Thursday, January 26, 2012

Superstitions and the 2 AM check

Grace has an overnight BG check, courtesy of me. It's always at 2 AM.

She checks when she goes to bed at 8 PM (or at least when she heads upstairs), then I check again at 10 PM, then I basically let her ride (pending of course, HI or LO blood sugars) until 2 AM. Then I check her when I wake up at 5:30 AM, and when she wakes at 7 AM.

Lately, my internal clock has been waking, every single night, at 1:38 AM. And, can I tell you something, I don't get up and check her. I know, I am AWAKE at 1:38 AM and I don't get up to check her. I lay there and wait until 2 AM. That's some sick stuff there, a therapist's dream!

Why don't I?

Cause there are certain things I will not do when it comes to diabetes care. And they have nothing to do with standards of care, or what my CDE or Endo says. They are totally discriminatory and random. They are called superstitions and I do not mess with them. Ever.

Here are my D superstitions:

1. I check her at precisely 2 AM when all is going well. Not at 1:38 AM, not at 1:54 AM, not at 2:07 AM. Yep, right at 2 AM. Gary Scheiner, our CDE, gets a kick out of this apparently, because when he downloads our data from her OmniPod PDM, he says 'You really stick with that 2 AM, don't you?!' with a smirk on his face. Because literally, the blood sugar data is all one big glob of dots, precisely all at 2 AM. And think, I'm not even OCD!

2. I only change her lancet once a day, in the morning. (Comments suggesting I am a bad mother for only changing once a day will be deleted. I don't wanna hear it.) But, if she has a string of really in-range blood sugars, I won't change it. I think I am jinxing the D-goddesses. If she has a really bad string of out-of-range blood sugars, I change it more often. I am completely convinced that it's the lancet's fault.

3. I won't write in her log book when her next Pod change is. Nope. That jinxes it so that her Pod will alarm. I KNOW this, as it's happened and happened and happened. I learned my lesson. No predicting when I will change the Pod. Got it world, got the message. Change the Pod when the PDM alerts me to, whenever that may be.

4. I close my eyes when I check ketones. Because we all know that's the way you get the ketone meter to read 0.0. Don't you do this? What, you don't? I suggest you try it, cause when I close my eyes and wish really hard, most of the time we get 0.0. I do remember once at Grace's school when I kept my eyes wide open and even counted down with the ketone meter, and we got 0.3. See, I should have closed my eyes.

I know you have them, D Mamas, D Papas and my fellow readers with D.

What are YOUR superstitions when it comes to D care???

Friday, January 13, 2012

Basal Dance - From Complex to Simple

I am a basal hound. I fix. I ponder. I test. I set up basal patterns and name them 'Test One' in her PDM. And I sometimes let them ride. But mostly, my life as a Mama to a kiddo with diabetes is focused on the basals. Cause you know that phrase 'If Mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy?!' then, for me, it's true that 'If the basals ain't happy, ain't nobody happy.'  Basal settings account for the foundation of the building. It's on the basals that every other setting rests.

I don't change carb ratios until I know the basals are set correctly. I don't mess with correction factors until they are set correctly. I always come back to basals.

And some times, they surprise me, how much they change as Grace is growing. When she hits these pre-puberty growth spurts, watch out! She needs boatloads of insulin overnight. And less in the wee morning hours. It's quite a thing to witness,  these 2-3-4 weeks of growth. They group themselves into periods of time, then they fade. And I wait for them to come back.

I find myself wondering how high of an hourly unit she will need each time. Our last go-round resulted in an overnight basal rate of 1.25 units. Yeah, uh, she's 9 and weighs 77 pounds.

Two days ago I basal tested, because she was dropping low at night. And I found we have stepped out of this high growth period, to a lighter state of basals.

Here is a peek into Grace's basal setting during her last period of growth. Those hormones love insulin.

