Candy Hearts Blog

It's a sweet adventure full of gluten free goodies!

Candy Hearts Blog - It's a sweet adventure full of gluten free goodies!

Dear New Friend (The one whose child was just diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes),

Your sweet child (no pun intended) was just diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. I know you woke up today in the haze of this whirlwind, and I realize you may wonder if this is actually reality, or some weird dream-like state of consciousness you never knew existed. Whether you are familiar with what type 1 diabetes is or not, you are probably in shock and doing your best to take in the enormity of the situation without panicking.

In the coming hours, days, weeks, and months you will have information thrown at you from a million directions. When you turn to the internet, it’s possible you’ll end up tripping and falling down a rabbit hole you never saw coming. In this age of technology, there are a million people with a million opinions waiting behind every click. Unfortunately, not all of the information at your fingertips will be helpful — or accurate, for that matter.

2015 marks the 10th year since my daughter’s Type 1 diagnosis. She was diagnosed about three weeks after her 2nd birthday, and we’ve stumbled around this block a time or two. From being told to “suck it up” to a suggestion to try feeding her camel’s milk (because I always wanted a pet camel, right?), I’ve heard a lot of stuff on this journey.

With that in mind, I wanted to give you 10 useful tips (in no particular order) to help you figure out how to plant your feet in the right direction:

BUT FIRST!!!!! This is a long post. I mean…it’s been TEN years for us…so TEN tips adds up. I just want to say that if you don’t feel ready to read this right now, that’s okay. Type 1 diabetes is here. It isn’t going away. You can always come back to read this another day.

1) You will, no doubt, deal with a range of emotions as you go through the motions of adjustment…and beyond. I want you to know that it’s okay if you aren’t feeling “happy happy joy joy” every minute. It’s okay to be angry. It’s okay to cry. It’s okay feel frustration over the financial toll, sleep deprivation, and stressful impact type 1 diabetes will have on your family. Pretending any of that doesn’t exist won’t make it go away. Acknowledging the challenges doesn’t mean diabetes “wins”. It means you’re facing reality.

Whenever possible, face it – don’t fake it. Your emotions are validated. Justified. Heard. But you are also the parent, and that means you won’t allow life to fall apart either. You’ll do what needs to be done — even when you’re feeling down — because that’s how you roll.

{Further reading: I wrote this post detailing my emotional journey when we got to the 5 year mark — now we’re standing at the brink of 10 years, and not much has changed.}

2) There isn’t a magic cure. Well-meaning people will offer up all kinds of solutions to try to help your child. I say “well-meaning”, because I’d like to think they aren’t intentionally suggesting you try things that could kill your child. I won’t link to some of the outrageous propaganda here (because I don’t want to give them click stats, and also because I don’t want to send you down the wrong path), but cinnamon won’t cure your child…neither will any special combination of foods…or eliminating a food group altogether…or trying an exotic essential oil…or giving your child a variety of supplements…or trying a specialized exercise program.

Insulin is NOT your child’s enemy. Insulin is a hormone essential for life-sustaining function. Without it, people die. It is the ONLY treatment available for the management of type 1 diabetes. Remember, prior to the discovery of insulin, T1D was a universally fatal disease. No one survived…despite trying every herb, every oil, every diet, every exercise, every everything…everyone died. No one was spared.

Insulin saved your child’s life too.

{Sidenote: You’re child may enter something called a “honeymoon phase” after being diagnosed. For awhile, it might seem like diabetes has disappeared, but it hasn’t. I’m sorry.}

3) There will be no shortage of advice. Once you begin to integrate online, you will find there are as many opinions about every detail as there are details. Remember when you were a new mommy and got sucked into the vaccine debate? Or the breastfeeding debate? Or the cloth vs disposable diaper debate?

Yeah. Like that.

Do you change your lancet with every poke? Did you check ketones with every BG over 250? DO YOU — USE AN ALCOHOL WIPE FOR EVERY INJECTION????? The list is long, and the commentary is longer.

Here’s a tip: Don’t pay attention to any all of it. Do what works for your kid, and let another mother do what works for hers. Take what you find helpful, and leave the rest behind. That’s all there is to it. Pick and choose what (and who) you want to spend your energy on.

