Happy Thanksgiving to our US Friends!

Since today is Throw Back Thursday AND it happens to be the US Thanksgiving Day celebration, I thought it was the perfect time to bring back a post from 2010 that was written on the Canadian Thanksgiving of that year. 

Happy Thanksgiving and here is a list of many of the things that I am still thankful for today!

Its been a bit since I sat down and thought of all of the great things that I am thankful for from the diabetes world but I guess today is the perfect time to do just that! So without further ado and in no particular order, I am thankful for…..

1. Insulin and Sir Frederick Banting…without which my son would not be here with us today!

2.  The incredible diabetes team that has helped us grow to this point.

3. My new support team at home whose strength and willingness to learn and understand makes life that much easier for me.

4. The amazing friends that I have made because of this horrible disease.  They have been with us through the good and the bad with wisdom, a shoulder, or a kick when needed.

5. The technologies available to us to keep my son as healthy as possible. 

6. living in a province that helps me to be able to afford at least some of these great new advances in technology. 

7. a son that for the most part is pretty compliant and is slowly beginning to understand his body and the importance of keeping it healthy…even if he does try to ignore it now and then. 

8. family who watch out for my child with diabetes and are there for both of us when we need them. 

9. insurance that allows us to pay for test strips and insulin without having to worry about using the grocery money for him to survive. 

10. the ability to share our story and our frustrations with so many people who are struggling down the same river we are, knowing that somehow we will all reach the shore in one piece. 

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving everyone! May your bg levels remain stable, may you enjoy a day with loved ones, and may your meals be feasts to remember!

Diabetes Blessings…Part 2

Once again I am behind.  I could use a thousand excuses including the fact that once again I was not feeling overly blessed after looking at the large gaps in testing shown by my son’s meter but I won’t. Friends have truly been the biggest diabetes blessing in my life as I already mentioned but there have been others.

Another big one has been a deeper sense of compassion and empathy.  I have always considered my self a pretty compassionate person but when a chronic disease moves into your life, you develop a new perspective on things.  

I saw our universal health care system in a less flattering light. I began to understand the financial toll that diseases can create on families.  Its not bad enough to have a family member who requires life saving therapies or drug but having to reallocate resources to manage that can be exceptionally stressful.

I began to understand how Alzheimer and cancer patients’ families felt. I understood their battles with government and developed a first hand knowledge of something called a “formulary” which is government talk for the drugs that they feel warrant coverage under their provincial health care systems and the ones that they deem extravagant.

My heart grew that much bigger as I began to get a glimpse of the fears of parents who deal with severe allergies and asthma.  You never know when a life threatening problem will happen.  Nights are not safe. Schools are not safe. Your children being alone is a constant worry. 

Diabetes is a nightmare.  Its costs are insane without extensive private medical insurance.  The blessing in all this is that I have developed an empathy for people who live with a variety of other disease.  Diabetes is hard but it is not the only disease that is hard.  We all have our “thing” to deal with and a blessing of diabetes is that it has shown me this in a broader light.


Happy Thanksgiving

Today is Thanksgiving Day for those of us living in Canada.  Its a lovely fall day, with the leaves changing color and just a slight sharpness in the air.  Its a day that I use to refocus on the positives in my life.  For many years, I have tried to practice gratitude–you know that practice of stopping at the end of each day and count out ten things that you are grateful for? At this point in my life, I simply try to remember at least two things each night before I go to sleep. 

There are many more than two or even tens things to be thankful for of course.  I truly appreciate a warm bed, a roof over my head, clean drinking water and a hot shower each morning.  There other things to learn more of like access to medical attention, a good dentist and a lovely orthodontist that are also blessings in our lives. 

Living with diabetes there are a few different things that I remain grateful for like the support of family and friends.  As well as the support of friends who have become like family.  The support of those people who “get it” and are there for me no matter what. The support of those people who work hard to learn and try to “get it”.  Their efforts mean just as much.

I am grateful for the work of Sir Frederick Banting, who’s insulin allows my son to lead an active “normal” life.  The genius who created our “Sirius Black” insulin pump that lent a new level of flexibility to our lives.  The companies who worked to make glucometers provide results in a mere 5 seconds.

I appreciate the hair color companies more and more after each stubborn low.  Without them, my hair would be a lovely shade of white by now.  I also appreciate the makers of the Olay products and the various foundations used to keep the stress lines at bay and poly fill in those that make it through.

We often curse diabetes.  Nightly we pray for a cure.  We beg for a day without injections, testing, fighting, and fear.  Today is a day to be thankful. 

It is a time to be thankful for the work of so many who make our lives just that much easier. The people who have advanced our science to make it possible for my son and others to live longer, more fulfilling lives.  The people who fight for equality in schools and in the workforce for people living with diabetes.  Its a day to be greatful for the people who work hard to raise the money for research and those who use their know how to one day cure this disease.  Today is a day to refocus, to count the blessings brought to us by diabetes and the wonderful advances that have made our lives just a little better than it could have been.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!