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Guest Post: Jumping Right In!

Holly is a sweetheart who is jumping into the diabetes blogosphere with her blog, Arnold and Me.  She says that she used to have a lot of conflicting emotions about diabetes, but she's no longer ashamed.  Check out her post below and then be sure to skip on over to her blog and welcome her to the crew!!

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Hello, my name is Holly!  I am 25-years-old and I’m from Alabama.  I am married to the most wonderful, patient man I’ve ever known, Trey.  I am the pet momma to two cats (Charlie & Elvis) and one dog (Roscoe).  I love SEC football.  I work as an environmental engineer for NASA.  And I love the weather, especially thunderstorms, tornadoes, and hurricanes.  

Oh yeah, and I have diabetes.  

On December 11, 2006, I woke up in my local hospital’s intensive care unit after experiencing diabetic ketoacidosis.  My blood sugar was over 1400 at the time of my hospitalization.  That afternoon, I met my endocrinologist.  He told me that I was type 1 diabetic but it wasn’t my fault and I had done nothing wrong.  So, two weeks after my 22nd birthday, my life changed.  

For the first three years after my diagnosis, I was ashamed that I was diabetic.  I avoided testing in front of people, especially friends and family.  I would test and dose in restroom stalls when I was out in public.  I would always wear my pump inside a pocket or somewhere discreet.  Regardless of what my endocrinologist told me, I somehow felt this “thing” was my fault and I wanted to hide it.  

But now, I want to start a diabetes blog.  What changed?  Am I more open to this “thing?”  Am I less shy and private about it?  Hardly!  Then, why start a blog about one of the most personal areas of my life?

For starters, I am no longer ashamed to have diabetes.  I understand this was meant to be a part of my life and was written for me long before I was born.  However, there are some aspects about living with a disease that can only be fulfilled by sharing it with others:  

Accountability: 
I don’t know why, but my numbers are always better when I write them down.  Regardless if I eat the same or work out the same, my diabetes is more in check when it’s logged.  I guess it’s kind of like when a trainer tells you “think about the muscle you’re using.”  When I think about my diabetes, the more in control it seems to be.  I’m hoping that with displaying my numbers and habits for anyone to see, my conscious will nag me to take better care of myself.  

Community: 
The first type 1 diabetic that I met in real life was April (fellow d-blogger, Nerdy April, and space nerd).  We were working together at a summer camp for kids.  It had been less than six months since my diagnosis, and I guess I was still in shock.  When I told her I had just found out I was diabetic, she gave me a hug.  A hug.  From someone who understood.  NO!  She knew!  That was my turning point, I wanted more of that.  More people who felt the same way I did.  More people with this “thing.” 

Encouragement: 
Let’s face it, we all have our highs and lows (pun intended) with diabetes.   And I’ll have my days where all I want to do is test on my middle finger and say, “F-U, diabetes!”  But sometimes we have our little victories.  Like finally getting a fasting BG below 130.  Or bringing my A1c down by 0.5%.  I want encouragement for all that and for when my husband and I want to have a baby (but not yet, Mom!).  And encouragement for when I want to ask my doctor for a CGM—and fighting the insurance company afterwards.  

For those of you who are experienced at this, what other reasons have you found a d-blog to be beneficial?  I’d like to know what I’m getting myself into.  =)

So, thanks to Kerri, for letting me make my first official d-blog post on SUM.  You can check out my blog at Arnold and Me.  I’ll start with the story of my diagnosis, which you can tell from my intro was very dramatic.  Then, some more non-D things about me.  

P.S.  I’m also a huge Twilight nerd.  Team Jacob! 

Comments

Thanks, Kerri, for allowing me the opportunity to post today. For awhile I was just a "lurker", now I'm a blogger! =)

I'm so happy that I'm staring to "meet" so many more d-bloggers and welcome their presence in my life.

Oh my. A fellow T1, a fellow southerner, AND a fellow Team Jacob fan. Wow. I think you are my new best friend. :)

Holly, I was diagnosed about 1 month before you! (And I also love Jacob!!)

Hurray, fellow D-sista Holly!! So proud of you for this post. I never realized I was the first T1 you met...I feel extra special :-)

Hey Holly! I was born in Dothan, AL (now live in Louisville, KY), I am a huge SEC football fan (Roll Tide!!!) and I am a Type I Diabetic (diagnosed at age 18). I think, as Cara said, you may be my new best friend, granted you cheer for the correct team (wink). :) Can't wait to start reading your blog! Great post!

Welcome Holly! Just have to make a little shout out for Team Edward :)

Welcome, Holly. My 8 yo is also a T1 Team Jacob fan... her reasoning is that testing would cause too much temptation for Edward lol

My main reason for reading (stalking?) D Blogs is to let me know as a mom that it's going to be ok...

As far as hiding it... so far (after 2 years) my daughter isn't... but I'm sure as she approaches the teen years that may change... in the meanwhile we focus is that it is part of her and not what defines her, as best we can.

Hi again Holly! Glad to see you here too and look forward to reading and tweeting more!

@Lindsay Campbell: *clears throat* WARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR EAGLE, HEY! Sorry, my dear, but YOU are cheering for the wrong team. ;-)

@Andrea: I love Jacob because the way Stephanie Meyer describes him is exactly like my hubby. The room feels so much warmer when he's there, my "earth bound sun". But I also get the testing thing. Edward is just to melodramatic and metro for me.

Oh no Holly!!!! Oh well, so much for our new found friendship! Ha, ha, just kidding, I guess we can still be friends. :)

@Holly... well she's 8, I'd be worried if it was on any sort of deeper level lol

I hate to admit that I'm probably one the few that hasn't read the books yet... but Santa did deliver the box set for my 12 yo... I may read them this summer... have seen the movies though :)

I am laughing at this Jacob/Edward discussion. (Can I just ring in for Team Jacob? I agree - Edward is way too metro for my taste.)

Hey Holly! Welcome to the D-Blog community! Awesome opening post.

I was diagnosed a couple months after you.

I found blogging useful for keeping track of how my diabetes goes. It's also an outlet for me to talk about diabetes. Get it on paper (so called) so it's out of my head. Gives me a place to rant and a place to share success.

My family also uses my D-Blog to see how I'm doing. They're all such worry warts. :) But that's family.

Good luck with the blog! Have fun!

I'm happy to know you Holly, and I'm looking forward to reading more of your posts!!

-Brenda

Am I allowed to post a comment if I haven't read or seen Twilight materials?

In any case, welcome!

Great guest post. I am on the fence between Team Edwards and Team Jacob. I guess I really need to see New Moon. Welcome to blogging.

Hi Holly!

Welcome to the DOC! It is a magically empowering and supportive family. I'm so glad that you've jumped in with us!

It's fun to hear your story! Having my own D-blog helps me keep a record of things so I can go back and see if there are patterns or things I can learn from the past. I think it's great that you've started your own!

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