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Moments with my mom

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I have always enjoyed reading posts from around the blogosphere from the parents of people with diabetes. Whether it is someone raising a child with diabetes right now (like Reyna, Joanne, Lorraine, MeriAlexis, and so many more) or posts from Jess’ or Kerri’s mom posted on their blogs. Every time I see those types of posts it makes me wonder what my mom would say.

As you know, she didn’t grow up with a child with diabetes. I was not diagnosed until my senior year of college, at which point I has been out of the house for four years. Due to the cost of graduate school, I moved home for the next two years. However, the majority of my life with diabetes has been out of her house.

Instead of just continuing to wondering what she thinks, this weekend I decided to ask her. Living across the country, I had to use technology and send her the questions by e-mail. Here are her responses with some of my favorite pictures from past and present mixed in.


What is your favorite thing about having me for a daughter? Now that you are an adult, my favorite things about having you for a daughter have changed. I enjoy your zest for living, your passion to help others and the fact that we enjoy each others company and can laugh together and share on those precious occasions.

me in the front, mom in the backMy mom loves our matching pajamas

What did you know about diabetes before I was diagnosed? Very little. Mostly about type 2 that could be controlled through diet and that it was a pancreas related issue [Her mom has had type 2 diabetes for many years, unfortunately with complications].

Mom, brother, and I
What do you remember from my diagnosis? I remember how frustrated we were by the lack of follow-up and straight answers until it was way too late. I remember distinctly your bugging eyes and skinny body weeks before you were hospitalized.

What is the biggest thing you have learned about diabetes in the past 8 years? I have learned how all consuming it can be not just monitoring what food goes in but also activity levels, sleep == everything to stay on an even keel. I’ve learned many little things too regarding technology and advances, but you asked for the biggest.

Thanksgiving at DisneyThanksgiving at Disney

What do you think about blogging? I think it has a huge value to bring people together for a common interest.

What do you think about the diabetes online community? In reading your entries and the comments of others, you are a huge support system for each other. Then having the privilege to meet some of the people face to face I am convinced they are responsible for your navigating the diabetes experience so successfully. As a type 3 it is helpful for me to read periodically to know where your thoughts are and action steps you are taking; since we don’t get to talk too often — I feel like an eaves dropper but it is all I’ve got.
Team Ninjabetic

Most of my diabetes friends were diagnosed when they were little and their parents felt (and still often feel) a great responsibility for their care. How did/does it feel to be the parent of an adult with diabetes? Especially considering I live across the country from you now. I feel very powerless to help except through prayer. When I read about your discouragements or challenges, my heart breaks but I have to trust God to bring you through and to allow you to prosper. I also have to know that you are blessed with an intelligence and determination beyond the norm and you will make the right decisions for your care.

getting a pedicure before George's walk

Any specific worries you have related to my diabetes? Living alone and experiencing a low so low that you can’t make the right decision to remedy it. Also I am concerned about the long term effects on your body but the man that is the head of the Disney conference (aka Jeff Hitchcock) was very encouraging in that regard at the last conference [she met him when she came to visit me after Roche].
mom learning how to use glucagon

Have you seen any positive aspects of my life with diabetes? In some respects it has made you more disciplined and definitely more caring for others and aware of giving people grace because we may not know their story.

Any final thoughts? I wish with all my heart that you did not have diabetes but I think it has made you a much stronger person and definitely pushed you outside your comfort zone to connect with a broader base of people as a result of the online community.
Mom and her mini-me

Thanks for your help Mom!

P.S. My mom hates that last picture but I LOVE it! Everyone thinks my youngest nephew looks the most like her, so we make him make the faces she is famous for.

Faith Friday: Thank You

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Short, sweet, and to the point this Friday. I am so thankful for each of my friends and family across the country and (because of diabetes) even across the world.

“I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers.”
~Philemon 1:4

Photo on 2010-10-01 at 23.53 #2
the adult Type 1 crew

Office Space – Man on Wire

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The task was significantly harder than the wordless IKEA directions indicate, but Friday after work my friend/coworker was finally able to get my make-shift photo gallery hung above my desk.

Reducing my life down to only 24 pictures was a challenging task all its own.

This is the updated view that I get to enjoy each day in my office.

up close 1up close 2up close 3up close 4
the gallery
Have I mentioned how excited I am to add more memories in Kansas City in less than a MONTH?!?!

How to win a staring contest

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Thank you all for your support on my post yesterday. It was something I had wanted to write for a while, but I needed to make sure certain people in real life knew first.

Speaking of people in real life, I mentioned when I first got back from my vacation that my niece had mostly entertained herself on our trip with my iPod touch. I am still working my way through all her pictures and videos trying to make her a DVD of her work.

I picked three short videos (one of which I actually recorded on my video camera) to brighten your Wednesday.

