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Guest Post: It is what It is by Cherise

November 12, 2009

My next guest blogger is one of my closet friends. She is an amazing cheerleader, motivator and an amazing friend. She is one of the most positive people that I know. Even when she is having a bad day she still is there for others. Everyone in the diabetes OC loves her! Follow her tweets at @Diabetic_Iz_Me and definitely check out her blog at Diabetes Daily. Thank You Cherise for guest posting you are the BEST!

June 14, 2004 I was diagnosed with Type 1.5/LADA.  I cried.  The first person that popped in my head was my step father.  I knew I didn’t want to live with diabetes the way he did.  I cried.  I called my Mom.  I let her know what was going on, she said,” I should have known what was wrong with you; you sure was drinking a lot of water and going to the bathroom a lot.”  

I went home that night; I researched as much information as I could.  I saw a lot of sites about finding a cure for diabetes and not much on how to live with it.  I was irritated and upset.  I understand the need to cure diabetes but can you teach me how to live with it without trying to milk my pockets.  Teach me how to LIVE with DIABETES!  Did my step Father have the tools he needed to live with Diabetes?

It is what it is and I have to live with it.  I became a very informed patient/diabetic.  I asked questions, searched the internet and I found several online communities and blogs.  I live with diabetes.  My Husband, Mother, Brother and Doctor’s don’t.   You have to want to before someone will help you. 

My focus wasn’t and has never been completely about finding a cure. If we found a cure how much would it cost for us to actually get it? Insurance companies barely approve the tools we need to make living with Diabetes easier…so, think about this…Yes, I want a cure but I want to focus on Education and Awareness because in the meantime what do we do?

Last month I went to a luncheon “Celebration of Strength”.  I heard a woman say, “I have been living with diabetes for over 50 years. I was promised there would be a cure 5 years after I was diagnosed. 50 years later there isn’t a cure”.  My heart sunk.  Insulin isn’t a cure, pumping isn’t a cure, metformin isn’t a cure and exercising isn’t a cure.  I honestly can’t remember any of my Doctor’s or Endocrinologist mention a cure to me and I am glad they didn’t. 

Can we  “try” to focus on the now, focus on education, and focus on living with diabetes, focus on awareness, and focus on saving lives, limbs and organs.  A cure will come one day just not soon enough.

We can either hide under a shell or Raise our voice.  What will you choose to do? 

 November 14, 2009 is World Diabetes Day.  Diabetes isn’t a black, white, Hispanic, Asian or Indian problem…it’s becoming a WORLD EPEIDEMIC. Diabetes knows no color, location, and size or food preference.  We can hide under a shell, wait for a cure or Raise our voice.  What will you choose to do? 

Please wear blue on 11-14-09!!! It’s not all about “I”, it’s a WORLD effort.

Be Blessed

Cherise

Talk about it because Everyone Knows Someone!

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Diabetes Act Now!

November 11, 2009

I was asked to write a post about a great interactive website called Diabetes Act Now! Diabetes Act Now was created by the American Diabetes Association  (one in english and one in spanish) as a part of their ongoing efforts to increase diabetes awareness. The campaign started this month for diabetes awareness month. They are making efforts to help us live with diabetes until a cure found. I love it!

The websites will help raise awareness of the risks of uncontrolled diabetes, to help give adults with type 1 or type 2 diabetes a place to get answers, and learn easy actions to help reduce and prevent complications like heart attack and stroke.

When you visit the website a series of statistics about diabetes appear before you are greeted by a physician. To his right (your left) is the option to learn about your numbers and to his left (your right) are easy actions. There are two easy actions. The first is a banner that reads Who’s your health care provider and the second is a banner that reads Type 1 vs Type 2 what’s the difference Both give you definitions of each.

Across the top of the screen are three choices. The first choice is Simple Answers which is three videos that talk about the ABC’s of diabetes (A1c, Blood Pressure and Cholesterol). The doctor reminds you not to forget your goals card located at the bottom of the screen. When you click on the goals card it will take you to a one page printable sheet of medical information (A1c, Blood Pressure, Ldl/Hdl Cholesterol, and number of times a day to test your glucose). One side is your current information and the other side is your goals. Across the bottom is a space for your next appointment and questions to ask your doctor.

The second choice is Easy Actions (my personal favorite part of the whole website) which is a series of 9 videos (Cholesterol, Parking Lot, Salt, Stress, Activity, Pizza Effect, Supermarket Skills, Restaurant Portions, and Expect the Unexpected). At the end of each video you have the option to share, watch the video again or watch the next video. You also have the option to Try It. The try it option takes you to your easy action page and adds a friendly reminder email that will help you stay on track. You have to sign up for a free account but  it only asks you for your name and email address.

The last choice is My Easy Actions which allows you to manage your account (change your email address or password), see your upcoming actions and your completed actions. I’ve signed up for the Stress and Expect the Unexpected Videos.

What I loved the most about the website is how user-friendly and easy it is. All of the videos were no longer than a minute. The animation was cute without being annoying (Fuss sat in my lap and watched them with me).

What I didn’t like about the website is the information is limited. Hopefully the ADA will add more videos so you can implement more easy action steps.

Overall I rate the website a 9 and highly recommend it for any diabetic no matter the age or type of diabetes. It will also be great for T3’s (friends, family and co workers).

Talk about it because Everyone Knows Someone!

