Friday, May 22, 2015

What? Diabetes Blog Week Was LAST Week?

If you follow this blog, you probably noticed that last week was Diabetes Blog Week and perhaps you noticed that I made it through Day 4.

If at first you don't succeed, try try again.
                                                                            Thomas H. Palmer

Wildcard topic

If you could personify your diabetes or that of your loved one, what would it be like?  What would it look like, what would it say, what kind of personality would it have?  Use your imagination and feel free to use images, drawings, words, music, etc. to describe it.

I think of Silent Sam's diabetes as being like Beetlejuice.  Since he has been able to so well so far, we are happy to keep it in our mind and at bay.  But there is the background worry that the self care will falter or his metabolism will change and there will will be ready to taunt us.  That someone will say "diabetes" three times and there it will be to change our lives in a new way.  

Thanks for reading!

Friday, May 15, 2015

Diabetes Blog Week–Day 4–CH CH CH CHanges

 Day Four Topic
Today let's talk about changes, in one of two ways.  Either tell us what you'd most like to see change about diabetes, in any way.  This can be management tools, devices, medications, people's perceptions, your own feelings – anything at all that you feel could use changing.  OR reflect back on some changes you or your loved one has seen or been through since being diagnosed with diabetes.  Were they expected or did they surprise you?


I would like the BIG change!  I would like for there to be a cure – a way for people not to live with diabetes any longer.  For them to be able to be free from the toll the disease takes on your body. 

In our family, we are dealing with Type 2, I wish there was a way for people with Type 2 diabetes to know that they have the disease so that they take better care of themselves.  You know, something like they break out into bright purple spots when they are not taking care of themselves. Maybe the spots would start slow as a warning and if ignored the color would intensify.  Yep, that is what I would like as a change. 

Do I sound too flippant?  I’m not really.  I think I have said frequently enough that I think one of the problems is that the damage caused is silent. Patients feel fine until something really goes wrong and it goes wrong because they felt fine and didn't acknowledge their disease.
Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Cleaning Out

Day Three Prompt -

Yesterday we kept stuff in, so today let's clear stuff out.  What is in your diabetic closet that needs to be cleaned out?  This can be an actual physical belonging, or it can be something you're mentally or emotionally hanging on to.  Why are you keeping it and why do you need to get rid of it?  (Thank you Rick of RA Diabetes for this topic suggestion.)

Gathering the stuff to go

This day’s topic is right up my alley right now. 

We have been cleaning out.  Yes, Silent Sam and I have decided that our little house has too much stuff.  We have lived in this house for 30 years (gulp!) and now it is just the two of us here.  The kids are married and living in their own places.  As small as our house is, we don’t need three floors (including the most dangerous of spaces – the basement) full of stuff. 

I think that a light bulb went on last fall when we were looking at houses.  We were amazed at how much stuff people had in their houses – especially the closets.  The closets were jam packed.  We were feeling pretty smug about it until I really looked at our closets.  While not crammed, there was plenty of stuff in each.  Hmmm.. Maybe we weren’t in such great shape after all…  Then I realized that all the closets in our house were being used and we weren’t using all the bedrooms as bedrooms any longer. 

Do we actually wear all those clothes?

It was time for a change.  Articles on the topic began to catch my attention.  I read in various places that actually cleaning out can help you lose weight.  Yea, sure.  The theory is that if you are not weighted down by all the things in your house that you will concentrate more on your health.  That cleaning out the clutter will help free you to pay more attention to yourself. 

We are deep into our clean out.  We will make our third trip to Half Price Books today to sell off books.  The first trip was just for all the CDs that were sitting not being used.  Then there were 4 boxes of books.  Today there are three more boxes of books.  We have had the Amvets donation truck 4 times so far and they are coming again on Monday.  We feel that we have gone through the house once but know that there are several more rounds to go. The first round – especially in the basement was probably the easiest and produced the most items to get out of the house.  The next round will be harder but every little bit counts.  The mindset is in place. 

This is what it feels like each time the Amvets truck pulls away

It feels GREAT! Do I think that it will help us lose weight?  I am not ready to discount that theory completely.  I think cleaning out brings to your attention all the money you have wasted (or at least it did for me) on things that don’t matter.  Things that you don’t really need.  Distractions. When you get rid of those things and you stop shopping for things you don’t need, you do have time to think about what is really important and what you need and don’t need.  You make space in your head to be more intentional about what you want to do.

Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Diabetes Blog Week–Sixth Annual

This is the third year that I am participating in the Annual Diabetes Blog Week.  The idea is that many of the bloggers blog each day for a week and we share not only among ourselves but tell you about some other blogs you might want to read. 

Not completely typically, I am behind already.  I was not feeling well yesterday and did not start on time.  So today, I will cover the first two days.  I am usually late at the end – not the beginning!
Each day has a topic and we are all to write on that topic.  If there is a topic that you prefer not to wrote about, there are a couple “wild card” topics. 

While I have found that many of the topics don’t necessarily apply to Silent Sam or our situation, I still think that it is a great unity exercise and I love finding all the other bloggers.  So, off we go…

Monday’s topic -

In the UK, there was a diabetes blog theme of "I can...”  that participants found wonderfully empowering.  So lets kick things off this year by looking at the positive side of our lives with diabetes.  What have you or your loved one accomplished, despite having diabetes, that you weren't sure you could?  Or what have you done that you've been particularly proud of?  Or what good thing has diabetes brought into your life?

I would say that in our case, the “I can” was that Silent Sam decided that he could start exercising and eating right and reduce the medicines that he was taking when he was diagnosed.  In case you never read the beginning of this process for us, Silent Sam was diagnosed when he was in the hospital for a different issue and he went from nothing to shots and pills.  He was able to work hard and reduce his use of medicine.  I am very proud of all the hard work he put in. 

You know, if you follow this blog that there have been some missteps along the way and we have had to kick start the process a few times.  We are currently back in the kick start phase again.  We are doing well – Silent Sam always does better than I do – but we are both working on diet and exercise. 
But to those of you wondering if you can work your way off the medicine or reduce the amount that you need to take, I will tell you that you really might be able to do it.  The rewards are well worth the effort. 

Tuesday’s topic

Many of us share lots of aspects of our diabetes lives online for the world to see.  What are some of the aspects of diabetes that you choose to keep private from the internet?  Or from your family and friends?  Why is it important to keep it to yourself?  (This is not an attempt to get you out of your comfort zone.  There is no need to elaborate or tell personal stories related to these aspects.  Simply let us know what kinds of stories we will never hear you tell, and why you won't tell them.)

This is hard because I think that I share most of what happens around here.  I do try not to concentrate on or write about the long term affects of diabetes.  I think that they are so scary that I just try and concentrate on trying to work with Silent Sam to keep his levels in a good place.  

Because really, not taking care of your diabetes is a path that leads to major problems.  The loss of body parts is bad but the loss of your mind is even more serious.  I know that diabetes is a hard disease to come to grips with because you don’t necessarily know there is any thing wrong with you.  They call high blood pressure the silent killer but I think the same can be said for diabetes.

I think that when I find something truly scary, I don’t want to talk about it.  I certainly don’t talk to friends and family about the long term issues of diabetes.  It is almost like tempting fate.  I keep that as the stone in my pocket that I occasionally peek and then hide it away again.  

I will try to keep on top of my daily posts for the rest of the week now!

Thanks for reading! 

Friday, May 8, 2015

Just a note!

Just a quick note -

Next week is DBlog week.  This will be my third year participating.  During DBlog week, there is a topic for each day for participants to blog about.  Part of it will be a test to find the time to blog for 7 days!

So, this week is very short but there will be plenty next week!

There is just one other thing that I wanted to mention to you.  I don't know if you are on Facebook (And if you are, would you please "like" The 9 Inch plate?) but maybe you saw a challenge that was going around to give up a whole list of food for 21 days.  I read the list and was taken back by how hard it would be to give up those things.

Then I read Gretchen Rubin's Happier at Home.    In her book, she talks about how she has found that it is easier to abstain then try and moderate eating habits.  That really struck a chord with me.  (I seem to have a musical theme today.)

I decided to go back on Facebook and find that list and really try to give the items up for 21 days.  Well, as those things go, I could not find the list.  I decided to make my own list.  On Monday, April 13, I gave up Coke, chips, crackers, and candy.  It just so happened that cookies and cake fell into the list but I must admit that I just didn't have any not because I gave them up.
I made my 21 days!  The worst part was that I missed Coke.  Yes, I refer to it as the "nectar of the Gods"  I realized that it is so convenient to just walk into the kitchen and grab a can.  Replacing it with tea has been okay but not as convenient.

I decided to keep going with the abstinence.  The 21 days were not bad and I know it is good for me.  Since I know what day I stopped, I can keep a calendar to see how long I can go.  I am now at 26 days.  WOOT!

I hope you are doing well.  See you here all next week.

Thanks for reading!