Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Don't judge me, but my kids don't and won't have cell phones

"It's a scary world out there. I like to know where my kid is all the time and I want him to be able to reach me." 

People often get defensive or even argumentative with me when I say that our kids will not have cell phones anytime in the near future. I am not judging you for giving your kid a phone, so don't judge us for deciding that we will hold off on cell phones for as long as possible with our kids. Truly, I do not see the need for my child to have a phone until he is driving. And even then, he doesn't need to have a smartphone, a simple flip phone with no data will do just fine. 

Good kids make bad decisions everyday. They are's okay to make mistakes. Unfortunately, the mistakes that kids make on their phones today, can hurt them for a lifetime. And you might not even know about it. When I was 13 and made a mistake, there wasn't a video or picture as proof. Today, kids are documenting EVERYTHING. 

I know, I know. Not YOUR kid. It's everybody else's kids that look at, listen to or do bad things on their phones. I know you might feel like you are very techy, but I have personally seen apps and secret techniques used to hide and delete pictures and messages on their devices so that parents will never find out. 

Is it worth it? We have decided that the risks of giving our children phones do not outweigh the benefits. It is a personal decision that parents have to make and every family's circumstance is different. 

I just hope and pray that when you give your child a phone, that you educate him or her about the lasting consequences than can accompany a smartphone and social media. Too many kids just don't know and understand how devastating a split second decision to send or post can be. 


Saturday, July 30, 2016

How my insulin pump works (with link to short video)

As a follow up to my last post about my diabetes, I made a very short video (below) that shows how my pump works. It's my actual pump, and my messy bathroom counter you will see, but what you won't see is my annoying face or hear my annoying voice! 

It's not all that interesting, but hopefully it will answer any questions people have about the pump. I have to do this process every 3 days and it usually takes me 5 to 10 minutes. I usually put the infusion set (that's where the insulin goes in my body) on my stomach, but I have put it on my arm before. Kennedy tends to grab at it more, but sometimes I think that my body absorbs the insulin more efficiently when it's on my arm. 

There is another pump called Omnipod that I would love to try when my insurance will cover it, but I am still researching it. It has some mixed reviews, but it doesn't have the tubing, which is the most annoying part my pump, in my opinion. 

So, here's the video. Photobucket

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

How's the Diabetes Going? The Sarcastic Truth

Well-meaning friend or family member: "How's your diabetes going?"
Me: "Fine, thanks." (More info depending on how close I am to the person...)

What I actually want to say:
"Well, I have a useless pancreas, so I have to prick my finger and check my blood sugar at least four times a day, every day, and wear this device that's super sexy 24/7 that constantly pumps insulin into my body, so that I don't die. I have to count every carbohydrate that I eat, and let my pump know so that it can adjust the insulin I receive, so that's really fun, too. If I accidentally overestimate my carb count, I get too much insulin, and then I get all sweaty and confused, and I could die from that too. So, yeah...good times."

People may not know how to respond to all of that, so "Fine, thanks," seems to work better.

I have Type 1 Diabetes. Yes, I'm sure it's Type 1. Yes, I was a grown up and pregnant when I was diagnosed...yeah, it's still Type 1. No, it wasn't gestational. Yes, again. I am sure. No, no one else in my family has Type 1. No, that's not weird.

Real quick diabetes lesson for you:

Type 1 (Only 5% of people with diabetes have this kind...yeah, I not bragging that I'm in the 5%, it sucks)- Your pancreas is basically useless and creates little to no insulin so you have to inject (either with a pump or a needle injection) insulin so that your blood sugar doesn't rise too high. Type 1 has a very small genetic factor. My children only have a 5-10% chance of getting Type 1 Diabetes. It is an autoimmune disorder and can be diagnosed at any age. There is no cure at this time.

Type 2 - (The other 95%) Your pancreas is still creating insulin, but your body isn't using it efficiently. The great thing about Type 2 is that sometimes it can be just controlled with diet and exercise, or even reversed. Some people have to take medication and/or insulin. It is usually diagnosed in adulthood, although there are beginning to be cases in childhood due to childhood obesity being on the rise. Bad news, if you have it, there is a 50% chance your kids will, too.

Gestational Diabetes - Same as Type 2, but generally it goes away once you deliver the baby. BUT... you have a 50% or higher chance of getting Type 2 later in life.

The Diagnosis Story:

I had never heard of A1C before I got diabetes. It is a blood test that looks
at the last 3 months at the sugar levels in your blood.
It is supposed to be under 5.7
When diagnosed, my A1C was 11.
In October, I was in my 24th week of my 4th pregnancy when I got a terrible sinus infection. Then, all of the sudden, I dropped 10 pounds and couldn't keep any food down. I wound up in the emergency room and they diagnosed me with gestational diabetes and admitted me overnight.

