About Me

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I'm a glass-half-full type of girl. I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, grave's disease and celiac disease in 2010 and life-altering allergies in 2013. I believe having a positive attitude is the only way to live with dis-ease. I also believe that life doesn't have to be PERFECT for it to be WONDERFUL. Dis-ease is expensive, so I live a frugal yet healthy lifestyle. This is just my blog; my day-to-day story.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Diabetes 1, Nikki 0.

Feeling really alone tonight. You know you just have those days where you don't feel as confident about things. Sometimes life feels really...long. How am I going to manage a chronic disease, every day, forever?

I just treated a low blood sugar that my CGM didn't catch. I was lucky enough to feel the low. I looked at my CGM, which was reporting a healthy 89 bg. But that little voice inside me wondered why my fingers were shaking so I tested. It made me realize that we are never really safe with diabetes. There are meters and pumps and CGMs, but none of them are 100% reliable. There's so much at stake when they are wrong and it overwhelmed me tonight with fear and anxiety and ultimately, tears. It made me feel so alone and overwhelmed by the responsibility I have to keep myself alive everyday.

Today's score: Diabetes 1, Nikki 0.

But tomorrow's a new day. I'll get all the fear/anger/self-pity/self-loathing out tonight and start fresh tomorrow.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Blogger down

Sorry, right now my list of followers has disappeared from my blog. It still shows you are there in Dashboard, just doesn't show you at all on my blog page. Blogger is aware of this outtage and state they are currently working on it. Please don't think I deleted you as a follower!!


Coffee, quiet, relax, and.... screaming kids.

Went this morning, quite tired, to Caribou Coffee to get a nice hot expresso drink. Was looking forward to the peace and quiet, time to wake up. But alas, that was not the case (boo) with all the children who were there running around and yelling.

And that's when I saw this magnet on Caribou's coffee maker, which made me laugh.I really wanted to ask the manager if that was their actual stated policy (One can hope) or if it were just, well, a magnet. She just winked at me.

Feel better.

You are likely about to feel a whole lot better about your medical charges and bills when you see mine. It's pretty over the top. I go to the Mayo Clinic Celiac Disease Center, and I also see the Mayo Clinic's top type 1 diabetes endocrinologist there, too. I guess that's what insurance is for, I guess. I'm on a mission to be healthy, no matter what it costs me.

Am I going to far to take care of myself? Is there a reasonable cut off that I'm missing??

Ur thots plz!!!!!!

What It Takes.

Not pictured: Align probiotic pills.

I remember the good old days when all I took was a multivitamin. Then I got t1 diabetes. And grave's disease. And celiac disease. With each diagnosis, my doctor(s) recommended supplements,as did the dieticians I saw. Next thing I know, I'm taking all of these. Me, a girl who has problems swallowing pills. How did that happen?

Well, I chose to do whatever I could to be healthy, and forced myself to overcome my fear of swallowing pills. Fear of death/blindness/amputations trumps fear of swallowing pills. I use to sit next to a registered nurse at the insurance company I worked for, and I talked to her about my absurd fear of swallowing pills for fear they wouldn't go down and I'd choke on the big ones. So she had me bring them all in and take them at work, since she was right next to me. It was just the security blanket I needed. Now I take them -alone- at home by myself. Although sometimes the bigger ones get a bit melty in my mouth by the time I convince myself to swallow them, yuck (hello omega 3s and the super B complex!)

I'm still on the hunt for an easy to swallow, gluten free calcium pill. I could take Viactiv, which is gluten free, but wonder if they have too much sugar in them (??) Citracal makes a "Smaller, Easy To Swallow Pill"-- that's not gluten free (bummer). Does anyone have any suggestions for a calcium supplement?

Are there any vitamins out there- for you diabetics and for you celiacs- that you take that I'm not and should be? I'm open for suggestions. My urine is florescent GREEN from all the vitamins. Crazy!!! I'm up to 17 vitamins, a few I take 2 times a day so it's more like 19 or 20. Maybe I'm nuts.

I've become obsessed with being healthy!!!!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Diabetes Humor

I found this diabetes website today and just laugggghhhhed. If you have diabetes, or take care of someone who does, you will be nodding your head "yep" to many of them. Be forewarned, it does use strong language, so it's not for the faint-hearted.


Birthday Weekend!

Do you like birthdays? For those that like them, I put up the "party cake" picture, and for those who don't, well, I put up the poop cake picture. I love my birthday. Yesterday was my birthday. I'm getting OLD!!!

It was my 2nd birthday with t1 diabetes, and my 1st birthday with celiac disease (celiac diagnosed 7/13/10). A year ago, I ate real cake. This year, it would have been gluten-free cake, but I chose to have gluten-free blueberry pancakes for breakfast instead of having cake later in the day. For my diabetes' sake, I thought I better choose one or the other. Seriously, I don't know how many I actually ate, but it was the first time that I ate so much of ANYTHING that I felt nauseous afterwards.

