9 months and beyond.

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People like to label me an overprotective mother. Some friends, family, even my husband at times, think that I should relax a bit when it comes to letting my kids, and more specifically my oldest, go places with out me. I’ll admit that if I could keep them in a bubble, snuggled up by protection, for the rest of their lives, I would. They are my everything, an extension of my husband and I. No one ever wants to think about something happening to their children and as a mother, as their parent, it is my job to ensure their safety and well being.

Maybe I should take it back further then this. I carried each of my babies for nine months. Nine scary, overwhelming, exciting months. I watched my belly grow as they did the same inside my womb. I spoke to them, sang them lullabies, promised to always love them. I giggled as they wiggled around, just me and each of my babies. I cried late at night when my blood sugar wasn’t perfect, I was my worst critic, I bruised from the countless blood drawls and poked my fingers raw for blood sugar checks. I have the scars from pump sites gone wrong. I’m the one who had to eat properly and drink enough water and didn’t forget to do this or that. It was me. So forgive me if, yes, I am a bit selfish with them, if I am a bit overprotective when it comes to where they are going and who they are with. That is any parents mentality but especially a woman with diabetes. I have been trained from the start that it is my duty to keep them happy, healthy, and safe inside and out of the womb.

One day my oldest may hate me for questioning everything, needing everyone’s number before she heads out, calling to make sure she is where she said she would be. But I don’t think this is a crime, I don’t think I am a horrible person, and I would hope that people would understand why I feel this way.

I suppose that is where this post is coming from. I am completely upset by the assumption that I should be okay with people taking my kids wherever they please. I didn’t work so very diligently for nine months and beyond to just hand them over to anyone.

Maybe this makes me a bit neurotic. I can’t help feeling the way that I do.Of course lets be reasonable I have let my daughter go places with out me and I have done so by trusting that the person watching her will treat her as though she were their own. With the same kind of care and love her father and I show her. Some have come through and kept my trust in them intact and others have not.

You can agree, or disagree, with how I raise my children but until you’ve had your own or until you’ve had to care long term for these tiny little humans it shouldn’t be up for debate.

My babies are my world and I intend to keep them whole.

Beginning and end of story.

What are your thoughts on this topic? As a parent or caregiver do you agree or disagree with my viewpoint? Or even if you don’t have children, how do you feel about this?

I’m interested in hearing from you all.

Vacationing with diabetes.

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As I plan itineraries and sight seeing for our trip to Florida in a few months I can’t help but think about how stressful it could end up being because despite my pleading and begging diabetes has decided to tag along for my first family vacation.

I asked nicely.

I’ve even been babying it in hopes that it might let me slide this one time but my hopes were shattered when diabetes decided that I couldn’t escape it’s grimy, disgusting grip on my life.

So included in my planning for all the exciting events I have to also plan for diabetes. I have to make sure I bring with me enough supplies and game plan for anything that may go wrong.

Here’s a quick list of things I will need:

  1. Insulin.
  2. At least three pods, not including one that I’ll be wearing. (I’ll be away from home for a total of four days) Pods can be fickle little beasts sometimes.
  3. Test strips and my meter.
  4. Triple A batteries for my PDM which controls the whole pump/insulin system. With out that I couldn’t bolus.
  5. An extra Dexcom just in case mine craps out.
  6. Syringes. Because pods could die and then what would I do.
  7. Charger for my Dexcom.
  8. Water and snacks for low blood sugars.
  9. Locating pharmacies in case of extreme emergency.

Truthfully I have to have back up plans for my back up plans. You never know what could happen. Because the thing about diabetes is that if you don’t have an idea of what to do in an emergency, or if you miss even the tiniest detail in planning, you could be screwed. Just in case is something I mumble a lot to myself even when I’m not going on vacation. Just walking out the door to the grocery store gets a plan A,B and C. “Well, I should bring this/do this just in case…” I can’t leave things up to chance. I can’t afford to blow caution to the wind because my life literally depends on it. That;s a scary thought, am I right?

It’s frustrating but manageable. It’s annoying and tedious but I can do it. I just wish I didn’t have to. I wish I could go on our vacation with little to worry about.

I plan on having a magnificent time despite certain hassles, I plan on enjoying myself fully. Because not even diabetes will ruin my vacation! I just have to be sure to plan accordingly.

Have you been on long vacations with diabetes tagging along?How did you manage and what are your tips for traveling?

Diabetes Sucks

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Please excuse my very grouchy language in the title but it’s the truth. I’m not writing this to be negative, just honest. At the end of a very long and stressful day or even a fantastic one… diabetes will always suck.

I have had many days where my blood sugars are stable and I am a bolus queen. But most days aren’t like that. Most days I encounter high numbers here and there or numbers so low I can’t think. What makes it even more annoying is that these highs/lows always seem to happen at the most inconvenient of times.

