without notice.


Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Happy Right Now

It's hard not to think in terms of school years. I keep thinking, okay I will do this until September...when in reality September becomes just a month in the year, it isn't the 'New Years' of back to school. It's simply just a month, and at that, an extension of a summer month since September can still be quite mild.  I have been going to school for seventeen years. SEVENTEEN YEARS!  And now, I am free, yet so stuck in the groove in school I can't help but break down the year in that way.

This is the start to the rest of my life. Of course I have been living before, yet not I have no solid commitments to what I have to do or what I don't have to do. I can do whatever and that feels good!  It has been almost too overwhelming deciding what I want to do, where I want to be and what will make me happy, but I have realized that looking that far ahead it impossible as we cannot predict what will change. I automatically have been planning up until September, having to stop and remind myself that it's just a month not a start to anything and that my plans can exceed into fall, winter, spring and back to summer - there is a lot of time to figure out what will make me happy, but more specifically what will make me happy right now is what matters.

Watching E is giving me hope that my diabetes management will only improve. How awful would I be to make her check her b/g and not check mine. The other day she asked to check my b/g for me and had the strip in my meter before I could even answer.  We're each others diabuddies and that makes me happy. Noting to myself that what makes me happy right now is taking care of my diabetes and being a great help in managing hers as well.

I am not sure where life is going to take me, but have to trust that that is the beauty of life. I have to remind myself that is isn't about getting to September, it is about getting through the day and not just getting through the day but truly living within the moments, enjoying the people around me, listening to myself and taking care of myself.

I may not be returning to school in the near future (never say never...) however, I am learning every day and that is awesome!


Monday, June 2, 2014

My Own Voice

I ventured off to the park near my apartment the other day. It was a beautiful day and after I recovered from my horrible night of high blood sugar, I wanted to enjoy what was left of the day.  I packed my bag with an iPod, towel, banana, a book and diabetes supplies and headed there with full intentions on relaxing. Nothing disrupted this plan, I found a perfect spot on the grass, laid down my I love Barbados towel, sunscreen, my iPod l, a banana and a good book, 'Happier at Home' by Gretchen Rubin.

As I was lying there, families having BBQ's around me, people tossing a football back and forth, even a loose balloon flying around me, I felt so good! I felt so relaxed and couldn't help but wonder, 'Why haven't I done this before?!"  I have been in London for six years, and I have been an independent person since what, eighteen. I could have at anytime taken a moment or two to appreciate what is around me, enjoy time and specifically enjoy time alone.

I laid on the towel, book in hand, sun beaming down and took the time to appreciate what I do have and what makes me happy. I don't like complaining about diabetes or the chores of daily life; however, sometimes it is nice to take time for yourself and allow yourself to be alone to reflect on the day rather than gossip about it to friends (which, I must admit feels good too!)  But, being alone provides something different.  I have spent a lot of time alone, as I am living alone, and it has truly given me time to figure out what I want, I can hear my own voice and I am starting to realize how important it is to know yourself and most importantly love yourself. I don't think this can be achieved when you're surrounded by people, clutter, or noise.


Sunday, June 1, 2014


Yesterday after getting home from a long morning, I felt abnormally hungry. My first instinct was that I was high for some reason because I had other symptoms that gave me that impression. However, I was sitting at a 4.1.  I took the opportunity to have an earlier dinner; however that only led to me being hungry around the normal dinner time... so I ate again.   I couldn't help but feel grossly hungry for the rest of the afternoon. I began snacking as the urge was too strong, literally I couldn't resist.   My blood sugar was rising and I took insulin accordingly.

Like I mentioned I was already feeling like I was high at a 4.1, so when I was actually high, I felt awful. My head was pounding and I could barely keep my eyes open.  Now, I live alone, so the thought of something awful happening does cross my mind every now and then.  I try not to panic because I don't want to live a life fearing my diabetes; however, it is important when you live alone to be honest with yourself, if you think you should check, you should. If you think you should sit down, you should. You can't push yourself, especially when you're alone.

I checked and it looked like it was coming down again. I clearly was on a diabetes roller coaster and the feeling of thrill was hanging on strong.  I decided I would change in my pajamas, put on Bridesmaids (my favourite) drink some Fresca (another favourite next to Diet Coke) and relax with my meter by my side. However, it seems that when I changed into my pajamas I clipped my pump back onto my pajamas but didn't connect myself to it.  I have done this before, but usually in change-rooms. I will be walking around the mall and spot my tubing flying back in forth in the air like a swing being pushed.

