Sunday, June 30, 2013

Will the real Kate please stand up?

From time to time I go back and read some of my previous blog posts.  There are two reasons for this: 1. It’s interesting to see what folks are reading on my blog and 2. It helps me to stay focused on what I’m doing and to remember where I’ve been.  Just recently this activity caused me to have some uncomfortable feelings.  Why?  Because someone might come to the conclusion that I either don’t know how I feel about things or that I have multiple personalities.

I’ve written about how food producers and/or the government should do something to help people eat a more healthy diet, and I’ve also written how it’s up to us to eat more healthy foods and it’s not the job of food producers to do it for us.  I’ve said that there is no way I could follow a low carb diet…and then I did.  I’ve told how proud I am of the changes I’ve made to my diet; limiting carbs and shunning junk food and then I complain that I can’t eat such things and wish that I could take insulin!  Who am I really?

I’m all of those people.  Every word I write in my blog comes from me, from my heart.  It’s a diary, after all, of my journey with type 2 diabetes.  Everyone changes their mind over time on one subject or another.  Living with a disease like type 2 diabetes can cause you to over think or have an excess of hope that you’ll find something that will make all the difference in your glucose control.  Reading about new ideas or other ways to deal with D can make it easier to switch teams, so to speak.  It can cause you to rethink your ideas and make it easier to try something else.  I think that’s a good thing.

My life with diabetes is an ongoing science experiment.  I enjoy trying new things and I’m proud of the fact that I pay attention to how my glucose is doing and am willing to adjust when necessary.  My mind is not closed, especially when it comes to dealing with diabetes.  I’m also human and I will have days when I don’t feel as confident or am just plain tired of it all.  My blog is a place where I can say what I’m thinking and I don’t spend any time worrying that I might be contradicting myself.  So there you have it, I do know how I feel about things and I don’t have multiple personalities.  It’s all me; the real Kate.  The real Kate may change her mind now and then.  You’re just gonna have to deal with that.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Insulin Envy

This past week I had the distinct honor of attending the first-ever type 2 diabetes blogger summit.  It was an amazing opportunity to meet fellow bloggers and learn about a new insulin delivery system designed specifically with type 2 diabetics in mind.  I will definitely blog about the experience soon but today I want to focus on something I personally experienced during this trip: Insulin envy.

I found myself envying those who inject insulin!  First, because of this slick device that I got to see which makes insulin use so simple, and second, because if I did inject insulin I would be able to eat a larger variety of foods without fearing the spikes I now see.

I know that I may sound like I’m crazy for wanting to use insulin but consider my story and maybe you won’t think I’m in need of a padded cell.  (Besides, insulin should never be considered a punishment or last resort.  Insulin use gets a bad rap.)  Here are the facts:

·       I currently have decent glucose control, despite the fact that I’ve been continuing to struggle with higher fasting numbers.

·       I’m not yet on the maximum dosage of Metformin so there is apparently wiggle room there if things go south.

·       I’ve managed to lower my carb intake over the course of time and that has enabled me to keep my glucose more or less under control.

·       I have found that a small glass of red wine with dinner can sometimes allow me to eat more carbs with that meal.

·       I can no longer eat bread, cereal, potatoes, regular tortillas, and rice (even brown). 

·       I can still eat some fruit, beans, quinoa, and couscous but only in small amounts.

·       I can’t order at a restaurant without sweating over how many carbs are in any given meal.  I am very restricted when eating out (if I plan to be “good”).

·       Splurging at any time brings with it glucose spikes that ruin the entire experience. It’s no fun to splurge and then spend the next 4 hours regretting it. Case in point: I threw caution to the wind at lunch during the summit and paid for it with a glucose of 215 (when I started at 97) which made enjoying the remainder of the afternoon more difficult.

Just give me insulin…Please!  I have given up so many foods in order to control my glucose.  Most of the time this fact doesn’t bother me at all, but I occasionally get pouty and wish that I could just eat whatever I wanted.  I’m aware of the fact that, should I be able to eat whatever I wanted, I would now be making smart choices and not just eating junk.  I don’t really want junk any more, at least not very often.  But dammit, it would be nice to eat a couple of enchiladas once in a while.  How about oatmeal for breakfast?  Some strawberries would be nice. Is it unreasonable to desire a normal restaurant meal?  Why can’t I share a pizza with friends?  Because I can’t.  I’m one of those diabetics who can’t just eat anything.  I can’t.  I found myself thinking this past week that if I could just have some insulin I could eat more normally.  I even considered totally wrecking my glucose for a couple of weeks by eating a healthy diet with more carbs in it just so I could show my doctor what I’m talking about.  Sigh.

I’m fully aware that the grass can seem much greener wherever we aren’t.  I know that insulin use brings with it a whole other group of issues, including fear of lows, which I don’t deal with now.  But sometimes I just want to feel more normal, you know?  Is that too much to ask?

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

It’s not neglect: A Disclosure

I’ve been busy!  It feels as if I’ve been neglecting my blog, and I guess I have.  It’s not for lack of things to say or ideas to convey, it’s more that I’ve been focusing on other writing.  I have found other ways to advocate.

I thought it was time to explain where I’ve been, since I’ve obviously not been here.  I am pleased to tell you that I’ve started a couple of part-time “jobs” that I’m quite honored to be doing.  

First, I am a freelance writer for the website The DX, a non-branded diabetes website that is supported by Sanofi.  My work there is spotty but I’m jazzed to be writing “professionally”.

Second, I am curating articles for Diabetic Connect.  I seek out articles online that are either about diabetes (detecting neuropathy through sweat) or ones that could affect PWD (most Americans don’t get enough exercise).  I write a little blurb about the article and sometimes add a spin from the perspective of someone with diabetes.  This has really caused me to be more up-to-speed on what’s going on in the world in regards to diabetes research etc.

I’ve always enjoyed writing and getting the opportunity to do it, and get paid something, is amazing!  Woo hoo!  As much as I’m enjoying these new avenues I do miss writing for my blog and I hope to get back to writing here more often.  I don’t want to lose my readers.  Do I have readers?  Hello….is anyone there?

I want to make it clear that, even though someone is paying me now and then to write about diabetes, those companies have NO control over what I say here.  This is my blog and these are my thoughts.  Period!

I hope you’re all doing well with your diabetes control and that life is sweet (without high blood sugars).