NHBPM- Day Eight

So, I’m a bit behind on my NHBPM posts. Are you surprised? I’m not. Especially with all the excitement going on this month since it’s National Diabetes Awareness month and World Diabetes Day. Doing stuff for that, combined with crazy things happening at work equals no blog posts. But, I’m back.  I also think I started lagging because I didn’t really have anything to say for the past few prompts. So instead of beating myself up over not writing an entry every day, I’m just going to write an entry for the prompts that interest me. Deal? Deal!

Day 8:

“Write a letter to your health”

or

“Write about how you choose to write about others in your blog”

I wrote a letter to diabetes on my diaversary in September, so I’m going to write about how I write about others.

I started this blog as an outlet when I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism and diabetes last year. Throughout the year, my blog has focused mostly on my diagnosis and daily life as a 20-something. I’ve talked a lot about my friends, family and boyfriend who gradually became my ex-boyfriend over the course of this past year. I try to speak very honestly about the people I talk about because in a way, this blog is a bit like my journal (with less nitty gritty details though).

While I do strive to speak honestly and in a positive light about those I write about, nobody is perfect. I’ve written about the fights with my mom, tensions with my friends and my heartbreak over breaking up. Those posts might not be the most flattering version of the people I write about, or even of myself, but it’s the truth. Writing is one of the few things I do with my guard down and I always strive to portray the people I write about in a great way but also a real way. I obviously wouldn’t be writing about them if they didn’t matter to me and my life.

So, with all that said, I think so very highly of everyone I write about (unless I don’t) and your support and presence in my life has helped me become who I am today. Thank you!

“Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.”

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World Diabetes Day 2012

Can I just say that I love the Diabetes Online Community (DOC). World Diabetes Day is on November 14th every year, which is also the day Frederick Banting, one of the discoverers of insulin, was born. It’s a day that is globally recognized to bring awareness and education to the general public about diabetes. To see a community unite the way the diabetes community did yesterday is truly inspiring and incredible.

Last year, I was newly diagnosed when World Diabetes Day rolled around, and to be honest, I can’t remember what I did on that day. This year is completely different. I’ve thrown myself into advocacy and awareness over the past year, blogging, tweeting and talking to everyone. For WDD, there was a 16 hour global Twitter chat with new topics every hour. I participated as much as I possibly could, but was at work so had to jump back and forth.

My major take-away: the DOC is full of inspiring, amazing people and the sense of community is overwhelming. I’m lucky to be a part of that community, even if we would all rather not have the thing that has brought us together.

In addition to the Twitter chat, I also participated in the Diabetes Postcard Exchange. I made two postcards and sent them out (one to Connecticut and one to West Virginia) with some positive words and pretty blue circles.

I also got my whole region (my office and our sister office) to dress in blue for World Diabetes Day. My office has been amazing at dressing in blue for Blue Fridays, but getting both offices involved in the awareness effort on November 14th was an absolutely great feeling. My friends outside of work tell me I work with some great people because they aren’t really supporting diabetes, they are supporting me. I say that they’re wrong because if someone is supporting me, they are supporting diabetes. Like I tell people, diabetes and I go hand in hand. Anyway, it was impressive seeing everyone dressed in blue. What was more impressive was the fact that we were all able to get together for a picture and it took less than five minutes.

Of course, I took a self picture of my blue:

I dressed head to toe in various shades and circles of blue. Definitely my favorite “blue” outfit so far.

My parents also dressed in blue to support me. Of course, they live an hour and a half away and they didn’t snap any pictures, but I love their support as well. It means a lot, especially after our extremely intense, emotionally laced family conversation this past weekend about diabetes (hi Mom and Dad- love you guys!).

Hope everyone had a wonderful World Diabetes Day! I’m definitely looking forward to the rest of Diabetes Awareness Month… and Thanksgiving. This is absolutely the best month of the year!

“Pull up a chair. Take a taste. Come join us. Life is so endlessly delicious.”

One Does Not Forget To Take Insulin Overnight

Unless you are me…

Ok, everyone is going to have to forgive the spotty blogging. This week has seriously been INSANE! I swear I’ve been on the go, go, go!

This past weekend I did birthday celebrations with my family, starting on Saturday night at Olives, a really nice Italian restaurant in Frederick, Maryland! The food was absolutely amazing with options like goat cheese stuffed chicken rolls, homemade lasagna and lamb meatballs.