The first was on our car trip to my grandma’s house. The rest of her family was in the other car, but she chose to ride with my mom and I. We knew she was entertaining herself in the backseat, but had no idea how much!

The next day we headed to Niagara Falls. I had only been there once before, at about the same age as my youngest nephew. And I think I enjoyed it about as much as you can see that he did.

Finally, here is a short tutorial on how to win a staring contest.

*I think the trick is to play against yourself!

Happy Wednesday!


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This morning, around 1 am, I finally arrived home after spending a week in upstate New York with my family. Thank you to Scott, Jess, and George for posting here in my absence.

We visited with my paternal grandmother and played in the same creek that my dad explored over 50 years ago and that I played in as a child when we visited.

another four generation photoby the creek

From there, we went to see Niagara Falls lit up at night and spent the whole next day exploring the park.

Niagara Falls at nightI promise the falls are behind uswearing the poncho the right way!

Sunburned at the end of that day, we drove three hours back to my aunt’s house to get ready for the real reason for the trip – my maternal grandma’s 85th birthday celebration.

My brother tried to convince us to get a special party hat for grandma and was disappointed to be outvoted.
party hat
After the party, we posed for a four generation family picture by balancing my camera on a car hood and running into my spot while the self timer ticked away from across the parking lot.
four generations of family
Before flying back to Florida, a short trip to a local museum gave me the opportunity to point out to my niece an important portion of the human body.
bad pancreas
Speaking of my niece – she had possession of my iPod Touch during our adventures. I have a few hundred pictures and a few videos from our trip, but she puts me to shame with over 500 pictures and videos from our week. Here is a small sampling –

I see a future as a vlogger for that one!

Everybody’s Normal…

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There is a book in the self-help world titled “Everybody’s Normal Till You Get To Know Them” by John Ortberg. The author appears on the front and back cover. On the front cover he appears dressed nicely in a collared shirt and khaki pants. When you flip to the back cover you notice a tag sticking out of the back of his shirt. The tag reads “as-is”.
Ortberg describes “as-is” in the opening of his first chapter,

“In certain stores you will find a section of merchandise available at greatly reduced prices. The tip-off is a particular tag you will see on all the items in that area. Each tag carries the same words: as is.
“These items are not normal. ‘We’re not going to tell you where the flaw is. You’ll have to look for it. But we know it’s there. So when you find it – and you will find it – don’t come whining and sniveling to us. Because there is a fundamental rule when dealing with merchandise in this corner of the store: no returns. No refunds. No exchanges. If you were looking for perfection, you walked down the wrong aisle. You have received fair warning. If you want this item, there is only one way to obtain it. You must take it as is.’ “

To me the diabetes community is one big “as-is” bin. Not only do we all have some sort of flaw (and not always just related to diabetes – ha!) but we are all stuck in that bin together too. Once you’ve found us, there are “no returns, no refunds, and no exchanges.”

That’s actually the point of the book. Life in community and relationships is messy and difficult but if we try we “discover the transforming power of being loved, accepted, and valued just the way we are.”

The prompt for today was to write about “admiring our differences.” We were instructed to “pick a type of blogger who is different from you and tell us why they inspire you – why you admire them – why it’s great that we are all the same but different.”

I think I am in a unique place within the diabetes community on this topic. I have Type 1 diabetes but, I didn’t grow up with diabetes like the majority of my Type 1 friends did (Kerri, Scott, Lee Ann, etc). I spent about a year with a diagnosis of Type 2 diabetes, and although that wasn’t very long, even in that short time I encountered some of the unfair and inaccurate stereotypes people like Bob, Mike, and Rachel deal with every day. According to my doctor, my diabetes isn’t LADA, but I do have some of the same diagnosis and insulin effectiveness characteristics as my LADA friends like Cherise and Manny.

The one group I haven’t really had much experience with in my own life are the D-parents. Since I was never a “kid” (dx at 22) with diabetes, I didn’t really experience living at home with a d-parent – although my mom is still a proud card-carrying member of that category. I worry enough about my own health and well-being and whether or not I am doing as much as I can correctly, I cannot imagine taking on the extra guilt and burden of making sure I am doing that for another person.
So if I were to pick a group that I admire, it would definitely be the brave and powerful parents of the children with diabetes – Leighann, Meri, Bennet, and Nan.
Here’s the thing though, I admire the differences of all the members of the diabetes community. We come from different areas of the country, different religious backgrounds, different ethnicities and families of origin. We often land on different sides of issues in the political arena. But when we need each other, we are there for each other.


Happy Birthday to my favorite Type Awesome*!

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My mom was born on the east coast, so as of this moment it is her birthday! She is turning 29, which is remarkable since I turned 30 this year!

Happy Birthday Mom!

LOL! Gotcha George!check out the giant Coke bottle!Team Ninjabetic!

Love you!

*Confused about what Type Awesome means? Check out the definition here.

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