Meme time

Returning after days of exhaustion and studying to post the 7 random things about me meme. Thanks Bernard for tagging me!

So completely random fact 1)
I attended a private high school in the heart of Minneapolis, Minnesota my sophomore year in high school, De La Salle. It was a great experience but I didn't graduate from De for many reasons. But I did seek out that learning environment completely on my own and gained acceptance thanks to great recommendation letters from all my teachers from 7th to 9th grade.

Random thing 2)
I am nicer and more affectionate towards others when my blood sugar is low. Not sure why or when the low turns scary and this surge of nice-ness leaves; but its something I've noticed as has my beau.

Random fact 3)
I not only like the random, not so great movie every now and then, but I also have an odd addiction to reality tv shows, but only the terrible ones. Sunset Tan on the E! station is the first one that comes to mind, anything on E! that's a reality show I can zone out to and most of the MTV reality shows. This is really new to my life as recently as this summer so maybe that won't last. I only watch them when channel surfing and it isn't that big of a concern to me time wise, but I can and do watch them when I am bored. (like that makes it any better...)

Fact 4)
I don't enjoy living in the heart of a city. I would rather live in the suburbs than in the city. Its too loud and busy for my daily tastes. Once in a while its good, or even working in the city is fine, but take me home to land, quiet and open skies and I am happier.

Fact 5)
If I were to get another kitten I would be very fine with naming it Ginny. Jason doesn't like the idea though. I have to work on my suggestion skills some more...

Random Fact 6)
I am not a morning person. Getting up and ready before 8 is damn near impossible for me. I can go all day sleep deprived and stay up late. But get me up early and expect me to look presentable? Not happening. Or not that often.

Fact 7)
My favorite color at this very moment is sage.

So, there they be. The rules of this meme are:
1. Link to the person’s blog who tagged you.
2. Post these rules on your blog.
3. List seven random and/or weird facts about yourself.
4. Tag seven random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.
5. Let each person know that they have been tagged by posting a comment on their blog.

I am tagging Jenny, and Sasha, Nikki, Wil, and anyone else who may not have been tagged yet as I keep finding those who have! Nite folks!


Do you believe?

I have been doing a lot of thinking about evolution and biology lately. That is what we are covering in my biology class right now and I just casually talked to my best friend of over 12 years about it only to discover she didn't believe in it. I was floored. I think my jaw literally dropped to the table when she told me that.

I've come to the understanding now that it is fine for her to not believe in evolution because it really is her choice what she believes in, but out of curiosity I began asking other people close to me, "Do you believe in evolution? Why or why not."

I had forgotten how upsetting the evolution question is to people. Some people said they didn't want to believe we (humans) came from apes, while others said yes with no hesitation. Some said it conflicted with their religious beliefs, while some thought God was the puppet master behind evolution and accepted it.

I can't help believe in evolution; it just makes sense to me and the evidence is overwhelming. And I wonder if I feel so strongly about biology and evolution because of my diabetes. Diabetes really spiked my interest in biology as a kid and that interest continued into teens and adulthood.

As I take these two classes this semester I encounter biology, evolution, inheritable traits, genetics, environmental influences a lot and maybe because of this I've been thinking about my self and my disease more. Where ever we humans evolved from, whatever creation story you believe in, research in biology can save lives, can change lives and does every day. While I don't think I will be alive when there is a cure for type one diabetes I still hope for that day.

Biology, evolution, creation, cure, its as though they mean the same to me. I pray to God for advancements in research leading to a cure and I have faith that biologists will ask the right questions, study new things to come upon more answers. Where we came from I don't know, but I do know that the hope we don't talk of often in my life and that so many others are crying for can be found through biology. So I believe in biology, the evolution theory that comes with it, and God, and at times I believe that a cure is with in reach and waiting to be discovered.


Late night, no time to write

So my night of studying went well, I completed all but 4 or 5 questions of my worksheet for bio that I turn in tomorrow and those I can finish while at work tomorrow. In all aspects my biology class is going wonderfully.

