Wednesday, December 31, 2008

for new year's~

still working on my resolutions, but so far: 

-to train for a 5k (baby steps people, baby steps!)
-finish my massage doula certification.
-maybe make a bebe.
-actually agree on a name for that maybe-bebe with matthew (malcolm, zaida, oliver, aziza, francis, penelope, samantha, ohmeohmy why so many girls' names?  ah!  did i mention i had a baby dream---with a perfect little girl!)
-edit my current stories and submit? 
-make all of my cleaning and yummy home supplies myself.  (maybe get the women's co-op going?)
-have the best herb garden i can imagine.
-figure out what the hell i'm doing after graduation, now that med school's on hold.  (hey, it's not like, yipeeee! i graduated!  now let's go... make a baby! haha.)

for new year''s eve, we are having a hip little shindig at my friend's house.  we are making homemade pizza with lots of lovely toppings, a film, games, music, vino and champagne.  
my sista and i started the dough last night---soaked and sprouted whole wheat---to 'release all of the nutrients'. you too, can make a wholesome pizza dough for friends and fam. 

best of the year as you open it anew with hope and love,

*birdy

welcome to waking up~

i have been wanting to start a confession section on my blog.  just like i have poetry, i want to share some funny (and not so funny) confessions.  some are just me getting it out, others are to laugh at, er, with.

first off, i cannot see as well as i used to.  i know that's a banal statement to make; eck, we're all getting older aren't we?  but this ever-so-slight lack of clarity since getting diagnosed has really gotten to me.  i guess this is not much a confession, as it is a statement of fact.  they checked my eyes, even had me see an opth, due to the terrible temporary blindness from the sorbitol i experienced for about a month after insulin was reintroduced.  "everything is fine", they said. "everything is fine."
but this bothers me.  maybe it really is just 'old age' starting (yikes! ha!)  but wow, this is truly the first time in my life i've 'felt my age.'  
cliche as it sounds, to me age is truly just a number i take no heed of.  
guess i just thought i'd go til i dropped.  i literally almost uh, did this year! 
that or one day, i'd happen upon myself in a hallway mirror and see my wrinkles and the reflections of my grandchildren's photos staring back at me from the wall behind me. 
maybe it'll hit me then. 

 

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

truly wishing you the best holiday~

as this year wraps up, i hope all of you who touch base with me through blogging and in general have a healthy, whole, happy holiday.  i often think during christmastime how the coming year will be.  last year, little did i know that peabody (my pancreas) had finally begun his rapid downward spiral.
sniff. sniff.
but you know, as fast as 2008 has gone by, i am filled with so much gratitude at how much i have grown, changed, evolved, accepted, rejected, opened and closed many doors and windows in my life.  while one aspect of what we define as 'healthy' in my life appears to have shut down, other aspects have opened making me more healthy, more happy, more whole...in ways others will never know unless they embrace their lives just as they are: broken, confused, diseased, empty...only to realize these are merely cycles that allow us to empty ourselves of the waste, only to be filled and renewed with new truths, new joy, new hope. 

to paraphrase derrick jensen, sometimes you need to lose hope...in that, you are holding out for change to occur within something (or someone) that inherently cannot or will not change. 
make a new hope. make a new year. 

much love and peace to all of you, 
birdy

Sunday, December 21, 2008

warning: thinking too hard may be bad for the blood~

i realized this last week that as long as i keep watch over my body and try, really try to just 'go with the flow' (don't flip out here, i know sometimes we don't have a choice) my sugar is well,
way awesome
haha.
no, i am not bragging.  it's just that this week, i was forced (as is usual of this year, i think) to deal with my biology finals, finding a friend in serious poverty and then move him in right before that final, preparing a dinner party for 20 people the day after that final that was only planned for 10 (!) and all the while being steady and gentle with myself about the possibility that my sugar was gonna be seriously crappy this week. 
funny, it's been great. 
and i think it's because i checked as often as i usually do, but i just took good care by continuing to eat well and try to focus on those around me.  i know that sounds a bit nutty...
"focus on others and your sugar will be fine", but what i'm trying to convey is that sometimes maybe we need to just...take care of business and the rest will follow.
so it's been an insane weekend, no less. i'm still trying to figure out what to do to assist my friend in the best way possible, but also have a relaxing holiday before school begins again. 
*sigh*
i never asked for an easy life, eh?  
and you know what?  as tired as i get of all the problems that we must all face in this life, 
so far it's been a blast!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

keep it tight/loosen up a little~

blood sugar, that is.  
well, i do hate standing up from inversions in yoga because it doesn't matter what pants you wear or how skinny your ass is, it always seems that...well, you get the idea.

as i was saying about "tight" (ah-hem): 
got my A1c back: it was 6%.  i actually had somebody say to me, "how tight are you trying to keep it?"  
wellwellwell.  let me just tell you; as tight as a baby needs it.  
(no, i am not pregnant.)
let me say that one more time: 
no, i am not pregnant.

but really, it got me thinking about how this battle is every. single. day.
*sigh*
"the bloodsugar battle."
you know what i'm talking about, the one where you're like, "OHMYGOD!! my numbers are soooooo bad!"
but then you look at them and realize that you just spent your whole day worrying about how they might be bad.
then you get your A1c back and maybe it was good, maybe it was not. but hey, you're still kickin', right?  so no, it couldn't have been as bad as you thought.
so it's not only about battling the hectic daily lives we all lead, and keeping good control in the mathematical, quantitative, physical sense, but on some level - more importantly - lightening the hell up about the 'blood sugar battle' going on emotionally in ourselves. 
that's me in a nut shell.  

now, i realize i'm only about 9 months into this disease (i'm about to give birth to my diababy blues!) no really, i'm still watching my endogenous function go bye-bye, right?
but i also have realized that this is really it.
i read some awesome advice the other day about 'diabetes burn out' and how to avoid it; how to make life worth all of the little things it is so worth (cause it is, like, duh).
it was pretty straightforward advice---you've heard it before to be sure, so don't hassle me about its lack of originality, haha. 
but the truth is my friends, we all need to learn to leave good enough alone. 
you got the number.  it was only a number. fix it high or low. take a long look at that beautiful face of yours and go celebrate. 

because ya, maybe your immune system decided to do 'operation  pancreatic freedom' on that little organ beneath your stomach and small intestine, but you are not your pancreas.  and neither is your life, because it's yours and no one else is livin' it.  our own, unique, individual lives:  no one can ever take that away. 


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

hey, did you grow that radish subversively?

if you agree, this little info sheet just might be for you. 
it's got the awesome "food not bombs" logo on it (which i understand is not copyrighted and ok to use for such purposes). 
i made it for a class on the anthropology of nutrition and food movements quite a while back.
it's about keeping it simple. 
it's about basics. 
it's about urban gardening, and is geared towards college students, little kids, and first time real-food, plant-growers. 
it also has some embarrassing typos and items specific to albuquerque ("quirky burque") but you get the idea.  white it out and type in your own local food network info!
try it out, 
print it out, 
hand it out as a flyer!
it just might excite, enthuse and change you and your neighbor. 
P.S. 
it's two sided, and ohpleasedon'ttelltheagribusiness.  they might come for little bird cos her feathers are too puffy and ruffled. 

amazing yum~

this, oh this,
my friends, is amazing. 
found this gal's blog the other day because i'm trying to put together my recipe book better.  
whew!  i love coconut milk and oil in my general cooking (thanks for the introduction, bestie mimi!)
but wow
chocolate coconut milk ice cream?  
need i say more?  i never even thought of it as an alternative to the problems i was having with lactose ( a sugar, duh) in my baking endeavors as a type 1. 
i mean, thanksgiving went really well, but some things are difficult for me still, as i don't know how to work in some of my more eclectic and rich recipes from the past. 
of course, you must like coconut when substituting, i guess...  but i'll have to ask my friend (who's not big on coconut) if she thinks she can taste it in things such as this.  haha, she's a good 'control group' member whenever i'm cooking. ;)
however, i really love this gal's site because of her intense support of local and slow food movement activism, and the nourishing traditions family cooking philosophy.
right on! 
i started by growing my own herbs and lettuces a few years ago when my own eyes were opened to the importance of these "critical social issues".  i love her blog because all of the recipes appear simple and straightforward, but most importantly, centered upon true whole foods family health. 
hmmmmmmm, i should post my basic urban gardening guide (targeting college students) for all of you to see, print, and subversively post! 

poetry: how to be kind~

listen, touch people. space. place. presence.
bring your eyes close without erasing the individual.
open, smile. be genuine. take interest. create.
have faith, don't worry. your worry only turns to mistrust.
laugh, manufacture none of your feelings; taste them.
stop arguing and absorb.
speak softly, live loudly.

don't let your pain live for you;
live knowing others are also in pain.
be deep without forcing people into your depths.
dive into the messy, muddy waters of the world, 
only to find water lily roots at the bottom. 
ponder the truth of ugliness, 
but only feed on the promise of unexpected beauty. 

gain from understanding and surprise;
that which can make you most uncomfortable.
listen to your silence, 
it is often your own voice drowning you out. 
become pregnant with your old surroundings 
and you will give birth
to new light. 

