Monthly Archives: September 2011

Happy Anniversary to the best husband a girl could ask for!


Happy Ten Year Anniversary, Jeff!  Never did I imagine how two wedding receptions, three cross-country road trips, two submarines, four addresses, four military moves,  three homes bought, two homes sold, two master’s degrees, four middle schools,  two dozen fabulous trips and travel opportunities, a hundred new friends, one rescue beagle and two miracle baby boys could bring our marriage so much love and laughter.  Never did I imagine how much more I could love you more today than when I said “I do” ten years ago!

Jeff and I dated for four years and our relationship before we were married was all long distance.  The longest period of time we had spent together before we were married was no more than two weeks.  So, getting married, moving away from my friends and family and the life I loved so dearly, moving into a hotel on the Naval base where Jeff would finish sub school for three months…the beginning of our marriage was a little complicated.  Put on top of that the fact that we were married on September 15, 2001 just 3 days after the tragedies of September 11 and our adventure of a life was going to require a little more trust, faith and teamwork than we had originally imagined.

I have thought many times about the vows Jeff should have had to recite at our wedding.  He had learned everything he could about Type One Diabetes before we were married.  Actually living in the same time zone, not to mention, room, would prove to teach him a little more.  On the day we were married the vows he recited he has held close to his heart and provided me with all that I could have asked for and more.  Here are a few of the vows of the things Jeff promised to do that day, but didn’t know he was exactly promising.  A few of the zillion things he has done with patience and kindness and compassion to ensure my good health.

As a groom marries his diabetic bride…..

I promise to be your kind, generous, compassionate, dedicated, hard-working, funny, smart husband and to make our life the very best I can.

I promise to help you find a doctor every time we move that will help you take good care of diabetes.

I promise to request and take our military medical records with us, three times, across the country, each time the file getting a little heavier.

I promise to ask you to check your blood sugar when your behavior tells me that you are high or low.

I promise to bring you juice in the middle of the night after pricking your finger and checking your blood sugar for you when you are too low to comprehend what I am saying.

I promise to bring you water and insulin and pump supplies in the middle of the night when your pump alarm wakes me up, instead of you, to change your site.

I promise to speak up for you, to be your supportive, proud husband in the security lines at the airport, in a different country and especially in our nation’s capitol so that your pump does not set off any alarms, so that you feel comfortable being yourself.

I promise to happily share a bite of my ice cream or a tiny piece of my cookie, a sip of my drink knowing that it makes you feel loved and that you appreciate just a taste of the things you know you should not eat.

I promise to do a thousand things before and while you are pregnant to keep you healthy: doctors appointments, nurse appointments, 8-10 blood sugar checks a day, helping you change your insulin measurements as the baby grows, talking through your worries and fears and joys.

I promise to help you find skittles and a granola bar when your blood sugar is dropping away from home.  I promise not to complain about low blood sugar when this happens in an airport, at church, at a concert, in the middle of a parade, while standing in line, on the way to a show, at the end of the fourth quarter in a football game, at the Sistine Chapel, in the middle of Gettysburg, at the beach, in the pool, while hanging pictures, while cleaning, while wrapping Christmas gifts, while taking care of our children, while I am driving, while you are driving, while you are just trying to live normally.

I promise not to complain about how grumpy you are when your blood sugar is high, when your pump doesn’t work correctly, or when you just get tired of it all.

I promise to support JDRF with you in all the ways possible and walk with you and wear your team t-shirt and ask my friends and family for money so that JDRF can find a cure.

Thank you, Jeff for all you have done to help me be healthy during the past ten years.  Thank you for holding me accountable, laughing with me, holding me when I cry, comforting me when I am sick or tired or worn out.  Thank you for all you have done to provide me with great medical care and for being right next to me (in body or in spirit) through it all.  I look forward to the next 50 years as your wife!

Here’s to my Jeff and all the spouses of those living full lives with chronic illnesses!  Thank you!


Third Time’s a Charm


I am hoping that the third time is a charm.  I am on pump site #3 of the day and have returned to vent in the blogging world.  If you are enjoying your Friday and feeling good about life, then save this blog for Monday!  I am tired and grumpy and welcome you to discontinue reading at any point.