Its the other class that worries me, developmental psychology. I have a test this Saturday in that class and am beginning to freak out about it. When it comes to classes that don't have a lot of direction from the professor and you're expected to know all the information from three chapters I am a little fuzzy on how to tackle that. Tomorrow and Friday I will be studying for that class.

I just realized that all of the sudden it seems my schedule got busy. When did that happen? I have something to attend every day for the next four days and when it isn't a social event that I agreed to attend, I have cleaning, studying, and spending time with my nephews who I hardly see even though I live with them. I guess I should become aware of this as that's how my life will go until I am done with the Nursing program.

And I am a little late in saying this but its world diabetes day, check it out.

Either way, its late, and though there is much to talk about I need to get to bed. Until tomorrow night then, adieu.


I'm not there, yet.

So this daily blogging isn't my thing I've decided. I don't have that much to say about diabetes, or many things that are actually uplifting, or inspirational; in fact more often I am just pissed off and trying my hardest to not let that show through my blogging.

But I can't, I just can't anymore. So I didn't blog last night because staring at the blank screen that used to be inspirational is no longer motivational, because I can't stay positive about most things and trying to find 30 minutes to an hour each day and chat lightly about the crap that happened with diabetes or with work and diabetes, or with life in general and then put a nice little twist on it in the end, no. No no no no NO.

Not that anger and pessimism is okay it's not, and it isn't healthy to walk around with negative thoughts all day and accepting those thoughts as true, and that isn't what I want to do with my blog. Somehow I have convinced my self that being positive is the way to go with blogging. And with that expectation I put a lot of pressure on myself to be that positive blogger that I want and yearn to be, but I'm not. I'm not there yet with my diabetes nor my life. I'm working towards it but I am just not there.

I hate this disease. I hate how it drains me and makes me tired after a low or a high; I hate the cost of this disease and how its draining my pocket book every month; I hate that my work place doesn't get it and sometimes even those close to me don't get it either, and I hate that I feel like I am always on the defensive with diabetes.

"No, I have type one; yes I take insulin; yes I can eat a piece of cake; yes I have to poke my finger a lot; no I don't know why my blood sugar is low ask me again when its back to normal and I don't have 20 other things to get back to so I can actually take time to look at my pump and meter and see what went wrong and when; yes I have a lot of lows I don't know why I need to talk to my doctor about it."

On and on with explanations and definitions and treatment descriptions and always seeking an understanding but never finding it, instead always trying to provide it to another.



So I forgot to mention that I found my iPod USB cable. Guess where it was. In my car, in the center console where I didn't think to look Thursday night. I found it on Friday morning.

Tonight we watched Amelie. It was great! Jason, my boyfriend, and I have a "quest" as I like to call it of watching all of our movies in alphabetical order. We both worked for Blockbuster Video for over 5 years, so combined we have a ton of movies, I think in total his collection is just over 600 movies and mine is around 200. Yikes!

This was his brilliant idea, and we started with the numbers in June this year. We are still in the A's and will be for a while. Our average is one movie per week, mainly because of me and school. We will allow ourselves to stray if there is a new release on DVD that we both want to see (or that one can convince the other to watch as in License to Wed last, that was all my choice and pleading).

Before Amelie there was Alphaville, last night before I got low. It was a visually striking and beautiful movie but not my taste. I can appreciate the ideas behind it but something just didn't feel right about the plot, as if there were chunks of the story left out or missing. I don't know, I am no movie critic, I leave that to him. Last Sunday's choice was okay. Not as funny as I had hoped but okay. I liked Because I Said So better though (talking of Mandy Moore movies).

American Beauty is our next movie. Its number 28. The B movies start in at least 20 more titles, not counting mine. Maybe this was a crazy idea...but then again, its entertainment that we own already and some of our movies we haven't watched together. Like All That Jazz, from my collection, he had never seen.

The goal to to watch our movie list so we can experience them together. I admit, I am a little worried about Moulin Rouge because I love that movie and I don't think he will, but then again that's what this quest is all about. Giving each other the chance to see what we both love in films, sometimes again (like 300 or Adaptation) or for the first time together (like AI or Amelie).