Now, I was a bit anxious before heading to the restaurant with my family because I’ve pretty much cut out pasta from my diet. It’s just so carb heavy and I really can’t justify eating it, so I don’t. While I’ve managed to do well at home, it gets a bit tricky when over half of the menu at an Italian restaurant is a pasta dish.

Go figure.

On top of that, this girl forgot to take her morning insulin in the morning and didn’t remember until noon!

If you remember, I’m still honeymooning so I only need to take basal insulin (Lantus) in the morning (15u) and 4mg of Amaryl. But that insulin is crucial in helping me control my numbers.

As I later found out when I got a reading well into the 200s. Before I decided to really beat myself up over it, I reasoned with myself that I was out of my routine (slept at my parents house the night before and woke up much later than usual) and that it would come down if I just watched what I ate for the rest of the day.

And with that I skipped lunch, focusing on the 6pm dinner reservations.

By the time we got to the restaurant, my blood sugar was at a nice and cozy 113.

Still, there were all of those pesky pasta dishes with things like chicken parmigiana, creamy sauces and lots of cheese sitting on top.

After feeling pretty crappy about my health all day, I opted for a a pear and walnut salad and a big bowl of mussels and clams in a nice tomato sauce.

Which left me to consume my carbs in the form of birthday cake!

Sunday morning, my parents, brother and I went to one of my favorite spots in Baltimore City. We were the first ones in for brunch at 11am (the early bird gets the worm!) and it was so much better than I remembered (we went there for brunch last year on my  birthday as well!).

The buffet included waffles, French toast, sausage, cheesy eggs, everything eggs, bacon, baked salmon with couscous, chicken, pasta salad with steak slivers, steak, shrimp, smoked salmon (with an amazing aioli on top), potato salad with gorgonzola cheese, bagels, peach cobbler, salad (both green and fruit) and cupcakes. Also, unlimited mimosas (of which I partook in minus the OJ).

I filled up two plates of yummy food, despite being stuffed after my first plate. I filled up on my usual eats of the baked salmon, smoked salmon, half a bagel with cream cheese, a big helping of salad, shrimp and a tiny scoop of the potato salad.

My second dish consisted of more smoked salmon atop another half a bagel with cream cheese, fruit, a bite of eggs, some more gorgonzola potato salad and a small helping of the peach cobbler.

I was STUFFED! But when my mom suggested we try one of the cupcakes, I couldn’t resist. Even though we had a whole cheesecake with a decadent chocolate ganache waiting at home…

So, I went with my dad to pick out a total of three cupcakes: red velvet, vanilla with amaretto and a dark fudgy chocolate toffee.

My brother got two just for himself: dark chocolate marshmallow and the dark fudgy chocolate toffee.

After consuming two days worth of sugar, our server brought out a hot brownie fudge sundae with a birthday candle! (I just kept thinking, “NO MORE DESSERT, BUT I LOVE CHOCOLATE!”)

He sang me a little happy birthday song and left me to try and control myself from sticking my whole face into the delicious, warm, gooey brownie and rich vanilla ice cream.

Luckily, I had some helping mouths to eat their share of the sundae, so I wasn’t left with the burden of eating it all myself.

The horrors!!

Honestly, the only thing that kept me from eating the whole thing was this little thing called diabetes that seems to follow me wherever I go.

It’s like the pesky ex-boyfriend who won’t go away.

Except he usually does go away after you yell at him enough times that you don’t ever want to talk to him again.

I tried doing that with diabetes. It just resulted in a red face and high blood pressure.

Anyway, after I rolled out of the restaurant I took a nice little nap on my parent’s couch before packing my birthday presents up for the ride back to my house.

Of course, I couldn’t leave without having my parents sing to me one last time as I blew out three candles on my ginormous cheesecake. Why three you ask? 23 would have been too much. Plus, three is just a really good number. Very zen.

Then we all ate the tiniest pieces of cheesecake and I was sent home with half to be consumed in reasonable amounts per day.

I love birthdays. And chocolate.

Friday Ramblings

What’s up blog world? It’s been a busy, hectic week but today is FRIDAY! So, can’t really complain about that. Especially since it’s also the start of my birthday week (yes, I have a week!)

My birthday is actually on Monday, but I’m doing a bunch of birthday stuff this weekend with my family including dinner with my whole family Saturday night at Olives in Frederick, Maryland. I’ve never been, but as long as there is wine, I’m good to go! That dinner is actually more for my Grandma’s birthday, which is on Sunday, but I’ll be celebrating too!

