Friday, August 6, 2010

Omnipod Tool

This idea came from our wonderful school nurse, who is amazing and deserves a parade down main street, a key to the city and a day named after her. When Bean started pumping the endo team recommended that we use sport wrist bands to support the pod on her arms. Bean has scrawny arms and the pod will flop if unsupported. It bothers her and worries her caretakers that some other kid will rip it off.
So I ran down to the local party store and picked up a package of wrist bands. Only to bad for me it didn't work so well. They were too tight and uncomfortable. Next we tried an ace bandage. But this was even worse, way too tight and very ugly. 9 year old girls do not do ugly. We then tried some medical tape and that worked ok but it wasn't easy to take off if you wanted to check the site.
And then the nurse sent her home wearing a sock on her arm! The nurse had cut the toe, heel and top off and used the part between the heel and toe as a support band. And it works great. Bean can easily take it on and off on her own, we've picked up cute socks at the dollar store with cute pictures to make more girlie ones. I also picked up some iron on patches so she can do an arts and craft project to make more. It's such a great idea I had to share.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Scary Saturday...

Friday night Bean asked me to make waffles for breakfast. On the weekends I usually do bigger breakfasts as it's my favorite meal. I agreed to make her eggs, sausage and a waffle that following morning.
I had tested her at 12 am and her blood sugar was a little high but nothing alarming. We then got up at 8 am and needed to rush my car over to the shop before doing breakfast. Bean seemed fine when she got up, we grabbed her kit and drove the few blocks to the shop. Along the way she started complaining that she was hungry and wanted waffles - really, really bad. Then she said she felt sick and puked in the parking lot. Poor girl. We had her test. 426!

So we rushed home to check ketones. Man that stick darkened so fast - the high end of moderate. I started shoving flavored water into her. She complained about being hungry but I didn't want her to eat carbs until we knew if the correction +10% worked. Thank god for cheese sticks and a fried egg. 2 hours go by with lots of peeing, demands for waffles and we tested again. This time the meter said HIGH! That's not very helpful - numbers I can understand but the words HIGH are so so scary. It's hard to put in perspective. What's higher than HIGH? At what number does it stop being a number and displays HIGH?

We do a syringe correction and a pod change. The tube is completely kinked in half and now we have the source of the insanity. I call the endo's office and the nurse line is closed, the answer service isn't turned on and I sit on hold for an hour. The office is open so I'm not sure why no one answered. We decide to test everything again with in that hour and if there was no improvement we'd take her into the ER.

Lucky for us her blood sugars came down as did the ketones. Another hour later she was dancing in the kitchen singing about wanting waffles - which she got for dinner.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Yay for Camp Sealth!!

I've been really bad at blogging as I've been suffering from burn out. Diabetes is hard.
Due to some encouragement from another T1D mom we decided to send Bean to diabetes camp at Camp Sealth. It was an incredibly hard and brave thing for me to do. My parents died in a motorcycle accident when I was a teenager and as a result I have huge issues with separation anxiety when it comes to my kid. So camp wasn’t just for her but also for me because I can’t project my issues onto her. I have to let her grow up.
The folks at Camp Sealth and the people from ADA are simply amazing. She loved being there and they did a great job with her diabetes. She made many friends – met a cute boy who also has D and learned some independence. And although we missed her so very much, having a diabetes break was what we needed to help put it all in perspective. We haven’t had a day off since September 6th. And the break allowed me to find myself again. I’ve let being a T1D mom define everything that I am to the point that I’d lost myself to it.
The week off also made me rethink a few things we do and reminded me that I need to slow down and just enjoy the moment I’m in. I also reorganized some things to make it easier for us at home. I did a small purge and cleaned out of the toy room. Reorganized furniture and started to do a purge of my sewing room. I didn’t do any sewing while she was gone as I missed her too much.
And I’m so proud of Bean. She was very compliant and bloused for everything she ate. Some of the other D kids didn’t understand the consequences of sneaking food - which is a normal part of growing up with D. And I’m proud of her for her management.

The boat to camp.
The Captain has been taking the kids to Camp Sealth for 36 years or so. Before boarding the kids will give the Captain boxes of Twinkies and other snacks that the crew will then hand out during the 3 hour boat ride. They also dance, sing songs and play games. Makes me want to be a kid again.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Family Retreat

Last weekend's Family Retreat was so much fun. We talked about diabetes, shared tips, Bean met up with her friend from the previous family retreat, and just had a ball. The best part is that while we were there Bean handled a good amount of her own care. During snack time she would add up the carbs then give me the number (so I could verify if she was right) then she'd go off to be with her friends - bolus and have her friend double check the number for her. She wanted to be more grown up. I supervised from afar, just in case she needed me, which she never did.
This time the panels were organized much better and I didn't feel as rushed from place to place. The food was still gross - thankfully they had bananas and a toaster so she could have peanutbutter toast. And the snack table was full of awsome kid friendly food. Plus I learned from last year and brought a little cooler of food stuffs. My favorite teen panel was held again and they talked about the difference between 'snacking' and 'sneaking' and how sneaking food was done out of a sense of control and rebellion. And how pre-pump many of them wouldn't bolus for the sneaked food. But now that they were on the pump they would at least 'sneak safely'. There was more - but i'll save it for another post.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Family Retreat

This weekend is the ADA's family retreat and it really couldn't come at a better time. We're all starting to show signs of D burn out. I've had to get on Bean's case for not testing for Ketones - and not telling us when the pod tells her too. She's not lying about her blood sugars but won't tell unless you ask. Which in my book isn't acceptable. Peeing on a stick is the easiest part of diabetes!

