Mindfulness! …or not.

Sometimes we just get involved in doing whatever nonsense we’re doing. In other words, not paying attention to what’s important (good health, for instance). I was just online, checking my e-mails, Facebook, listening to a TED Talk, etc., etc.  NOT doing more important things — like making dinner for instance.

All of a sudden, I felt like garbage — you know the feeling, if you’re diabetic. When I got up from the table, my legs felt heavy. I looked at the clock — 7:30. When was lunch? Did I eat lunch? Ugh. Of course, I checked my blood sugar immediately because, like any long-term diabetic, I knew where it was. The glucometer read 68! Now, for many of you, that sounds great, right? For me, when I go below 100, I feel crummy — weak, clammy. I couldn’t care less what the “norm” is. I know what’s right for me. Low blood sugar is no joke.

I don’t know when the last time was that I had orange juice in my refrigerator. WAY too high in sugar. However, I bought it last week because I had a hankering for Chicken a l’orange. The remaining OJ has been sitting in there ever since. So, I drank a glass and almost immediately I felt like myself again.

As soon as my glucose level rose, I cooked dinner — salmon, spinach and beets. I’m back to “normal.”  🙂

The topic of this post is MINDFULNESS for a reason. Not being mindful about what I’m doing is usually what gets me in trouble. We all do it — misplacing things, losing track of time. The importance of mindfulness, I’ve learned, can’t be stressed enough. Focusing is imperative. I’ve learned that being aware — acutely aware — makes for a more balanced life.

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That lack of mindfulness is what caused my blood sugar to drop. NO excuse for that. The good news is that, because it happened, I’m reminded to pay strict attention and be mindful in EVERY area of my life. Scheduling healthy meals and staying on track HAS to be uppermost in my thoughts. Get with it, Kathy!

Gotta go — my salmon’s ready! Yummmmm.

 

Monitoring Blood Glucose = #1

Seriously, what could be more fun than stabbing yourself three times a day???

Okay, nobody ever said it was going to be fun, but it’s important — no — imperative! If you’re new to this “game,” trust me, JUST DO IT! It’s the only real way to know exactly where you’re at, in terms of your blood sugar and, your glucometer WILL tell the truth. In truth there is no denial.

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Monitor glucose regularly

It’s easy to be in denial when you have Type 2 Diabetes —

  • you look like most people,
  • you sound like many people,
  • you think like your friends (or not),
  • you eat like everyone else…

WAIT!!!  You EAT like everyone else? You do? I sure hope you’re surrounding yourself with healthy eaters. 🙂

I’m meeting friends for lunch tomorrow, and there’s a routine I follow prior to going out.

  1. I go onto the website of the restaurant.
  2. Check out the menu and pay attention to the healthy choices. Usually, I decide what I’m going to order, but I also give myself the option of choosing one or two of the other acceptable alternatives. This process gives me a range of possibilities that will allow me to make a good decision. I IGNORE THE REST OF THE MENU!
  3. Remember: You’re in charge of your decision. Grilled chicken is usually an option in any restaurant and be sure to add lots of veggies to your dinner plate — it will be colorful and appetizing!   IMG_4432
  4. Before I leave home, I drink a glass of water and take my blood sugar. And then — I’m off, and destined to have a delightful meal with my friends.
  5. When the conversation turns to DESSERT, “No thank you. I’m full.”  [By the way, you will be full.]  GREAT decision, congratulate yourself! While they’re piling on the pounds, and adding toxins to their bodies while sifting through their dessert, feel free to enjoy a cup of steaming hot tea/coffee or an ice cold glass of water (something to look at, instead of their dessert). It’s also nice to ask the waiter to add a wedge of orange, lime or lemon, or even a strawberry or two to your water — you deserve it!

    I find that adding fruit to my water makes it look and taste so much more refreshing.

  6. Once home — sometimes, in the car before I leave the parking lot of the restaurant,  🙂 I check my blood sugar. If it’s elevated, as soon as I get home, I grab my sneakers and go for a quick walk, even if only for 30 minutes — walking will bring that number right down — never fails!

So there you have it folks. CHECK THAT BLOOD SUGAR — no matter what. NO EXCUSES! You’ll be glad you did.

