Stop Diabetes

Saturday, November 28, 2009

'ecember - Because December will be a No-D month.

My friends and family have been so patient with me as I've been learning about my diabetes management.  It seems like I'm obsessed, well, I am a bit.  It's hard to NOT be obsessed when you feel so crappy at least once a day and your life is so altered.  I'm grateful they've all put up with my millions of tweets, dblog and Facebook messages about the "D" word.  But, I am SO much more than just a person with diabetes. (PWD) 
I thought the one month that starts with a D would be the perfect month to declare a No-D month.  During the month of December, unless asked specifically, I will not be talking about diabetes.  No complaining about what I can't eat, no need to explain to the restaurant servers why I'm ordering a certain way, no tales of daily highs. (I've only gone low 2 times since being diagnosed, so that's not usually a topic of conversation.) You will all be able to read about other pieces of my life for a change.  I've got plenty to say about my faith, my hobbies, my family, my friends, my job.  All these things are probably far more interesting than what I've been sharing.
I was amazed that when I first mentioned my diabetes on FB, how many friends wrote to tell me they too were diabetic.  That's odd, I've known them for YEARS and never knew.  Perhaps I just don't need to be sharing my every Dmoment with the world.  It'll be tough, I'm a pretty open gal, as you've probably noticed, but, I'm willing to stick with it to have some different conversations.
So, what are some things we have in common. . here are some of the things I'd like to share about myself:
  • First, always, I'm a Christian and love my God more than anyone or anything.
  • I've got a GREAT husband who takes very good care of me.  We've been married for 1.5 yrs (still newlyweds) and even though I never would imagine it possible, I love him more and more every day!
  • We have four beautiful, bright, witty, talented, daughters. I'm not biased at all.
  • My mom lives near by and we're really close.  She moved to KS when I did and I'm really happy to have her so close.
  • I LOVE paper crafting; scrapbooks, cards, gifts, etc.  You name it, I'll try to make it.  I teach basic scrapbooking as well as some more advanced classes at Joanns and would love to have you join us for a class.  I'll post some of my projects this month. . hopefully, you'll be inspired to get creative.
  • I am still in contact with my closest friends from elementary thru high school.  I'd like to introduce you to some of them and share how they've inspired me and been such an important part of my life.
  • I've also made some great new friends this past year in the DOC and offline.  They've inspired me in ways other than my D-management and I'll share that too.
Well, I said all that to say this; I have plenty to talk about this month of 'ecember.  So, stay tuned, I hope you all learn more about than my blood glucose level this month.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving according to FB

I polled my Facebook friends last week, asking for their best Thanksgiving memories.  What struck me, is that most of them wrote about time given to their community or time spent with others.  I didn't have one person focus the Black Friday sales, traditional foods, football, napping or parades.

Paige wrote about times spent four-wheeling in the desert with family from California. Another year, they served meals with Victory Outreach and then stayed home together watching movies.  I know this family fairly well. . I can see them all curled up on the couch together, giggling and teasing. 

Cindy also wrote about serving meals at the Salvation Army kitchen with her hubby.  It delayed their trip home to be with the extended family, but she says it was SO worth it. 

While Annette talked about the smells and tastes of her grandmother's wonderful cooking, she also talked about sharing the meal with her family and building some great memories.

Veronica spoke of crawling up on her grandfather's lap to watch football.  I wonder if it was really the football game she remembers or the warmth of building that moment with her grandfather?  I'm thinking the security, love and inclusion by G'pa was the whole holiday for her.

And finally, but certainly not least, my friend Tahmina spoke of inviting 15 for dinner and having 40+ show up.  She is quite famous in the SLC area for her incredible cooking.  She includes foods from many cultures and countries.   But, it's not the cooking that we all remember (well, it is but). . it's being a part of a world-wide community in her home.  We were so fortunate to have people there from Congo, Sudan, Bangladesh, Barbados, Iran, Bosnia, and even some of locals.  We always had the best time sharing food, culture, music, dance, prayer, conversation and some pretty amazing stories.