Friday, November 28, 2008

que comida? (what did you eat?)

for thanksgiving?  
i'd love to hear what people had, as i love food! 
i attempted to make some healthier versions of the traditional thanksgiving meal, but as many who know me can tell you: i love to make eclectic menus!
here's what we made: 

-citrus cilantro roasted turkey (sweetened with agave nectar)
-mashed roots (rutabaga, potato, celery root)
-curried sweet potatoes
-cardamom roasted carrots
-garlic parsley green beans
-organic stuffing
-pumpkin pie (matthew's mum's is amazing)

let me just tell you: my sugar did so well!  i kinda overdosed a bit, honestly, but you know how it goes: ah!  gotta make sure....so i think it was those wonderful little mashed roots instead of full-blown potatoes, and of course protein mixed in with it all (turkey has a whopping 47grams per serving!) really helps you to burn your carbohydrate fuel slowly.

what a yummy day!






Thursday, November 27, 2008

keep it simple~

when i say in my list "whatever it is, it's not that complicated" i mean that we need to learn to keep it simple.  that life, as complicated as it is, is pretty straight forward.  some things cannot be negotiated, but all can be dealt with. 
i am grateful for the small things, because it is this that makes up the stuff of our lives; the most important parts.
i keep a gratitude journal.  i don't know who told me to do it, but someone did a few years ago when i was getting out of the military.  it has helped me through so much, because at the end of the day, i look into my comings and goings and always find something to be grateful about.  we have to.  sometimes i tell myself there's nothing to be grateful about, especially when life hands you lemons, or worse: people you thought cared about you hand you those lemons!  then it's not just abstract or nonspecific...
this can be so difficult at times, like the day i was diagnosed with type 1, but i must tell you, it hit me so hard that it was a gift to become the healthiest gal i can ever be, and therefore reach out to those with diabetes that i can someday help as a physician.
we can connect to others' joy and pain better when we are grateful, even for the small things. 
happy thanksgiving,
much love and peace, 
littlebird. 
    

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

name a disease that's been cured~

i've been thinking lately about cures.  
not just for type 1 (that one being my personal favorite, haha) but in general.  
unfortunately, i have yet to find one that has been cured.  some say smallpox, however, most diseases have been eradicated by vaccine, not technically cured once one has 'contracted' it.  this is why i'm starting to think 'they' (the great researchers we are all depending on) have invested so much in the idea of preventing type 1's onset in the first place through vaccine.
could you imagine that, though?  how many vaccines are we gonna subject our kids to?  i think in some people's minds, it is the only way, since (i theorize) we've never actually found a cure for anything. 
*sigh*
i am grateful our disease is manageable, though.  while letting it go would have led to me to a slow and painful death, many diseases that become 'managed' (i.e., the aftereffects of severe scarlet fever) have long-term results that effect one for life in a way that is unmanageable.  that really breaks my heart.  
so we watch and wait, but birdy's not holding her breath.  now i'm just waiting for my damn ankle to heal so can run again! 

Monday, November 24, 2008

poetry: dr.field, my mentor professor~

when i go to see dr. field he tells me
he believes in me,
that a lot is invested in me, 
that it's not going away.
this is it, he says.
this is my life now, i think. 
but he tells me that the point where my goals actualize into something
will happen; 
he shows me this with his hands, 
always talking with his hands, clasping them, 
showing me with his fingers moving like a river over the other.
he tells me i'm brilliant, 
that there are people whose hearts are with me, 
"because you of all people, 
had to deal with this thing;
of all the mundane things to have to deal with:
food."
he is right, it is mundane.  
and that is what most people will never understand. 
we both tear up, looking away for a moment.
i take my hat off, 
feeling the static electricity coming off the ends of my black hair.
i think of walt whitman, 
the body electric.
and i remember why i am here. 
that i can stand up and walk out of his office, 
awake, electrified.
that i can move, one foot in front of the other, if it is all i can do at times.
that i am moving forward, 
even as the river seems to move past me, 
i am a part of it,
unafraid. 




Sunday, November 23, 2008

can they just make pancreatic bandages?

this year seriously just needs to end.
i have never broken a bone in my life, nor twisted or sprained or torn or well, you get the picture...anything.
now, while some of you may smirk and say, "hmm, well maybe you've lived a safe life.'
uh, no. actually, let's make that a very loud NO!
i've served in the military, love hiking and backpacking, been to africa, love to run. 
so here i am, at this point in the year---thanksgiving---ya, i'm tryin' to be thankful despite how seriously crappy certain things have gone.  such as, getting sick in january, watching my body outside of myself until march came and i got diagnosed with type 1.  then, i spent my summer recuperating marvelously, got back into my running routine...no injuries.  dealt with a crazy semester, moved, having to continuously deal with nutty people...*sigh.*  
so then, yesterday, i'm like moving...nothing items, and tadah!  my left ankle starts hurting.
bad.
but, just like all things health-wise, my first reaction always is that i'll take care of it myself.
but today, oh man, today i can't even put weight on it.  sprain.
but you know how it goes with diabetes, people's eyes bug outta their heads and...
"OHMYGOD, but it's your foot we're talking about!!!"
so now it's hitting me all.over.again.
this annoying little beast in my life, this little flea that won't leave my little-peabody-pancreas alone affects me in the most mundane ways (as if the ability to eat food and process it is not mundane enough...)
if only i could wrap peabody in an ace bandage and he could get strong enough to fight off my immune system's conniving little attacks then maybe, just maybe, when i get a sprained ankle, i wouldn't have to always get it checked out right away like it was the end of ...well, my foot.
god, everything, you know?  it becomes about everything. 




Thursday, November 20, 2008

hilariously motivating~

you must read this.   this guy's story about low blood sugar is great (ah-hem?!) but i also love his movement towards healthy living with type 1...

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

glow~

saw a double boiler today. 
i really want to learn how to make candles and soap from scratch.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

dawn phenomenon~

perhaps more people can fill me in on the high morning numbers.  i've had several the last couple of weeks, not every single day, but i've also not had anything below 100 in a while.  i think i will go ahead and do the nighttime check on my early morning sugars to see if i'm rising due to growth hormones releasing, but i'm pretty frustrated.  i wonder if i can get some ideas about what to do to bring it down a bit; anything that has worked for people experiencing this?  especially women

Friday, November 14, 2008

"to live from love is to dry your face"

we must go on.
not only because we truly have no other choice, but because we actually can.
sometimes we just don't believe it.
we wallow in our own pain; confusion, even bliss.  we forget the big picture, that while we are merely a dot of paint in the landscape, it would not be lovely without us.
this is why we matter; this is why everyone matters.
"when we live in depression or obsession, we have lost perspective... when this happens, it is hard for God, the great mother, to console us and to assure us that within the larger perspective, these heartaches and headaches too will pass and too will be eclipsed by perspectives beyond our present imagination and experience."

ronald rolheiser, against an infinite horizon.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

whew!

