Thanksgiving. Thankful for Family, Friends, Dogs, Insulin, Food, Memories

November is suited for National Diabetes Awareness month.  It’s the beginning of the Holiday Season, which means parties, family gatherings, which all lead to food, food, and more food.  And not normal everyday food that we are used to counting carbs with.  The thought of counting carbs for that once a year Apple Salad?  Where do I start?  I’m glad that Joey doesn’t eat it, although he’s missing out on one of my favorites.

Thanksgiving is a lot of people’s favorite Holiday.  Just the thought of Thanksgiving brings so many happy memories for me.  My mom loves Thanksgiving, so it means a lot to me too.  We always had people over at our house, the family from Indiana that came year after year,  they had never cooked  a turkey before, until one year there was a snow storm so they couldn’t come, I remember my aunt calling my mom frantic, “what do I do, can I still get a turkey, how do I make it??”  Or the year that my brother, who was a student at the time at UWM,  brought a couple from Korea to dinner, we got to share an experience with them that they had never experienced before.  That was fun.  I have really great memories of Thanksgiving, I’m thankful for them.

This year we celebrated Thanksgiving with my son John, his wife Kristy and my granddaughter Alexcis.  My daughter and her family will be there too.  I didn’t realize until someone pointed it out  that we hadn’t celebrated a Thanksgiving with them since John and Kristy were married,  11 years.    We would get together for dessert after the meal, but no meal together.  That can’t be right, anyway, we had such a great day with them, the food was perfect but the company was the best.

I hate that I can’t spend every Thanksgiving with my Mom and Dad, but they live 10 hours away, and with the kid’s school schedule, it’s hard to get there every year, plus we have to split our time with Joe’s family too.

This will be our 3rd Thanksgiving since Joey was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.  It’s certainly easier since he has the pump, but the carbohydrate calculations are not easier.  The foods we eat at this meal are so high in carbohydrates,  if we didn’t have a food scale that tells us the carbs, we’d be lost.

For most families with kid’s with type 1, the Holiday’s are a huge challenge.  Managing their blood sugar is the top priority.  With the insulin pump it’s a little easier, because you don’t have to give them a shot every time they eat, but it’s still a challenge because the pump is just a different method of insulin delivery into their systems.  We still have the task of counting carbs, a lot of times estimating the amount which can cause issues later with highs or lows.

You get the best blood sugar results when you take a blood sugar, figure out your carbs, dose, and recheck your blood sugar in two hours.  For the best results, it’s not good to eat again within that two hour time frame, because the insulin takes up to two hours to work, and if you eat again, say an hour later, you can’t get a good gauge on how the insulin worked from the previous bolus.  Bolus is the word for dosing for a meal.   But, try to tell a kid, or adult for that matter, that they can only eat in two hour increments, especially at a holiday party.  It’s hard.

The management of diabetes is crucial to overall health, so, it’s  our  number one goal to keep Joey healthy,  plus, he feels like crap if his blood sugar is to high, or to low.  So it’s a balancing act,  24-7, around the clock.  We just want to make all the holiday’s a time to remember, good memories, for years and years to come.

Happy Holiday’s.


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