Then, Sunday morning is brunch with my parents and brother at one of my favorite spots in Baltimore called Crush. They have the most amazing crushes (grapefruit, orange, pineapple) and the best sushi salad. One of the hardest parts about living in Northern Virginia is not being able to go to all of my favorite spots in Baltimore. The city really does have a unique vibe and a lot of amazing spots. Crush has a really airy, modern feel to it with intimate seating and lots of ambient lighting. I’m a little bummed though because I haven’t been since I was diagnosed with diabetes and I probably won’t be partaking in one of their famous crushes. I just can’t do the juice…

I think some champagne will be in order. It’s not everyday that it will be the day before my 23rd birthday.

For a surprisingly busy weekend, I have nothing planned on my actual birthday. How lame. I may be going to a Korean spa with my best friend later in the day, but that’s still undecided.

Then it’s Valentine’s Day. I’m sure everyone is so psyched about that… A will most likely have to work, so I’m thinking about just baking some yummy treats and watching a movie.

Then, next weekend will be more birthday celebrations with all of my friends! Lots of laughing, story- telling and wine drinking will occur. And that’s all I want for my birthday!

So, in life news…

I’m moving! I found a cute little apartment that is being rented out by the owners. It’s behind their single family house, so it’s attached in some way, but separate. I have my own parking spot (under a covered car port!), my own entrance, my own everything! It’s all hard wood floors, full-sized kitchen (with an oven… one of my few requirements!), huge living room, decent sized bedroom and big bathroom.

I’ll be sad to leave my roommates and my little adopted children, but I’m excited to move on to the next phase of my life. I debated living with or without roommates, but after lots of conversations with my friends, I decided that living alone might be best. Especially since my potential roommates would be strangers from Craigslist, and while that worked out for me the first time, it might not be so nice the second.

I went to the endocrinologist this morning for my usual three month check. My feet are beautiful, my blood pressure is normal and my a1C is down! 7.6 to 5.4.

5.4!

I couldn’t believe it when she said it. Well, I could actually. I’m still honeymooning along, so my blood sugar has been pretty stable and easy to control with my medicine, diet and exercise. Still, good news!

However, my thyroid medicine had to be increased. Maybe that’s why I’ve been feeling so sluggish lately?

Anyway, my body is just doing its thing… not fully functioning but doing good.

More news… my hair is no longer orange. If you read my last post, you know that I had a bad experience with some hair dye on Monday night. I went to a salon and got it fixed. Took a good two hours of sitting in the chair, but I came out with pretty blonde hair (a bit blonder than I would have liked) and only a tint of orange in some places.

And, I just want to give a shout-out to my boyfriend. He’s been so supportive and encouraging, especially these past few weeks as we both rode the stress roller coaster. We might be “running against the wind” but “we’re together like two hands of a prayer.” You’re the best!

Now, to get through the work day without going crazy! My parents have enticed me with movies and sushi to come to their house tonight and avoid bad weather (apparently snow is coming- I’ll believe it when I see it) as opposed to tomorrow. Argh… I wish I had a private jet. Then I would never have to face the nightmare that is the Baltimore-Washington corridor.

But I want sushi. Good thing I have no problem facing nightmares.

Hope everyone has a great Friday and an even better weekend! 

Ask Me…

ASK ME!!!

Ok, I just really liked this picture. A bit Spartacus or 300 like.

And the spelling of “diabetes.”

My grandma says “diabeetus.”

I don’t correct her anymore. I figure she has the disease too. She can say it however she damn well pleases.

Funny story about Christmas, my grandmother and my diabetes.

My grandma was on the phone with my mother telling her how she gave everyone lots of chocolate in each of their Christmas bags… except for me. My mom was quite shocked and told my grandma that I would be none too pleased.

“But Lizabeth (that’s what she calls me) has diabetes. I don’t want to give her sugar!”

Oh grandma, grandma, grandma. If only she knew that 10-20% of my daily caloric intake probably comes from dark chocolate.

I like it plain. I like it salty. I like it with nuts and toffee.

I’m a poet and didn’t even know it.

Anyway, I was quite upset upon hearing how I was being discriminated against by my beloved grandmother for having diabetes. I made that quite clear.

Oh, the shame!

And I ended up with a beautiful bar of dark chocolate with crystallized ginger and an Intense Orange Dark Chocolate bar from Lindt.

(Thanks Grandma! I love you 🙂 Shout-out to both of my grandparents! You rock!)

My blood sugar loved every piece of it.

What it didn’t love was the oatmeal I tried to eat a week later. But that’s another story about me and my “diabeetus.”

Happy Friday everyone! Remember, a little chocolate never hurt nobody!