moving sucks!
and i couldn't find the little bag i'd put all my test strips in, yikes!  
but all is well now.
so much has happened since my last post, and there's so much i want to mention. 
however, my internet is still down and i wanted to start fresh with a quote from one of my favorite books ever: against an infinite horizon.
while it is a catholic book, it is a good book for anyone, in my little opinion.
so i'll leave you with that until i can finish my crazy week out and find the quote!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

defining~

when you think of poverty, what do you define it as?
when you think of wealth, what do you believe?  
i'm curious about people's ideas (whether abstract or not) surrounding these very 'controversial' terms.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

heating up~

i've been thinking the last few days (well, i've always been a "heavy thinker", not drinker, haha.)
i've realized some things regarding our human state of feeling inadequate.  
this year, literally from january 1st, i've felt so emptied.
and i don't necessarily mean that in a bad way.
i feel opened, and lighter (well, maybe i am, as i try to gain my weight back!)
but really, it's been an eye-opener.  i look around and see everyone taking everything for granted. 
which we do a lot of in this country, no?  but it's truly hit me how i was no different.
oh, i thought i was.  i thought, "these are my goals, these are good things that i want."
and they were! 
i've never wanted cash, or a big house, or fame, or lots of friends.  really, ask anybody.
i only wanted to be able to say that i really lived. that i cared for others, that i traveled, that i ate yummy foods, laughed a lot, read a lot, learned languages, sang songs, licked snowflakes out of the air...
what i mean is, it's taken me this long to realize that all of this, this teeny-tiny life, this is it.
this really is it.
and i've been acting like i was working up to it.  
my life has been happening while i planned it!
where have i been?
matthew said to me the other day, "you're still gonna do everything you've dreamt of doing for the world.  just remember, your dreams don't define you.  you define your dreams."
that's why we can be flexible, that's why we can open up and change.
that's why we can move on.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

seriously, it's time to change the name~

i'm sorry, i know this sounds rude, but i can't take it sometimes: 

if you have type 1 diabetes you do not make insulin because your immune-system essentially does a covert operation on the insulin-producing cells every. single. day.  
we have absolutely no choice in the matter: we mustmustmust take insulin because otherwise we will die.  

if you have type 2 diabetes you do make insulin, but do not use it properly because of terrible eating and [lack of] exercise habits.  therefore, a type 2 has absolutely no choice in the matter but to get off their ass and start doing something about it.  
or else....
you won't make insulin anymore because it pretty much just stops working because you're not healthy.
the immune system has nothing to do with type 2 AT ALL.  

this is a bit harsh, but type 2's are in for no surprises with their diagnosis.  
they often get warned for years.  they even get little pills to perk up their pancreas's waning function looooong before they ever need to go on insulin.

but a type 1:
BAM!
autoimmune, baby, 
autoimmune.

please folks, LOOK UP TYPE 1 AND TYPE 2 DIABETES ON WIKIPEDIA if you are confused.  
i'm having an 'i hate explaining my disease week'.  
i did not make myself sick.
i did not eat too much sugar.
i am not allergic to sugar.
i did not develop an eating disorder and this is how my body is 'paying me back.'
i did not choose this disease, it chose me.

when i say i have tight control, it is because of diet, exercise and INSULIN.  
my sugar's not tightly controlled because i somehow miraculously don't need insulin anymore
I NO LONGER MAKE THE DAMN HORMONE!!!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

the community health center~

so i did my follow-up with my naturopath today.  she got really excited about my idea of doing a 'community health education center' that could be a resource for those in need of affordable access.  it would specifically focus on natural therapeutics and massage,  fertility awareness education and women's health, family herbalism remedies, and be a resource for diabetes education.  
whewhoo!  
i was kinda nervous to admit my ideas to her, but she got so damn excited that i can hardly contain myself!  
i really feel full of wild hope right now.  the future is so bright, and i do believe that deep down, all of this happened for reasons i'll never be privy to.  but i can be sure that it is only making my existence deeper and more meaningful by the day.  
i have never gotten rid of the drive to help those in greatest need, and despite having to put off medical school for a while, now i think all of these ideas pouring out of me of late only make the future full of endless possibilities in serving the community as best i can.  

Monday, October 13, 2008

little yogi~

my yoga teacher is 're-teaching' us how to breathe. 
i will admit to you that for the past couple of years i have not been able to take a deep breath.  
i try, i really do.
but the issues that were going on in my deteriorating family relationships, coupled with my new diagnosis made it so difficult; even though i knew i was breathing with my shoulders and my chest. sometimes even my throat.
so, sometimes you need some guidance.
my teacher has worked wonders!
we sat there in class and she told us, "you know how you watch a baby breathe? they naturally breathe from their abdomen; you watch their belly rise full and move up through the chest and then out through the shoulders.  somewhere along the way, we lose that."
i couldn't agree more. 
the first time i tried my 'full yogic breath' i thought my chest was going to explode and burst through my throat, i kid you not.  it was that hard.  
but now, i feel a depth of breath i have been yearning for for years. 

plus, i notice when i sing in the car now, i'm louder than ever. 
it feels so good to laugh, cry, sing, and breathe deep again. 

Saturday, October 11, 2008

share this treat~

yum.
pears with dark chocolate and walnuts.
the best. 
my new favorite! 
plus, you get to subtract the fiber in the pear from your insulin dose. 
yahoo!

october therapeutics~

so we're moving.  
i know my last big post was on my terribly rude slumlord.  but i have to mention finding a new place because it is just so exciting.
it has a real space for a real garden and coldframe, plus fruit trees and big windows and hardwood floors.  i can hardly wait to cook all of my middle-eastern concoctions in a real kitchen. 
oh, and the roof certainly does not leak! whewhooo!
our new landladies are this sweet couple who seem really in tune with people.  we've both really enjoyed just talking with them and the whole process so far. 
but what a week it's been, dealing with my angry-without-a-reason-landlord.  i won't even go there.  the specifics are too horrible to tell because he truly has lost his mind and resorted to tantrums due to his grotesque [non]communication skills and passive aggressive nature.  all because he's mad he needs to fix his roof!  ayyaya. 
oh well.

so onto better things.  the weather here in the Q is just lovely.  muy linda. 
 
it is good to feel the warm sun and leafy breeze on my face as i bike to school and watch the brightened spines of the fall leaves swirl and dance down the street with me.   
i feel so alive in october for some reason.  some people become sad at the end of summer; i always feel hope for the darkened seeds and bulbs planted that become the spring. 
a chance to go deep inside ourselves; dig ourselves deep to find and become our best self. 
it's a promise of a new start.  every. single. year.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

i am grateful for the small things~

things like paper and pencils to share my thoughts. and the fact that when i spilled an entire cup of coffee on my laptop this summer, the thing woke up the next day running like a champ. 
things like last night, when i found a really comprehensive book on one of my favorite topics - chinese medicine - and it was only $1!  
but most of all, when i get calls from besties like mimi, telling me she chickened out on asking the guy out on campus that she's got the hots for. and bad.
hot or cold chai, girl?  hot or cold chai.  
haha. 
it just feels great to be a part of people's lives, and to have them in mine.   

Sunday, October 5, 2008

slumlords~

dear mr. miller, 
maybe someday you will somehow come across my blog and say, 'hey! that's the gal that used to rent from me.'
i have never done anything but take care of your home.  i pay my rent on time and even planted things in the yard.  i never call unless it's an emergency and don't deduct items from rent unless i absolutely needed to repair or buy something.  
i've given you respect, and in return, i have gotten nothing.  you never address the issues at the apartment and have enjoyed the [over] half a grand  i give you each month in rent to build your new house that surely does not have leaks.  
i did not sleep last night because i stayed up to empty my dish bin every fifteen minutes so that your carpet would not ruin.  
today, you had the nerve to tell me to "poke a hole in the roof and put a trash can underneath it."  
i was awake all night.  i politely waited until nine a.m to call you, so as to not disturb your sunday morning, although mine had certainly started long before yours.  when i opened my call with, "mr.miller i hope you know why i'm calling you" your response was, 
"yes i do and get to the point."
then, when i said that it was not right to charge someone like that and not care for a home they rent from you, you hung up on me. 
that's right. you hung up on me.
a grown ass man! 
why would you do all of that?  why are people like this now?  is it the baby boomers?  like my parents, people who lack basic communication skills and simply do not talk to you if you don't fit their 'shut up and take it' mode of living?
i know your family is quite 'left wing' as you have told me in the past, mr. miller.  but you, like so many think that the face of change lay in one man: barack obama.  
really? you don't think it starts with us? you think good is outside of yourself? you think each of us is not contributing to living off the backs of others in the world?  
you think it's somebody else's fault? 
we treat terms like 'community' and 'green living' and 'human connection' as abstractions.  
they begin in the moment.  they are the moment we choose to do the right thing when we need to because it's just the right thing to do: to reach out, starting with ourselves, and then extend to another.  
i always liked that statement by mother teresa, "give until it hurts, and then give some more. " 
she didn't say to be a push-over, but you can certainly give what you know you ought to.  
you hurt me today, mr.miller. you insulted me, but mostly you just added to my hurting and wondering of late as to whether or not we americans can pull ourselves up from the capitalist grime we have slathered and soaked ourselves in for...so long. 
you think you're different, but you're just like everyone else: trying to make a buck off the little guy.
i'm trying to be the change i wish to see.  i stated my needs to you, i did not attack you.  
and, instead of seeing me and listening and trusting my points, you did the only thing your generation seems to know how to do: 
escape, feel entitled, ignore, avoid, attack, refuse, control, don't speak: 
you hung up on me.  

