OK, I’d like to start this column out with an apology. For Mother’s Day I went on and on about how wonderful mothers of type 1 diabetics are. I never did that for dads for Father’s Day and I’m sorry! This disease affects the entire family. Many dads are up at night checking blood sugars or refilling prescriptions or doing any of the other numerous things t1 diabetes requires of you. Being a parent is stressful enough. Being the parent of a t1 diabetic ups that stress by about 100 million percent. Thank you dads for all you do to care for your sugarbaby! Sometimes it may just be listening so the mom doesn’t go bonkers! I can’t describe how important that support is! I don’t know what I’d do without my husband! Thank you all again! Please accept my apology for not getting this in sooner!
Now, onto business. I’d like to pass on an idea that I’ve been using. It may sound cheesy, but with t1 requiring so much of you along with all the responsibilities of life in general, managing this disease can seem overwhelming. To help with this I devote a day to the “logistics” of diabetes. You know the behind the scenes stuff. Making sure prescriptions are filled, paying medical bills, making/returning phone calls. I’m off work on Mondays so have I what I call Medical Mondays. If something comes up that doesn’t have to be addressed right away, I write it down and take care of it on Medical Monday. This way, I can get it out of my head and move on with life. Another great thing about this “system” is that it keeps my procrastination at bay. I am a procrastinator through and through. Devoting one day to focus on getting this stuff done helps to ensure that it will get done before it becomes an emergency (i.e., crap we have no insulin!)
I highly recommend setting one day aside to take care of the logistics. You don’t even have to give it a cheesy name if you don’t want to although I highly recommend this as well — you gotta have fun with it! I think this is another little trick to not let diabetes run your life.
As I sit here writing this it’s Tuesday morning. I’d like to tell you about what I did yesterday on my Medical Monday. Funny, every time I type that I hear an announcer’s voice saying “This week on Medical Monday” with music and ambulance sirens in the background. Anyway, let me get back on track. Yesterday, I filled out paperwork for my daughter to be screened for t1 diabetes through TrialNet. With this screening she will be checked for the autoantibodies. If you have these autoantibodies you are at a greater risk of developing type 1 diabetes. If you do test positive, there is a pill you can take to help stop (or at least slow) the development of diabetes. This is a study to learn more about how type 1 diabetes occurs and if we can stop it. So far, there have been many cases where the pill has dramatically slowed down or even stopped the progression of these developing autoantibodies. This is why I want my daughter screened! If we can keep her little pancreas functioning or even delay it’s failure, I want to do it!
People 1 to 45 years old who have a sibling, child, or parent with type 1 are eligible to be screened along with people 1 to 20 years old who have a cousin, aunt, uncle, niece, nephew, or grandparent with it. If you’d like more information, I encourage you to look up TrialNet! After a simple blood screening, we may be on the way to preventing type 1 in my Bella Bean. That it something I’m very excited about!