Clearly I was out of it, as I fell asleep at around 7:30 p.m and didn't wake back up until 12:30 p.m  I didn't even bother throwing on my glasses to guide myself to bed, I must have just stumbled around and fell back asleep. Although, I did notice I picked up a few things off the floor and placed them neatly on the coffee table, clearly OCD in my sleep as well.

I had a long night however, up to go the bathroom, up to get a glass of water, up to revisit the bathroom, back to the kitchen to get more water (all without glasses I might add!) I felt horrible each time I woke up, my mouth was dry, my head was pounding. I checked and I was sitting in the 20s. I grabbed my pump and gave insulin and fell back asleep.

I had a commitment this morning to go to and had set my alarm for 6 a.m. Well 6 a.m came and I woke with the worst headache and stomach ache. I felt literally like I had been drinking the night before, yet all I did was sleep. I knew that I wasn't going to be able to drive feeling as bad as I did.  I messaged my friend (who also has t1) and let her know. She told me to check my site, which is a pretty standard procedure when things go wrong, but in the middle of the night, all you want to do is a normal person.

I felt around my site, sometimes the cannula will come out or bend and insulin will leak. So, I was looking for a wet site or the potent smell of insulin. Nothing, however, this is when I realized something major, that is, that  I wasn't even hooked up!

Clearly, taking on diabetes alone is a lot of work. It seems simple and to me sometimes I forget how complicated it can be. But it isn't impossible to take care of yourself, it just takes some trial and error and we can't be too hard on ourselves, after all we have a pretty big job.


Friday, May 30, 2014

Being A Nanny

Last night I drove past the university and saw a few people carrying books as I am assuming the summer class had finished for the day.  I thought to myself, 'I can't believe I am done!' What a strange feeling to know that I have completed school! Even when I graduated from college three years ago I wasn't able to feel that 'completedness' feeling because I knew I was headed off to university. But now, now I'm just free?!

'E' made me read a German book.... it was interesting
because I don't know German... however, when I
told her I didn't know German, she said....
"Why? It's just language!"
This makes me want to learn German now or at least how to
read this book properly!
Of course I had been job hunting like every other one of my university peers. My major being English, isn't exactly the easiest to fit into a job description, unlike say nursing or business; however, with no regrets about my major I still began to apply to jobs.  As most can assume, my ideal job would be to work in the diabetes field in some shape or form. However, it's totally easy to volunteer in the diabetes field, but to get a job is another story.

I stumbled across an ad to be a nanny for a little girl with type 1. They required someone who knew about type 1 diabetes as well as insulin pumps. It almost seemed to good to be true.  So, fast forward to a couple weeks, I am going to be nannying a t1 diabetic girl! Yes, it isn't exactly what I had thought I would end up doing for the summer; however, I am slowly starting to realize that this may just be the perfect job for me right now and right now is what matters.

Yesterday I got a little sample of what it will be like to watch 'E' on my own. I can see how if someone without diabetes would be worried all the time as an insulin pump is simple; but I think that comes with the fact I wear one. It was a lot of fun knowing that we both had diabetes because I felt instantly like we understood each other. For instance, 'E' 's b/g was high when I got there, and when she asked for water, I could literally feel that feeling, and when she chugged the bottle, I could put myself into her little shoes.

Nobody wants to have diabetes, but it's important to realize that diabetes may effect all different ages, sizes, colours, races, genders...but it truly picks people that are strong enough to handle it and watching 'E' take care of her diabetes (with help of course!) I realized that she is one of the strongest three year old I have ever met.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Making the Most

Making the most out of each day can seem like an exhausting feat.  As soon as your alarm goes off the first thought is probably, 'snooze' or 'ugh, do I have to get up?' It's so nice to stay in a warm bed, dark room and not think about the chores of the day.  That's why I've decided not to get blinds... just let that sun pour in. Yes, for a quick instant in the morning I regret it and wish that it was dark in my room, however, the sunlight gets me up, gives me energy and gets me moving, or at least upright.