Saturday, October 4, 2008

richard~

when i go to do laundry, there are some without homes washing their clothes, too.
i met richard the other day.  
he was having a hard time with the washer. it slyly eats a couple extra quarters.  we all know this. i lose count, too.  most of us are irritated but sadly, don't care.  but richard, well, that could mean a whole snack or bus ride or coffee or ten minutes in the dryer.
he can't stop talking to himself.  i don't mind, even if his pants are falling down while he does it.  everyone moves away from him.  he insists that someone took his other shirt.  the laundry attendant smiles kindly, gives him one from the lost and found. 
so we talk.  about school (he studied engineering, he proves this by pulling out his greasy old transcripts.)  i believe him.  
he says, i could do it, you see.  i could do it.  
i can't do advanced linear algebra, but richard can.
but something went wrong in 1989.  you can see his grades dropping: withdrawel pass, withdrawel, withdrawel fail.  fail.
so now he's at the dryer asking me to figure out which one pays up and which one pays down.  i guide his cut-up hand to the top coin drop.  
he tells me his fingers are still cut up from "doin' somebody else's yard work. it's the only way i get by."  he's not begging, just telling.  
i have lots of bandaids in my bag in case of blisters.  so i give a bunch to him, we talk about handwashing, and he tries to give me a quarter.  
he tells me i'm a nice nurse.  i tell him he's really smart. 
i offer him my extra apple, munching on mine so he knows we're sharing, not gifting.  
he says "i got bad teeth and i got some soft donuts in my bag."  his plastic bag that he brought his dirty laundry in.
i start folding my laundry, he politely looks away when i fold underwear and camisoles.  
i start thinking about diabetes and poverty, how i can understand how much it would hurt to eat an apple with so many teeth missing.  but no whole food, no soup, no nourishment in richard's life. 
i tell him i've gotta go home. we shake hands; say "it was nice to meet you."  he likes that, you can see.  don't we all?  what is it like to be so invisible?  

 

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

stand up~

"in a fascist system, it's not the lies that count, but the muddying of truth."
naomi wolf

Monday, September 29, 2008

the shit has hit the fan~

whatarewegonnado???!!!

the economy is so in the crapper, and most people i talk to at the U are not even aware.

how does that happen?! 
how did we get to this point?
take your headphones out of your ears and your fingers off your texting and wake up!

stop wasting.
stop shopping.
stop mediocrity.
start listening.
start reading
start growing.
start changing. 

"be the change you wish to see in the world."

but first, you have to stop supporting starbucks and walmart, and take notice of the fact that we have been living off the backs of others for far too long.  

things are about to change, my friends.  we had plenty of warning signs, but now we have to learn our lessons the hard way. 

Sunday, September 28, 2008

what is your perfect day?

and you can't say a day off from being type 1! 
(or whatever is wrong with you...:)

here's mine:

make paper with dried portulacas, sit in the morning sun while it dries.
eat waffles with real syrup (ok, without the impending-doom spike...)
use a new word from the dictionary.
meet a friend for coffee during rain and have her tell me some special news.
find a new band to listen to that makes me believe real people are still writing real music.
photograph a dove up-close.
watch a child take its first steps.
smell clean laundry.
my mother calls and we have a real conversation.
get a massage.
play guitar and harmonica  at the same time.
go sled-riding and drink cinnamon cocoa.
apologize and be forgiven, be apologized to and forgive.
make herbal remedies for sick people.
sew the perfect pair of pants.
roast a chicken while an accordion plays and all my besties come over and we dance and sing and laugh and drink wine and at least one person falls in love. 

Saturday, September 27, 2008

logistical information on commenting~

friends,  with some of you, i have no way of 'responding' to your comments.  so please check back to the comment you made to me by clicking on the comments again a day or so after  your comment was made.  you will see my reply to your comment beneath the comment you made, and this way, we can actually converse/touch-base.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

1-2-3 THERMOMETER!

this one's for the ladies: 
i've been successfully charting and using fertility awareness method (which, by the way, is not the very irresponsible 'rhythm method' people often know of) since 2006.  i have charted my fertility signals since 2003, as a whole.  one of my many community health clinic goals is to become a community-based fertility awareness educator for impoverished women, and well, anyone who wants to get to know their body! 
i wanted to write about this topic a bit because i've made a new type 1 friend (hey lisa!!) and she is interested in charting her mucus and temperature signals.  i want people to know that it is an elegantly scientific way to connect with your body and empower yourself with the knowledge that so few women [sadly] have.  to wake in the morning and have the knowledge that will take you through your sexual relationship without the use of hormones or worry is an incredible power to have. also, to be with a man who knows your body and respects that your sexual relationship centers around your cycle, is a beautiful way to remain in balance with one another.  used properly (just like hormonal contraceptives) it is over 95% effective.  
however, you must be in a completely monogamous relationship and a physically healthy one, obviously.  the worry not only being that you will get pregnant, but that you must have complete trust, communication and equality between each other.  otherwise, you will end up making a mistake.
i can tell you as a type 1 woman, i better understand changes in sugar balance throughout my cycle that i can 'plan for' and deal with because i know exactly where i am at in my cycle:  i tend to spike on the day of ovulation, and have greater lows immediately before my new cycle begins.  not everyone is the same, but that is the point: your body is your own, and getting to know it is a responsibility we all have.  i don't care for standardized...anything.
ah-hem:
you don't get pregnant because you 'didn't use anything'; you get pregnant because you were fertile at the time you had sex. period.
 
reading even a basic book on FAM ('fertility awareness method') can help you get started.  i suggest the highly scientific "Taking Charge of Your Fertility" but "The Garden of Fertility" is an excellent introduction, too. 

ruminate on this: 
the female body is like the earth, round and supple; full of the potential for life.  things cannot grow without rain.  when the earth is wet, life can grow within it.  when she is dry, her soil is not fertile.  

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

they weren't lyin'~

when they said breakfast is the most important meal of the day. 
i'm all about the oatmeal in the morning with a bit of agave syrup and some walnuts.  i'm telling you, oatmeal and chromium ( i think) are what have been helping me out. all day, i'm balanced and my BG's are in control.  not just from the oatmeal, but just because of general increases in fiber!
for all of you non-type 1's (even 2's!) you should seriously take heed to what type 1's figure out about diet and health, haha. we're a great control group. it's hysterical to me when people say, "oh yaaaaaa, you have to watch your diet really well, right?"  it's like, "hey! i don't eat a special diet!  i eat the diet we should all be eating. 
because if i don't, i get to see the immediate consequences you only see later on."
 i read some journal article recently where this doctor said in response to someone's question of "what do you think is the most important thing a person can do to stay healthy?"
her response:  keep the blood sugar in balance.
she said this because when the body's blood glucose levels are in control in any person; (meaning, the body is not swinging as it tries to maintain balance) a person will live a  longer, happier, healthier life because all of the systems in turn, can remain in balance. 
especially the cardiovascular, the system that is number one for getting clogged and fattened and slow and sad in the U.S.
more red wine! 
more olive oil!
more...oatmeal!  

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

poetry: in honesty~

she taught me how to breath again.
said my abdomen was too tight.
"you're holding", she said.
my lungs were hurting from holding so tightly.
i heard the Earth in her voice, 
open and full.
i can feel my breath widen, widen as my hips
with the desire to give birth to the grief
held for so long.
the left pushed up from making space for my heart,
to be pushed even further from life
that will make its rounded way.
i feel you coming, little one.
make way to the tunnel.
choose wisely and you will be.
make your home and i will be
your Earth, your mother, i will breathe
deep life into you,
as you will return mine.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

awake~

this woman i know said that something will happen to most people that awakens them.  
and then, they return, forgetting whatever it was that changed.  so they in turn never change, going back to that place of gray they knew before where they wondered why they felt so asleep, so apart, so alienated. where they were comfortable.
what is that woke you?  
i can tell you, hands down, it is this new friend.  my new friend makes me take good care of myself, analyze how i feel without obsessing, slow-react when i'm upset, and smile when i get to eat chocolate.  

