Author Archives: wifemompancreas

Five Seconds

five red button


Five seconds. Seems like an unbelievably short amount time. Especially considering how much runs through my mind in that amount of time every night when I check Medium’s blood sugar.

From the moment that strip sucks up the perfectly formed drop of blood, to the beep that signifies the moment of truth, a lifetime of thoughts rush through my head.

It is possible to have really good control of your blood sugar as a diabetic and rarely be surprised by the number. But the truth is with Medium, his numbers are all over the place most of the time. I attribute this to his being fairly newly diagnosed, him being 11 and pre-pubescent and the fact that it is not my body, so I don’t know how he is feeling. But what number that glucometer displays is always a surprise to me.

I don’t like surprises.

I am a planner.

A self-proclaimed cotrol-freak, and I don’t like that every night for 5 seconds I hold my breath and pray that the surprise is a good one.

In that 5 seconds, I worry that it is too high. I worry that it will be too low. Somehow in 5 seconds I am able to concurrently think about giving a correction bolus and then setting my alarm to ensure that it brought his number down. In that five seconds I decide between juice and a Quick Stick if he is low. I choose peanut butter crackers and a temporary basal rate if he is only slightly low. And I choose just a 1 hour temporary basal rate if he is just slightly higher or lower than I want. In that five seconds I worry that if he is really high, is it because he is coming down with something or because he forgot to bolus for his bedtime snack? I can already picture myself systematically choosing the correct order of the buttons on his pump to deliver a correction versus setting a temporary basal rate. In 5 seconds I am able to wonder why he is low, feel sorry for myself that this will be another one of the many nights that I won’t sleep, and picture myself hysterical if I were to find him cold and dead in his bed in the morning from this low.

Seems impossible to think all of these things in five seconds.

But I do.

Because in that 5 seconds every night, the world stands still as I hold my breath and my son’s life hangs in the balance.

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Poor sport, sore looser, sourpuss, party pooper, killjoy….

Call them what you want, but they all have one thing in common.

Unsportsmanlike behavior.

And that is something very high on my list of “dislikes”.

Medium struggles with this, at times, and so I am uber-sensitive to it.

I grew up playing sports, so even before I had a child who suffered from it, I disliked it. It is immature, mean and really, just ugly.

This past weekend, Medium’s basketball team was in a tournament; a tournament they should have won. But they didn’t even make it to the final game because they lost an earlier game in the tournament that they shouldn’t have lost. It was the worst officiating I can remember witnessing of any game of any sport that I have ever participated in or watched. Yeah, it was that bad. Particularly one referee. A female referee.

Now, let me preface this next statement with this: I have been a female basketball referee. When we were dating in college, my husband and I refereed boys about Medium’s age, in a basketball league. I WAS A HORRIBLE REFEREE!!! I was either afraid to make the wrong call, or too busy watching that I would forget that I was the one who was supposed to be making the call. After only one season I traded my whistle in for a clipboard and coached instead. I was much better at that (I’m sure that’s debatable, but I felt much more at ease, anyway). Now, I’m not saying that females should not be referees. I fully believe that women can, and should, do anything that a man can do (except referee). But I digress.

She had apparently been absent on the day of referee school where they taught what a layup was. Because she called traveling EVERY TIME one of our boys went up for a layup, and therefore at least 10 points were taken away from us. And yes, we lost by less than 10 points.

Did we loose the game because of the referee’s bad calls?


We lost the game because we scored less points than the other team…..for whatever reason. Maybe it was because of all of the missed free-throws our boys had. Maybe it was because we had too many turnovers. Maybe it was because our head coach wasn’t there and my husband had to step in and coach-nah couldn’t be that. Maybe it was because we got some really bad calls by the referees. Or maybe, just maybe, it was a combination of all of those things. Maybe the sequence of events that happened that afternoon, all led to us not scoring enough points to win.

Sports are not always fair.

Life is not fair.