I'm pretty convinced that it is NOT the turkey, dressing and cranberries that bring us together each year in November.  It is the draw of our heartstrings, pulling friends and family ever closer to help us meet the challenges we all face. . TOGETHER. 

Thanks to each of you responding to my request.  I wish you and yours a fantastic holiday season and know that you are in my hearts and prayers always!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

When someone cares. . .

I had an interesting conversation with a 1st grader tonight.

We have a group of couples (and their children) from Sunday School that get together for dinner on Sunday evenings. We're all very close and I honestly, don't know how we would've gotten through this transition in our lives without the love, support and prayers of these wonderful friends.  It is exemplified in this story, as they've passed those caring skills on to their kids. Two of the daughters, "N" and "B," are my buddies.  They always give me a hug, tell me about something exciting in their day, and giggle endlessly.

Tonight, we went to Jose Peppers for dinner.  Prior to being diagnosed, I LOVED this restaurant.  I'd always have the Corona Shrimp Tacos with rice and black beans.  But, the crowd favorite there is the Espinaca, a spinach, cheese dip; SO yummy with their crispy, thin tortilla chips.  Since my DLife, I usually order a salad and bring my own chips that I've made by baking low-carb tortillas.  Again, tonight, I brought my chips in a little bag and started dipping into the salsa and espinaca and "B" asked why I have my own chips?  I told her that those chips make me feel bad, and I make my own.  She seemed satisfied with the answer.  Then it happened. .

"N" leaned over and told "B", "Barb has diabetes." They argued back and forth for a minute before "N" asked to confirm.  "Hey Barb, you have diabetes, huh?"  Yes, yes I do "N."  She then turned to "B" and said, "See, I told ya.  Barb has diabetes and she can't eat bread or chips or rice or potatoes."

I know many of you out there will tell me that I CAN eat these foods, but for me, they really spike me and require a GREAT deal of exercise to get my BG back down.  I'm only supposed to eat 30 carbs for a meal, so to have any of those things would really take me over the limit and I'd be a zombie within 20 mins.  That's really not the point of this story. . .

Really, the point of this story is that "N" is SIX YEARS OLD!  She remembered these details about my life because when she learned it, it affected her, it moved her, she realized it was something important to remember about someone you love.  I've got friends that are MUCH older than that, that can't remember I have diabetes, let alone a list of what I can't eat.  Honestly, when I heard her explain this to "B," I wanted to cry; because I felt so loved, I felt so HEARD, I felt so important to a little girl that I adore.

When someone cares, they hear when you speak.  They feel when you hurt.  They remember important details about you.  They want to come hang out with you. (She's dying to come hang out in my scrap booking studio.)  They're not afraid to show you affection.  They're so excited when you walk into the room.  I think I need to take a lesson from my buddy, "N."  It made me wonder if I show the same kind of care for my friends and family and if I don't I'm sorry.  I'm taking this lesson from "N" and hoping to love the way she does.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Ever have one of those days?

Do you ever feel like you're having one of "those" days.  No matter what you do, nothing goes your way? This poor kid stopped the ball, ran to the line, just like she was taught. . but instead of throwing the ball, decided to kick it.  Now, I've go to admit, she's probably got a better kick than me and I'm sure her little flip-er-doodle would be even funnier coming from a 47 y.o. chic like me. . but, kick it she did.

Sometimes, it's just that our fundamentals aren't there.  She was probably taught to scoot the ball down the field as the other kids were doing.  She was obviously taught to grab the ball and run to the line with it.  Was she ever taught the proper skills for kicking the ball with distance from that position?  Was she given time or incentive to practice that move?  She's pretty young and looks like a fairly new soccer enthusiast.  As a former coach. . that's what I see in this video. . and in my own life experience.

There are times in my life when I feel that I am just beating my head against the wall. . whether it be at work, in relationships, my faith walk or my diabetes management.  I just can't seem to advance and feel that I'm accomplishing anything.  Is it that I'm not trying hard enough?  Am I not diligent, sincere or well-meaning enough?  Perhaps it's that my fundamentals need a little practice.

