Wordless Wednesday

Yesterday April 1, 2015 was the first day of The Health Activist Writer’s Month Challenge.

I’m not starting out well for the challenge since I’m a day behind and it’s only day two. The challenge is to write using the 30 prompts provided.

I also avoid selfies. I’m not feeling great about my physical appearance over the last year.

So instead of a selfie, inspired by my daughter’s socks that depict Edvard Munch’s The Scream, I painted what I call a 5 minute masterpiece. (It actually took about 9 minutes)

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The actual prompt for today:

“Since this is the start of HAWMC, post a picture that shows how excited your are for the next 30 days. We always love a good Health Activist Selfie!”

I am excited to participate in The Health Activist Writer’s Month Challenge. I am a bit worried I won’t be able to keep up. Note again how I am already a day behind. Life gets crazy. with three kids with diabetes. I will do my best and try not to berate myself when I don’t meet deadlines. Also – I should note that the title of todays prompt was supposed to be ‘Wordless Wednesday’. I dare you to find one Wordless Wednesday post of mine in the last 3 years that don’t have at least a couple hundred words.

In years past the first day of HAWMC typically asks writers to tell their story or why they write. I haven’t looked ahead so maybe that prompt is in the mix. But for any that don’t know, I write about diabetes (mostly) and our families adventures in navigating life with 3 kids with type 1 diabetes. There are funny times, scary times, angry times and frustrating times. Everyone has something and there are many days I am thankful for my kids it is Type 1 diabetes (if it has to be something). There are more challenging things to have. My interpretation of The Scream is less about how I feel regarding participating in the challenge and more of how I feel about participating in the diabetes word. (not to be confused with the diabetes community). There are simply days when the world seems to move around me while I scream.

Oh and to give you more perspective…

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It is less than 2 square inches – seen above with my Starry Night done back in December.

 

 

The 5 (oops 13) Things You Should Know

Today is Day 2 of the Health Activists Writers Month Challenge. Still not signed up – what are you waiting for? There are millions (or 26 according to how many poor souls follow my blog) of readers waiting to hear your story. Start HERE – you are only a day late.

Todays Prompt: Introduce your condition to other Health Activists. What are 5 things you want them to know about your condition/your activism?

Aside from being pictures of me this photo has nothing to do with diabetes  (although I did write a post about being the Mad Hatter).

Aside from being adorable pictures of me this photo has nothing to do with diabetes.
(Although I did write a post about being the Mad Hatter at some point).

 

I am a mom to three amazing kids. Two of my kids have Type 1 Diabetes. Type 1 Diabetes is an autoimmune disease that can not be reversed or avoided by exercise, diet, cinnamon or magic tree bark. A person with Type 1 Diabetes must take insulin to stay alive. Taking insulin does not mean the person has the “BAD” diabetes. In case you were wondering there is no “Good” diabetes. Without insulin a person with Type 1 diabetes would die. Oh and BTW – insulin can kill as easily as it saves but it’s not like a person with Type 1 can choose not to take it. My kids were diagnosed at age 2 and age 9. They were never obese and I was not in the habit of pouring sugar down their throats. Again – One Cannot Cause Type 1 Diabetes. Kids Diagnosis Stories HERE

Here are the nuts and bolts (lancets and syringes) of Type 1 diabetes – using the word ‘you’ because it is easiest (I’m already very wordy so imagine me saying ‘one has to’ or ‘a person with diabetes has to’ or ‘my kids have to’ for every bullet):

  • You cannot out grow it
  • You need to poke your finger at least 4 times a day (my kids average 10 times a day)
  • You have to give insulin shots for every meal and before bed or wear an insulin pump that is attached to the body 24/7.
  • You did not cause diabetes (can’t stress that enough)
  • There is no cure for diabetes
  • Diabetes can cause a multitude of complications (heart, kidney, nerves, eyes – can all be damaged by diabetes) I use the word “can” because most if not all complications can be avoided with well-managed diabetes.
  • Woman with diabetes can and do get pregnant and deliver healthy wonderful children (despite what is depicted in the movie Steel Magnolias)
  • You can eat everything that everyone else can eat – doesn’t mean you should – there are somethings NO ONE should eat on a regular basis if at all.
  • Exercise will not reverse type 1 diabetes but exercise is good for you and will help you manage your diabetes.
  • You can do everything with diabetes that those without diabetes can do – except serve in the US armed forces or be a commercial airline pilot in the US. There are professional sports players, Olympians, Race Car drivers, Politicians, Judges,  Mountain climbers, Musicians, and Actors with Type 1 – kicking butt and proving daily that diabetes never needs to be a deterrent to your dreams.
  • You will sleep less – whether you are a parent of a child with diabetes or an adult with diabetes – diabetes screws with sleep. Thus I suggest napping often.
  • You are not alone – there are entire communities out here to support you, provide tips, make you laugh, and hold you when you cry.
  • Celebrate the wins, learn from the not-so-much wins, laugh often (there is a lot of opportunity for humor in diabetes “Are you High?”), don’t try to do it alone, numbers are just numbers – not good or bad – just road signs helping you find your next road, don’t let diabetes become who you are, It never gets easier but you get better.

