Created and organized by Karen Graffeo, Diabetes Blog Week is an annual event that brings together members of the Diabetes Online Community and provides a shared set of topics for discussion. Last week, 131 bloggers officially registered to contribute and it was a wonderful and successful experience for all involved. For more information and for a list of those who participated in DBlog Week 2016, please visit Karen’s site www.bittersweetdiabetes.com.
Friday May 20, 2016 // Day 5: Tips & Tricks
Let’s round out the week by sharing our best diabetes tips and diabetes tricks. From how you organize supplies to how you manage gear on the go/vacation (beach, or skiing, or whatever). From how you keep track of prescription numbers to how you remember to get your orders refilled. How about any “unconventional” diabetes practices, or ways to make diabetes work for YOU (not necessarily how the doctors say to do it!). There’s always something we can learn from each other. (Remember though, please no medical advice or dangerous suggestions.) Let’s round out the week by sharing our best diabetes tips and diabetes tricks. From how you organize supplies to how you manage gear on the go/vacation (beach, or skiing, or whatever). From how you keep track of prescription numbers to how you remember to get your orders refilled. How about any “unconventional” diabetes practices, or ways to make diabetes work for YOU (not necessarily how the doctors say to do it!). There’s always something we can learn from each other. (Remember though, please no medical advice or dangerous suggestions.)
After years of dealing with a disease that must be taken into consideration 24/7, it has come to my attention that the deciding factor of whether I can make it through my day successfully hinges on just how organized I happen to be at the time. It only seems right that adequate preparedness would factor into more favorable outcomes since that is how life in general seems to work as well. My fourth grade teacher always used to say, “Proper prior planning prevents poor performance.” Mrs. Lowe never spoke truer words!
There was a time when my diabetes supplies were just thrown haphazardly into my bag or purse with no true sense of organization or care. After finding that didn’t quite work for me, I moved on to using cosmetic cases. I’ve been lucky over the years to find a few I have really liked and that have worked well for me. I was glad to finally have something a little bigger and a little more unique than the drab black case given by the meter manufacturer but my stuff was still just thrown in, all mixed together, and always terribly disorganized. Not to mention the used test strips that would accumulate!
It wasn’t until recently that I decided to give the company Myabetic a try. After browsing their website for ages without making a purchase, I finally treated myself to the Kamen Diabetes Case in Black/Smoke Gray and the Marie Diabetes Mini Crossbody Bag in Gold. Needless to say, I love them. Founded by a fellow Type 1 lady, Kyrra Richards, this is a company striving to provide the diabetes population with fashionable alternatives to the black and boring kit cases we’ve been subjected to in the past. They’ve created options for women, men, and children that offer style and functionality and have even teamed up with DexCom to make some really great receiver cases as well. One of my favorite features of these bags and cases are the waste pouches that are adhered to the inside of the case with Velcro, making it super easy to detach and empty into the trash bin once it starts to fill up a bit.
I had every expectation that I would enjoy the products I had ordered online but nothing could prepare me for the feeling I would experience when I first held them in my hands. It caught me off guard to be honest. Something inside me felt like I had finally been considered. These bags were not only practical but really cute! I met up with friends to see a band one night shortly after getting my first Myabetic bag and during the night, as I tested my blood sugar, revealed to my friend, Lara, that it was a product made specifically for people with diabetes. Lara does not have diabetes. She then told me that as I entered the bar earlier and walked across the room to meet them, the crossbody bag had caught her eye and she had taken note of how much she liked it. I think that’s what they call a mission accomplished! It’s not that I’m shameful or that I want to disguise my diabetes, it’s that I want to rock it. I want to have the option to pick how I tote around the many vital pieces of equipment and things that keep me going strong. Please, by all means, look my way as I unzip a bag worthy of a type none’s envy and attention. Why settle for boring when you can have beautiful and fun?
I was so lucky to have been introduced this past year to the lovely Susan Weiner, owner of Susan Weiner Nutrition and 2015 AADE Diabetes Educator of the year. Words cannot even begin to express what a light that woman is and what a joy having her in my life has been. It seems serendipitous for such a valuable resource of a human being to enter my life at a time when I’m really ready to buckle down and kick my diabetes management into high gear. Susan is a strong advocate and respected member of the diabetes community. She is the co-author of two books that share tips on how to live life with diabetes to the fullest with less stress and more happiness.
Her book, The Complete Diabetes Organizer: Your Guide to a Less Stressful and More Manageable Diabetes Life, is a guidebook written with the help of Leslie Josel, an expert in organization. Her latest project, Diabetes: 365 Tips for Living Well, co-authored by Paula Ford-Martin, features a year-long day-to-day style format that focuses on empowering any person living with diabetes through tips and tricks that we can all find useful and applicable. I also found Susan’s installment in the DiabetesSisters Life Class webinar series (presentations on various topics held by people in the extended d-community) on “Goal Setting” to be informative and helpful, as well as inspiring. It was a perfect way to kick off the new year. The webinar series through the DiabetesSisters is a very positive and valuable resource to take advantage of. Thank goodness for people like Susan and the ladies at the DiabetesSisters who are pioneering ways to help those with diabetes live the life they deserve.
I’m taking my time on my path to optimal diabetes life organization. I’m finding what works for me and constantly connecting with others in hopes to find out new tricks of the trade. It is wonderful to have so many avenues of support and guidance to aid in my journey.
What are some of your favorite tips, tricks, or pieces of advice when it comes to living life while managing diabetes?
What Sarah Said