I promise.

 

UGH! What happened? –OR– Back to the Basics! Burnout..?

February 18, 2017

No matter what I do with my Type 2 Diabetes, all roads point back to the BASICS! I know what to do, we all do, correct?

  • Monitor my blood sugar
  • Eat properly
  • Exercise
  • Blah, blah!

It’s just NOT all that difficult, folks, so why my frustration? Sometimes, I just don’t know which direction to go… 

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London

Maybe it’s the repetitiveness of it — day in, day out… But, c’mon. People have WAY worse diseases/conditions than diabetes. So much of it is simply an inconvenience, the real issue for me is the cravings. Yes — it’s ALL a pain in the butt, but not an earth-shattering nightmare. Is it diabetes burnout? Is there even such a thing? Yes! (See link)

Look at that! — not really a surprise, but I haven’t read about it (burnout) in a  l o n g  time.

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It’s the answers that count. Here are a few, if you’re “feeling the pain” — (not literally pain, but feeling the burnout of T2D:

*Accept the damn diagnosis! Again.  I do think it has to be accepted every day, otherwise, the denial builds up. (Faster than a speeding bullet!)

*DO monitor blood sugar regularly and, yes, a chart helps to keep track. [Putting my big girl pants on and just charting it AGAIN.]

 

*Put on the damn sneakers and move your butt. (That’s called EXERCISE, which in my world is walking, and walking, and walking.)  If your exercise of choice is the gym — go for it!

 

                                                             [A little levity never hurt.]     🙂

*Eating properly — yeah, yeah, yeah. I think the answer to that might just be changing it up a bit. “It” being the menu. I KNOW I need to work on that, because I’ve been bored to tears with what I’ve been eating lately — and, a lot of the time I’ve been eating on the run. “On the run” has never worked for me, so I’ll be doing some extra planning.

Many posts back, I ended by listing my blood sugar level and my weight. Somewhere along the line, I stopped doing it. What was I thinking? It’s certainly a good practice to keep me on track and accountable. So, I’ll be doing it again — starting right now:

Blood Sugar:     109          Weight:     149 lbs.

There — I did it!

I have a doctor’s appointment on the 24th, so I’ll see what she has to say about my A1C. 

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                 Good luck, folks! From your very DEDICATED  and  DETERMINED DIABETIC.

Just have to do the best I can do and then, DO A LITTLE BETTER!

Who’s perfect? Not me, that’s for sure. In terms of posting on my blog and reading others, I’ve brought procrastination to an art form. LATER, TONIGHT, TOMORROW — these are the nonsensical terms I’ve been tossing around, in an effort to procrastinate. My decision, is to TOSS THEM RIGHT OUT THE WINDOW, and get with the program.

Thanks to the blizzard in NY, I’ve hunkered down today (like I had a choice) and read some blogs (especially Bill’s, Simple Living Over 50 — his posts usually smack me back into the NOW of this crazy life). I finished catching up with his posts and will read others that I follow, after writing this post. First Things First, right?

The snow just stopped — YEA!!!! I have a guy who comes with a snow blower, a plow and a shovel to dig me out. I baked some cookies while he was de-snowing my property for the first time last year. I thought it would be a “nice gesture” — warm Oatmeal Chocolate Chip cookies on a cold snowy day.  OR was I looking for an excuse to eat some sugary delights? I prefer to believe that it was an act of kindness. 🙂  We Type 2 Diabetics know the truth! I’ve made it a tradition now, Matt plows and shovels while I bake. Damn those cravings!

I was talking to two friends this morning — BOTH were baking. What is it about the winter and/or a snow storm that pushes us to bake?  Is it the CARBS?  SUGAR?  img_4732

I don’t get it. Normally, I don’t care a whole hill of beans about cooking or baking. Seriously, those days are over. I get on a “kick” once in a while, but mostly I’d rather do other things. But today, oatmeal chocolate chip cookies and banana bread “took over my brain.” Considering how sugar effects the brain, there’s a LOT of truth to that. NOT funny, but true. Except for dinner (leftovers), I’m done with that oven for now. I’ll dust it off, if we have another storm! 🙂

I know that I just have to do the best I can do, and then, DO A LITTLE BETTER on this journey called diabetes!

