Tuesday, March 17, 2009

St. Patricks Day poem for ya

The Wish

I caught a little leprechaun,
quite wise and very old and he said to me,
"You have one wish,
would you like my pot of gold?"

"No thank you," was my quick reply,
"But how about another...
A gift that's truly precious
and esteemed above all others?"

He offered then some emeralds,
rubies, sapphires, pearls
and a host of other treasures
that would make your senses whirl!

As I rejected all his list
his bright eyes flashed with fire
and, angrily, he said to me:
"What is it you desire?"

I said:

"A rainbow's far more beautiful
than its' supposed treasure
and the 'rainbow' that I'm wishing for
is priceless beyond measure.

"I'd like to have the dearest friends
a person ever had
to share in all the good times
and help me through the bad...

"To laugh and sing and joke with,
love and appreciate
as we live life's greatest adventure
that would certainly be great!"

"Oh, now I know you're daft!" he said
as he ran off with his pot...
"to waste your wish on something
you have already got!"

~Author Unknown~

retrieved from: This Website


Monday, March 16, 2009

Celebrity Apprentice

I'm not a huge fan of the reality show genre, but I took notice of a promo for Celebrity Apprentice. What caught my attention was the personalities represented on the show, most notably Andrew Dice Clay and Jesse James. Clay represents, to me, a very low class form of entertainer. Not only do I dislike his humor, but his personality. So, I was very pleased to see he was the first celeb to be "fired" by Mr. Frump... er... Trump.
Jesse James, on the other hand, is married to Sandra Bullock. That is one point in his favor. Also, although I haven't watched his show, I have been very impressed with him on CA. He seems to have hidden strengths and I am interested to see how he'll do as Project Manager when his time comes.

What I haven't been impressed by on the show is the absolute chaos that ensues from each team during their projects. I am really surprised that they all are so conflictual. Very few of them seem to be able to communicate and almost all of them have self-images that are over-inflated and just waiting to be punctured by the Boss. Seriously, aren't everyday people able to talk in reasonable tones and without all the conflict or do I just live in a fairy tale world? I know that this show is 90% about ratings and entertainment, but I think it is also a remarkable social experiment putting the result of Hollywood-centric personalities in the spotlight.

For those of you who have watched the first few episodes, here are some observations:
1) I like Annie. I think she is quite possibly the best person on the Athena team. Joan Rivers carries her own self-importance as though she is afraid of breaking it.
2) I think that in the end, a female is going to win the overall competition. Team KOTU has too many disparate personalities. Despite his annoying manner and the conflict he created during Episode 2, I think they lost something in terms of creativity when Tom Green was fired last night.
3) I wonder how well the Donald would fare if he was put into his own messed-up reality program. He's done well by society's standards, but he seems to lack the same qualities that he flogs his contestants for not having.

Interesting. I look forward to seeing how the season progresses.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Narrative Exercise

One of my professors recently assigned us the task of externalizing an issue/feeling/hurdle that I am facing at present. We were instructed to describe it in visual or kinesthetic terms.

Diabetes is a constant companion for our family. It influences the activities we can participate in, what food we can eat, the time we can travel, the money we can spend, how we handle our health decisions, sometimes even how much sleep we are able to get each night. Like a cruel taskmaster, just when we began to be comfortable with Ethan’s insulin regimen, Diabetes attacked our daughter, Mary Hannah. Now, we are relearning the initial stages of the disease. Although very similar, Diabetes has manifested itself in very different ways in each of them. This causes anxiety for me and my wife as we have to treat them differently from each other in terms of how often they have to check their blood sugar, how much they can eat, what items they can eat (they have different foods that trigger higher than normal reactions in each of them). Also, Diabetes has also realigned the structure of our family system. Instead of Ethan being the one child getting the most attention because of his condition, with Mary Hannah and Eleanor feeling a bit neglected in terms of attention, now Eleanor is the odd child out, being the only one without a chronic medical condition that demands our vigilance. In our marital relationship, Diabetes sometimes sits between us and keeps us from having time alone because of our anxiety around child care for us to enjoy our alone time. For Ethan, although Diabetes is a dark monster that afflicts him, it is also a friend that made him special and now he shares his uniqueness with his sister. It is a bittersweet turn of events. For Mary Hannah, who has been “normal” up till now, she is dealing not only with the physical changes in her body, but the social ramifications of Diabetes. The unintended consequences of her disease have made her feel “weird” to her friends. She is the subject of intense curiosity and even a little fear from her classmates at school. Diabetes has teamed up with Depression and Anger to torment Mary Hannah when she tries to go to sleep at night and we often end up rocking her to sleep as she cries in our arms. Eleanor has enjoyed a privileged status as the baby of the family, but her coveted attention has shifted and she doesn’t like it. Diabetes laughs at our family and mocks us as we struggle to find normalcy in this difficult situation. Diabetes is an uninvited visitor in our home who refuses to leave. He’s unpacked and is here to stay. He frustrates us and constantly disrupts our daily living. We put up with him and go through the motions of placating him with blood offerings on test strips and ritual torture of daily injections of insulin. However, he has also brought us closer together as a family. We rely on each other to remind each other to check blood sugars, eat responsibly, exercise together and manage this disease.

The picture above is the plastic jar that we deposit used "sharps" or needles after we are finished with them.

By the numbers:
Average number of finger sticks done daily: 5 per kid. That's 10 lancets used. 10 test strips.
Times each month the kids check their sugar (based on 5 per day): 300
Cost per test strip: (before insurance) $1
Syringes used daily: 5-6
Infusion sites changed per month: 3-4
Amount of carbs consumed before having to get stuck again with more insulin: 25 (that is about half a peanut butter sandwich or 15 M&Ms)

Items that must be carried with the kids at all times in their insulin kits:
1) The kit bag containing all the supplies.
2) Calorie King guide to almost every food and how many carbs each contains.
3) Extra syringes
4) IV prep, alcohol swabs to prevent infection when giving injections
5) Writing tool used to keep a record of Blood Glucose and carbs eaten and insulin given.
6) Fast acting, bolus insulin. MH also has to keep her Basal Insulin with her.
7) Emergency Glucagon shot. If BG drops dangerously low and the individual is unable to take fast sugars orally, this shot chemically tells the liver to dump all the glucose it has stored into the bloodstream. It is designed to be injected through clothing into muscle. Extreme measure.
8) Glucometer to measure those pesky blood sugar readings.