Along those lines, be aware that sometimes people will interject themselves into your crisis. And, make no mistake, right now — in the aftermath of your child’s diagnosis — this is a time of crisis as you adapt your new normal. There are some people who are just constantly in a state of drama. They come on strong, act like they know everything — been there/done that, and monopolize your time with their theatrics.  They’ll constantly compare your situation to theirs. They turn every conversation around to be about them, and they never stop to listen. Every day is a new dilemma for many of them, and you’ll grow tired of listening to all of their struggles while trying to balance your own.

You don’t have to make time for all that right now — or ever, for that matter. It’s okay to avoid them. Unfollow. Defriend. Block. Whatever it takes.

Catch your breath.

4) Ask for help. You are going to need someone who can check your child’s BG, count carbs, and help give insulin. You will need someone who can watch your child for an hour or two at some point in time. I know it might feel impossible right now, but be honest when people ask you what you need.

Sure you can always use help with dinners, and errands, and all that good stuff…but for the long haul, you will need someone to be willing to step up in this area. Tell your friends and family you need them to learn everything they can so they can help you take care of your child.

Not everyone will be willing, but someone probably will. You might be surprised who it is.

5) Technology is out there.  When it comes to diabetes technology, there’s a lot of information to absorb. From glucometers to insulin pumps to continuous glucose monitors (CGMs), there’s plenty to learn. While I feel inclined to tell you to cross those bridges when you’re ready, I also feel obligated to let you know that technology has, literally, revolutionized this journey for us.

#1 – The precise micro-dosing offered by the insulin pump helped us stop the horrible low blood sugars that were causing my little 2-year-old daughter to pass out repeatedly. {She wears the Animas PingHERE’S WHY, if you’re interested.}

#2 – Yes, she did begin carrying a cell phone at 9 years old. It was a game changer, and my only regret is we didn’t get one for her sooner. Putting a cell phone in her hand gave us a direct connection for the times we couldn’t be together…like, for example, when she was Toto in the school play and stayed after school twice a week for most of the school year; and that time she went to her 1st sleepover (which didn’t go very well, btw); and all the weekend services we’ve spent apart during church worship. These days, she goes to the park with her pals, rides her bike around the neighborhood, and calls me anytime she’s dealing with a BG issue she feels like she needs help with. I love that we have cell phone technology in this day and age of parenting — and diabetes management.

#3 – Finally, the peace of mind offered by her Dexcom Continuous Glucose Monitor (CGM) is second to none. Dexcom measures the interstitial glucose levels using a very thin sensor placed just beneath the skin. It displays a glucose reading every 5 minutes, along with an arrow to indicate which direction the glucose level is moving. We’ve found it to be incredibly accurate, and would consider it one of the most important tools in our tool box.

Currently, I’m able to remotely monitor my daughter’s Dexcom data using Nightscout. This means I can see her numbers on my laptop, smartphone, and even on my Pebble watch (using an Android app) no matter how far apart we are! Ten years ago, the idea of being able to remotely monitor my daughter’s glucose levels would have been a dream come true…and now here we are. {Nightscout is actually a bit more complicated to set up than I’m making it sound here, but it’s pretty amazing and worth the investment of time.}

If you are a family of iPhone users, the Dexcom SHARE might be a great option for you. There isn’t as much set up required as Nightscout, and you can still remotely monitor your child’s glucose levels. Unfortunately, Dexcom didn’t make their remote monitoring software available to Android users (something I have a pretty big problem with — a soapbox I’ll rant on another day), so I can’t give you a firsthand account of the experience, but I think it’s going pretty well for iPhone users who have been able to use it.

Finally, have hope in the technology of tomorrow. In the summer of 2014, my daughter wore a closed-loop artificial pancreas called the Bionic Pancreas. She wore it for five days as part of a clinical trial, and it completely controlled her glucose levels — like, she didn’t count carbs, she didn’t correct highs, she didn’t deal with lows. It. did. eve.ry.thing. I’m not even making this up, people. I know it sounds very futuristic-scifi-the-stuff-that-movies-are-made-of…but it was real. She really wore it. You can read more about her experience with the Bionic Pancreas HERE.