I can't remember who I was talking to or who said this, but someone stated that 'diabetes is like a 24/7 type of thing eh!' All the diabetics are likely shaking their heads up and down along with their parents/caregivers.  It totally is such a tiring disease that takes up so much thought even when you don't realize you're thinking about it. There isn't a day that goes by that I haven't thought about my diabetes. Maybe there are times I neglect it, i.e not checking before I eat or 'guesstimating' however, there isn't a day that I wake up, go about my day, crawl back into bed and not have been affected by diabetes in some shape, way or form.

Spent time visiting my Grandparents yesterday.
 Also started my genealogy project with them. 
So, in going back to the earlier message, making the most out of the day for anyone can be exhausting, but making the most out of the day for a diabetic can be a challenge because it is easy to get frustrated with diabetes or people around you (because of diabetes) and to wake up smiling, embracing the sunshine creeping in your window at 6:30 can be daunting.  Especially if your insulin pump is vibrating to be refilled (clearly my situation right now.)

Yesterday I went for another doctor's appointment, this time with my family doctor to get the whole thyroid situation figured out. She commented that if she were to pick any disease to have (as if that would be a thing...) she would pick thyroid, simply because it is one of the easiest to treat.  At first I was like, that's funny, but then I was thinking, "man, you're saying that to a diabetic, who has to think about diabetes all the let's not talk about picking diseases when I already am collecting them."

HOWEVER! I have come to realize that even when situations seem tough from being diagnosed with type 1 diabetes to something like waking up and crawling out of a comfy warm bed. We truly do need to make the most of the day we have ahead of us. Even if we think it's unfair, we're tired, or we're annoyed. We need to accept the things that we cannot change and embrace the opportunities and experiences around us.  We all have preoccupations that surge through our minds daily, but that doesn't have to limit us to having a good day.


Wednesday, May 28, 2014

That's Not a Surgery...

Every now and then you run into people that have no clue about diabetes, or worse, think they have a clue, but don't.  I noticed that a lot of people can mad at these people (on Facebook groups etc.) but in reality, I think we need to just shrug it off, and think at least they tried.

The other day I went for a massage.  Of course on the little information page I had to disclose that I had type 1 diabetes. I didn't bother writing insulin pump, mainly because I was half skimming the paper and half thinking, 'why does it matter?'  Anyways, before I got to undress and lay down, she did an assessment of me. She quickly noticed that I was wearing a pump and asked if that was what it was.  

I said, 'Yes, I'm surprised you know what it is!"  Because usually people stare at it in awe of what kind of iPod or pager or...who knows what it is.

After that she assessed my hips and asked if I carry children all day... which is irrelevant to the story but I found that interested, because I don't.

Anyways, she continued down the paper and all I could think of was, "Let's Get This Started!"

 She added one last question, "Have you had any other surgeries besides that one..."

"What one?"

"The one for your insulin pump..."

"That's not a surgery."

"Oh, it's not the one that is a surgery. Because my friend has the one that's a surgery.."


Then I just went along with it because I didn't really know what we were talking about now and I didn't really want to go into a conversation that I didn't think there was an insulin pump that required surgery...and to be honest I wanted a massage.

I guess there is a time and place for education and there it just didn't seem relevant. I figured she would go to her friend and tell her she had a client with a pump and say something along the lines of, "She didn't need surgery! Maybe you should look into that!" Then her friend could tell her she also never needed surgery...

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

When Life Stops

Yesterday I woke up and honestly said, "I feel at peace..." which seems weird. Who just wakes up and says that? But I honestly felt at peace with myself and obviously I had a good sleep. I decided that I would pack a bag and head to the park and spend some solid time walking and laying out on the grass, reading, writing and listening to music without the interruption of Internet or iMessages.  Before this dream day away could happen, I had to make a stop at the allergist since I had missed my appointment by accident last week. It was simply a follow up.

Now, my hives have been at rest for the most part. Every now and then they flare up and usually I attribute them to stress, take some allergy medicine and move on. So I was prepared to joke around with the allergist and tell him that I have been doing a lot of 'happiness' reading and patio sitting and I think I am going to be o.k!  However, what he had in store for me was nothing about what remedies I have been doing, in fact he never even asked me.