The University of Kansas (my alma mater) played Iowa State University this week and there was a very bad no-call with 4.9 seconds left in regulation that resulted in KU being able to tie the game, sending it in to overtime, where they eventually won. And boy have I heard about it! I cannot stop hearing news and sports reporters talking about it. People are all up in arms on Facebook. And it really ticks me off. Of course, my team won, so one could accuse me of being biased in this case. And one could be right. It’s hard to take your emotions out of such things.

What makes me so mad is that, I try really hard to teach my son that when bad officiating happens in one of his games, that he just has to brush it off. It happens to every team. Every team gets bad calls in every game. True some of them end up having a bigger impact, and may seem to alter the outcome of the game. But I tell him that he need only worry about the things he can control. He should focus on playing better defense, rebounding better, and taking better shots. I tell him he has no more control over the calls the referees make than I have over my age (and boy I wish I did!)

But then he hears over and over again, by adults no less, about how unfair the KU-ISU game was. And how Iowa State should have won. And what kind of actions are going to be taken against the referees. Now, make no mistake, I hope that female referee of ours never officiates one of our games again (at least not until someone shows her what a layup is). But humans make mistakes. And I agree that big enough mistakes, invite consequences. And if these refs consistently make bad calls (or bad no-calls) then they should be dealt with. But they had all of about .004 seconds to make that call. And all of this carrying on about the referees in that game, negate everything I am telling my son. And I hate it when people undermine me. 🙂 I just hope my children aren’t growing up to think that as adults, you aren’t allowed to make mistakes.

The bottom line is this: Life is not fair. Shit happens. Quit yer cryin’. Get over it. Move on. There are bigger fish to fry. This grass isn’t always….wait that one doesn’t fit.

Well, you get it.

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Diabetes Isn’t Funny…And Neither Is This Blog

I have been struggling to write lately. I had been blaming it on our busy fall schedule, having the house on the market, the move, the holidays…..

But it seems that those were just excuses.

I think I have identified the problem.

Diabetes isn’t funny.

I am a funny person (people tell me this anyway). And I do know, and fully admit, that I always use humor to diffuse unpleasant situations. So I love to write funny shit. And I was blessed with a personality and perspective to always find the funny shit.

But diabetes isn’t funny.

And this blog is about diabetes and my thoughts, feelings and experiences with having a child diagnosed with diabetes. And I passionately want to educate people about this disease and I want to be a source of information for new families facing this awful diagnosis.

But again, I have to say it. Diabetes isn’t funny.

I mean, it’s not even remotely funny.

There is nothing funny about blood sugars in the 500’s with moderate ketones.

And I assure you that a blood sugar of 31 is not going to get a chuckle from me.

I promise you that worrying about whether my son will loose his eyesight or keep his limbs, is not the least bit whimsical.

Hoping and praying that my son will someday find someone who will love him and be willing to take on the beast that is this disease does not crack me up.

So, all I am left to write about is the sad, scary, lonely, depressing feelings I have about diabetes.

And that sucks.

It bums me out.

I have already written posts about how type 1 has nothing to do with sugar, and that it really is about a confused immune system and bad luck. I have written many times about how tired I am now that I have to set alarms and check blood sugars all night long and how that contributes to anxiety and feelings of depression.

I have written about the “Honeymoon” period and even about diabetes and ADHD.

Sure I have peppered in a few non-diabetes related posts about ants, laundry, computers and make-up (this one is hilarious-if I do say so myself! And totally true!)

I’ve even written more than one post about not having anything to write about!

But this blog is supposed to be a source for others going through the same thing to find valuable information about timely, targeted diabetes information!


Ok, so I’ve made a decision.

This is my blog and I can do whatever I want. I didn’t sign any contract to ONLY provide diabetes related posts!

And the fact is, that while others that are going through the same thing as me DO need diabetes information, they are still regular people who need to laugh and get AWAY from diabetes sometimes.