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

tumultuous twenty-eight~

so i turned 28 last week.  whew!  what a year it's already been, eh? 
i finally met a gal that has type 1.  she's in my bio class and overheard a classmate asking me what had happened to me last semester (ah-hem.)  she was like, "do you have type 1?  me too!" 
wow, i never thought i'd be happy to say 'me too.'  but i was.  
this gal answered some of my T1 girly questions.  she's a pumper.  
however, she told me about how she got super-duper sick last semester (pnemonia!) and almost lost her scholarship. *yikes*.  
so i asked her all about 'why we get sick' so easily.  she consoled me in saying that if your sugar's in tight control, you shouldn't get sick anymore than a 'normal' (WTF DOES THIS MEAN?!) person gets sick.  anywho, i just hope i stay in good control, 'cos what happened to her did not sound fun.  

does anyone have any stories or advice regarding getting ill and being type 1?  as a newbie, i'd love to get clued in.  however, because i'm a naturalgeek, let me know of anything that works.  because *yikes!*  i've read that echinacaea is really bad for people with autoimmune disease due to the immune-system already being in hyperactive mode---don't need to stimulate it anymore!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

think twice~

why does everybody have a wave of joy and energy when a woman (ah-hem) proudly calls herself a "pitbull with lipstick", but people are scared of a real pitbull being a pitbull?  


by the way, real pitbulls aren't anything like her.   

they're kinder. 

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

supersupps~

so i started my 'maintenance supplements.'  these are going to [hopefully] keep me going, haha.  no, really, i've researched and read all that i can and finally pared it down to the following:

chromium 200mcg per day, (aids in insulin sensitivity--even in type1's.)
biotin 5mg (may increase to 10mg), assists the chromium.
vitamin e (gamma) 400iu every day, (we've all heard this one: protects the vital organs.)
alpha lipoic acid 400 mg a day, universal antioxidant; protects organ and nerve function.
evening primrose oil 1000mg a day in the a.m (may increase to 2000mg), assists in organ, nerve, hormone and cholesterol.  
whole food supplement (NOT the brand; it's a type of vitamin) 1 every day. 

(UPDATE): 
i continue with the chromium, biotin, gamma e, and ALA, but i have added folic acid and stopped the EPO.  i found that it was upsetting my tummy and so i just continued to exclusively use extra virgin olive oil and coconut oil into my diet (through cooking).  i have to say, i feel great and can tell a difference when i'm not using the chromium and biotin; i really think they assist in insulin efficiency... 

it's important to note that i eat a whole foods diet and that includes a lot of fiber, water, and greens at pretty much every meal; even breakfast! 

as  you can see, these are mostly about protection.  they are also the only ones that have had the most/best studies done it appears, and that my friends, highly interests me.  while i love natural medicine, case-studies are the only way we're ever going to find out the overall picture. however, i'm also one for 'gentle experimentation on oneself': if something works for you and is safe, keep it up.  
i can tell you that so far, the chromium is working wonders for me.  but running in the a.m helps too, because of the insulin-resistance that occurs in the morning from release of growth hormones during sleep. 

i'm really ruminating on the major differences between being a type 1 woman and a type 1 man.  my brother, who also now has type 1 (please see the posts regarding 'the truth sets you free' to see my theories on our 'contraction' of this disease)  is still honeymooning---to the point that he only takes lantus!  oh my.  either his a1c's are gonna be horrendous because he really is having a post-prandial spike that would scare jesus, or his pancreas really is producing that much for right now.  good for him!  
but it does make me wonder about being a woman with type 1 and how often a honeymoon like his occurs in women, you know?  quite rarely, i venture.  

Monday, September 1, 2008

groovy women~

this one's for the ladies.
i so wish that i never started shaving my legs 15 years ago.  it's like, why the hell do we do this? 
ya ya, call me a hippie.  however,  i saw a waitress the other day while eating with a bestie, and she didn't shave.
it was clear she'd never started in the first place, back when 13 year olds are pressuring each other to wear bras they clearly don't need.  ok, ok, i was a 13 year old that didn't need a bra til i was probably 23.  hell, i still don't.  haha

anyway, this waitress didn't shave.  i couldn't help but think while i was eating my crusty bread, 
"damn, those are some sexy legs."

*sigh* so jealous of the totally au naturale.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

give it to me~

to scott at scott's blog: 
i love this!

this is my retro-inspired response to the FDA in general.

i would love to believe that they are out for the good of us all, and yes, they do conduct studies that save some lives.  however, do they really follow their own rules?  

give us the real thing.  have some mercy for strugglin' organs. 

Thursday, August 28, 2008

collaboration is key~

i think most of you who've read my blog know that i chose to study cultural anthropology and peace studies as my undergrad, with the plan of attending medical school after.   i recently met someone---an older gentleman with a PhD in english---who felt that the new line of thinking in anthropology (which is often termed 'collaborative') is quite arrogant in its thinking that the field should have a goal.  he actually said, "i'm not sure we should assume that every culture or people have a goal."

what can i say?  
i think some people like to pretend they are living under rocks.   was he just being plain insulting to the 'rest of' the world? was he just assuming that because a particular group does something differently than what he would define as a 'goal' it is therefore not a goal?
my point here is to comment on how vitally important it is to collaborate in anthropology, as collaboration is key to life!
when we feel that there is a problem that needs to be solved, we go out to find a solution, no? no one likes to merely be 'told what to do.'  i can tell you from community health work in africa that people want you to work with them.  no one likes to be viewed as some little person in great distress that is being saved, eh?  i don't care if you're dying of AIDS, you want to be treated with dignity and respect, with your major issues viewed as target areas of the greatest need.  help me help you, right?
i'm talking about this because diabetes (both type 1 and 2) are a prime example of how important collaborative healthcare is.  providers must work with each patient as a different individual with a different diabetes than the next person.  

because in reality, not everyone can or wants to be a member of Team Type 1.  

and so, yes, i think everyone 'has a goal.'  we all live for something, even if it's you filling your emotional void with donuts or cocaine.  
ethnic, cultural, socioeconomic, and gender (!) differences all play a role in how people feel, think, act, react, respond, and live with their disease processes.  
from a medico-cultural anthropology standpoint, this could get overly intellectual and academic.  but let's just try being human: 
accept others and try to understand their worldview perspective and life situation.  work with that person for who they are.  you get a lot further in helping them to define their own idea of wellness if you try to start from a sense of collaborative and holistic health.  then all the straightforward 'this is what your disease is and this is what you must absolutely do to stay alive' stuff will easily follow.    

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

introducing...supermatthew!


wellwellwell. 
don't we look nice next to each other?  
the perfect geeky couple!  going on 4 years, i hope so!
(check out the button-up buttoned up!)  

no, really.  he's truly the most lovely man you'll ever meet.  he was incredible during my whole type 1 diagnosis fiascooooooo, but is also just, how do you say...'perfect' in every language? 
 

look at that face!  how can you not love it?!

yes, he's a bald white guy.  but i'm middle-eastern, so our kids'll balance out just fine. 

doggy yoga~

i thought you'd like to meet the great little lily in my life.  
yes, she prefers to fold herself in half when she sleeps.
since we were on the topic of yoga, i thought it was a perfect time to introduce my nutty dog. 

yogic breathing~

my new yoga teacher is going to be super!
she has spent the last 10 years teaching yoga to nearly 8,000 people!  she says her goal is to share it with as many people as possible.  we'll each be designing a routine for our own health and wellness.  i can't even tell you how exciting this is!
but get this:
my favorite part about her is that she spends the fall and spring teaching people yoga in town, but then in the summer goes to places like haiti and does natural therapeutics and yoga with orphans and people living with hiv/aids.  what a soul! 

by the way, haiti is the poorest nation in the western hemisphere.  i have thought that it would be the next place i would like to do community health work in,  so maybe it is fate that i am studying under my new yoga teacher?

(for more on the struggles of haiti and hiv/aids in the west, read one of my heros, paul farmer: anthropologist, doctor, philosopher, realist, and advocate for our most marginalized.) 

