Monday, April 23, 2007

There’s a first time for everything

I remember the first time I thought I was going to throw up post-diagnosis. No. 2 had been sick. I was walking up the stairs and my legs went wobbly. I thought, OK, today’s the day I’m going to get sick. But it never happened.

Since then, all the kids have been sick, but I’ve managed to stay well. How exactly I’m not sure. And when I say sick, I don’t mean getting a cold. I mean, sacrificing to the porcelain God.

That is, until Saturday around 4 a.m. I was tossing and turning and couldn’t get comfortable. And then that feeling hit me. That oh-shit-I-think-I’m-gonna-barf feeling. Sure enough.

One of the first things I thought of, interestingly, while still crumpled on the bathroom floor, was checking my blood sugar. Standing up to get a small sip of water, I decided I didn’t feel low and that I’d be OK. And since I had just recently written an article for a major diabetes magazine (to be published in the fall!) regarding sick-day management, I knew my sugar was likely to go up, not down, when vomiting.

It was mid-morning before I called downstairs to No. 1 to bring me my meter. He came bounding upstairs with the kit all taken apart. “Mom, where does this go?” he asked holding the test strip. I really didn’t have my wits about me and frankly I’m not sure what I told him, but he figured it out. He wanted to know where to put the needle, too, but I told him there was already one in there. He stuck around while I tested (108) and then went on his way.

Several hours later, I checked again and rang in at 123. I felt pretty good about those numbers since I hadn’t eaten anything since the night before. Not long after that second test, No. 1 came upstairs again and said, “Daddy said you need to eat something and check your blood sugar.” He brought me some ice water and saltines. Such a good nurse maid.

The really interesting part is that sometime yesterday when I was still chained to the bed, hardly able to turn over without inducing pain somewhere, I was thinking about that article I wrote. One of the key management points I talked about was having a sick-day tool kit. A box or bag filled with things like tissues, saltines, regular or soda, cold medicine, phone numbers for all your doctors and anything else you may need to manage your blood sugar while sick and barely able to even make it to the bathroom, much less the kitchen (which is downstairs!). I kept thinking, gee, I should have put that darn kit together…I kept thinking about it and kept saying I would do it and just didn’t get to it…you silly procrastinator…what if you had been alone today…who would have brought you saltines and ice water.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


The brim of The Mr.’s hat I’m wearing drips with water. Rain drops tap on my head. I had decided not to mess with wearing a poncho since last time I walked in the rain it was really more trouble than it was worth.

Maybe I’ll cut my walk short. I’ll decide once I get over to Promenade. As long as there’s no downpour, I’ll be fine.

Tap, tap, tap goes the rain on my coat. The wind blows drops onto my glasses and I lower my head just a tad so that my hat might shield my eyes. But I don’t like to walk looking at the sidewalk, so I grin and bear it.

The dog seems unusually interested in chasing cars this morning and gets herself wrapped twice around a tree. I start to shorten her leash when I hear cars coming. The drivers must think I’m crazy for voluntarily being out in the cold and wet conditions.

As long as there’s no downpour, I’ll be fine.

The house on Promenade that’s under construction had the front door left open yesterday morning. As I come up the small hill on that street, I look to my right to see if the door is open. The early morning darkness keeps me from seeing that the mounds of dirt in the front yard had turned to mud; my feet squish and slide.

Oh, geez!

With every step more mud, more mud, more mud. I have no traction on the brick sidewalk and I'm afraid I'll fall. The dog keeps going, walking right through the mud without a care. I don't stop, don't think about moving into the grass, just keep going. I look back and see that the front door is closed.

My glasses are smudged now and I wonder if this is what retinopathy looks like. I take a tissue from my coat pocket and wipe off the left lens while the dog contemplates going after another car. Passing the hospital, I watch the rain beneath one of the tall light posts in a parking lot. It’s misty and the wind keeps it from falling straight.

Passing Jefferson, I think about turning right and going home. But I’m on a roll and keep on.

As long as there’s no downpour, I’ll be fine.

I’m in a zone and start my cool down a block later than usual. The dog sees another dog far enough away that its owner doesn’t even notice us. She’s obsessed with saying hi. Under cover of a storefront overhang, I wipe my smudged glasses again. I’m almost home.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

The Five-Question Meme

Questions courtesy of Kerri at Six Until Me.

1. You have the opportunity to go “in-blog-nito” and start a whole new online personality. What kind of fiction would you pen to break away from the mundane?
This is a really tough question for me to answer, and I thought all weekend about it. I have no clue what I’d do if I weren’t blogging about diabetes and my life in general. The only thing I could think of that came close to being interesting is a completely anonymous blog where I could say the things I can't say outloud; in the "here's your sign" rhelm.

2. A film crew is following you while you shop. What purchases are you reluctant to make with an audience?
I definitely wouldn’t want an audience to see me when I’m in the middle of a chocolate craving.

3. Someone’s cat breaks into your house and starts leaving you notes about your housekeeping habits. What does the first one say?
That sock was in the same place last time I broke in.

4. Someone asks you to describe yourself in three words. Rebel against them and describe yourself in a sentence using all the letters of the alphabet at least once!
I’m an anal-retentive control freak who’s been called the queen of proofreading and copy editing, who loves photography, crafts, blogging and writing, who’s just trying to make ends meet, who said xylophone Sunday in the car when The Mr. and I were asking No. 1 and No. 2 what letter certain words start with, and who thinks that zebras are white with black stripes not black with white stripes.

5. The ol’ hot air balloon bit: What do you want to fly over?
I’d love to fly over the Grand Canyon and the snow-capped mountains of Colorado. But definitely no big bodies of water with no land in sight.

In the spirit of the meme, if you want five questions, leave me a note.

Thursday, April 05, 2007


A little background first, otherwise you might not understand. A typical and favorite (not to mention super quick and easy) meal in our house is taco salad: lettuce, tomato, shredded cheese, hamburger with taco seasoning, crunched up Doritos and dressing. The Mr. and No. 1 usually just have ranch, but No. 2 and I like a combination of ranch and thousand island.

So, you are sufficiently backgrounded. On to the story.

Last night when I picked up the kids from daycare, No. 2 asked what we were having for dinner.

"Taco salaaaad," I said.

"Oh, yum! I love taco salad," she said with glee.


"Mom, can I have ranch and Gilligan's Island on mine?"