I hope that I was the only person at the gym today with a blood sugar of 300.  My new pump site from this morning had malfunctioned, I took a shot of insulin and Zumba’d on.  Blood sugars returning to normal.  Mind just a little upset for the perfectly fine site I took out this morning to exchange it for a new site that did not work.  There is no way to know that it is not working until my blood sugar has been effected, then you know.  You verify that when you pull the little plastic piece out of your tummy.  If it is straight then the insulin has been going through.  If it is bent or crooked, no insulin goes into your body.  Either way, it is time to replace site.  To ease my frustration, it was crooked.

Time for lunch (and at this point I have consumed large quantities of water and am hungry).  I check, good blood sugar, give my bolus (what we call the amount of insulin you give before a meal) and wait….pump starts beeping (which is so annoying) and flashing.  No delivery.  Insert choice of bad word here.  Feeling optimistic I change out the tube and cartridge, thinking maybe the problem is here.  No such luck, still no delivery.  Now I am ready to throw in the towel, cry, call one of those sweet home health nurses to come help me.  I wonder sometimes if my body is just tired of being poked on.  I have a very nice rotation system for my pump sites, but wonder if every once in awhile my body doesn’t want the fake insulin, doesn’t want a needle or plastic tubing.  Then, I tell my body that we have boys to raise and blessings to enjoy and to soak up the *^#@*^@ insulin!  I am exhausted and would really, really like to eat my lunch and curl up for some reading while B naps before we go get Z.  Recovering from a high blood sugar takes time and energy, you don’t dare close your eyes because a nap could turn into the biggest tragedy fo your life, so you hydrate and hydrate and check your sugar every thirty minutes and hope that everything is working for good.

I  eventually muster up the courage to insert one more pump site today.  One more needle, one more insertion set that costs what I could use to feed my children a meal.  A few tears, a Diet Coke, a reminder to myself that the dishes will wait and the laundry will be there in an hour.  Today I just had time to take care of me, so I can take care of my boys.  Thanks to the blogging world for the opportunity to vent.   Thanks to my family and friends for the blessings in my life that are so great, I will forget the trials of today very soon.  Sometimes it is nice to feel heard or read or whatever when you are hanging onto the end of your rope.  Here’s to the third time being a charm!  I would love to hear from the pump wearers and parents of pump wearers of the world today!


Mendy Meets the Leaf Blower


The past few days have been a bit stressful just trying to adjust to new routines, keeping the boys on target, helping B master potty-training, being patient with Z and all the new things that kindergarten brings, supporting J in his job, etc.  All good stressors, all stressors to be so thankful for, all things I am grateful to be apart of.  Yet, still, my mind has been on overload and the normal daily chores seem terribly boring.

The weather has been gorgeous for three days in a row!  I don’t think we have hit 90 and it is lovely!  It has been a long, hot summer.  We all worked outside on Monday and took care of minor things in the yard.  Today after the gym B and I stopped at Home Depot and I brought home 225 pounds of mulch.  We brought it home and decided to clean out the flower beds a bit more before distributing our mulch.  B pulls out the rakes and shovels and I go get the leaf blower…

First, a little bit a background.  I am not a yard girl.  My parents were perfect role models in yard work, green thumbs, gardeners etc. but I did not inherit any of their skills.  Even when J was deployed, I would not touch the lawn mower or edger.  During his Navy days I took care of toilets, sinks, cars, garage door openers, snow, ice, caterpillars (anyone remember WA summer of 03??) deck repairs, flowers, taxes (thank goodness, only once), bills and had no interest in taking care of the yard.  Thankful to have my hubby home full-time, that has remained the same.  So, pulling out the big leaf blower today was a huge step.  Getting it to actually work and doing the job without breaking or burning up the leaf blower was monumental!

The lesson learned for the day?  Doing something different, doing something new and out of the ordinary is good for the body and soul!  After 5.5 years of being the domestic engineer of our home and social lives, I grow weary of the same chores over and over and over again.  But, today, I tried something new.  I was quite a sight and probably served as comic relief for my neighbors driving by on their lunch breaks, and I am sure B will have a story to tell about it.  Being tangled in extension cords and surrounded by leaves and mulch has improved my attitude and given me a new perspective.

Here’s to you (all five readers who I am so grateful for) and the new and out of the ordinary task you will try this week! I  would love to hear about it!