Oh, and Encapsulation. You need to be excited about that too…it’s a little implanted device that would eliminate the need for insulin for up to 24 months.

Yeah. Read that again: “eliminate the need for insulin for up to 24 months”.

Good stuff is coming.

Get on board with technology.

6) Get involved. You cannot take a passive role in your child’s future. You have a very finite amount of time to shape tomorrow, thereby ultimately making a long-term impact on your child’s destiny.

One day your child will grow up to become an adult with type 1 diabetes. Their ability to carry health insurance, avoid discrimination in the workplace, access technology (as well as what that technology will be), and the ability live as normal a life for as long as possible will come about, because of  advocacy efforts that are happening TODAY.

There are organizations working very hard to secure a better future for your child, but it’s not just about tomorrow. Children today are able to access insulin pumps and CGMs because of advocacy organizations who have worked hard with the FDA and insurance organizations. Our children can go to school with protection under the American with Disabilities Act, complete with a 504 Plan (or IEP, depending on your child’s needs). Today’s children are benefiting because of yesterday’s hard work. It’s a circle effect.

You must become part of the momentum, because we need ALL HANDS ON DECK. Get involved. Start a walk team. Sign up to share your story with lawmakers. Offer to come to the office. DO SOMETHING…but whatever you do, don’t do nothing.

JDRF

ADA

Here’s a great article that highlights some others.

7) There are no bad numbers.  There are a lot of numbers. Many days are like a roller coaster…up, down, up, down…but there are no “bad numbers”. There are high numbers. Low numbers. And target numbers.

Let’s say a BG of 439 pops up on the meter. What do you do?

Frown? Scowl? Grumble?

Does your child think you’re frowning, scowling, and grumbling at them? Are they now worried that they’ve disappointed their parent because of something they have absolutely no control over? Their body doesn’t make insulin. Regardless of whether that number is the result of forgetting to cover something or not calculating correctly, the fact remains that…well…they’re 439 because their body doesn’t make insulin.

Listen…the last thing you want is for your child to tie that number to their self-worth. It’s a number. It’s a piece of data — that’s all. 439 simply means your child needs insulin. Period.

Fix the number, then objectively try to figure where it came from. Don’t lash out. Don’t hurl accusations. Don’t place blame. Just work together to problem solve.

Each number — whether high, low, or target — is merely a point of data on a graph. There are no bad numbers — just data. Use the data to make decisions about what to do next, but do not use the data to place any sort of value on your child.

Your child is so much more than a number.

{By the same token, remember these numbers are not a measure of your parenting either. Data! That is all.}

8) Doctors often don’t get it. You will be surprised how many times you encounter a doctor (or other healthcare professional, nurses included) who will ask you if your child uses insulin. Um, yes. TYPE 1 DIABETES infers the use of insulin, but it’s just not that simple. They will insist your child needs nutritional counseling or start an exercise program to “control their diabetes”. They don’t get it. THEY JUST DON’T GET IT!!!!! And you can educate them until you’re blue in the face, but they will probably just argue with you.

Truthfully, I didn’t really get it either. I was a nurse for 10 years before my daughter was diagnosed, and nothing in nursing school prepared me for this. I was SHOCKED when I learned what this life would consist of. I’m embarrassed to admit this…but I said that…and this patient taught me so much.

I don’t know how to fix the problem at large, but felt you should know so you wouldn’t be caught off guard. Most healthcare professionals have no clue about T1D, so don’t let them start making decisions about your child’s insulin until you’re confident they know what they’re doing.

{Further reading: No one should die because they are misdiagnosed or not diagnosed in time.}

9) Get on a 1st name basis with your school nurse. And your school’s custodian. And the cafeteria workers. And the front office staff. And the crossing guard. And anyone else who is willing to look out for your child during the school day. Love these people. You are on the same team. It takes a village, and they will be there when you aren’t. Everyone matters.

10) Your child was diagnosed, but everyone in the family is living with type 1 diabetes. This is going to be life-changing for everyone. Siblings will go through adjustments. Marriages go through adjustments. Family routines go through adjustments. In some ways, a bomb has just been dropped in the middle of your living room.  In other ways, the ultimate team challenge has just been presented to your family.