American Beauty is a duplicate for us, we've seen it together before but not in a long time. Its my guess that it will take 8 years to get through the list. We are both aware of the length of time that it will take, but aren't daunted by it. I've known him since high school and hope to know him for the rest of my life so, 8 years of movie watching - here we go.



When I'm 54 I feel like I'm a child again. I can't think logically, I run with my emotions and wants, I don't want to listen to anyone.

An hour after being 54 I am exhausted, tired, crabby. I can understand that I feel this way because how I felt moments before but I don't like it. Thats where I am now and I am going to sleep. I am testing at a steady 139, lets hope things go well over night.


D-Blog Day

This is pretty cool. I have only been blogging every so often this year but really appreciate the connections I feel to other bloggers. The simple knowledge that there are other people out there just as determed as I am, fighting just as hard, and just as easily scared or upset by diabetes helps me. So, thanks other bloggers for letting me feel connected when I feel so isolated most other times in the diabetes struggle. So here's to everyone. Cheers!


where is my USB cable?

So the day was going well. I got up on time, got to work on time, actually ate a breakfast, didn't have any highs or lows, got out of work early with time to study for my bio test, watched an interesting video in class, went home enjoying my ipod and decided to put some new music on it.

Then comes the anger, Where the hell is my USB cable for the ipod? This cable has been floating around the sea of my purse for at least a week, I saw it just this morning! Now when I need it, its nowhere to be found. What. The. Hell?!?

I am not the most organized person in the world mind you. When I loose something I often say that the missing item is "lost in the abyss of my car" because there is so much stuff in my trunk and back seat (even passenger seat some days when I am packing an overnight bag). Its a little unorganized right now because everything was thrown about when I had to suddenly break for some idiot who decided to turn left in front of me when I was going nearly 40 miles an hour and just entering the intersection. It was a scary stop but I was safe just jumbled, as was everything in my car. I know I know, I shouldn't have so much stuff in my car and should spend a good amount of time cleaning it out. I think I have a bag of 9 or 10 paperback books in my back seat that I have intended to shelve for the last few weeks, but its still there, books a skew now in my back seat, some on the floor of the car.

Either way, the point is that I tend to misplace things often either in my car or my huge purse that I carry for all my diabetes crap. When I can't find something I have had with me for a while in either place I begin to get upset. It used to be, years ago, that when I lost or misplaced something I had my whole apartment, bag and purse to search and I feel that I've gotten better at keeping things in place, even when their place isn't organized at least I know where it is.

A part of me questions if the damn cable would have even been with me if I didn't carry such a big purse and then it turns to simmering thoughts to diabetes because I really did buy the purse for that very reason - to carry more diabetes supplies with out feeling everything could fall out any moment. That and when I get upset either my blood sugar rises or my anger is all the quicker to flare because blood sugars aren't ideal.

And this little gizmo is new for me; I've only had it one month and used that cable maybe three times. I don't want to loose it and actually have to see how irresponsible and unorganized my life is despite how hard I try to keep it organized and stay responsible.

And maybe that's the root of my anger right now. I feel like I spend so much time thinking about my day and planning my day for work, school, diabetes, and general life that when something as simple as a cord going missing happens it just gives me more shit to think about. Did I only think I saw it in my purse? Did I leave it at Jason's? At work? Did it fall out when I was walking through my work? Or even worse when I was on campus this afternoon and evening? Did someone take it when I wasn't looking? Or am I just not seeing it?

sigh. Its silly I know. Silly that simple things can cause such a interruption of my night and that I let it get to me. For now I will just have to resign my self to the fact that the cable isn't with me, and I will need to be patient with myself in finding it. Until then I can use CDs or listen to the songs I have on the ipod already.

Its so easy to do that with loosing a USB cbale! You should see me when I misplace something important like my glucometer. Oh man, keeping me calm is nearly impossible at those times and I really do end up searching everywhere just in case, like in the old days. Thank God this isn't something crucial!


I may need an extra break

Yawn. I waited too long to work on a post and now I can hardly type or think.