Sunday, August 24, 2008

autumn begins soon and oh do you like my hat?


i am so ready for school tomorrow even though i think i kinda look like a porcupine.  


just kidding, i'm not wearing this hat

yet. 

make it real~

while at work this weekend, i had the pleasure of working on a lovely young lady with down's syndrome.  she had come to see me (for massage therapy) because she'd just been in the special olympics and due to winning her many awards, was "sore all over!"
when i asked her what her other hobbies were, she said "boys." 
i said, "oh ya? you gotta a boyfriend?"
"yes, his name is joe jonas."

well, well, well.

now, not to sound perverted, i have to admit that i too, find little joe jonas to be the hottest of the hot jonas brothers.   nick, the one with type 1 is great too.  however, due to his diagnosis, i just want to squeeze his sweet cheeks and tell him his song, "a little bit longer" made this newly diagnosed 27 year old cry.  thank you, nick.  maybe someday you'll serenade all of us ladies with type 1 with your song and let us ruffle your curls. 

the beautiful gal i worked on had a just-as-sweet-mum.  her mother told me something lovely: 
"if reincarnation is real, then she's perfection reincarnated."
i couldn't agree more.  all this gal did was smile, talk about life, say how great the massage was, and giggle at my cheesy jokes.  
sigh. 
i need more super-sweet-joe-jonas-loving-totally-in-the-moment-keepin'-it-real-patients in my work space.  heck, we need more people like that in life.
it was a bittersweet reminder that even when life hands you lemons, you gotta make lemonade.    er, just don't forget to take your insulin upon drinking it..
:)
   

Friday, August 22, 2008

clarification~

a fellow type 1 blogger wanted to clarify the difference between cellular death and the possibility of regeneration.   i think this is important because the naturopathic physician i am seeing along side my allopathic practitioners does not in any way believe that beta cellular-regeneration is impossible. 
however, the beta cells produced by the pancreas in the past and present in a person with type 1 are attacked and destroyed by the immune-system's t-cells, never allowing those particular insulin-producing cells to come back---just like brain cells.  
the key of course to all of this is understanding that there is nothing wrong (per say) with a type 1's pancreas!
the problem is the immune-system.  it is essentially hyper-activated (the definition of autoimmunity) and attacking a specific organ/system within the body.  For example, with MS, the immune system attacks the myelin sheath of the spinal cord/nervous system leaving nerve fibers exposed and destructed, leading to degenerative function associated with MS sufferers.  
i believe that immunologists like dr. denise faustman are the key to our cure.  let's hope they can get to the bottom of this very destructive mode the immune-system gets in so that we can all live more wholly.
there are excellent books on autoimmunity out there, such as The Autoimmune Epidemic and Living Well with Autoimmune Disease. 
  

Thursday, August 21, 2008

sitting with skye~

today, i sat with my naturopath's new baby, Skye.  
what a basket of pure love.

he 'came' to our follow-up appointment.  while at first it was hard to be reminded of how natural medicine's goal at this point with me is to prevent complications:
"beta cells are like brain cells birdy, once they're gone, they never come back",
sitting with Skye made me realize that i do have a lot to look forward to in life.
he pulled my hair.  
he tried to suck on my shirt.
he proved that bouncing is truly a newfound joy in his life.

so i rode the wave of the pleasure of his day; reminded that i too, have always loved meeting new people, never losing that light in my eye listening to another's story.  

today, baby Skye sat with me and listened to mine. 

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

dear sunflower market~

i've never posted twice in one day, but here goes: 

just got back from sunflower market.  just bought from their bulk section.  got dark chocolate covered almonds.  mmmm, right? 
i'm reading the label on the bulk box:  "14 grams fiber, 2 grams carbohydrate, 0 grams sugar."

heaven!

i ask the bulk-foods guys,  "hey uh, you sure this is right?  i mean, it's kinda important that i know the info's correct..."  my voice trails off, embarassed.
i know what they're thinking, "what's a skinny girl like you worrying about carbs for?!" 
 
LISTEN BUDDY IF YOU WANNA.....

no, i let it go.  i figure hey, i'm still learning, i was only diagnosed in march.  almonds are pretty high in fiber, but i didn't know that high...

then i get home and start thinking, you know that uh, analytical gal in me can't help it.

THIS CANNOT BE RIGHT!

sure enough, i do some basic carbohydrate research online, and the truth is a real bummer for a gal craving some dark chocolate almonds: 
3 grams fiber, 22 grams carbohydrate, 17 grams sugar.

that's more like it. 

my heart, is seriously breaking.

should i tell them? 

oh but you must know~

jerusalem artichokes are absolutely lovely.
i love their earthy knobbiness.  and they do taste like an artichoke heart.  but harder.
a 'harder heart', eh? 
perhaps a metaphor for people we all know.
a native-american tuber. 
i like that word...tuber.
just boil a bit longer than a potato, put some butter and garlic on them and voila! 
you have earthy-knobby-tuber-goodness for your chilled autumn tummy.
if we eat seasonally, we feel more in tune with ourselves and everyone else.
i really believe that.   

update: 
jerusalem artichokes (aka, 'sunchokes') are excellent for diabetics b/c although starchy, they burn through your system much more slowly than a potato and have inulin (NOT insulin) that breaks down into fructose instead of glucose in your body.  this allows for better metabolizing of the veggie overall.  plus, i can tell you from experience, you don't need a lot of insulin to eat them!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

so i am thinking i need to re-evaluate my blog as type 1 can only be so interesting and i've got so much to say~

i think that explains it.  
more later, but to start: 
i enjoy chicken tikka so much because i am middle-eastern? 
no, because chicken tikka is just damn good.
also, i call my dog, lily, many nick-names.  one being chicken.
now lately she's  'chicken tikka'  after her ticks.  
yes, my friends, my dog had a bad case of the ticks after our hikes this summer.  
so one night, i looked at her as i craved chicken tikka and decided to call her the same. 
yum. 
  

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

no more refined sugar~

i am so done with refined sugar and flour.  it's just not worth what it does to my blood sugar! seriously, i can never seem to take the correct amount of insulin whenever i eat something with white flour or sugar.  
oh ya, did i tell you how i started using erythritol?  it's a sugar alcohol.  you can buy it at whole foods.  a bit pricey, but so worth it because you barely need any (it comes in packs to bring out with you, or in bulk for a pretty penny [$12!] for cooking.)  but here's the beauty of it that makes it worth it: 
it does not have a disgusting aftertaste.

ohmygod!  i think i wrote about my delicious treats i'd made, but ew! stevia sucks bad.  the treats are great, but you will find that stevia is not so fun. ugh! the aftertaste!  so i found erythritol and it's much, much better.  
it literally has no effect whatsoever on blood sugar, and you don't have to eat completely bland, bitter, boring food. 

 


Thursday, August 7, 2008

littlebird becomes a star~

alright, i need to hop on cloud 9 again.

i got my results from my first 'real' HgA1c.  i say 'real' because the last one included the first month of diagnosis, and that was still good (7.8 down from like 15.)

5.6!  can you believe it?!  5.6.  

for those of you not-so-medical, the normal range for a person with diabetes is less than 7%.  for all of you with beautifully functioning pancreases (would the plural actually be pancreai?  i'm over-thinking my highschool latin here)  the normal range is 5-6%.  hey people-with- normal-pancreai,  i'm just like you!  ;)

yes, i started jumping up and down like a maniac when i got the results.  i'm actually really glad that i was not at my doctor's office, because i probably would've kissed him.  and ew, my endo is not so hot.

this means a lot for me: it means my body is adjusted, it means i'm doing more than ok, it means i can make healthy babies (!)  it means i'm no longer a sugar-whacked mess.  

my internist (the one i have a 'hug attraction' to) wrote me a little note calling me his little star again. 
sigh.  i love it when he calls me that.  :)


Friday, August 1, 2008

the bipolarity of disease~

today, i am loving life.
it's funny what a disease does to you.  it takes something away, while simultaneously giving you every reason in the world to live in the moment, enjoy everything you taste, touch, smell, see, and hear.  
despite all of the glitches and problems and issues, i feel blessed to be here.  unlike most, i am deeply aware that one day, this beautiful life really will end. 
i know this because my life is injected into me everyday.  
and i'm grateful.  frustrated, confused, lacking a family support system, but so grateful to the people who have become my family. 
el futura es ahora.