Oh Shit – I was only supposed to list 5 things. Well I’ve never been a rule follower. I could likely list a dozen more.

Don’t forget to leave me a comment if you stop by. They are like chocolate without the fat.

 

Black Hole

Today is day one of the Health Activists Writers Month Challenge. The HAWMC is a month-long even put on by WEGO Health. Each day there is a new prompt health activist bloggers are asked to write about. Even though today is day one it is not to late to join in on the fun – its free and is a great way to get started writing a blog or reenergize your existing blog if you are like me and get lazy distracted. You can find the link HERE to sign up and get the prompts.

Todays prompt: Why you write – tell us a little bit about why you write about your health online and what got you started. AND/Or Why HAWMC? This is our third year of the HAWMC – why did you get involved this year? Are you a newbie or a veteran?

This is my second year of HAWMC. I had only started my blog in Jan of 2012 and HAWMC was a lifesaver last year since by April I felt like I was out of things to say. Im back because HAWMC keeps me fresh and introduced me to many new friends.

The bigger question – why do I write?

My house is a black hole. Things get lost all the time, never to be found again. My sons iPod, my daughters favorite ring, my son’s cell phone, socks, my favorite sweater, and of course my sanity.

BTW - I can't draw very well and my daughter is busy with homework so she can't help.

BTW – I can’t draw very well and my daughter is busy with homework so she can’t help.

Of course we are in a new house (well new to us) having moved here from TX last August. Our last house was a black hole too so maybe it isn’t the house so much as me.

I’m not very organized. My home is often cluttered with papers, old mail, toys, books, homework, clothing. For this reason I’m not a fan of surprise visits. If I know someone is coming over I can tidy up fairly quick even if it means tossing all the odds and ends into the guest bedroom.

My brain is just as disorganized. I don’t believe it is something that can be diagnosed. I am just very scatter brained. I could try to blame diabetes. But honestly the disorganized brain was a pre-existing condition for me. Although likely defiantly exasperated by having diabetes in the house.

FYI – in case this is your first visit to my blog – I have two kids with type 1 diabetes. Which is also the main theme of my blog.

I digressed a bit there (disorganized brain). I write because it keeps my brain a bit more focused. It provides an outlet for all my jumbled up thoughts. I write like I talk and that is also often jumbled up.

I also write to remember (note the black hole title and the fact that things in my house disappear never to be seen again). I have a difficult time remembering things. I’m not only talking about birthdays or items on a grocery list. I mean I have difficulty remembering details of past events. Why is this a problem? Because one day I’d like to share my experiences with others by speaking at conferences or even writing a book. I pity the editor that has to proofread my work (spelling is less great and I have an issue with parenthesis and crazy run-ons).

I’ve tried keeping a journal but I lost interest and then I lost it.

I don’t write on my blog as often as I’d like – life gets in the way but the thoughts I can and do share will always be here for me to find (although I have forgotten my password a number of times).

As a health activist I write about diabetes. Having two children with type 1 diabetes is difficult frustrating saddening scary challenging exhausting hurtful stressful draining  ALL ENCOMPASSING. It can also be empowering and that is where I try to focus most of my attention.

Thanks for stopping by – good luck to you if you are new to HAWMC or a veteran. Be sure to leave me a comment with your web address so I can check out your thoughts.

HAWMC

Greetings.

I suck. (Yes I’m self-deprecating today)

I haven’t blogged for an extended period of time. Sadly this comes at a time when I have also applied for a scholarship to the Stanford Medicine X ePatient conference (thus – if you are with the Medicine X scholarship department please see older posts and know that I am a serious ePatient but just swamped in the last couple months).

Thankfully WEGO Health is about to begin the yearly Health Activist Writers Month Challenge (HAWMC). It begins April 1st and you can joy the fun by clicking HERE.

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The writers month challenge helps keep me on task. Laundry, PTA, Primetime TV, and naps will take second chair to writing each day because I love a challenge.

If you have signed up or do sign up to participate you have or will be sent a list of prompts. When or if you have received your prompts you might notice my blog address on a few. First I didn’t realize WEGO would ever consider using any of my suggestions or that they would share who suggested the prompts if they did. Second I may have sent those suggestions in the middle of the night, sleep deprived, high on Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs (no not HIGH like in blood sugars – I have a functioning pancreas – High as in a self-induced peanut butter chocolate euphoria).

Let me just say this – if you find my suggested prompts inspiring, fun, or imaginative – great it was totally me. If not – clearly my email was hacked.

 

I hope to see many of my blogging friends participating and I hope to meet a great number of new friends through HAWMC. Some of my favorite online peeps are those I met during last years HAWMC both in the diabetes online community and other chronic illness communities.

Good Luck and I’ll see you in the HAWMC.