Everyone’s experience counts. No one is less important, and there’s most certainly a job for everyone. Youngers can help keep track of juice boxes, and Olders can help learn how to give injections. From learning how to check glucose levels to learning how to count carbs to learning how to weigh and measure food, there’s something for everyone.

All of that being said, sometimes it won’t be so hunky dory. Sometimes siblings grow tired of the extra attention your child with diabetes (CWD) is getting. Sometimes your CWD may grow tired of it too.

After ten years, I wish I could end this post by telling you that it gets easier, but it doesn’t. Sometimes it feels like we’re living life one number at a time, just waiting for the next result so we can make a decision about what happens next.

The insurance hassles, prescription battles, and BG rollercoasters never seem far away. There’s always a challege lurking around the corner. Just when you think you’ve found the perfect insulin dosages, your child grows — or has a test — or exercises — or whatever. There are birthday parties, and sleepovers, and swimming pools, and bounce houses…and nothing is predictable.

It’s never easy…but you will look back and see how far you’ve come…at 2 weeks, then 4…then 3 months, 6…then before you know it, at 1 year, 5…10… You will stand amazed at what you, your child, and your family has overcome. You will look around, simultaneously shocked at how fast the time has flown, and how slow it has crept by at the same time.

No…it doesn’t get any easier.

YOU, my friend, get BETTER!

End of School…Start of School…Repeat…

It’s the end of the school year here…which always means it’s time to gear up for the next school year. I just sent off this email, and thought I’d post it, just in case it makes life easier for you to copy, paste, and tweak it to fit your needs.

Hey…I’m always interested in finding ways to makes life easier.

(For more helpful tips and information about how we manage Sugar at school, click HERE.)


Hello!

It’s that time of year again.  The end of one school year means it’s time to begin preparing for the task of sending {Sugar} to school with both diabetes and celiac again next year.  {Sugar} has matured quite a bit over the years, and is now able to be more of an active participant in her self-care.  She still doesn’t possess the critical-thinking and decision-making skills that are necessary to insure her safety and well-being, but this past school year we’ve definitely seen her confidence soar in both areas of medical management. 

Prior to the 1st day of school next year, we will need to sit down to discuss her 504 accommodations, develop a routine for visits to the Health Office, and clarify any concerns/questions.  In order to meet these goals, there are a few bits of information I’ll need when we meet:

  • Lunch Time
  • Recess Time(s)
  • P.E. Time(s)
  • Routine for classroom parties (time of day, types of foods typically offered, frequency of parties.)

I’ve compiled some resources that may be helpful for school staff to better understand both Type 1 Diabetes and Celiac Disease.  Please feel free to share these resources with anyone who will be interacting with {Sugar} throughout the school day:

Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 Diabetes in School – Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF)
Safe at School – American Diabetes Association (ADA)
Helping the Student with Diabetes Succeed — National Diabetes Education Program via the CDC

Celiac

National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA)
Letter to Educators from the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness
Celiac Disease Awareness Campaign via the NIH

I hope these resources will be helpful in better understanding the medical issues {Sugar} lives with.  As her parents, it is our goal to help her succeed, despite the challenges.  We believe we have a responsibility to educate school personnel, and advocate for her throughout her education experiences.  We are always available to answer questions or address concerns, and want to maintain an open dialog at all times. 

I’d also like to mention that Nurse {C} and {Sugar} have a solid history of working together to effectively manage both diabetes and celiac in the school setting.  Nurse {C} is an outstanding resource to {Name of School}, and I am confident in her ability to troubleshoot, problem solve, and address any issues that may arise.  Nurse {B} is also very knowledgeable and capable of helping however necessary to insure {Sugar’s} well-being.  I consider this amazing team of school nurses to be one of the most consistent attributes to {Sugar’s}success at school thus far. 

Please let me know how I can be of assistance in getting her 504 meeting scheduled.

We are looking forward to a healthy, happy 4th Grade year, and hope everyone has a wonderful summer!

Old School

All this back to school chatter has caused me to pause and reflect at how far we’ve come.  Today I decided to go back….WAY BACK….to the first blog post I wrote when I began blogging 2 years ago.  I dug this out of my archives and decided to repost it today.