(the future is now.)

we can live!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

call me "trekkie type 1"~

so because i cannot afford insurance, i am at the mercy of my local hospital determining everything i use as a type 1. 

such as, last week i was informed that "due to 'problems' with the freestyle monitors (?) you will be buying a new one today [low cost---ya, right, i payed nearly $30 for my new 'super monitor']."  
who pays for glucose monitors?
so i buy it cos i'm just grateful to have 'low cost' healthcare from my university hospital. they did, after all, save my life.

however,  AH-HEM: 

when i got home i opened my new monitor and it became very clear to me that they (the university hospital) were the ones having 'problems' with the freestyle monitors.  this new one was clearly cheaper and uh, well, cheaper.
click, pull, push, drop like a third of your body's blood to get a sample (haha) and then sometimes it says, "not enough"  (!?#%@45%!?) 
the best part is that it has a 'secret door' that you open to push 10 other buttons just to get to your average.  nice. 

oh, did i mention that it looks like something out of star-trek? 
it's like, hey, don't mind her studying over here in a cafe!  i beep 5 times when in use, and scream:  HI, I AM EMILY'S GLUCOSE MONITOR, SHE HAS TYPE 1, STARE AT HER, SHE HAS A PROBLEM!

now don't get me wrong, i'm still grateful i have everything i need right now. 
but i loved my freestyle.  i named him fred. 
he was small, inconspicuous (looked like a cell-phone) and barely needed anything for my blood sample.  so i was basically, uh, not obvious.  
i know no matter how long you've had type 1, it's nice to not look obvious. 

did i mention i run?
hmmm, so now i'm trying to run with my trekkie-monitor and where the hell am i supposed to put it on my teeny-tiny body?!  

ARE YOU TELLING ME I'M GONNA HAVE TO GET A FANNY-PACK SO I CAN CARRY THIS THING WHILE I RUN?!


cheers, friends. cheers.  
oh, and happy monitoring to all you beautiful type 1's with hip little BGMs!  
:)


Tuesday, July 22, 2008

refusing to be so insulin dependent~

so i went camping in the beautiful Pecos with my honey and best friends.  it was awesome!  PLUS, i barely took any insulin!

we hiked and ate the best food and drank water from the creek and lily my mangy mutt wandered around like she was in doggy heaven.  and i, my friends, i barely took any insulin!  haha.  i know i'm bragging, but it's so good to just EAT.  of course, it all had to do with the hours-long hikes.  but hey, i'm figuring this "insulin dependent diabetes" thing out, and something i've learned is combining carbohydrate with the wonders of FIBER and EXERCISE and WATER and PROTEIN.

ya put a type 1 on that plan and you've got nothing but awesome results to look forward to.  seriously, 6 units for one day (including my 24 hour dose) with super numbers to boot?

4 for the Lantus, and 2 for the uh, ya ok: smores!  you can't camp without fire and smores!!! i didn't need any for the other meals. 

yahooooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!


Monday, July 14, 2008

healthcare is a right, not a privilege~

the waykoolkats over at diabetes talk fest are running a petition to be signed for insurance companies to stop banning continuous glucose monitors.  if you can, please head on over to gina's site (diabetestalkfest.com) and sign it.  
    these types of issues are extremely important, because although new technologies exist to make Type 1's lives better, it is often viewed as an accessory, and not a necessity.  
HA!  because having a pancreas that continuously monitors glucose levels in the body by itself  should be considered unnecessary!  

there's a gal online who pretended to have type 1 for a day.  she said she was 'overwhelmed' to say the least... 
everyone in those insurance companies should try being type 1 (let alone all of the other disease-processes they refuse care for) for a day and then tell me if it's fun to "think like a pancreas" all day every day in order to survive! 




Sunday, July 6, 2008

good junkies bring two needles~

ya, birdy, um, bent one into the side of her vial while out to eat and was forced to do strange things to get insulin into her abdomen.
uh! no backup!

i will nevernevernever do that again.  whew! what a bruise!

:)

Friday, July 4, 2008

words to live by~

do what you love. 
know your own bone;
gnaw at it, bury it, unearth it, and gnaw at it still.
h.d thoreau, the sexiest man alive, er, dead.  

(what is it with me and guys with beards?)

Thursday, July 3, 2008

permit to protest~

our plans are almost in place.
my closest friends and i will soon be protesting, er, 'providing information to the misinformed' at our local MEPS (military entrance processing station).  this might change to a recruiter's station (you know, the friendly looking offices in strip malls between smoothie shops and blockbusters.)
this is due to the need to get the truth out there about research regarding vaccine-induced disease processes (like, um, type 1)  in military members.  
however,
there's a (teeny tiny) chance that we might
umgetarrested, 
so if you don't hear from me in a while, you know what happened. 
thank you ACLU for the info!
we probably need a 'permit to protest' (WTF?!) which we most likely will not receive (duh, who wants to give us one when we need more troops to invade iran?! you crazy byatch!)
cop watch anyone?  i will try to post the little card we will hand out when it is finished, then you can ALL print it to hand out to unknowing/misinformed members in your home states!  

(for a refresher on why i am doing this, refer to the post, "the truth sets you free." from june.)




Wednesday, July 2, 2008

do you like my hair?

i finally got it right! 
well, just call me an andrews sister!
ya, that's me up there on your left, smiling like the fruitcake i am because i'm so excited i finally got my victory roll right...OHMYGOD i have a freakishly large smile.
still, grammy would be proud!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

words to the wicked~

so this young guy i know (well, he's 24, not too too young)  had symptoms of vertigo and then wobbly legs and then tremors and then blurred vision and blurred speech, and now, needs a catheter.

no one knows what's wrong with him.   they think his cerebellum might be "inflamed".  what does that mean?  

so matthew (my honeydew) and i have been visiting him.  he's a coworker of matt's, but is also a friend. 

he can hardly stand for 20 seconds.  he's been in the hospital for about 2 weeks.  2 weeks!  god, it's been so stressful for him.   when i look at him i am reminded of how we are not promised everyday, and, how in one day everything can change.  

so i started doing massage therapy for him, so his muscle tone doesn't waste, but also for the terrible back pain he's having being holed up like that in a hospital bed for 2 weeks.   but you know, as stressed out as he is, my heart moves for him because he still manages to crack jokes about needing to go to 'rehab.'  but it's true, he'll have to go to learn how to...walk again.  

we all thought it'd be over and done with by now.  he was so sure of it when he was first admitted, that he seemed more concerned with me and  how i had been doing than himself.  and now, the word "flabbergasted" only comes to mind.  i forget that we're all handed our different burdens for who knows what reason.  certainly not because we 'deserve' it or can 'handle' it.  

but you know what?  he's strong.  he's beating it, i can see it.  and i think it's because of the little accomplishments that occur for him right now.  "no matter what", we told him, "you'll always be you."  
when i got sick, you don't know how comforting that statement was.  it reminded me everyday that i was gonna make it out.  

he gave me a big hug after our massage session today.  
i told him to take it easy, you know, no cycling or mountain climbing or picking up hot transvestites on Central. 
he just laughed and told me he was glad to know that some things never change.  

Thursday, June 26, 2008

how this works~

sometimes,

at the end of the day, 


i just want my pancreas back.

Monday, June 23, 2008

deceptive desserts~

ohmygod.

    i've made some really amazing treats.  folks, i'm only sharing this because, well, it was worth like, 3 grams of carbohydrate!  you don't even need insulin! yahoo!
    so here it goes.  i got onto about.com's lowcarbdiet thing---NOT because i eat a low carb diet, but you know, with type 1 it's like, "um, no i do not want to take 6 units of insulin for that piece of cake..."
so i found their dessert section, and yumyumyum!!!  i made homeade peanut butter cups (with cocoa!) and brownies, and coconut raspberry muffins! yaaay!  treats!  
    i didn't use splenda,  because splenda freaks me out.  i used stevia, a plant.  i may look into erythritol  (a sugar alcohol) but because i'm a naturalgeek, i've gotta take a closer look at the molecular make-up.  
  the real key with these treats is that there is no sugar or white flour used, instead things like flax meal, almond flour, and coconut flour.  also, unsweetened coco sweetened with something like stevia or berries.  yum!  (i can't stop saying that)  they're great midday snacks, so you can have your major carbohydrate content filled with insulin needs at actual meals.   so great!  

