Jul 27, 2013


I was asked to write a Welcome letter (of sorts) to be included in a JDRF brochure that will be placed in the waiting rooms of our local Children's Hospital Endo/Diabetes Center, as well as, adult Endo offices. This brochure introduces the reader to JDRF and the new Mentor program. Before I started writing I had to stop and think. I didn't want to be so upbeat that I was channeling my inner cheerleader (yes, back in middle school) and welcoming them to diabetes. It's not like they won the lottery....whoo-hoo!! Welcome to diabetes!! Glad to meet you!! Truth be told I DO get excited when I meet another diabetic family...(maybe a little too excited). I get the urge to want to give them all my years of experience in one conversation. 

Which is ridiculous. 

I know. 

Maybe I need to go to a D-Mom Anonymous meeting...   

One the other hand,  I didn't want to be all Emo (never was) and pull the diabetes sucks, it's a horrible disease, you'll never sleep again, you'll be able to recite the carb count in every food item better than the Calorie King app, whoa is me, etc., etc. 

I needed to find a gentler approach. 

An "I know how and what you are feeling but it'll be okay".

So this is what I came up with: 

 First of all, I want to let you know, you are NOT alone. I know you may be confused, scared, angry or uncertain and please know it is okay to feel this way. You see, I know how you feel.  Our daughter, Nora, was diagnosed at age 4 with Type 1 Diabetes in 2005. Then in 2012, we received a second T1D diagnosis; our eldest daughter, Evelyn, just 5 days before her 18th birthday. The first call I made in the hospital back in 2005 was to JDRF. I needed to connect with someone who had been through what I was going through. I was contacted by a Mentor when we arrived home. Even though I hadn’t grasped diabetes fully, my Mentor was there for me with any questions or concerns I had. We signed up for our first Walk to Cure event in the Fall of 2005. It was from then on that JDRF became an extension of our family. I have met some wonderful families with children living with T1D. I have met some amazing adults that have been living with T1D for years. My daughters have met other diabetics their age who have become lifelong friends. And we’ve met them all through JDRF. I know you may be feeling overwhelmed right now and this may all be too much. I respect that. Just know, when your ready, there is a whole diabetic community that is out there ready to welcome you with open arms. Please feel free to contact the JDRF office with question, concerns or just to find someone who gets what you are going through.

Just know, I was shaking my blue pom poms as I was writing this :) 

Jul 17, 2013

She NAILED it!

A few weeks ago Nora and I applied to be Team A1C Champions for Sanofi. It's a program that provides speakers to organizations or programs that deal with diabetes. Both Nora and I filled out a separate, 3 page resume of sorts. Asking us why we wanted to do this, our background, speaking experience, etc. We filled it out and I emailed it in. The next day we were contacted for our first of three interviews. 

I was a little nervous...not for me, as I can speak diabetes in my sleep. I was nervous for Nora. Beyond telling her what I thought they would ask her she was left on her own. And man, did she NAIL it. I know, I know, yes, she has been dealing with D for 8 years now but just to hear how optimistic and full of hope she was when she answered her questions truly floored me. I know she is an awesome young lady who has had to grow up before her years but I couldn't have scripted better answers for her. There were even a couple of questions that flustered me but she was able to answer with no pause at all. Truly a proud Momma moment. 

Two days later we had our second interview. This was a little more clinical and harder, I thought anyway. But again, she NAILED it. 

This week we had our third and final interview via Skype. That was fun! More of the same questions and Nora answered like a pro...well, technically, she is. The bummer to this whole process is we have to wait a year. Why? Because the training they fly us out to attend is the EXACT same week of Diabetes camp!! Oh, the irony!! So, we will wait until next summer for our opportunity to share our A1C story with others. Of course, all of you get to hear all about our stories through our blog posts! 

I'm excited to be involved in something that I live daily but also am passionate about. I'm excited that Nora wants to share her story and make sure other T1D kids don't feel alone. I'm just excited to be able to give hope to all who live with or take care of loved ones with diabetes. And I'm proud that what I'm trying to instill in my kids is sinking in...and I know this by how they treat others, as well as, speak on their behalf. Proud Momma here, proud Momma! 

Jul 4, 2013

Got glucagon?

I'm not sure if you got a chance to read a blog post from Diabetes 24-7 but you can read it here. In a nutshell it's every diabetics nightmare...it's MY nightmare, as a caregiver.

I've got glucagon.

Luckily, knock on wood, I've never needed to use it (unless we had to administer mini glucagon to raise blood sugars to get rid of ketones). I carry one with me should I ever need to use it. I keep the expired ones. I open them up. I "play" with them. I go over the instructions. I mix the glucagon. I fill the syringe. I get familiar with it. Because I know I won't be in a good mind set to go over those instructions in case of an emergency. I'm not gonna lie. Glucagon is scary. The red box looks scary. The needle looks scary. But I want to be able to use it with confidence.

The article reminds people to fill their glucagon prescription. Do you have one? Do you know how to use it?

It also shares this really cool app (let's face it...we are totally app crazy) from Lilly on how to use the Glucagon. You can download it here. (It's only available for iPhone devices as for now)

This app is great in case you don't have an expired glucagon to practice on. Once you practice on the app it will ask you if you would like to set a reminder for 3 months out to do another practice. Of course you can practice as much as you want. You can add your kits and expiration date and set up a reminder to refill. I'm not getting paid to endorse this app. I like it because I can make a scary, intimidating red glucagon box into a confidence builder. And I want to share this with you...download it, use it and gain your own confidence!