In relationships, perhaps I haven't been simply gracious enough.  We all like to talk about our own situations and try to relate to others.  Have I listened with full attention when my friend has shared something important to them?  Or did I just jump right in with a solution or a "like" situation to relate with them.  Sometimes the best response is just a nod and a hug.  So, feel free to say Hey, Barb. . shut-up and hug me. 

My husband travels, ALOT.  Have I thanked him often enough for the sacrifice he offers every week when he leaves his family and gets on that plane?  Do I do enough to help him prepare for his trip?  Do I let him know how happy I am when he arrives home?  (Thanks Babe!  You work so hard to provide for us and I want you to know now how grateful I am.)

I'm in a fairly new position at work.  I've been a banker for so long and in February, I started working in marketing.  My boss is wonderful and has taught me SO much.  But, at times, I really feel like the dunce.  It's not that I'm stupid, my fundamentals just need some work.  I need to know what abbreviations like, SEO and PPC mean.  I'm really learning about market research and the difference between quantitative research and anecdotal research.  But, that doesn't come naturally to me.   These conversations with clients take practice and we rehearse all the time.  He understands the importance of my practicing my fundamentals.

Diabetes is new to me.  I didn't grow up watching a relative make proper food choices, bolus before/after a meal or talk about checking their feet for open sores.  I've scoured the internet for information, talked to my diabetes medical team at length and joined every diabetic online community I can find.  But, I'm still learning the fundamentals.  Just because I have 30 carbs available for my meal doesn't mean I can spend those 30 carbs on anything I want.  Some foods cause my BG to soar into the 300's with others simply raise it enough to verify I've eaten.  I've had to learn what time of day is best of my meds, my vitamins, my fish oil, my fiber, my exercise.  The fundamentals of testing my BG, making the right food choices and exercise are the fundamentals of self-managing my diabetes.  And BOY, does all that take practice.  I definitely relate to this little girl when it comes to this.  There are days when I not only feel that I've scored one for the other team, I've also done that flip-er-doodle and landed on my behind!

Sometimes, I feel like my prayers hit the ceiling and fall back to the floor around me.  Is it that God has taken a vacation to the Bahamas?  Is it that I don't know how to pray?  Perhaps my fundamentals need some practice here too.  Maybe when I'm spending my quiet time with Him, I'm doing too much talking and not enough listening.  Maybe He's trying to show me an area of my life that needs some tweaking, and I'm going on complaining about how unfair it is that I have a chronic disease.  The fundamentals of memorizing His Word, spending time with Him and listening for His voice and taking the time to see Him working all around me may need a workout.

When I coached softball, I was amazed that when I asked college coaches about what they were looking for in a softball recruit, many of them said they didn't care, they had to reteach the fundamentals from the beginning.  Many of the players arrive at that level with bad habits, poorly formed skills and feeling like they were superstars.  Let's not make the same mistakes.  Let's remember that the fundamentals will always get us through, but we need to continually hone our skills in whatever we do.  Let's not be so arrogant as to think we're better than we are and we don't need practice.  As I used to tell my team, practice doesn't make perfect, PERFECT practice makes perfect.

Have a great week!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

World Diabetes Day - Wow!

I've gotta tell you. . this weekend is one of those that you just know you'll never forget. . .

I was diagnosed July 24, 2009 with Type II Diabetes.  I really had no clue what that diagnosis would mean to me, how it would change my daily routines, how it would change my life.  I did nothing for two weeks while I waited for the meeting with my dietitian.  I had been on Weight Watchers before and thought that since that was a healthy diet, I'd go back to that until someone told me differently.  I was eating the right number of points, but most of them were carb-loaded and I still felt horrible.  I tried to stick with salads and meat after the first few days. . that helped.