Enter my endocrinologist (this is a doc that specializes in the endocrine system) I already had an endo doc because I have thyroid issues (yeah, another autoimmune disorder....I'm pretty much an autoimmune nightmare.) Anyway, in comes my endo to the hospital to inform all of the other dummy doctors that just because I am pregnant does not mean it is gestational diabetes. She runs more tests and assures me that I have Type 1 Diabetes. She brings me a meter to read my blood sugar and insulin pens to inject my insulin.
This is the type of pump I have...
yeah, I wish that was my stomach,
but I have had 4 kids. 

Of course, we hope that she is wrong for the rest of my pregnancy, but she was able to get me an insulin pump from my insurance by proving to them that I am Type 1 in December.

 After I delivered my baby,  (yes, she is healthy, perfectly normal and does not have diabetes) I took off the insulin pump and watched my blood sugar rise to scary highs. I did this several times over the course of the next month or so. Apparently my endo knows what she's talking about. My pancreas is broken for good.

Ok, so I have a list of the top 10 things to please not say to me or any Type 1 Diabetic:

1. You don't look like a diabetic.
Seriously? What does that look like? You mean I'm not overweight? Not even all Type 2 diabetics are overweight!

2. I just couldn't give myself shots or prick my finger.
Well, the alternative is death...soooooo.....

3. Oh, sorry, you can't eat that.
Is it poisoned? Type 1 diabetics can eat ANYTHING they want, they just have to inject the correct amount of insulin. For me personally, I have found that sticking to the Paleo diet keeps my blood sugar from spiking high too much,(lol, "sticking" is the key word, I like food ALOT;) so if I want to have a Dr Pepper and some Hot Tamales, I can for sure have some! Type 1 diabetics do need to eat some sugar to keep blood sugar levels from dipping too low as well.  

4. My grandfather has diabetes, so all you have to do is watch what you eat and exercise and it will go away.
I am glad that you are an expert on diabetes. I wish diet and exercise would make my pancreas magically start working again. That would be lovely. (See Type 1 vs Type 2 above...moron.)

5. I guess you ate too much sugar...
Yeah, no. There is no known way to prevent Type 1 Diabetes.

6. You must have Type 2. Children get Type 1.
It is true that Type 1 used to be called "Juvenile Diabetes." However, every year, 15,000 children AND 15,000 adults in the U.S. are diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. The diagnosis can come at any time. Luckily for me, my pancreas decided to work for 35 years! 

7. Thank goodness you have the pump! You are basically cured! My pump is great. It does the math for me so I don't have to calculate my insulin doses. But it is not a working pancreas. Your pancreas is controlling your blood sugar right now. Mine is lazy and useless.   

 8. Does it hurt when you prick you finger?
Nah, feels great. Give me your finger and let me stick a needle into it, over and over...

9. My great uncle had diabetes and he had to have his foot amputated...and he went blind. But he didn't take care of himself...
Great, thanks. If someone said they had cancer would you immediately start telling your scariest cancer tales? Why should diabetes be any different? It's not...

10. At least it is a manageable disease!
I mean, if we are gonna rank diseases, there are worse ones out there. I didn't write this to complain or say "woe is me" about having diabetes. I watched my mom die of stomach was a million times worse. If I have to live with diabetes, but get to see my kids graduate from college and meet my grandchildren, yes, I will manage. But don't write it off like it doesn't affect those of us who have it. It is something we have to deal with every single day. 

Well, if you made it this far, consider yourself Type 1 educated. Congrats and thanks for bearing with me!


Sunday, June 26, 2016

A Nice Weekend

It has been a nice weekend at our house. Seth, Uncle Clint and my boys went to the Rangers game last night. They had a wonderful time!

My Aunt Jan sent Kennedy a couple of cute new outfits and bibs that she made this week. Handmade clothes are so special. I wish I had the talent to do what she does.

And here is Emma in her Matilda Jane shirt that Aunt Lauren got for her. We have a few more Matilda Jane items for Emma and Kennedy coming our way, selected by Aunt Lauren. That stuff is so cute and really well-made! I can't wait until our package gets here!

Unfortunately, we are on the hunt for a new church. Our little Methodist Murchison church is nearing extinction, which has become a common thing for tiny hometown churches. Our kids will be going to Vacation Bible School at a large neighboring church this week, but I just cannot bring myself to attend a big church every Sunday. There is a something about a little church that I like, but as it is now, our children are the only children at our current church. That's a little too small! I also have a hard time convincing myself to drive to another town to go to church. There are many options either in Chandler or Athens, neither of which are terribly far away, but there is something special about going to a church just a couple of miles away from home, in your own community. I will definitely have to be in prayer about this important decision for our family! 


Thursday, June 23, 2016

Summer, Slow Down

It is funny how my days start out with good intentions regarding my diet, and then things quickly go downhill! I ate some nice wheat toast this morning with eggs and romaine lettuce....then a few hours later I find myself in a home-cooking restaurant called Big Mac's scarfing down my husband's leftover biscuits and gravy...then a few hours after that I am eating Mann's leftover McDonald's cheeseburger. I guess the key word there is "leftover." No one is forcing me to eat their food, but something in me tells me not to let their food go to waste! Oh well, I guess tomorrow is another day!