I read this and realize that so much has changed….yet nothing has changed at the same time.  The day I wrote this, I wasn’t connected to the diabetes online community (DOC).  Today you guys are like family.  I feel incredibly blessed to have found all of you.


I hope you’ll join me for a short stroll down memory lane….

Round 2

Well, here I am…again…

I tried to start a blog 16 months ago, right after the birth of my last baby in May 2007. That lasted, um, about 2 months…during which time, I think I managed to post all of 3 times.

You might say I was a little busy. I was balancing life with a nursing newborn AND a nursing toddler (**gasp**, I know, YES I was nursing TWO babies — now that the shock has worn off, I’ll continue…), and diabetic 3 year old — with only my wonderful husband (who also happens to be gone 12+ hours a day) to help. Yup. I was busy.

Funny thing is…I still am. Somehow the days have passed, my little girls are getting bigger…and I’m getting busier. I’m still nursing that baby I mentioned before. Her name is Tink, by the way. Her older sister, Tiara, finally weaned after I forced her into it at the age of 2 1/2 years. They’re both very curious toddlers — into anything and making a mess of everything. Big sister,Sugar, is teaching them well how to leave a tornado in their tracks. I wouldn’t change this life for the world. Now, ask me if I felt that way about 3 hours ago while I was making dinner and you’d probably get a different answer. But, at this moment in time, everyone is tucked sweetly into bed…and I’m not far behind. So, at this moment, I couldn’t imagine my life any other way.

Ah…daydreaming…
THAT MOMENT IS OVER.

Then there’s that pesky little thing called Type 1 Diabetes. You’ll hear a lot about that subject here. Can’t help it. My life revolves around Sugar’s blood sugar. Among everything else in life, it determines how much sleep I’ll get at night, when I’ll wake up, when I’ll eat, what I’ll be thinking about at any given moment, how I’ll plan family outings, and how far from the school I’ll stray. Yeah, it’s safe to say that our life revolves around Sugar’s blood sugar.

(Hey, don’t judge us until you’ve lived with, and raised, a child with this disease. I’m about sick of hearing people tell me that “I can’t let diabetes win”…blah, blah, blah. So, let’s get one thing very clear. Diabetes hasn’t “won” anything.  Sugar is healthy, well adjusted, and happy. But, do not be mistaken.  It takes an exhausting amount of work to achieve that…or should I say EXHAUSTING amounts of brainpower…just to keep her alive.)

Numbers. Right now she’s asleep at 229 with 0.10u IOB and 22 minutes so I gave her a 0.30 correction and will check her again in 2 hours. Make sense? Good. There’s more.

Basal rates, ratios, insulin sensitivity/correction factors, boluses, sites, IOB, disconnect, carbs, target range, low, high, ketones, balance, shots, Lantus,Novolog, pump, TDD, averages, A1c…

I am fluent in a second language. It’s called Type 1 Diabetes. And I hope you never have to learn it this well.

If I sound tense, it’s because Sugar just started kindergarten. Let’s just take the last few points of this post and sum it up to say that it’s pretty stressful sending diabetes to school.

Maybe I’ll feel better after another night of interrupted sleep and spur of the moment troubleshooting for wacky blood sugars. Because, aside from a handful of nights, I haven’t slept more than a 3 hour stretch in, at least, the past 3 years.

I’m tired, but I don’t have a choice except to feel better.

Because I’m the mom.

School (Problem) Resolutions

As promised 🙂

Here’s the answers I came up with to resolve some of the school issues I mentioned the other day.

1)     I replaced those little fruit bowls with my own version.  Instead of buying the pricey individual cups of fruit, I bought a little box of snack sized resealable plastic bags and larger cans of less expensive fruit.  Then I weighed  out a serving according to the label, threw a spoon in the lunch box, and *wiping hands* fruit cup dilemma — SOLVED (check.)

2)     On the rare occasion I did offer a fruit cup, I’d send her with a pouch type drink…but I wasn’t quite this crafty. I’d open the seal a tad bit, and then cover it with foil and place it in a sandwich bag.  When she sat down to eat, she’s use her little straw and drink the juice before using opening the fruit herself using my little starter spot.  (check.)