I met with the dietitian a couple of times, and with my Dr. a few others.  They gave me great guidelines, meds and advice, but neither of them have diabetes and my Dr. even said he's not a specialist, so he was basically following whatever my dietitian said to do.  I was able to use their guidelines to get my BG down out of the Danger-Will-Robinson-Danger levels, but still found myself feeling like I was floundering around trying to figure this out.  That's when I went to the internet.

I found so much information that fed my head. . Mayo Clinic research the ADA websites.  Still, I was needing something that spoke to my heart and emotions to let me know I was going to be alright and that I was not out there alone.  I stumbled on some of the DOCs like,, Diabetic Rockstar, etc.  I also decided to do a search on Twitter to see what people were saying about diabetes and the lifestyle I was about to embark on.  I was amazed to see how many blogs were referenced, how many people seemed to know each other. . it really felt like a community of friends.

I started reading some of the blogs on a daily basis, dropped some, added some more, until I had a pretty refined list of bloggers who spoke to me, gave great information, great encouragement, made me laugh, basically talked me off the ledge.  They became my "Rockstars."   You know, those people that you really admire, respect and wish you could just sit down and have a conversation with them.  And then it happened. .

I try to comment on most of the blogs I follow.  After all, I love it when I know people have read mine and found some value to it.  One day, I blogged on Dorkabetic's blog and the next day, the author of a blog I'd referenced sent an email saying she would be in town for a WDD luncheon and she'd like to meet me.  I was so surprised that she would want to meet ME. . I mean, really, I'm just a newbie Type II trying to figure this stuff out. . and she's, you know,  A ROCK STAR!

Anyways. . .the point of this story isn't to embarrass her or sound like I'm some kind of weird, stalker. . .I basically wanted to say that WDD has come at a great time in my journey.  I was able to meet THREE of the bloggers I follow every day as well as some other pretty fantastic people this weekend.  I felt like I was part of something bigger than me. . and the part I played was as important as anyone else.  I even had another one of the Rockstars of the DOC add me to his blogroll. . I was honored.

So for this WDD, my DH (Dear Hubby) bought blue light bulbs for our porch, I tweeted about it and before I knew it, others were doing it too.  I made a diabetic awareness ribbon pin, wore it to dinner tonight and got to share my story with some friends who had previously acknowledged my diabetes, but really asked questions and engaged in conversation about it.  I participated in the Big Blue Test and had saw how just 14 mins of exercise changed MY BG.  No more griping about not having enough time to do something active!
AND, I met some of my RockStars and found that they are indeed some great people that I hope become dear friends.  Thanks Cherise, Andrea and Sarah for sharing your stories online and your hugs in person and opening your world to those who follow.  AND. . to our DOC out there. . thanks for sharing this WDD with me and allowing me to be part of something world-wide, life altering and dang it. . a whole lot of fun!

Happy World Diabetes Day!  Love, Babscampbell

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Fight the good fight

Today is Veteran's Day and I'm so grateful for those who have gone before to pave our way with freedom.  In reading through my daily blog list, many are speaking of veteran's who have influenced them, loved ones currently serving and individual battles being fought.  

I have several dear friends fighting cancer.  I have my battle with diabetes.  I know of some battling depression.  Others, wage war with financial concerns.  Still others battle loneliness, loss of hope, fear.

I get tired just imagining all the energy it takes to do all this war-raging.  I know my own personal struggles, and knowing that everyone has their own personal struggle, I multiply that times each person I know and you've got an awful lot of energy being spent!  So, we team up and fight those battles we can together. . sharing resources, covering each others' back and allowing our fellow soldiers a rest. One small victory at a time, we begin to make sense of it all.  That victory is shared with the community and all spirits are lifted, hope restored and a new vitality enlivens the troops to the next victory and then the next.  That's what the different online communities, support groups and our family are all about.

Fight the good fight and never leave a comrade behind.  Link arms with SOMEONE and make some headway.  We were never meant to face life's circumstances alone.

Thanks to for the inspiration today.  Check out his website. . gotta appreciate a fellow bacon lover.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Attitude of Gratitude- I can see, touch, hear, taste and smell.