He began talking about blood cells and science.  I knew that any time a doctor starts explaining science, it's not the best sign.  I tried to focus but truly wanted to just blurt out, "LOOK THEY'RE GONE! NO HIVES. BYE!" But, he steadily focused on giving me textbook definitions of red blood cells, white blood cells, mast blood cells and how many we should have, what is good, and what is bad.   Then I started cursing in my head.

He told me that I have a 'above average' count. And I won't go into detail because one, I don't know the details and two, until I know FOR SURE I won't bother.   Anyways, I feel like this doctor took no note on how I was feeling as I sat there across from him, gripping my purse, and trying not to cry. I didn't even know what it all meant but when he started throwing around some scary words, I bawled. I bawled, and I bawled until he reached up and grabbed some stupid industrial medical tissues for me to sob on.   He continued talking.

Next, Le Thyroid! Great. More news.  He went on to explain that there are also some 'above average' or I guess 'below average' issues with that. Something I have had looked at countless numbers of times via diabetes centres, yet no one said anything.  So, to say I was SHOCKED would be an exaggeration. The SHOCK was from the first set of news that already had be bawling in his office chair.

To be honest, I felt like life stopped for a quick second in that office. I felt like I had a moment to think, "Why?" and not just cry over "Why" but truly ask "WHY!"  and I am praying, praying, praying that it all is O.K and that my focus of being positive, and kick starting my thyroid, all of that will make things O.K.  

Photo found on Google Images 
At the end of the appointment, which was only fifteen minutes. He asked me if I had any questions. I just looked at him and asked, "IS THIS BAD?" with tears rolling down my face.  I can't even remember what he said, he was so nonchalant about the entire thing, I couldn't read what the mood was in the room besides my own; which was pretty mooodddy.

I sucked up my tears until I got outside the elevator and thankfully it was like someone knew I needed someone, something, words.  I fought the rest of the day with my thoughts, carefully choosing to be positive, to be hopeful and realize that truly God would never give me something I couldn't handle.  Maybe giving me a bit too much right now, but I've got it, I'll figure it out.

I truly began to think about what it means when life stops, and I don't mean 'no longer living' but when everything around you feels like it stops and it's just you and your thoughts. You have that quick moment to really think or maybe do nothing at all, but you just feel the halt like a roller coaster as it reaches the end.  I think those moments are special, and they stay with us. Like when I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, or one time when I was driving down Western Road and realized, 'Man! I got accepted to Western!"

Even if those life stopping moments are hard, they do teach us something and bring us back to ourselves, those moments don't last long though, so it's important to hold onto them and remember that just after that moment what did you learn, what did you feel?


Monday, May 26, 2014

Surround Yourself With Love

I've always been the person with more close friends; rather than a large group of not-close friends. I had the friend I could call up after a major life moment, which was the same friend I would call up to go to the mall.  I would say that, I am a pretty good friend and more than ever I am realizing the importance of friendship and the concept of surrounding yourself with love.

After I was diagnosed with t1 diabetes, I truly realized who my friends were. Not based on how many people brought me flowers or sympathy but by how much time they took to truly reach out, learn and grow with me as I began my journey as a diabetic. I have a really good friend who was by my side before my diagnosis and after and I like to think of her as an honouree diabetic. And if you know my myself or my blog well, that's Michelle. 

Andrea & I 
Of course not every friend we meet is one from childhood or even high-school. As life goes on we make new friends and we find these friends in the most interesting ways; whether that is in post secondary or work or even from the gym.  These people that come into our lives,  are going to either accept you for who you are or move on. Friendship isn't something that you can just let go and see what happens, it does take work and it does take love. 

When I needed my friends (and my family) those that wanted to accept me offered me support, a warm meal, a safe place to cry, a drink.   I began to realize that the fact that I can pick up my phone and text someone to come, and someone comes is a sign that I am beginning to surround myself with love and that feels good. 

I'd like to say that my friendship circle has truly been growing. I am working on making the friendships around me strong and making sure that when they need me I am equally as open, able and willing to surround them with love.  Sometimes it is more about just showing up than saying the right words or bringing the right comfort food. Because showing up shows love and that's all we need.


Saturday, May 24, 2014

A Funny Way

Recapping, I've been talking about the things that I have learned from the past few weeks.  I must admit that I have been spending a lot of time thinking about what I have been writing, and the past couple days I have only been reassuring myself of this last lesson. "The world has a funny way of making things work out."  