I spent the day out with different groups of friends. I went to the zoo and walked around for 3.5 hours. I went to a party in the evening where I was able to spend time with friends. Had a great day and was in bed by midnight. I don't drink, so I woke up today feeling great and refreshed!

This time, last year, I wasn't celebrating much of anything. I had a new t1 diabetes diagnosis, had just (a couple weeks earlier) completed radiation therapy for Grave's Disease, and little did I know, was about to be diagnosed with Celiac Disease. I was unbelievably sick. I am so grateful that a year later, I feel better, stronger, happier and more confident. I enjoyed my birthday more this year than I have in many years. Why? Because if there's one thing that my diseases have taught me, it's to appreciate life and to appreciate every good day (which most days are!) Birthdays are milestones!

I might not be as carefree as I used to be, but I am as happy, or maybe even happIER, than I've ever been.

It's easy to find the negatives in, well, everything. But most days I choose to focus on the victories and the blessings that each situation brings. Because whether it's celiac disease or t1 diabetes or grave's disease, it doesn't matter whether I hate it or not- I still have it, I will always have it, and I have to take care of it. Daily. Period. So I might as well quit using up all my energy cursing it.

Happiness is not a place, nor is it a health status. You can be happy regardless of your circumstances. And it sure makes life easier for those around us, who take care of us and love us, when we choose to be happy people.

I hope everyone had a wonderful and blessed weekend. I have a suggestion for you. The next time you are in a situation where you feel anger or stress, or even despair (e.g., traffic, grocery store, balancing your checkbook, taking care of your disease or someone else's), stop yourself. Picture a nice big red stop sign. Then try to identify something positive about the situation. There's something positive in everything. You will be surprised at the weight you physically feel come off your shoulders (aka tension!). Night night!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Exercise and T1

It's definitely warmed up here in Minneapolis, to which most of us here say...finally. Over the half the year here, it's dreadfully cold. So while some complain about the 95+ degree days we've had for the last four days, I am actually enjoying it.

Yesterday, it reached 99 degrees. For some reason, I felt like it was a good idea to go for a 3.2 mile speed walk session. I strapped on my Spibelt, threw in it my CGM and a roll of glucose tabs, grabbed my iPhone and earbuds, and hit the pavement. I ate a healthy snack one hour before the workout (1 small banana with all natural peanut butter, 1/4 cup of pumpkin seeds and 2 turkey sausage links). Right before leaving the house, I drank a toddler-sized Juicy Juice, just to be extra prepared. When I left the house, my bg was 133.

The speed walking felt good. I don't mind the sweat pouring down my limbs. It felt like progress. Every 10 minutes or so I checked my CGM. The lowest my bg got was 79, which was awesome! When I came home, I did 75 crunches and pushups and then ate a full, healthy meal (stuffed peppers, stuffed with quinoa, organic hamburger, garlic, onions, and tomato sauce. I've been cutting out dairy lately so I didn't put any cheese on them. Instead, I seasoned with oregano, Mrs. Dash Southwest Chipotle, pepper and nutritional yeast flakes.)

All went better than I anticipated. I thought to myself, maybe I am one of the diabetics who aren't affected much by exercise or heat.


My CGM started alarming me of lows starting at 11pm and continued throughout the night. I wasn't dangerously low, but low enough to have to get up each time to eat glucose tabs or drink juice. The last of the alarms went off around 4:30am. In between the alarms, I dreamt of being awake and checking my blood sugar. I'd wake up and realize I was dreaming. The dog had enough of my getting up all night and around 5am, she started whining that she needed to go to the bathroom. I opened my heavy eyelids and thought to myself "are you kidding me?" So, I got up, took her out to go to the bathroom and this time, I just stayed up. I knew that trying to go back to sleep when I had to get up soon would only make things worse.

I have been in a sleepy fog all day. I had to drive down to Rochester, MN (about an hour from my house), had to be there by 7:30 am. I was so tired driving back that I almost fell asleep a couple of times. I feel like I went on a binger last night. (I actually don't drink, but I do remember my college years ;)

I'm realizing that exercising with diabetes is a little challenging because it can affect you long after you're done. It's unfair! I want to exercise and be healthy, but having residual lows makes me scared to do it. It also sucks that in the end, I end up eating all the calories (to treat the lows) that I was trying to burn off in the first place. I was going to go for another speed walk today, but the high today is 100 degrees and humid. So I thought I'd take a pass today. I think it's supposed to be cooler the rest of the week, so I'll try again then.

On a happier note, I'm pretty psyched about Crystal Light's new drink flavors (sugar free AND gluten free). I usually try to steer cleer of artificial sweeteners, but for these flavors, I'll make an exception! I tried the margarita flavor yesterday and it's FAB. Gotta appreciate the MOCKtinis!