I spent a good portion of my night going over practice interview questions with my step-Dad. There was a question that he asked me that gave me a pause, "Can you perform your job with reasonable accommodation?"

"Yes I can." I said and didn't hesitate. But then I stopped and thought, "Unless I have to treat a low blood sugar and need an extra 15 - 30 minute break. But this only happens once or twice a month."

No matter how often it happens or doesn't happen though, its an extra break that isn't scheduled, predictable, or even easily explained to someone who doesn't have experience with diabetes. Even when I do explain it sometimes I feel like it isn't really understood because I get that look that says, "Really? You need this time to drink some juice and even when you've drank it you can't get right back to work for another 10 or up to 20 minutes?"

For this reason, the fact that so many people in financial institutions don't understand health issues, is why I can't wait to finish my degree. Not that a health care job or a nursing job would be any more forgiving than any other job, but at least I know that it would be more understood.


Sensor, sensor, updates

I placed my order for sensors three weeks ago and they finally arrived this morning, yay! While its going on two months being on the CGMS it doesn't feel like it, because I've been spacing out using the sensors for the very reason above, they are always on back order. Its also nice to have only one site on my body to worry about instead of two. With a new box of ten sensors I am good for at least six weeks unless I decide to wear the CGM all the time.

Even though this little device is so new to my diabetes care I was jumping and shouting for joy when I saw the sensor delivery box at my door. There is something relieving having this hooked up, like I don't have to worry as much about lows in the morning or swings during the day because all I need do is take a quick peek at the menu and see whats going on with my sugars. The biggest down fall with it is that sometimes it just doesn't catch a quick rise or drop in glucose. Like two Sunday's ago when two hours after eating I was in the 500's, what did the sensor tell me then? 220. In a situation like this Borat would have a blast yelling "NOT" at my pump screen and poor body.

As it turns out from the time I tested that Sunday morning and ate lunch, my site some how kinked and I wasn't getting the bolus that should have covered my lunch, and lord knows about the basal but that was probably null and void too. Can sleeping on your infusion site (if its in your thigh) cause the cannula to kink? Because I will go one, two days with everything fine only to wake up one morning, eat something and shoot up higher can be only to discover a kink.

Hmmm, yea I don't know but aside from kinks the CGMS seems to really help with blood sugar swings. A part of me asks, "Does it really help, or do I just feel like it does because its something I can control that helps me control my diabetes?" I almost feel a little like a control freak! HaHaHa, nah if I were I wouldn't have eaten candy nearly every day for the last two weeks, damn Halloween... I just like the technology that allows this type of control and aids in management.

Changing thoughts now, I am hopefully trying out a new site area for the second time with the sensor, my thigh. It worked pretty well last time around, and I was able to get six days out of the sensor before it was torn out between charges of the transmitter. So we'll see how it goes this time.

Also, I keep telling myself to become more active and am thinking of getting some good work out play lists created, any suggestions of music that keeps you up and running and active?

Lastly, I have my school schedule figured out for the next year and hopefully by this time next year I will be able to confidently say I am a candidate and good competitor for acceptance into the nursing program. Until I can get accepted into the program I am taking the pre-requisites part time so I can work as much as possible. Planning my schedule helps keep me feel better about all of this work/school/diabetes/life management. So far, this semester is going smoothly, but I always get a little panicky around test time or when a big paper is due. Its getting better though, and I am definitely learning how to manage my time better and stay ... less stressed. Calm I am still working on but its getting there!

So, until tomorrow night then, Adieu.


Here comes winter

How long can one stare at the white computer screen before it becomes intimidating? Am I the only one who feels that way about blogging sometimes?

Sometimes I get so used to talking about the same things, and thinking the same things because I talk to so many different people about diabetes and work and school and life, that when it comes down to me and the blank screen I come up silent. My fingers don't know what to type, my mind asks the question, "Where to now?" and the answer that keeps returning to me today is the weather.

In MN its getting closer and closer to our first snow, at least in the Twin Cities, and you can just feel it happening. I almost expect to look outside on my lunch tomorrow and see snow falling. The wind is fast and crisp to your skin and the sky looks a little farther away, drawing away its heat for months and months to come. And that's how you know, winter is on her way.