Now, I say 'world' because I don't have a word or know a word that can replace it, I don't know what is making things work out, or who makes things work out, but since the world is something so big, so crazy, so diverse, let's for sake of argument say that the world is in charge and you can simply replace that word with what you believe. 

These past few weeks have been ones of change and to be honest, when I look back on previous notes  I realize that I knew a change was coming, I just wasn't sure what it would be and where it would take me. Of course, I am now graduated from Western and can finally read a book for pleasure - which as an English Major, you'd think I'd be doing all along, but rest assure there are ENGLISH MAJORS and there are English Majors, and I am the latter. 

I had been struggling with my health as hives as taken over my body and I was frustrated with doctors and blood work and diabetes because everything I do effects my diabetes and everything I don't do, also seems to effect my diabetes.  

Mel & I doing a little Rent Performance.. just because. 
I also wasn't sure what I wanted to do. The daunting question of, "What's next!" with the exclamation on the end, hinting that you're supposed to answer with fortitude and say, "WELL! I am going to go on an adventure and open my own business and have two kids and a dog..." When in reality you're thinking, "Well, I have to pay of my student loans, find a job among thousands of my peers and hope that the Kraft Dinner will last me two dinners."  

I don't know what is next and like I mentioned, each day is full of surprises and that's the beauty of life, you see. We can't predict what's going to happen next or how we are going to wake up feeling. We don't know who is going to be thinking of us or who isn't and most of all we don't know if everything is going to truly be o.k.  However, I do believe that everything works out and the 'world' has something in store for each of us, whether it is going on an adventure, opening your own business or getting two meals out of one box of Kraft Dinner.  

Believe me when I say that I am on a journey in my life right now that I did not really predict. I say really because I have a pretty good insight.. however, what the surprise in life is, is that what even when something seems like a let down, like you don't deserve it, something like, diabetes. You have to trust that what you cannot imagine, can happen and it all has a funny way of working out.

Thanks World. 


Friday, May 23, 2014

Another Day

Like promised, I will continue explaining the few things that I have learned throughout the past couple weeks.

I have spent a lot of time gathering my thoughts, visiting the library, going for walks out in nature not on the sidewalks of Oxford St. and talking at night.  Yes, super weird. Just talking to myself or God or whoever is listening, possibly my neighbours, after all there is only a wall separating us.

Either way, I cannot believe by the time I lay down in bed at night, finish reading my book(s), finishing checking Instagram and finish iMessaging Mel or whoever happens to be messaging me at 11 p.m that the day is over and sometimes I think or SAY to myself, "You made it!"  and not because each day is like walking through mud, but because each day brings new things to deal with, new emotions and inner and outer battles (Canadian Geese can be pesky!)

Like mentioned, the sun will come up every single morning no matter what you did the day before. No matter how hard you failed, it's coming up and giving you another chance. The bonus is that it is a completely different day.  What you did yesterday may have some consequences leading to your tomorrow, but you totally have the upper hand on dealing with it, and guess what if your tomorrow leads you into a weird place, try again the next day.  Like sun will shine every day regardless, the fact that it is a completely different day.

I have learned that, that each day I can make it through, being awesome but sometimes falling every now and then and when the sun goes down I take those moments to reflect and talk and by the time the sun rises again, I truly see that it is a completely different day and I have the power to work with the hours I have.


Thursday, May 22, 2014

The Next Day

I've learned a few things these past couple weeks:

1. The sun always rises the next day

2. It's another day

3. The world has a funny way of making things work out

While the first two seem similar - they're not because what I have started to realize is that at night, when there is no light shining in, it truly changes our mood. At least, it truly can change my mind.  Night to me, is a time of relaxation and an excuse to NOT do anything. In turn, that means sobbing or feeling 'alone' because unless I am texting my friends, I have no one asking about how my day went.  However, with patience and knowing that each moment is vital for ME to relax and ME to enjoy, I know that before I know it, I will be opening my eyes to light pouring into my window.