3)     A typical lunch consists of half a sandwich (using Udi’s GF bread — it’s seriously THE BEST!!!), a serving of fruit, and either chips/pretzels or a cookie (or, sometimes, both!).  She usually buys a milk.  I don’t deviate much from that plan.  It’s pretty much the same amount of carbs every day BECA– USE I’ve learned how much is too much and how much is not enough. (check.)

4)     NO BIKE FOR YOU!  (Yet – check.)

5)     BIRTHDAYS…..plaster smile on face….yeah.  Nah, we have a good system worked out.  I make a batch of gluten free cupcakes and frost them.  Then I freeze them in a single layer, before putting them in a big ziplock bag.  I make each one about 25 carbs each (all using my glorious guessing skills, btw).  We store them in the freezer in the Health Office.  If a party comes up last minute (or not) we’re ready.  BRING IT.  Just remove one from the freezer bag 15 minutes ahead of time and it will defrost with all the icing intact.  Intact icing = no carb loss 🙂  (check.)

6)     Okay.  I compromised.  She couldn’t ride the bus TO school, but I let her ride it home.  She was on the first stop, so it was a quick 5 minute drive.  I made sure to have some Starbursts in the front pocket of her backpack, so she could access them if she needed to.   I know it was only 5 minutes, but I got her off that bus with a low number more than once!  Now she wants to ride her bike.  See #4 for details.

Alright, friends!  I’m off to bed ….do you see the time?  What, pray tell, would anyone be awake at THIS hour for…….

School School Everywhere!

Sugar’s school days have gotten off to a great start this year!  But I won’t mention that….because I don’t want to jinx it….so….forget I mentioned anything.   It’s just that, sometimes, screaming from a mountain top is the only way to express what the victory it feels like.

Anyway, a few minutes ago I was thinking about some of the little things that have made sending T1 to school so unpredictable….and here I am to chat it up with my pals (read: that would be YOU guys, my readers)….

1)     Sugar was pretty young (4) when she had to put the big D in her backpack for the first time.  At that point it was hard for her to open fruit cups — you know…the ones with the tight plastic covering the little plastic bowl?  Yeah.  She had alot of trouble with those.  And FORGET about the little cans.  NO WAY!  It was practically a suicide attempt (but no need for a finger poke) when I handed her one of those.   I know there’s (awesome) staff available to help, but Sugar gets pre-bolused.  She needs to sit down and eat.  Period.  She can’t spend the first quarter of her lunch with her hand in the air, waiting for someone to open the fruit for her.

2)     If she DID manage to open said fruit cup, it was always a mess.  How many carbs would end up on the floor?  It would be like a Fruit Flying Party — oranges here, pears there, pineapple in the hair!!!  And the juice???  Is licking one’s arms in an effort to prevent further carb loss considered appropriate behavior in the cafeteria?

3)     I mentioned that Sugar gets pre-bolused.  Ehum.  Do YOU know exactly how hungry your child is going to be at lunchtime everyday?  Yeah…neither do I.  I wake up in the morning summoning the psychic powers-that-be to pack her lunch for me.  Everyday I hope I’ve packed enough to keep her from starving, but not so much that she can’t finish it all.  If I had to do this for all three, I’d be confined to a small area without access to sharp objects (like canned fruit) by now.

4)     She wants to ride her bike to school.  She’s been asking for 2 years to ride her bike to school  I WANT to let her ride her bike to school.  But….I’m not ready to think about that.  Physical exertion (like bike riding) on the way to school requires some sort of monitoring on the other end…..but I can’t be there to hover.  Let’s just say that, so far, she hasn’t ridden her bike to school  That’ll be changing soon, I’m sure.  Pray for us.

5)     Oh look!  It’s a birthday party.  Joy.  It’s only Day 3 here, and the class has already had a birthday party.  In fact, that birthday celebration was on the FIRST day of school.  Hip.  Hip.  Hooray.  Let me just peek my eyeball through the phone to size up what I’m going to guess for a carb count.  Oh, yeah.  She can’t have the same cupcake as everyone else because of gluten…..even better.