Sometimes you need to read about how someone else’s 5 year-old had a MASSIVE code brown in the MEN’S room at a high school during your other son’s basketball tournament and how you had to have your oldest son stand guard outside and not let any men in and how in the end you had to abort the underwear  AND shorts AND shoes and usher the 5 year-old out the side door before you either got chastised by the janitor or arrested for having a half-naked 5 year-old in a public place. (Yeah, pretty sure we are not welcome at Shawnee Mission West High School anymore).

So, my friends, as I am entering the second year of my blog, I am taking it a new direction. If I’m ever going to write again. I’m going to have to start including some non D material.

After all, the name of the blog is WifeMomPancreas, because I am not just a pancreas!

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Diaversary. Weird word.

What does it even mean?

I’m not 100% sure, but I think it means, “diabetes anniversary”. But, it could mean “diagnosis anniversary”.

Either way, it sucks.

It is not something I’m happy about.

I don’t even want to acknowledge it, let alone celebrate it.

I suppose it’s all about the way you look at things. Glass half full versus glass half empty kind of thing.

I know I am supposed to be positive and I usually do try to find the silver lining in every situation. I am always impressed, amazed, and flabbergasted when I read blogs, articles and Facebook posts from people who are going through significant struggles and they are so positive.

But I just can’t be that person today.

There is nothing good about my son being diagnosed with this awful disease a year ago. Nothing.

For 365 days now, his life has literally been threatened.

Veterans of this disease probably don’t think of it that way. Or they don’t focus on it that way. But I am still a newbie, and right now I feel like I will never be able to focus on anything else.

Every day is affected by diabetes.

Even if Medium is having a good day and his numbers are good, I inevitably read on Facebook about someone else’s struggle with their own or their child’s sugars that day. Or I read in the news that someone has died as a result of their diabetes.

I know it is all about perspective.

Because every day there are also millions of people living successful, happy, meaningful lives, despite their diabetes. Every day there are people posting good numbers or successful sleepovers or trips to the movies. Every day people with diabetes are getting married, having healthy babies, graduating from college, playing professional sports. The point is, they are living with diabetes. And so maybe I will be able to see things differently one day, too.

But today is not that day.

Today marks an event that happened a year ago, that changed my life forever; re-defined the word “mother” for me. But more importantly, my son’s life has forever been changed. He is forced to head down a path that I didn’t choose for him. It is a path that no one would choose. God chose this path for him, and maybe someday I will understand why. But right now, I disagree with God. Right now, God and I are going to agree to disagree on this one.

My oldest son, Large, has started talking about driving. He will turn 14 this year and in Kansas, where we live, kids get their driving permits when they are 14, so it is on his mind.

While I was driving home from work last night and driving by the hospital where Medium’s endocrinologist is, a thought smacked me across the face.

Medium will be 14 one day, too. He will want to get his driver’s permit. He will turn 16 and want to drive someday.

This is one of, I’m sure, many situations that I had not yet thought about. The questions started flooding my brain. Will I let him drive? Will I make him check his blood sugar before he starts up the engine every time? Will I ever let him drive alone? How have other D-moms and dad handled this situation?

It just sucks so much for him. I know that is a pretty immature and simplistic way to put it, but it does. It sucks rocks. Big ones.

Not only does he have to have this horrid disease which has robbed him of his innocent and carefree childhood. But it makes him feel like crap sometimes, he has to stab himself with needles 10 times a day (which if you’re counting and can do simple math is 3,650 finger stabbings since diagnosis a year ago), play dates and sleepovers at other people’s houses are almost non-existent, he has to be tethered to a device 24-7 FOR THE REST OF HIS LIFE, and he can never just live in the moment. He has to be one step ahead of the game at all times. He has to check his sugar, make sure he has food to treat a low, make sure he has his meter and extra test strips every time he leaves the house. He is singled out at school as a kid with a medical condition.

That is no way for a child to live.

It is so not fair.

And besides how worried I am all the time about his long term health and whether or not the life-saving insulin we give him is going to kill him overnight while we are all sleeping, I am so, so sad for him and this life he is forced to lead.