Have to go take my blood sugar…

“Tick-tock, tick-tock — Excuses, excuses, around the clock”

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Are you a procrastinator? An excuse-maker? A clock-watcher?  Join the group! I try, I really do try to make the most of the time I have each day. NOTHING frustrates me more than to look at my list (Yes, I’m a list maker too!) at the end of the day and see that I haven’t accomplished what I set out to do! It makes me crazy.

My brother used to say that we have the “procrastination gene.” We were a family of last-minute doers! When I was in school, I thought it was the rush to get a paper done that gave me a “rush.” Now, though, I’m not interested in that; I want completion. Period.

I listened to a wonderful TED Talk on the subject of making the most out of the time we have. Funny, but true; it smacked me right in the face with the fact that I waste time. I detest the thought of that — I feel strongly that we’re put on this earth for a purpose and wasting time is the worst thing I can do. The TED Talk helped to set me back on track — including in terms of my ” life with diabetes.” SO many things are important to fit into my day, to care for my T2D. They bear repeating:

  • PREPARE MEALS  a h e a d  of time. Cooking two meals and freezing one may seem like it takes a lot of extra time but, that’s simply not true. It’s such a pleasure when, a week later you can defrost the (second) meal, heat it up without the rigamarole of the chopping, cooking, etc., that you did the first time around. Give this gift to yourself — you WON’T regret it. I promise. If you’re working full time and can devote a couple of hours on a weekend, you can probably get four or six meals done and frozen for the weeks to come. Sheer joy. 🙂
  • MONITOR my blood sugar. Two to three times a day “depending,” is what my doctor suggests. It’s so annoying, I tell myself. Put your big girl pants on and just DO IT! is my next thought. I’ve devised a chart and just fill in the numbers. There are also websites that accommodate this issue, but I believe in keeping mine simple. I include the date, times of testing, and the resulting blood glucose number. I have, at times, included the food that was consumed. Discuss it with your doctor. My purpose in bringing up the subject of monitoring is that, for ME, it keeps me aware and pushes away that damn denial. The NUMBERS DON’T LIE! 
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    Monitor glucose regularly
  • EXERCISE. The time I spend walking keeps me a lot healthier than time vegging out in front of the t.v. When I schedule “hoofing it” into my calendar, I KNOW that I’m doing the right thing for me.

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    Start WALKING!
  • TICK-TOCK folks — let’s make the BEST use of the time we have!

IMPORTANT: If you didn’t listen to the TED Talk, noted above, I strongly urge you to do it now. Take the “TIME!”   🙂

BREAKING NEWS! “President Barack Obama quotes K. Keevins.”

At the end my last post (The Effect of Weather on Appetite), I stated, “We’re going to be just fine.” Of course I was directing my comment to Type 2 Diabetics and was talking about food and it’s consumption during the cold months of winter.

Moments ago, while watching our President’s last press conference, I heard him quote me — yes, ME! He wasn’t discussing food. He was speaking about the (future) state of our Union, when he said, “We’re gonna be okay.”   [copy cat! :)]

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Then he went on to sprinkle words of hope at us, the way he does in that patriotic manner. I agree with him — HOPE is where it’s at.

 

I’m injecting HOPE into my Type 2 Diabetes Treatment Plan as the PRIMARY factor in my success. Hope is such a positive word, isn’t it? I don’t mean, “I HOPE I’m successful.” I DO mean that, no matter if I slip and slide along my journey, I’ll always hold the hope that I will succeed — I WILL succeed ONE DAY AT A TIME.

President Obama also used the word vigilant. That’s a term that fits into my plan perfectly! I will be vigilant — about monitoring my blood glucose, about exercising, and I will be most vigilant regarding my food intake — healthy choices are the way to go.

“The absence of hope is despair.” Who said that??? There will be no despair on my part, no matter how I may struggle along this journey. I’ll win the battles and eventually the war against diabetes. YOU will too!

Thanks, President Obama, for your last minute words of inspiration.  I needed the reminder to be hopeful and vigilant in life (in general), as well as in my life with diabetes. Timing is everything!