For example:
When both kids are cranky or I need to feed my son because he’s screaming his head off. I can’t give either one of them my full attention because I’m about to pass out from a blood sugar reading of 45 or lower. I can’t function. I can’t even remember my name but I have to suck it up and fix the situation. It’s stressful.

Or how about when I’m trying to drive to work, or a doctors appointment, but then I have to pull over to fix a low blood sugar or else I could be putting myself and others in danger. I’ve had to sit in the car for almost 20 minutes waiting for my numbers to stabilize. It’s frustrating.

Sometimes my blood sugar gets high and I have to stop playing with my daughter, or stop making dinner, so I can give myself insulin or I could again be putting myself or others in a possibly dangerous situation.

A few days ago my pump decided to crash out on me in the middle of my shift at work. My numbers were so high I felt sick. My head was pounding, my mouth was dry, and every time I took a step I felt dizzy, I couldn’t see straight. No matter what I did I kept creeping higher and higher until eventually I had to leave early. It was upsetting to me because I try very hard not to let diabetes get the best of me or interrupt my daily routines but sometimes it does and I just have to deal with it.

These might seem like no big deal to some people but when you are trying all that you can to take care of yourself and you still end up feeling helpless in certain situations, because your body is fighting against you, it can be overwhelming.

The reality is that with diabetes there’s no time off, no vacation away, no 20 seconds of freedom. Diabetes is 24/7 and it just sucks.

I try to stay positive with everything because these were the cards I was dealt but it’s become very difficult with the new baby to care for diabetes like I used to. Diabetes is needy and uncaring. I’m hoping to get back into a rhythm with it but so far it’s just been an overall mess.

It doesn’t help that no one can really tell when you’re struggling with this disease because you can’t see it. I may look fine on the outside but I’m battling a monster inside. That’s what this disease is no matter how you look at it. A monster. Every one handles their diabetes differently, I try not to make a big deal out of my struggles but sometimes it is a big deal.

I’m in a bit of a diabetes funk if you couldn’t tell but I know tomorrow is a new day and it will be better. It just has to be.

I’m still smiling and I hope you are, too.

Motherhood

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Five truths about motherhood from my perspective.

1. It’s difficult: I know. I went there and said it. It’s a beautiful blessing but it can be stressful. When your newborn cries all night no matter what you do. When your seven year old is sick and can’t sleep. When you worry about your parenting skills and hope to the heavens you’re doing this right. It’s all so difficult. Not something I’d give up but I’m allowed to wish things were a little easier sometimes. Okay, a lot of the time.

2. You’ll fall in love: As a mother, no matter what, you’re going to fall so deep in love with these little people in your life. The sticky, crying, kissable little people you’ve created will steal your heart. After having my first and giving her every drop of love I could muster I thought for sure I’d never be able to love another person so much. And then I had my son and somehow my heart grew ten times bigger and I fell in love with him, too. My heart overflows for these two kids. It’s an amazing, incredibly breathtaking, experience. That’s the only way to explain it.

3. You’re going to be exhausted: People told me lies. I’m here to tell you the truth. Those long sleepless nights with your newborn don’t go away. They are fewer and far between but they’re still there. At 3 am when your toddler has a tummy ache, when your seven year old has a nightmare, you will be right there. Wide awake. While they sleep, toss and turn, or are puking up their guts… You’ll be there. Every cough will startle you awake. Jolt you from the deepest slumber. For the rest of your life as a parent. That’s the truth. But it’s okay because it shows you care. That’s how much you love your kids that you’re willing to go nights without sleep and then juggle the world the next day. The good part is you won’t remember how exhausted you were when you look back. You’ll just remember all the sweet moments.

4. It’s expensive: I know that’s a give in but lemme tell ya…I didn’t realize how expensive. Between diapers, formula, and everything in between you’d need quite a few bucks in the back. And they don’t get cheaper as they grow. They’ll wanna play sports or they’ll decide they want to be an artist so you’ll need all those supplies. On the other side of that coin is the pride and joy you’ll feel when you’re cheering them on after kicking the winning goal. The excitement that runs through you when you’re showing off their latest art piece. It’s what makes spending your last dime on them worth it.

5. It’s all worth it: Despite the mixture of emotions I’ve displayed here I can say with my whole heart that I wouldn’t give up a second of this crazy, beautiful, exhausting thing called motherhood. I just wouldn’t. My life wouldn’t be the same without my children. They’ve taught me so many things in just the short time they’ve been in my life. Patience, unconditional love, patience… Yeah you’ll need a lot of that, and most importantly appreciation. An appreciation of all the tiny moments. The laughs and giggles, the smiles, and all the hugs.

Kid Art

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I love when my daughter draws, paints, and colors. I’m a huge advocate of spreading ones creative wings. Discovering what you can do with a few tools and your imagination. Over the years her art has gotten better and better. This picture is of her little brother. She was very proud of it and so am I. So much so that I had to share it for todays wordless Wednesday.
Hope you’ve found a reason to smile today.