Friday, June 20, 2008

quantum leap~

i have the cutest internist.  his name's scott.  he's a resident.  nonono, he's not cute in that way, i don't have a crush on him.  i have a 'hug' attraction to him because he's so warm and friendly.  he was so awesome to me in the ER the night i got diagnosed in march.  
 it's two in the morning, and he plops down in the squeaky chair beside my skinny ass and says, 
"hi!  you're my first patient!"
"what?!  you mean your first patient?"
 shit!  i'm thinking.
"of the night, girl!" he says, laughing. 
"whoa!" he says, looking at my chart.
"have you got an adjustment to make!"  
 
the next day, scott asked me to be his... patient. *sigh*.  

haha.  so, anyway, scott says the other day that "i'm his little star" and that i'm doing awesome.  

man, that makes me feel so good to have people let me know that i'm probably not gonna die young of kidney failure and amputations and blindness and heart disease.   

i love you peabody!  keep giving me your 20%! 

Saturday, June 14, 2008

gratitude tea~

i've had some pretty crazy sugars today (most likely due to my monthly cycle beginning)  yaaay! hormones are fun!
but i am grateful today.  i will tell you why.  

because this type 1, this beast i thought was going to be the thing that got me, this frustrating set of numbers and feelings and lines and doses and cold spikes that have injected themselves into my daily life have taught me something: 
i can live!  
i look around and know that i am alive in a way that i cannot describe.  
my dearest friends and i were at the indigo girls concert last night at our local zoo, and i was looking around at all of the people there.  of course, everyone was filling up on carbs. haha.

but it made me listen more. laugh more.  pay attention to the fact that i have everything i need now.  i can taste everything in a way i never did.  i can smell everything ever more deeply.  my dreams and hopes mean something more than a goal on the timeline of my life.  in some ways, this 'disease' has become my daily reminder that i am not promised every day if i am unkind to my body. unlike most people who think their bad habits will never catch up to them---even if it is only their bad mood---i know that i will reap what i sow.  
and i want to sow seeds of joy and whole food and all of the promises i made to myself as a young adult that i would never, ever, ever, ever give up no matter what happened to me or what people thought of me.  

so here i am.  grateful as i have never been before that i can live and breathe and eat and laugh and laugh at a world full of beautiful people who can't get past themselves. 
 wake up!  our pain is not so great as to forget to see the earth at our feet, the people in front of us that we may never get to meet again.  

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

whenallyourhairisfallingoutandyourboyfriendstillthinksyou'resexy~

my hair is officially falling out.

yes, i am having a major moment of vanity.  

you see, i'm not a made-up make-uppy kind of gal. i don't even know how to use a hair dryer. and i can barely remember to shave my legs.  (whew! and i'm middle-eastern, so does it show!) my boyfriend calls me 'spike.'  
(that wasn't a joke.)

anywho, but my hair!  my lovely dark hair!  it was ok that it was going gray, like, bad.  but it was silvery!  and long! and, my boyfriend thought it was... sexy!  

ok, i'm one of those annoying lucky gals who could have hair growing on her ears and her boyfriend would still think she was sexy.  (you know the type:  "it's what on the inside that counts!")  and does he mean it!

but now this.  this "telogen effluvium"  crappola.  what the hell?!  i start taking insulin and my hair cycle stops?!  i didn't even know there was a hair cycle!  guess i missed that incredible class when it was offered at my university...

i read on some sites that once my metabolic system snaps out of the 'shock' it's in right now (snap out of it! you've got your insulin now!!!) that it will "re-enter" the growth cycle of the "hair cycle."  oh dear god, funfunfun.  ladies, tell me now whether or not i'm in for a long life of sad, stringy, patchy, pathetic hair or not.  
i promise, i can handle it.   hey, in any case, my boyfriend'll still think i'm sexy.  maybe he'll start calling me  "spikey string on a syringe."   



Wednesday, June 4, 2008

the truth sets you free~

today, my brother got diagnosed with type 1.  i just got diagnosed this march.  not too weird, eh?  both siblings get diabetes?

we're adopted.

folks, there's some disturbing results to the research i've been doing.  the only thing my brother and i have in common is this:  we both joined the military in 1999 and both got diagnosed in 2008.  coincidence?  i beg to differ.

 according to research by dr. john classen (and many others)  there is evidence of vaccine-induced type 1 diabetes amongst military members at an alarming rate.  however, because most members do not get diagnosed until they have been out of the service for a few years, they don't make the connections.  like us. 
      i was ready to accept my diagnosis as "it is what it is", bad luck, hell, i even thought it was 'environmental.'   however,  i cannot stand by and see an entity inject unknowing members with unstudied vaccines and then claim no negligence under the Feres Doctrine and it's "sovereign immunity."  people offer their lives for a small group of individuals who just want bigger cars, marble countertops, private jets... and their own free healthcare.   and what do they get in return?  missing limbs, lives, and now, pancreases.  god knows what else.  
     for a long time i've been involved in health justice and revolution.  the wrong people just lit a fire under my ass, and they're not gonna hear the end of it until people are better educated and informed about the need for vaccine safety, veteran justice, unjust wars, pathological corporations, and the never-ending need to take from those with so little already.   

Monday, June 2, 2008

diababy~

i've been reading some literature on type 1 diabetic women and the incidence of premature menopause.  uh-oh.  the peri-menopausal phase tends to begin around age 35 (instead of 40.)  that's like 5 or 6 years earlier than the average!  bummerrrrrrrr.
    i don't know if many of you know this, but i'm turning 28. i'm in my last year of pre-med and boy, did type 1 throw my plans off track, eh?  i want to go to medical school and i'm 28, which is fine. but i'm all this and type 1 now.  i don't care about age, i'm all for trying anything and everything you want when you want to.  
     such as, i can picture myself at the age of eighty taking up the uh....tuba or something strange.  or writing a children's book illustrated by a long lost love.  or hiking mt. kilimanjaro.  (ok, maybe i won't physically be able to do that, but anyone who knows me, knows i'll try.)
    my point is, my internist told me it'd be best to make a flip: have the kiddos first, and then go to medical school.  he said this is to ensure that i'm giving pregnancy my best shot, rather than at like, 35.  
but wow! this is quite the news!  whew! the adjusting that needs to be done.  but you know something?  it's all small stuff.  really, i'm not just saying that.  it's like, hey!  i'm still here!  i'm still kickin'!  i can be GUMBY!  dammit, i am beyond gumby-like now.  
      i'm lucky in that i have a superman partner in life.  i'd like that guarantee of at least trying when my eggs are still jumping around happily waiting for matthew's uh...well, you get the idea.  these are all the eggs i've got!  no chances on turnin'  into the rio grande here.
      i wonder why there is not more information in general on type 1 diabetes and women.  and certainly type 1 and pregnancy.  i was not able to participate, but the way cool peeps at Diabetes Talkfest had dr. lois jovanovic (who is a type 1 endo) on to discuss the former.  she has a new book coming out this month on diabetes and pregnancy.   it's on amazon, but she told everyone in the forum it's written for all women, not just physicians!  yaaay!  user friendly reading!  
       well, i'd love to hear from other type 1 gals/moms/friends or anyone who knows about healthy type 1 pregnancies that can tell me something other than  "as long as you have tight control, you'll be fine..."  details!  and being the science geek i am, preferably statistics and ideas and all that good stuff we latch onto when trying to learn about this disease!   i'm still sad that i'll be considered 'high risk'.  i was all about prenatal yoga and a homebirth!  yaya, call me a hippie, but i've never wanted to be hooked  up to all kinds of machines and drips and having strange doctors wearing mean eyeglasses glaring at my vulva and screaming "PUUUUUUUSH!!"  (what the? ) only to have them cut you because they're gonna miss their flight to brazil.
oh dear god.  i'm gonna need a really great doula.   







Saturday, May 24, 2008

education nation~

i was at my little part-time job (a day spa) yesterday and i have to say it really amazes me when people just reach out and understand.  my boss, clare, was so kind about my type 1.  i know, i know, it's our 'right' to be given time for snacks and breaks.  but it really means a lot to me when people are just real and do things for another person because it's the right thing to do, you know?  they just get it. everyone moves on from there and it's all cool---no drama, basically.   
     i guess i'm saying this because sometimes it really gets to me how random people i talk to now are like, "um, how did you walk around not knowing you were diabetic?!"
      *sigh*
     that's when i take a deep breath, smile at them and begin what i now call:
 "The Difference Between Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes Discussion."  
( i know all you type 1's are laughing right now...)
 as irritating and assumptive as it is to deal with it, i like that i get to be just one more person out there advocating for education, better food for all of us, better treatment for people that just feel...misunderstood.  
        but i've also realized something big lately:
you can't be understood 'til you understand.