Keep the faith, folks!

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I CAN DO IT!

 

Effect of Weather on Appetite?

 

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Welcome to Winter in New York

Ha! Not MY favorite time of the year, that’s for sure. We got hit with eight inches on Saturday — beautiful, but messy and dangerous.

I was in NYC with my children, celebrating my birthday (NOT revealing the number!). 🙂  We went to the Met to see the exquisite Christmas Tree, sometimes referred to as the Angel Tree, and Neapolitan Baroque Creche. It’s a sight to behold, regardless of the religion you profess (or don’t). It’s art, at its finest. Put it on your calendar for next year. You won’t regret it — I promise!

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“Angel Tree” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC

While we were strolling through the museum,  enjoying the VALETIN DE BOULOGNE — BEYOND CARAVAGGIO Exhibit, it was snowing outside; like CRAZY! We were warm, relaxed, and hungry, so we headed to The Petrie Court Cafe, one of the Met’s restaurants, for lunch — so, Let It Snow! 

We had worked up an appetite and feasted on food fit for royalty. Most museum food doesn’t do it for me, but our lunch was deeeelicious! I won’t write the specifics — just the thought of our epicurean delights is making me salivate!  We were full, and moved on to the remainder of our journey in the museum. Evidently, we walked off that full feeling, because…

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View of Central Park from Petrie Court Cafe, Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC

Later, after viewing some other exhibits, we returned for dessert. Yes, you heard me right — DESSERT! Something I normally skip when out to lunch/dinner; but, C’mon, it was my birthday. I indulged in a serving of dark, chocolate fudge cake with a small scoop of cappuccino gelato — there go my salivary glands, again! Joking, I said to my kids, “What! No candle?” They chuckled, as my daughter reached into her purse and pulled one out. I laughed knowing they couldn’t light it, but just to be on the safe side, I said, “We’ll get thrown out, if you light that!” At that very moment, my son lit a match and they quickly sung Happy Birthday to You, as I made a wish and blew out the candle!

🙂  That was one of many laughs we had on Saturday. More took place in two Uber rides through the snow (to and from Penn Station), along with a serenade — Happy Birthday to You, just prior to my train’s departure. They made sure that the guests at the restaurant, the visitors and employees at the Met, and the passengers on the train wished me a HB! My stomach hurt from laughing; a multitude of thanks to my chickadees for making yet another birthday — SO much fun. Contrary to research, we believe that a sense of humor is genetic — actually, we know that for sure.

BACK TO WEATHER AND APPETITE and T2D.  I don’t know about your inclinations, regarding food and the change in weather, but I know that I definitely BULK UP in winter. Let’s face it, if you live in the “change of season” states, you’ll be cold in the winter months and looking for a nice warm soup or stew, hot coffee or tea. For me, the warm summer weather signals salads and cold drinks.

That being said, it’s been really cold here in the Northeast of the U.S. and so, along with donning my long johns, I HAVE been drinking a lot of herbal tea and eating heavier meals (while monitoring my blood sugar, I might add).  HOLY METEOROLOGY! Our temperatures ranged from the 20’s on Saturday (with 8″ of the white stuff), moving up to 46 degrees today (Wednesday), to a predicted possibility of 60 tomorrow!

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Jones Beach, of course!

CRAZY! BEACH WEATHER! So where will that put our food cravings tomorrow? Chicken salad, tuna salad, big fat Greek Salad? Dare I say, ice cream? NOOOOooooo. I won’t go that far. Just as the outdoor plants are getting confused with the roller-coaster weather, our internal barometers may not know which way to direct us in terms of food. But fret not, It’s “suspected” that the thermostat will take a dive into the 20’s come Saturday, and then rise up once again during next week.

What to eat? That is the question — not Shakespeare!

It matters not the weather (feeling British), the bottom line is that this Type 2 Diabetic must stay on track — regardless of the barometer.

  • Monitor blood sugar levels
  • Exercise — in my case, walk, walk, WALK
  • Eat properly (Yes, we ALL know what that means!)

Enjoy the journey, folks. We’re going to be just fine,   🙂   despite the weather.