And having a tween is hard. Her and I are starting to snipe at each other a bit more as she fights for more control over her life but doesn't take responsibility for things. And she's struggling with learning an acceptable tone of voice. There are days where I miss having a toddler.

Instead her and I overcome our issues by curl up in her bed to watch season one of Little House on the Prairie. Ma and Pa make parenting look so easy.

Bean on the ferry

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

9 year old epiphany

While driving Bean to school today she tells me -

"Mom I'm so glad I have to do so many shots because it's made me a stronger person. I used to be a big baby and cry about everything."

I have mixed feelings on this. She's right and I'm proud of her for embracing this part of herself. For seeing the positive in it. But deep, deep down a part of me weeps that she has to.

Monday, May 10, 2010

I'm not the most perfect Mother but they love me anyways

Flowers are the traditional symbol of mother's day love. And I like flowers. Roses, lilacs, daisies and lilies. They are all very pretty. But you know what I like more than flowers? Coffee. And my Mother’s Day started out by waking up to my husband giving me a hot cup of Starbucks. Then he made breakfast while the family showered me with tokens of love. They gave me a Wizard of Oz box set, the new Alice in Wonderland DS game (which is incredibly cute) and a plastic glow in the dark zombie set for my future ‘Christmas at ground zero’ zombie Christmas village which I feel will go well with my Disney Christmas village that goes up every year. Bean gave me the sweetest Mother’s Day card where she’d drawn herself as a rabbit wearing her Omnipod. The pod is drawn with the same amount of consideration as the color of her eyes and hair. Simply a part of who she is now. I’m proud of her.While eating breakfast we watched the newest Doctor Who (can you tell yet what a huge geek I am) as well as the older Blink episode. Then we took the puppy, piled into the car and headed for the ferry to Orcas island to do a little touristy fun.I love being a geek and a tourist.
For most of the day Bean’s sugar was on target, even though she was hyper and we had to do some carb guessing for lunch. She’s become a tween – which means she doesn’t listen as well as she used to and likes to challenge us a bit. But I monitored her levels and they seemed fine. I dismiss the attitude as a 9 year old thing. On the ferry ride home she and I wandered the ship and then she started acting truly bizarre. We were standing at the nose of the ferry watching the scenery and then she started bouncing off the walls, hanging off the railings, you know being insane. She was so hyper, and I secretly thought ‘you better be high or you are so in trouble’. Am I horrid?
So I took her back to the car to test – I could have tested on the deck but we were right near our car. She was in the low 200’s. So high but not alarming and not in trouble for her behaviour. We corrected. Thinking it was possibly the excitement or miscalculated carb guess. I should know by now that with this disease you should never assume. I should make that a T1D rule.

With diabetes – never assume.

Because we were driving back late we stopped and got a McDonald’s kids meal for her. Horrid food but easy to carb count. Chicken nuggets, apples and a chocolate milk. It’s our ‘oh crap we need to give her dinner but don’t have enough time to make it’ meal. It’s only been an hour since her correction so we don’t poke. We get the food, get on the highway, bolus for it then discover they gave her a hamburger instead of the nuggets. Luckily it’s more not less carbs. So easily corrected. She’s still hyper in the car, wants to talk our ear off - but eventually nods off for a little snooze.

We get home really late and all of us are tired. I get her to bed, tuck her in and do a finger poke. And crap – the meter reads 340. Not good. She won’t pee for me because she doesn’t have to go, so I correct and set my alarm for 2 am. At 1:40 she wakes me up and drags me upstairs because she doesn’t want to go by herself as it’s too dark. I’m really out of it and it isn’t until I hear her going to the bathroom that it hits me that I should have checked her ketones. Crap, not good. I get her back to bed and check her blood. 360. Triple crap. Now I have to change the pod. This stresses her out and I can’t blame her. Diabetes at it’s best is not a ton of fun, and at 2am it’s hellish. But I go into mommy mode and suspend the pod with the promise that we’ll remove it in the morning, and I do a correction with the humalog pen because I couldn’t remember how to read a syringe and she was so scared of it that I didn’t want to mess with it. I put on the new pod using the new insulin in the humalog pen. So I set my alarm for 2 hours later and try to sleep. At 4am her levels are down – not in target but the low 200’s. I correct and get up again in 2 ½ hours for school. And her target is back in range. As an added bonus she woke up in a good mood, giggling about how she was wearing not one but two pods.
Last night I hardly slept in between the constant blood checks, worry and fear helped keep me awake. It’s so scary not knowing what’s going on in that little body. I feel like awful at work today from lack of sleep and as I’m sitting her trying to get through my lunch the school just called to let us know the pod is reading an error and that it’s deactivated. This time it’s daddy to the rescue.