I know he will have as a great a life as possible, because I will see to it. But the reality is that he has type 1 diabetes.

And that sucks.

And so today, on Medium’s first diaverary, I will not celebrate.

Maybe next January 24th I will feel differently.

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Hell Hath No Fury

I’ve had a house guest for almost a year now. He was not invited, and he won’t leave. I’ve been really busy for the last few months so we’ve been able to stay out of each other’s way, for the most part.

But Medium’s numbers have been totally whack lately and it’s all his fault. The uninvited guest, that is.

The other night when we checked at bedtime he was 467……WTH? 467??? Just two hours earlier he was in the 100’s. So of course I rage bolused on him and then checked  him 2 hours later and he was 187. Then I decided to check him again at 3:00 a.m. because I got up to pee.

My bleary eyes watched the countdown on the meter 5, 4, 3, 2, 1…..54.

Blink. Blink.


Get the hell out of my house. I’m so over you, you don’t even know it.

It’s easy to push him to the back of my mind when I am extremely busy. It is easy for me to not get down about him when I don’t have time to think about him.

But things have finally slowed down a little bit in my life and now he is all up in my grill again.

And as much as I want to stick my head in the sand and ignore him, I can’t.

Because my son’s life depends on me paying attention to the rude, ugly, smelly, obtrusive and down-right abusive guest.

So here I sit. Vigilantly watching the stupid SOB.

He’d better sleep with one eye open.

Hell hath no fury like a woman whose child’s life has been threatened.

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A Mother’s Wish

sunrise tree***So….it has been so long since I have blogged that I just found this post that I wrote back at the beginning of December and, for reasons that I cannot remember, I did not post. So this should have been posted on December 2nd….better late than never??? Anyway….

Tonight I met the mom of a boy that is in the cast of Nuncrackers with Large. We’ve know of this boy for a while because he is active in the Kansas City theater community, but this is the first time he and Large have done a show together. Several of us parents were lamenting at how busy life is especially with these theater kids and rehearsals and how most of us live so far away from downtown and the areas where most of the theaters are.  All of us in the conversation were working moms. One of the mom’s has recently gone back to full time work and I was commiserating with her as less than 2 years ago I went from part time to full time too. I mentioned how that was already hard and then Medium was diagnosed with t1d this year and how much I hate being so far away from him every day. So the mom of this other boy sits up and says that her oldest has type 1 and has had it for 14 years. Who knew?  She was asking how we were doing and commented how the first year was the hardest.

I sort of unleashed on her and told her about the downward spiral I took into the deep, dark pit of despair (the DDPOD) right after diagnosis. I told her that what sent me into that pit was reading things, mostly blogs on the internet, and being smacked in the face with the reality of what our life was going to be like and all of the things that I hadn’t yet worried about but now knew to worry about. I told her how I started a blog to deal with my emotions. She told me that she wrote and recorded a song with her son about how she felt. And as she was telling me this it was sounding really familiar. Turns out, we got her CD in the hospital with a bunch of other stuff; poems, books, websites, etc. And her song was one of the things that I just could not listen to in those early days. The words were written inside the CD and I started to read them, but couldn’t even finish. I didn’t want to learn any more things that I needed to worry about. I already knew that I was praying for a cure, but I wasn’t ready to really know what that meant. Because what it meant was that every day for the rest of my life I would hope and pray for a cure so that my son could live a long, happy life with legs that would take him where he wanted to go. So that he could see the world with strong eyes, and have a strong heart to find the right girl. (Words from Renee Austin’s song, “A Mother’s Wish”.)

So I came home tonight and I went somewhere I hadn’t been in a long time. I opened the drawer that held all of those poems, and books and her CD. And I got it out and I listened to it for the first time. And I cried just as hard today as I probably would have if I had listened to it back then.

Because it is true. It is the ugliest truth there is; that your child’s health and happiness are threatened every day.