6)     School bus?  WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU WANT TO RIDE THE SCHOOL BUS?  To be fair, she can’t ride a bus now, because we live too close to the school (enter: desire to ride bike).  But BEFORE her new school was completed, she wanted to ride the bus.  Except that she was on the first pick up.  Meaning it would take FORTY FIVE minutes to complete the bus route….FORTY FIVE!!!!!  As if worrying about who would tend to her on the bus wasn’t enough!  The fact that I’d have to get her up, dressed, fed and to the bus stop FORTY FIVE minutes before school starts, after working until midnight AND checking her blood sugar twice between the end of my shift and the alarm AND (not to mention) the needs of her 2 younger sisters (who were both nursing – yes, I tandem nursed an infant and a toddler for a full year.  Take a breath…I know it sounds crazy, but I survived, so I’m sure you’ll make it to the end this paragraph!!!!)

Yeah.  Not happening.  No bus for you.

Well, anyway, these are just some random things that popped into my brain a few minutes ago.  Yup.  POP!  Just like that they were there — all swirling around, mixed together with a review of the numbers from the past 24 hours and contemplating another day with her current site.

You see, a few minutes ago, I watched my 4 year old child rip the foil off the top of an applesauce cup….and half the cup splashed all over the floor (Ivy’s lucky day!).  Then I stood there wondering how many carbs had fallen everywhere followed by a slight panic attack while I tried to decide how I was going to fix the situation.

And then I remembered that Tiara doesn’t have diabetes.

By the way, if you’re wondering how I problem solved some of that stuff, stay tuned.  I’ll blog it next — but I have to go get dinner in the oven right now.

See ya later, my friends 🙂  Thanks for stopping by my new pad!

TIME TO SEND DIABETES TO SCHOOL!

Will you hit the snooze button, please?
I need 5 more minutes.
At least.

We’ve been out of town for several weeks (more on that later).  I feel like I’m behind the ball with school preparations this year.  I left it all at home.  I’ve been intentionally dealing with as little as possible “diabetes stuff” all summer…school was about the farthest thing from my mind when we got up close and personal with a few black bears and loads of buffalo…while we were cruising the famous Going To The Sun Road at Glacier National Park…when we were spending HOURS circling the National Bison Range…when we were boating with loved ones on Flathead Lake…when we were playing on the lake shore with my mom and the dog…when we were just hanging out and enjoying the beautiful Montana weather….

Then we came home.  And it was all still here…just waiting…lurking in the background.  First thing last Monday morning (before the suitcases were unpacked), we headed to the school…a meeting date followed…then the 504 revisions…who has time to recover from vacation when diabetes needs to go to school??????

I posted on Facebook when we were headed to our 504 Meeting.

And guess what!?!?!?!?!?!?  I’m not alone!!!!!  Comments, other status updates, private messages, e-mails…from left to right, I was quickly reminded it’s THAT time of year again, and everyone else is trying to get ready too.

To be honest, this is the FOURTH year that we’ve gone through this.

Yes.

I said FOURTH.

Once for preschool, and twice for kindergarten (I opted to hold her back a year, because she has a summer birthday).

That brings us to right now.

First grade.

Sooooooo, I should be an old pro, right?

Pffffffffft….HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!!!!  YEAH RIGHT!

I have to admit that it’s easier the 4th time around.  But I’m still nervous.  I’m still afraid I’ll forget to send in something important.  I’m still anxious about how a daily routine will be established with her new schedule.  I’m still freaked out about troubleshooting the inevitable pump setting changes.  I’m still scared out of my mind that she’ll have the worst low EVer, and I won’t be there to catch it.

I dunno if all that stuff ever goes away.

But I do know that, recently, I’ve had tons of requests for help.

There was a time that I was a mom looking for direction.  When I was lost, there were other moms who had gone before me, and they came out of the woodwork to help me get our act together.

Friends, we pave the road for each other.

And for the 40 who are diagnosed tomorrow…and the next day…and the next….

Time to pay it forward.

So, what bases do WE cover when it’s time to send the BIG D to school?

Simply click on the 504 tab at the top of the page to check out the plan we use. Feel free to copy and paste it….then tweak it to your Candy Heart’s content!  If you come up with any helpful revisions or have something to add, I’d appreciate it if you would send them my way (candyheartsblog@gmail.com)!

By the way, TODAY was Sugar’s 1st day of the 1st grade….

How did it go, you ask?

Stellar 🙂

(That was for you, Heidi!)
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