#dblogcheck – Challenge Ideas (help!)

#dblogcheck is the idea that, for one day, you comment on every single diabetes blog you read. It’s a great idea from Chris over at A Consequence of Hypoglycemia. 

I read a lot of blogs, but I don’t usually comment. That happens here; many people read this blog, but not too many write or react. Today, the hope is that we can connect and communicate more as an online community. So I thought, why not use that generous spirit in a selfish way (but for a good cause)?!

We’ve had a family JDRF Walk team for several years. This time around Benny asked if we could invite his whole school to walk with him. Of course we said yes. I convinced my local chapter to combine a JDRF Kids’ Walk with a JDRF OneWalk.  So we get the diabetes assembly, with the rah rah and the cheerleading and the education, but instead of culminating in a walk around the track at the school, our big finish is the actual JDRF walk.

We do have a “we met our goals” party at school on April 24th.  The teachers, the principal and even our town’s mayor have agreed to do some silly challenges to celebrate. Blue hair, blue tutu, ride a tricycle around the school. We need to come up with some fun, silly, not-completely-humiliating ideas.

Have you done this before? Any ideas for a fun challenge? Our staff is wonderful and is up for just about anything. If you have an idea, please leave it in the comments as part of #dblogcheck. Or just say hi. Either way, thanks for stopping by and checking in.

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(Our walk team has always been Benny’s Brigade, but since there are other children in the school with T1D, we needed to change that. We got a little local coverage already (click here) and have some more fun stuff in the works)

Daytona!

Wow!

My timeline on Twitter and Facebook blew up last night as Ryan Reed won the Florida 300 at Daytona. Four years after he was told a type 1 diabetes diagnosis meant he would never race again, Reed got his first NASCAR victory. Very cool.

We first met Reed at a local JDRF event, in 2011. He was immediately active in the diabetes community; by denying his doctor and pursuing his dreams he became an inspiring role model. We met him again last year, after he’d signed with the ADA and the Drive to Stop Diabetes. Still the same kid, just trying to manage his diabetes and race.

I hope Ryan Reed has tons of NASCAR fans who have no idea he has T1D. I’m sure he has fans who don’t care that he has a Dexcom (just like Benny’s!) mounted to his dashboard and who don’t wonder what his blood sugar was when he crossed the finish line (yeah, I’m curious. Guessing high, due to the adrenaline).  I do know that when he won, the diabetes community went bananas.

Congratulations, Ryan. Hope to see you soon!

read more and see the final lap (click here)

Always Be Nervous?

We took advantage of a four-day weekend to head to my parents’ house in Florida. It was about as cold as it gets here in North Carolina, so it was nice to have a few days of sun. Benny’s Dexcom sensor was hanging by a thread when we left on Thursday; after close to two weeks we knew it was coming out any minute. Normally, this wouldn’t be a big deal but my husband didn’t travel with us.

Since we started using the CGM in December of 2013, Slade is the only one who’s inserted the Dexcom sensor. He does a great job. He’s fast, like all the advice says you need to be, and he and Benny have a routine.  It’s to the point that if Slade’s got a late meeting and the Dexcom comes off, we’ll just wait until the morning. It’s a little weird that I’ve never done it, since we’ve always been a great team on the diabetes care for all these years, but it’s working.

When the sensor came off two days into our trip, I didn’t expect Benny to let me put a new one on. And that would’ve been okay. I love using the Dexcom, but we managed diabetes for 7 years without it. To my surprise, Benny said he was ready for me to give it a try. “I’ll set it up, Mom,” he said, helpfully pulling the tape off the inserter and positioning it on his stomach. “You just push the plunger, pull it out and be fast. Like Dad.” He removed the “safety” and looked at me expectantly.

From a purely cosmetic perspective, the Dexcom inserter is one of the most poorly-designed devices I’ve ever seen. It’s terrifying to look at – you either think “giant needle” or “gun.” There’s a reason you can’t find any pictures of the inserter on the Dexcom website. The insertion process is also completely unnatural. The instructions even say, “Your first sensor insertion will not feel natural.” Very reassuring.

There’s a plunger and a collar. You’re supposed to put your fingers above the collar for insertion and then switch and put your fingers below the collar to pull the plunger back up. It’s a bit complicated (and unnatural!) but I love the CGM itself and I know it’s made a difference in our diabetes management.

I willed myself to be calm. “No problem, dude,” I said. “Let’s do this.”

Benny pinched up his skin (which helps) and counted 3-2-1. I pushed the plunger but as I pulled back he shouted, “Mom, you’re done! Stop! You’re going to yank the whole thing off!” I was working so quickly, I had already pulled the collar back without realizing it.

“That was great, really fast! You were even better than Dad,” Benny said as he clicked off  the applicator and popped the transmitter into the new sensor. We were done. I did it!

“I have to tell you something,” I said to Benny. “I was really nervous.”

“Then you should always be nervous, because that didn’t hurt one bit.” Benny smiled, “I can’t wait to tell Dad!”

It’s nice to be back on the team. I guess nervous is my secret weapon!

Doesn’t this look completely natural? Nothing to be nervous about here! (Sensor insertion at 2:00)