I'm grateful today to still have all my senses available to me.  This is a great video depicting how diabetes affects all our senses.  Diabetes truly does intrude on every facet of our lives, not just the food we eat or adding exercise to our daily routine.  There are so many complications that we face and are constantly reminded of.  Many of you know someone who has lost a foot, their vision, a kidney, liver function or have suffered a stroke or heart attack.  In fact, when I stop to think about it. . I am at least one degree connected to someone with each of these issues, all stemming from their diabetes. 

I'll admit, until July of this year, I knew so little about diabetes and its complications and now I wake up each day grateful to feel the earth beneath my feet, to see my Hubby's handsome face smiling at me, to taste my beloved bacon, to hear "I love you" spoken so often, to smell fresh brewed coffee and know that at least for today, I'm here to make a difference, to speak life, to share love.

I hope that this month of Diabetes Awareness is helping all of you, my friends and family, to understand the changes in our lives since this last summer.  I know I do go on. . .but, really. . I'm hoping that you can possibly take some of what I've shared with you to help you support others you may know with diabetes, if not give you the tools to get you through a diagnosis like this.  It's the biggest challenge we've ever faced and I don't know how I would've done it without the love and support of all of you, my diabetes online community and my medical team.

Have a great day!  Go taste, smell, feel, hear or see something incredible today!  Then, drop a comment to share it with the rest of us.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Attitude of Gratitude - VACATION!

I haven't posted for a few days.  Really, it's not that I'm ungrateful, I've been out of town.  My DH and I traveled to Colorado Springs to support the USMA Black Knights as they played at least half a game against the USAFA Falcons.  We're Army fans through and through, cheering loud, wearing the garb, hanging banners, driving around town with a flag flapping in the breeze.  So, here's my gratefulness for the last few days. . .all rolled into one post.

I'm grateful to have had the chance to make this trip.  We were able to see some friends that recently moved from KS to CO, have dinner and catch up with all they're doing.  We were also able to take our favorite Air Force Cadet to dinner. He's graduating this next May, getting married and then he'll be off saving the world.  I know. . he's Air Force and we're Army. . but, really, if there's anyone giving my Army Lt. air support, I want it to be him!

I'm grateful for the MSP airport 'Start' walk path. I was a little worried about not getting exercise on my flight day. I was able to get 4.5 miles in while I waited for my flight.

I'm grateful for God's creative art projects.  We were able to wander through the Garden of the Gods and hike up 7 Falls (both were great workouts and brought my BG right down. BONUS!)  These two parks were the amazing, breath-taking kind of beautiful.

I'm grateful for a Cracker Barrel breakfast.  What's up with the hotel breakfast bar?  Carb-City! We had a choice of bagels, waffles, toast, english muffins, cereal or juice.  I let them know that there are 8 million diabetics in the US and I bet many of them travel and stay in hotels.  Wouldn't it be novel to provide them with something to eat for breakfast?  They said they would look into it.  So, if you ever stay at a Fairfield and find the buffet to be diabetic-friendly. . you're welcome!  LOL

I'm grateful for high altitude = NO oxygen = EVERYTHING becomes aerobic exercise!  My BG didn't get over 140 all weekend!  It was fantastic to feel so well.  I'm thinking I need to move there.

I'm grateful for rental cars that have extra places to plug in my phone.  I was using it as a camera all weekend and really wore the battery out.

On the way home, my DH traded seats with me on the plane and I got to ride in First Class.  I felt pretty special. I'm pretty grateful for him and his generosity.