The boys finished up basketball camp today. Both had fun and Mann brought home several awards to hang on his wall. Tonight they have their last regular season baseball game, but their team has already won their place for the district tournament, so we still have a few more weeks of baseball yet to play!

Somehow, the entire month of June has almost passed us by! Summer, please slow down!


Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Taking My Time

I quit blogging because I said I didn't have time to keep up with it. But truly, if something is important to you, you make the time for it. I mean, do I have time to sit out in 100 degree heat and watch my boys play baseball? Well, of course! I make time for that! Do I have time to do the laundry? I would love to say no, but yeah, I make time for that, too. Do I have time to shower daily? Well, it would smell pretty gross around here if I didn't make time for that!

I have been paying more attention to how I spend my time this summer. Last summer, I did a lot of sleeping. In my defense, I was in the first trimester of my pregnancy and I was exhausted, but I really did not make the best use of my time. School came back into session, and I found myself really wishing I had planned more when my co-teacher flew the coop (never to return!) and I ended up responsible for every 8th grader's history lesson (while I was pregnant...and diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes..but I digress....)

I have deactivated from every social media outlet, except for the blogging world. I have done this before, but I feel like this time might be for good. Social media is a huge time waster, and I find that I judge others and have some negative thoughts when surfing through those feeds. So goodbye Facebook, Instagram and sadly, even Pinterest. Oh, the time I can waste on Pinterest!

I have been trying to wake up at 5 am, which may sound insane, but that is usually about the time Kennedy is wanting a bottle. After feeding her and putting her back to sleep, I have my quiet time and prayer. Then at 6 am, I take Kennedy and we go on a walk before it gets too hot outside. After that, I am back in time to make breakfast for my other three children as they are just waking up and Seth is getting off to work. Getting up early seems to put me in a better frame of mind for the entire day. On days when it doesn't happen, my mood is definitely affected!

It is funny how people brag or complain about being so busy when time is what life is made of! Like we should get a medal for how busy we are. I say it ALL THE TIME. "I have 4 kids, of course I am busy." Or "like I have time for that!" But that's just my point. I should make the time to sit and enjoy time with my kids, or with nature or with God. I shouldn't be so preoccupied with keeping myself and the kids busy all of the time, because the best time is down time.
This picture was taken about 7 years ago. My boys and their cousins, playing in the mud. There was no agenda. I didn't plan on this mud party. It just happened. And the best memories are made that way.

And then there was this, just the other day in the hay field with my oldest and youngest. Does it get any sweeter?!
Hopefully, I will continue to make time to blog. I enjoy it, even if no one reads a word I say, it's a great way to document our journey as a family.


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Are they 7 or 17?

Wow! It has been awhile since I have written! I have been trying to spend more time in my role as busy wife and mother and staying on top of all of my duties, so blogging was one of the first things that had to be thrown to the wayside!

But recently, I have found myself disturbed about various topics and so, back to writing I go...mostly to get out my crazy emotions!!! ;)

One of my new favorite toys is my Nook Tablet. My dad and his wife gave it to me for my birthday a few weeks ago and I just LOVE it. I take it everywhere and I am reading more than I ever have surfing the web and playing Words with Friends and Angry Birds, of course!

I got a subscription to a popular parenting magazine on my Nook. The magazine is geared towards parents of children who are school age, basically ages 5 to 9 or so. But after reading this last issue, I am canceling my subscription. There were several things in the magazine that disturbed me, but I will just share one with you today.
I was reading along and come to a spread in the magazine about cute summer clothes for your school-age child. (I would love to just share the picture with you, but those silly copyright laws forbid me from doing so....)

The little girl on the page caught my eye. She had her hair in pigtails and was missing her two top teeth...just precious. I would guess she was about 6 or 7 years old. She was standing on the beach with big heart-shaped sunglasses on. 

And then I looked closer. Is that a skin tight halter top? Is that a very short skirt that also happens to be mostly see-through? Really?!

The outfit this 7 year old was sporting could easily be worn by a nineteen year old!

Teaching our daughters about modesty is becoming increasingly difficult when the world around us is telling our little girls that what is in that magazine is what they are supposed to be wearing.

These pictures are of my mother. A far simpler time! My grandmother made most everything my mother wore herself. Can you imagine? I can barely sew a pillowcase!

But look closely. Dresses go to the knees, and the necklines are high.

Advertisers and clothing designers today are counting on the fact that our little girls will be convinced that they will have no friends if they do not buy these revealing clothes. And our little girls, in turn, will beg and plead to wear these clothes to fit in.

But this is a battle I am willing to have with Emma in the coming years.

I know, easy to say now...she's only three. But it starts NOW. There is no reason for my three year old to wear a two piece bathing suit or an outfit that would be suitable for a teenager.

I think she looks just as precious with that belly covered up!
I want women to be modest in their appearance, They should wear decent and appropriate clothing and not draw attention to themselves by the way they fix their hair or wear gold or pearls or expensive clothes. For women who claim to be devoted to God should make themselves attractive by the good things they do. - 1 Timothy 2:9-10