Chatterbox Show

November 9, 2009

d54104f0-9d94-4b10-8304-d41c310278ffchatterboxbuttonI’m on the Chatterbox Show talking about diabetes awareness month. Check me out  http://www.blogtalkradio.com:80/chatterboxradio/2009/11/09/Diabetes-Awareness-Month-with-Andrea-Bradley-of-Sticky-Sweet-Diabetics

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Guest Blog: Dr. Gerard Lozada

November 5, 2009

As a part of Diabetes Awareness Month I asked four people who I admire to write a blog post for me. I am so lucky that all of them said yes.

My first guest post is from my eye doctor. Dr. Lozada is the owner and optometrist at Rosedale Vision Center located at 3424 Rainbow Blvd., Kansas City, KS  66103. I love him because 1. He found Dre’s cataracts that Children Mercy had missed (that’s a whole other rant post) 2. He is friendly, nice, comforting, always happy and explains EVERYthing to me so that I can understand it 3. He is an advocate for good eye health 4. He remembers his patients when he sees them outside of the office 5. He is living his passion

Guest Post:

Remember that diabetes is a disease of metabolism in which the body is unable to properly control the amount of sugar in the bloodstream.  This is why blood sugar is measured and a higher number indicates a greater problem of control.  When too much sugar is available, vision can become blurry due to excess sugar in the eye itself.  This greater than normal amount of blood sugar causes a fluid in the eye (the vitreous fluid) to actually change the focus of the eyes. Some diabetic patients even report that their vision changes after eating a meal.  Fluctuating vision is often the first symptom that brings a diabetic patient to my office.  For a patient with this problem, I do not recommend that they obtain eye glasses until after their blood sugar is under stable because the eye glass prescription that I measure will depend upon their level of blood sugar at that moment.  In other words, it is possible to have a patient see clearly with one measurement when they are hungry and a different measurement after eating a meal.

 How clear a patient is able to see is not the only way that diabetes affects the eyes.  When too much sugar is present in the blood vessels, smaller blood vessels begin to leak.  Sometimes these small blood vessels leak a clear fluid, but if a patient has diabetes that is not controlled or is taking medications, but not under control for a long time, the leaks become big enough for blood cells to pass through.  The eyes and kidneys have some of the smallest blood vessels in the body and, as I like to tell patients, it is easier to see these hemorrhages inside the eye than inside the kidneys.  Some patients have no leaks at all inside their eyes and that is obviously the best outcome to have.  Some patients have small hemorrhages that quickly clear up one day with a new hemorrhage appearing in a different area the next day.  These patients have “Background Diabetic Retinopathy” and are the normal state for them.  Patients who do not have their disease controlled may have larger hemorrhages and even new blood vessels growing inside the eye.  These patients have “Proliferative Diabetic Retinopathy” which must be followed closely to prevent sight-threatening hemorrhages from occurring.

 If you are a diabetic patient, the level of care that is best is to have an eye examination every year with eye dilation.  Eye dilation simply provides the best view inside of the eye and getting a detailed view inside of the eye is the only way to know what is really happening.

 Dr. Gerard Lozada

Thank You Dr. Lozada for guest posting for me. It means more than words can ever express. Praying that you get more patients than you can handle.

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4 days in

November 4, 2009

4 days in and I’ve already lost the NaBloPoMo challenge to blog everyday for 30 days. I had planned on writing a post yesterday evening but we were so wrapped up into Family Fun Night that I forgot all about it. The boys and I played our first game of Checkers (Thomas was in the bed sick). It was very interesting because Fuss was either running his cars across the board or stealing the Checkers pieces and running. Needless to say we are now one checker piece short. I won but I showed Dre’ the moves he could have made so he can get better at it.

After that we played a surprisingly short game of War. We gave Fuss two cards and he was content with that until he realized he had to give his cards up. So we just let him keep his. Either one of us won depending on who you ask. Thomas grew up playing that who ever lost all of their cards first was the loser. I grew up playing just the opposite way.

In my world we were all winners because nothing can beat family fun night.

P.S. I shipped 250 ribbons to Boston and 10 to Malaysia yesterday. I shipped 100 to a blind veteran group last week. Others are on their way please be patient if you ordered.

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My kids are diabetic too

November 2, 2009
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When you read the title of the post I know you think that I’m saying that my boys take insulin, have to check their blood sugar, and watch what they eat. They don’t have to do any of that (except for the last one) but they are still diabetic.

They are what we in the DOC call T3 (type 3). T3’s are our friends, family and co-workers. The people who we interact with everyday that are just as affected by our diabetes as we are. The people who don’t get diabetes because they don’t have it but they have to deal with it anyway. My children fall into that category.

Fuss doesn’t really understand at the new age of 3 what mommy is doing when I check my blood sugar or inject my insulin. He stands there and watches very closely, not touching, not speaking. When I’m done he sticks out his hand so I can check his blood sugar (I really don’t check it) and he lifts up his shirt and points to his belly saying medicine. With the cap on I pretend to poke him in his belly with insulin. I do my best to explain it to him so he will get “it”.

Dre’ is actively involved in my diabetes care. If I’m short-tempered with him all of a sudden he will ask me “momma do you need to eat?” He knows that lows will cause me to be agitated. He also counts the Diabetes Awareness Ribbons and keeps them in straight rows so they are easier to count.

Both of my children are awesome and I am very blessed to have them! I pray that they never develop diabetes but if they do I want them to be confident, educated, and proactive in their diabetes management. I can only hope that seeing me take care of myself will encourage them to do the same.

Talk about it because Everyone Knows Someone!

Perfect Score

November 1, 2009

This is one of those rare occasions when you get a perfect score when dealing with diabetes. Woo Hoo!

Perfect Score

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