We had a great time. . but, you know what?  I still have diabetes.  All the carb-counting, calculating, exercise, metering, clock watching, etc. . is still a part of all I do, every day.   It didn't stop me from experiencing all the fun of our trip. But, it was still there, begging for attention. . every time we were trying to decide on a restaurant or activity.  Diabetes doesn't take a vacation. . even though I do.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

My Attitude of Gratitude-The Unknowing Servant

Wow, today started out rough.  My BG has been so high for several weeks.  Occasionally it'll sneak down below 200 just to tease me, but, not for long.  My fasting BG this morning was 287, where do you from there, except up, right?  So, I went to work feeling really discouraged.
I came into the empty office, dropped my stuff on my desk, started to boot up my computer and decided it would be ok for me to throw myself a pity party.  After all, I was alone, no one would see me being less-than-stoic and upbeat. I sighed heavily and then I heard it.
Nicole Mullin-Call on Jesus

Weary brother
Broken daughter
Widowed, widowed lover
You're not alone
If you're tired and scared of the madness around you
If you can't find the strength to carry on

But when I call on Jesus
All things are possible
I can mount on wings like eagles and soar
When I call on Jesus
Mountains are gonna fall
'Cause He'll move heaven and earth to come rescue me when I call

Call Him in the mornin'
In the afternoon time
Late in the evenin'
He'll be there
When your heart is broken
And you feel discouraged
You can just remember that He said
He'll be there

Our office is sublet to a Christian organization and the president of the foundation was sitting in the conference room, affectionately known as the "War Room," just outside my cubicle. . just minding his own business, working on something, listening to music on Pandora.  This song was randomly chosen by some virtual DJ who probably doesn't even like the song.
I lost it
Right there, at my desk
Blubbering like a baby.

I went in to thank him for following whatever promptings he had felt that morning that had led him into that space.  He didn't know why, he just didn't want to work in his office this morning.  He wanted the space to spread out, or something and decided to park himself in the conference room.

I needed to hear that song, I also needed to hear his heart.  I told him about my discouragement and he began to share his story with me.

His son has autism and was undergoing treatment and doing well.  But, there was a 2 week period in which dad was in S. Africa speaking at a conference.  Son was home with mom and underwent some of the most frightening days he'd ever experienced.  His temper was raging and mom couldn't seem to get control.  Dad was unreachable for a whole week. . it was horrible.  On his way to the airport, he stopped to buy the kids some souvenirs and bumped into a gentleman he had met at the conference.  This man said to him, you know, the other day, I just felt like we weren't finished talking.  What's going on with you and your family?

Dad proceeded to share the story of his son's struggle, the rage, the fear.  This man happened to work with natural remedies and Dad just asked. . do you know of anything that could help my son?  The man answered. . nothing in the USA, but here in S Africa.  He gave him samples to try and low and behold, the son has been great ever since.
This isn't a story about natural medicine or autism or any of that.

To me it's this:  Be Available.

God may want to work some miracle through you, speak to someone's pain through you, paint his fingerprints on someone's heart through you.

Nicole Mullin didn't know the lives that would be touched, the fear that would be calmed, the anger that would be denied, when she wrote that song.

My friend didn't know what impact he would have on me today, just by sitting in another chair this morning.
But, they did as they felt prompted and my mood, my fear, my anger, my discouragement changed.
Thank you to all those unknowing servants, who follow their hearts and bring healing to mine.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

My Whimsey What does that mean?

Peter Pan teaches Wendy and the boys to fly by having them focus on their "Happy Thought," sprinkling some pixie dust and then believing they COULD fly.   This blog is an attempt on my part to learn to fly. .

When my girls where young and someone would upset them, I'd always say, "Hey, don't let 'em steal your whimsey!"  Once you lose your whimsical self, you stop dreaming, creating, solving problems.  I'm hanging on to every whimsical, happy thought I can.

Because I have so many facets to my life, there will be different kinds of postings here.  I love to teach paper crafting, card making and scrapbook techniques, so you'll see some of that.  I'm also an Army mom, a fan of 82nd Airborne and the Black Knights of West Point.  Finally, this page will chronicle my trials and triumphs as I fight Type II Diabetes.  So, there may be low-carb recipes, exercise ideas or just some random rants about my high blood glucose results.  I started a page on called Attitude of Gratitude and that will be copied over here as well.  So, hopefully, I'll share something meaningful to someone.

Come fly with me. . come fly, come fly away. . .