But I have a different perspective now than I had ten months ago and I wasn’t crying from that same terrified place. I’m not going back into the DDPOD. That was a place where there was no hope.

I am still scared. I am still sad. I still worry every day about my son’s future.

But I have hope now.  Ten months ago I had no hope.

We are doing this. It is hard, and scary and awful sometimes. But we are doing it.

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Airing My Dirty Laundry

I know that it is a time tested woe of families everywhere, but I have to take a moment out of my life to rant about laundry.


I think the Duggars are the only people on the planet who have more laundry than we do.

And I know that it is my fault for buying so many clothes. Well, actually, I used to buy my boys a ton of clothes. I don’t buy them anything anymore because all they will wear is the t-shirt they got from football camp or VBS or some other article of clothing that looks like we dug through the lost and found! But even though I am not buying many new items, I obviously need to go through the stuff we do have and pare down a bit. But still. The amount of laundry we have is crazy, insane, asinine, redonkulous….call it what you want, it is just wrong. Today I counted 6 baskets of clean laundry (curiously place all around my house-none of it folded),  a GINORMOUS pile of dirty laundry in our master bathroom, an over-flowing basket of dirty laundry in Brett’s closet, a full three-section hamper of dirty laundry in the laundry room, a huge pile of clean laundry on the counter in the laundry room and a load in each the washer and the dryer. And this doesn’t even include all of the dirty socks, uniforms and other random items that I’m sure are in my car needing to be laundered.

And socks? Oh don’t even get me started on socks. We are not independently wealthy but I swear I am just going to start throwing socks away and buying new ones every week. There isn’t enough Xanax in the world to deal with trying to match up socks for 3 boys!

So I have identified part of them problem- we have too many clothes.

I think I know the other part of the problem and I know I am going to get all kinds of comments and hate mail for this , but here goes.

My dear husband, whom I love very much, is responsible for laundry in our house. I do the mail, pay the bills, make appointments, keep the family calendar, go through school backpacks, he does the laundry.

And I don’t like how he does it. (Ironically, he doesn’t like how I do it either, which is how he won himself the title of Laundry King in the first place….but I digress).

He waits and lets it all pile up for days and days, and then he will do 87 loads in one day. The problem with this is that then when those 87 loads come out of the dryer, he rarely folds it, and NEVER puts it away. So we either have ginormous piles of dirty laundry or thousands of baskets of clean laundry laying around.


And I know that if someone were asking me for advice, I would tell them that if they want something done a certain way then they either need to do it themselves or they need to hire someone to do it so they can yell at them and say, “hey, I’m paying you to do this, so do it MY way!”

But I can’t afford to pay my husband to do it, and I don’t have time to do it myself. I am going to have to find another way to deal with my evil nemesis. But until then, I will just vent about it on my blog. (So no, I’m not going to shut up. It’s my blog and I can cry about laundry if I want to!)

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Who Am I Voting For?

  So I was going to write a post about laundry (exciting, I know. Look for that one next!) but instead I have to write this one because I am infuriated!

Something (or more likely someones) did something to our laptop and now when you open a web browser (internet explorer or Google Chrome) two other “home pages” open as well; some Yahoo page and some stupid Babylon something-or-other. I don’t know how to get them to stop opening, so I just have to close them every time. Also, every night at 7 pm some stupid “computer fix” crap kicks me out of everything that is opened on my computer and “runs a check”. And I don’t know how to get rid of that either. And finally, some stupid Social Search toolbar has been installed. And you guessed it, I have no idea how to get rid of it either! And the worst part about it is that when I am on my blog, the toolbar covers half the page and I can’t get to any of the tools I need to write a post or manage my blog from my home computer!

This crap makes me CRAZY! This should be illegal!

You want to know who I’m voting for???

I am voting for the person who makes it illegal and punishable by death to write programs that install crap on someone’s computer without their knowledge and without any obvious way to uninstall it!!!!!

I’m Danielle, and I approve this message.

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