I can't help but feel as though fall went by far too fast and that this winter will take too long. But we shall see.

There are always the snow angels to keep you company when it snows.


Bad Movie Sunday

I have a bad habit that I am indulging today. Mainly, terrible movies. Okay, not terrible movies but not the greatest most thought provoking films either.

I am really really excited to see License to Wed. It came out on DVD last week and I have just been dying to see it. Another one that I can't wait for is Enchanted, the Disney movie that starts animated but then turns to real life (and also has Patric Dempsey in it, that's made for oh, pre-adolescent girls, yea that one). Most things with Mandy Moore in it I want to see...and it just doesn't jive well with the rest of my movie collection.

The other movies I own, if they could talk, would say,"What the hell happened to your sense of dialogue?" or "I thought you liked emotionally charged dramas that made you question life, what are you doing with that in the DVD player?".

I don't know what else to say, so it goes. I like the good and the not so good movies, even the ones that are just to gain a profit; if it looks light hearted, has an actor I like that hasn't hit too big yet, or looks creepy but with good effects, I'll probably want to see it.

There are some things I won't see, like Saw 4, I mean really, how many movies does there have to be of the same idea? But I did see Saw in theaters and liked it.

So, trashy romantic, new concept of a horror film, anything with Mandy Moore, I'll probably see. But not the sequel, or the trilogy. Unless I really love it (Like Harry Potter or Elizabeth: The Golden Age; I loved the first and the sequel and would probably see a third if it was made).

Some things are just a guilty pleasure - only I don't feel too guilty most of the time about my joy of an average or even poorly rated film.


Darkness to light

So, I have been seeing a counselor for numerous reasons over the past few months. I usually see her on Friday mornings before work, and at yesterday's appointment we talked about my terrible Thursday with diabetes. I wanted to share that burden with someone who could talk me off my emotional ledge about it and help me stay off it. It helped, because she actually made me feel normal, like what I was feeling was understandable and okay. One thing led to another and she decided that on my next visit (probably few visits) we will go over a list of some of the most difficult times in my life, the traumatic times. We started with any childhood experiences that I remember or had heard of in stories but didn't get any farther than about age 2 or 3 because there just wasn't enough time. She asked me to think of those difficult times with out judgment so we can talk about them next time.

The big question I have is probably a silly one, but I have to ask it anyway: was being diagnosed with diabetes traumatic? Of course it was to our family dynamic and to my body, but when I look at my emotions of that time, it doesn't feel traumatic. In fact, of all the difficult times in my life I would have to say that this is the one time where I felt completely safe and supported and that it wasn't the end of the world. I was nine when I was diagnosed, and I hope to be able to write a more eloquent diagnosis story, because I know its a good one, but am not quite there yet. Maybe I will be by the end of the month (cross my fingers).

Here is the thing, I can remember life before diabetes. It was fine, I was a typical kid with an older sibling. I liked school and reading a lot. And none of that changed, the only thing that changed for me was what I could eat and that I had to take shots and prick my finger. I was still Amber, just with out the root beer float treats or the sweets at holidays.

I think its a little silly of me to question if being diagnosed was traumatic or not because I know it is, its a time where everything changed. But I took it well. It wasn't until my late teens that I began to feel something negative about being a diabetic. It wasn't until I noticed that diabetes put more limits on me than I wanted to live with when things really began to conflict. Some of those conflicts led to rebellion towards diabetes. I didn't want to test my blood suagr, I didn't cover my foods as I should have, I ate whenever and whatever I wanted and justified it because I could cover it. I didn't think it could stop me.

This post is a little jumbled I realize, but I guess I am just wondering where was the trauma with diabetes because it didn't seem traumatic until later in life. Until I started paying for the medical bills and prescriptions, and counting the minutes that I couldn't work because I was treating a low knowing that I couldn't get paid for that time.