12a - 2a  1.25 u/hr
2a - 4a    .80 u/hr
4a - 7a    .40 u/hr
7a - 2p    .45 u/hr
2p - 9p    .55 u/hr
9p - 11p    .90 u/hr
11p - 12a    1.00 u/hr

And here we are now. Just set two days ago. Notice the change. And the simplicity of it all.
The simplicity is what strikes me. I never have just four settings of basal rates.
I always seem to have 6 or 7.
But, it is what it is.
Girl went to bed at 145, 2am check was 130 and woke up at 7am at 120. Boo - ya.

12a - 3a    .50
3a - 8a    .35
8a - 10p    .40
10p - 12a    .50

All I do know, about my daughter, is that when the BGs start to turn high, I go back to basals. And growth hormones. And LOTS of insulin.

I may be getting the hang of this!
(And now I have totally jinxed myself, you do know that don't you?)

Monday, January 9, 2012

Year Three

Happy Diaversary Grace!

Its been three years since Grace was diagnosed.

You can read about her diagnosis here. And year ones's Diaversary here. And year two's Diaversary is here.

And here we are, three years into this game. And we are in a different place. Each year brings about something new. Year one was the shock and awe phase, and the introduction to the DOC. Year two was the year of the pump, the year of acceptance and learning that diabetes comes along for the ride, everywhere.

Year three, I would categorize it as a year of stretching for us both. For Grace, it was about celebrating, yes, celebrating her diabetes-ness through diabetes camp, d-friends and d-meetups. It was a year of moving forward for her, embracing new challenges in school and growing up. And a year of literally g-r-o-w-i-n-g as she grew 3 inches this year. And learning to take on more responsibility of her care. And being OK with it all.

For me, year three brings about ideas of personal growth, of accepting that this is the new normal we live with, the idea that I am not a perfect pancreas and God I should stop trying to be one! and ideas that I can't possibly do this without the support of my friends in the diabetes online community.

Three is a turning point. One is learning. Two is rounding the bend. Three means you're stuck with it for life. Three reminds me that we are not newbies anymore. Three reminds me that we survived the worst and are here to tell the tale. Three years reminds we that we are survivors. Three years reminds me how fast time goes. And how much it changes a person to have to walk through the fire.

Year three is also reminding me that one year it will be year thirteen, then twenty three, then thirty, then thirty three. May there be many more threes in her life.

Year three is the trifecta... the perfect alignment of the sun, moon and stars... the triangle, the's one more than a golden double...good things happen in threes.

Three down and many more to go.
God willing.

Happy Third Diaversary my sweet Grace! 
You are all that, and a bag of chips.
(which you CAN eat, by the way!)

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Marching on

There are days that diabetes doesn't dominate my thinking. I KNOW! I KNOW! I can hardly believe it myself. I just plod along, plugging in this number and that number, treating the high, treating the low. And on we march.

It's strange to even write this. That it has become such a part of our life that sometimes there is nothing to write about. No strange occurrence with blood sugars. No situation that left me without something I needed. No panic days. Just days.

And that's good. Sometimes it is very good, getting off the rollercoaster that is diabetes (OK, it's still a rollercoaster, but it's more of a mild, kiddie coaster than something like Kingda Ka, OK?)

This is Kingda Ka.
And no, I will NOT go on it. (As DMamas and DPapas, we already know what it's like.) I do enjoy the Spanish speaking person yelling in the video though.
Now take a minute and enjoy it.

OK, enough thrills for one post.

What this post is about I suppose, is that after a while, diabetes just is.
 It's just a part of our lives.
 It's just something we need to do as we do other things, namely life.

And that is such a good thing.

Monday, January 2, 2012

The New Year

Happy 2012 my friends!!!!

We made it through the holidays unscathed. We ate, bolused and prayed :0) and had some great times. Now it's back to the reality of going back to school and the march through the doldrums of winter here in PA. Can someone send a blizzard? Cause those are really fun.

Until I start blogging about all that went down this past month or so...

We are all well.
We are all healthy.
We are about to celebrate (damn right) three years of having diabetes.
We have enough diabetes supplies.
We have enough insulin.
We have the support, the friendship, the love and the laughter that is the DOC.

We are blessed.