Recently I read a book called, "Carry on, Warrior," by Glennon Melton. I will probably be talking about it for awhile since I learned from vital lessons from it.  However, Melton compares the sun to 'God's Love'  Now, just a antidote:  I have never been to church other than a couple first communions and I did photography from a baptism a couple years ago.  However, I have always been open to the idea of 'God' as some have may noticed my subtle hints that there is one, I don't know who she/he is, I just feel like there has to be something... so I accept all Melton's ideas of who she believes God is, and with that decide if I believe that same. I think that's an acceptable way of going about it - so stick with me. Anyways, she states that

"the sun shows up every morning, no matter how bad you've been the night before." 

This can be interpreted anyway it best fits you. I wouldn't say that I've done very many bad things in  my life that I was ever worried about not seeing tomorrow or being punished by some altering force. However, I think now that it is so important to do the best with the day we have ahead of us, and mould it and work with it, and play with it and enjoy it or just get through it because in the end the sun will shine or at least light will come (we live in Canada after all, where the weather is iffy...) and we can start anew and work through that day because each day the light reminds us that we are given another chance. 

I shall continue talking about the other two lessons as the week goes on.


Wednesday, May 21, 2014


You know when you say a word too much and it starts to sound weird like, Yellow for example. Say Yellow about ten times and BAM, it sounds like a foreign word.  When in reality it is a word you've been saying since kindergarten.   This is what having type 1 diabetes is like, it's like this 'thing' that you have 24/7 that you know so much about but when you start to think about it too much, look at it too much (insulin pumps, injections, used up test strips) it starts to seem weird.

Every now and then I have these moments where I am looking at my insulin pump and think, 'man, what a weird thing, I've got going on.'  Because who would have thought that they would be faced with giving themselves injections of the smallest amount of medicine to ultimately keep them alive, anyone? anyone?

I would say that my biggest fears in life do not result because of my diabetes; which I am thankful for. Yet sometimes I think, 'I must be irrational. How could diabetes not be my top five fears, but snakes are?" Snakes.  I workout in a gym not the park and I live so high up that if I snake were to enter my home, I'd just be impressed.   It's funny that our fears in life aren't always the rational ones.

Diabetes is super weird to me and I never really understood why God or whoever decides who gets diabetes, picked me. I mean, I can see it now from afar that yes, I am thankful that I was 'chosen' because look what I've done with it. But I can't really believe it happened to me and those thoughts are strong when I start to get 'Yellow Syndrome' when looking at my insulin pump.

I think the important thing about it all, is that when those moments arise to remember to let it go. (You know like the movie Frozen suggests) because we have to realize we will never know why exactly we were given diabetes, maybe science can give us technical answers, but truly why we were given diabetes. Once we take a step back and stop starring at our insulin pumps with confusion and disgrace, we have to remember just like the word Yellow, it eventually will just be a normal word, you just can't focus on it too much.


Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Get Out Of Bed!

The first step to a good day is getting out of bed. Which can be hard, we all know that. Tucked in to warm comfy sheets, a soft pillow finely moulded around your head...and dread of what the day might bring.  When we're in bed we don't have to clean anything, count carbs, pick up groceries, communicate, we just just simply lay there. But, the more I began to think about what lying in bed really meant, this morning while I was well, lying in bed - is that although sleep is wonderful, when we spend too much time just lying there and time is passing by, we are missing out on new thoughts and emotions - we're closing ourselves off from the rest of the world, yet allowing ourselves to be jailed with the same sometimes painful thoughts or maybe happy ones, but I can guarantee they aren't new thoughts.

You're probably wondering why I am focusing on being in bed.  I actually haven't been wallowing my days away in my bed, today in fact was probably the latest I have stayed in bed and I think that is because the sun didn't come shining in at 7 a.m.  The easy way of going about life is to not get out of bed and I'm not an 'easy way out' type of person, as much as I want to be sometimes.  Instead, I am getting out of bed, MAKING my bed, so there will be no temptations. I am carrying on because that is what life is about, carrying on.

When I was diagnosed with t1 diabetes at first I didn't have much of a doubt that I couldn't handle it. I got out of bed each morning, but mainly because I was on multiple daily injections which made sleeping in a hassle and a half.  I did life the way that I wanted and even more. More recently I admit that that term 'burn out' people talk about, hits me every now and then and knowing that I have to think about diabetes for the entire day irks me.