I really wanted to be positive on this post, so I guess I'll end it by saying that all those feelings about diabetes is starting to get my attention and thought which can only lead to healing and hopefully better management. If I make my December A1c under 7 I will have spent a full year with an A1c under 7 for...I can't even remember how long! But a long, long time. To say that I did it will be a great accomplishment.

Thats what I will keep in mind, that there are always things to strive for and fight for, even when its difficult managing this disease.

"Small moves ,Amber, small moves."



I was sent an email by my sister to check out this article. Its from a local news station in MN and explains how Randy Gallemeyer, a type one diabetic, died in jail last month. His parents dropped off his meter and insulin and supplies the day he was arrested. He was held for 48 hours, at the end of which he died. His blood sugar was in the 1200's.

I am outraged and stunned at how something like this could happen. But mainly it just makes me really, really sad. I can begin to try and imagine what took place to cause a blood sugar in the 1200's, no basal insulin injection, no bolus for food or drink. Then comes the questions.

What the hell was the jailer doing that they didn't realize something was wrong?

Was he pleading for help and his requests were ignored?

Didn't anyone notice how often he went to the bathroom, the vomiting, the retching, the constant request for water. Do they give water to people in jail?

If not then maybe there weren't frequent bathroom trips, but there had to be something, anything to signal an alert to the jailer.

More questions like why didn't the nurse give instructions?

Was there a nurse there on Saturday? Was anyone there who had a functioning mind?

The family is considering a wrongful death lawsuit against the county and its sheriff's office. I don't know much about legal rights in jail or about law, but maybe someone else does. Lets get this horrible situation noticed, maybe there is a way to help.

The family is in my prayers.


Welcome to November!

So after an October filled with swinging blood sugars and extreme highs, an overall blood sugar average somewhere around 190, the first day of November is proving to be very different. I woke up this morning around 1:30am with a low of 53, starving and lost because my stock of juice was depleted. I wandered upstairs looking for left over Halloween candy and found two Butter Finger fun size bars, a fin size Twix, a Reese's Pieces peanut butter cup, plus two handfuls of Parmesan and Oregano Wheat Thins . Yum! Despite all of that candy and starch, I woke up at 7:30 with at a healthy 131.

That was the last time that I saw a normal blood sugar until 6pm. Let me just say, floating between 50 and 80 all day while working at a job that doesn't allow any personal time is a bitch. Luckily I had a break between work and school, but when I got to my car I just broke down and cried. It was so much energy and so stressful to feel sweaty, shaky, confused yet trying to focus for 8 hours while worrying where my blood sugar was and where it was going. It pissed me off and drained me; pissed off that I had to always be the one to try and fix these situations and prevent them in the future, pissed that my great doctor was on vacation and couldn't email me suggestions, furious that I couldn't explain why it was happening. Why, why, why when I haven't changed my insulin vial, my pump infusion set, nothing that should effect my blood sugar so drastically in one day was altered, so please God, why?

As I drove to class I debated on if I should go or not for fear of battling another low. I made it an hour and a half early to class and decided to talk to my professor, see what was on the menu for class tonight and how important it would be to attend. I walked into her office at an uncertain 78. She gave me the handouts and said that she didn't want me to feel obligated to neglect my health to attend class. Afterward, an hour away from class, I decided to go home and rest for the evening. Home being Jason's house and Jason wasn't home yet. I sat waiting for him and decided to test again even though it was only 30 minutes from my last test, I was worried about it dropping again. While pulling out my meter and poking my finger for a drop of blood I said to my self, "If its anywhere near normal, I'm going to class." 97. 97!

Somehow seeing that number lifted from me out of my slump of lows and I decided to treat my self to a double cheeseburger from Burger King. I had three hours of class to last through and I wasn't going on an empty stomach with a 20 ounce of Coke. I covered half what I usually would have for the cheeseburger, and hoped for the best. I kept a temp basal rate going of 50% what it would usually have been and lasted the entire class over 85 and under 130. It was wonderful!

Now, of course in true diabetes fashion my blood sugar is a little too high. Maybe the trends of October aren't gone completely.

I still don't understand what the hell was going on, but hey, I made it through the day and through my class. Amen for that.