Diabetes has taught me a lot about the 'getting out of bed term' because diabetes forces you to get out.   It's a big sign that beams at you, 'YOU'VE GOT Sh*&T TO DO! GET UP!" and maybe we don't want to do these things and maybe we don't want to face the reality of where our life has come (but never ended up because we keep on moving...) and maybe, just maybe we aren't sure how strong we are today; but we will never know until we step out of that bed and look.

Like I said, I think it's incredibly important to allow new thoughts in and exhale old thoughts and I remember one of my professors once telling the class that if you're stuck on an idea of an essay, go somewhere you've never been before because each new space will bring you new thoughts and ideas. I love this, and will never forget this.

Getting out of bed is the first step of a good day.


Sunday, May 18, 2014

I Am Strong Enough

I have been neglecting the blog.  I admit it.  Without a doubt in a short span of time my life has flipped upside down and twisted into a thousand knots; however, as much as we all hate working through our knotted up necklaces, sorting to find the end of the chain, these life knots are not something I am allowing myself to hate & that is something I have just decided now.

I have been thrown curve balls in my life, more so starting when I was in high school; or at least that is when I began to realize that life isn't about having the pool so the kids at school will want to come over. It isn't about being someone else, so that you can be liked, loved and called 'pretty'. Life is so much more than shopping at forever21 and getting good deals, or knowing whose dating who. It's so much more and that seems so obvious, but how easy it is to just lose your self in something so simple.

In these recent weeks I have felt myself breath new air. The strangest feeling in the world to feel as though the strings that were never actually there have gone. I still ask myself what it that was making me feel that way and how did I not recognize that feeling before. What is this new feeling and how can I make use of it? What will it push me to do? Where will it take me?

This blog has always been an outlet for me. I have guided myself through the past five years with type 1 diabetes managing to live a life that I would say is more than I had imagined for myself. I never thought I would have climbed the tallest mountain in Africa, nor travel to Australia. But the most surprising thing that I have accomplished is growing into my shoes and being able to say, 'I AM STRONG ENOUGH." I have surprised myself, and I hope that never goes away.


Thursday, April 24, 2014

When I Lose Control

I actually for the most part don't mind dealing with diabetes; however, there are times like now that I wish that I could have left it at home. I have been struggling with high blood sugars; mainly because I assume the hives/stress. I could honestly just eat my regular three meals a day with insulin and still end up with a wonky number. So what is one expected to do when the lose control of their pancreas? It's not like things will get done on their own. Life must carry on or else.

I am feeling incredibly frustrated with diabetes right now. I am incredibly frustrated with my health to be honest. I feel like it's taking all of me to just focus and truly get through without feeling stressed or concerned. Today, just before my exam I was a nice 22, and by nice I mean horrible. I could tell as I had to visit the bathroom every half hour and I consumed my waterbottle in a matter of seconds. I took a lot of insulin, so much that my roommates insisted I take cookies in case I go low. I walked to my exam and before I wrote, I was 17.

I told my professor, who hardly knows me because it's an online class. She told us we couldn't use the bathroom unless it was an emergency because they were lacking in T.A's But, as we all know as t1's when you have to go, you have to go. That's the nature of a high blood sugar. I felt awful, I could feel my blood sugar slowly coming down, and my focus going off into some other world. I couldn't  handle the whispering in the front of the room from the T.A's and the prof. something that wouldn't normally bother me.  I was getting frustrated and confused.

I tried to calm myself and get through the exam without having to leave to pee.  I get that maybe I somehow could have gotten out of the exam, but truly I didn't want to have to study any longer for this. I kept thinking, 'Damn You Diabetes, why are you bothering me right now?" And maybe I wasn't prepared, maybe I am using diabetes as an excuse. I really don't know, but I left feeling crappy about my preformace despite not truly knowing how I did.  I guess, because it is my graduating year, I am fearful of what marks I get on my exams because that will determine if I put on a grad cap in June or in the fall.

"What's done is done," V said on the phone tonight. I don't need to stress about what I answer right and wrong or how I did right now because there isn't anything I can do to change it.  I need to relax, with the big move in with V, I am tormenting myself with to-do lists. I will allow tomorrow to be a new day and when it comes to making choices, I will let them happen when they appear, instead of predicting them ahead of time.

Diabetes is diabetes and it's not always something I can control....