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Health & Wellness

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So since not a soul asked, I’m going to explain why I haven’t been posting much lately.

For the last four weeks I have had a very painful headache. My Nurse Practitioner and I have hit a wall trying to figure out what is causing it and so far we’re stumped.

It started a few weeks after my cough did. The cough started at the end of February and about five days in, I headed to our local hospital to make sure it wasn’t pneumonia, as I have had it in the past when having a deep cough. Fortunately it wasn’t pneumonia, and I was sent home with codeine syrup to help me sleep.

I used that for the five days and though it didn’t fix the cough, I was able to sleep.

When the cough didn’t go away, my Nurse Practitioner started me on a puffer to see if that would help. I did get some relief, but I was increasingly uncomfortable as the cough remained productive. I was also having times of being unable to take a deep breath as the coughing fits would happen.

And in the midst of all this, I ended up with a bladder infection and was put on an antibiotic for three days. Which led to me telling off someone in the waiting room, which I have NEVER done! But that’s another story.

So when I still wasn’t getting relief from my cough, my NP ordered an antibiotic since a virus should have cleared up on its own during the time I was coughing. I was able to get relief and the cough eased up. Which was a very happy time!

But that’s when the headache began. I was using Ibuprofen and was getting mild relief from the head pain. My NP added a Triptan, which sadly didn’t work at all. I bumped up my Ibuprofen just to manage, but that failed as well. Because of the possible side-effect of a rebound headache, my NP asked me to stop the Ibuprofen and she prescribed me T3. That helped for a bit, but didn’t give long-lasting relief.

Which brings us to one week ago when I was prescribed Propanolol. It seemed to help a great deal. The second day on it was great and I was able to be more active and help out with our minimizing for our upcoming move. That was this past Friday, and here we are. I still have headaches, but they are moderated a bit by the Propanolol. But the are still there, now focused in the right temple, directly above my eye. I am managing for the most part, but still tire very easily and the headache comes back strong if I’ve done too much around the house.

So we are at a stand-still. We have no idea what is causing my headaches, and why the plethora of meds hasn’t had an long-term effect on the pain. Is it part of my fibromyalgia? Is it something new? I’m also having dry eyes, pain with eye movement and an extremely dry mouth. And I’m kind of going squirrely trying to figure it out!

So help me out. If you have any tips, please share below!

The government of Canada has published a great deal of much information about the current COVID-19 pandemic, including the following guidelines about actions you can take to reduce your risk of becoming ill, supplies to have on hand and everyday precautions.

As someone with diabetes, I’m in the high risk group. I will definitely not be going to the grocery store or farmer’s market to minimize my own risk.

Though this is done in a cheeky manner, it is EXACTLY spot-on. I have had fibromyalgia for 22 years now and it’s ups and downs are especially problematic.

Since stress exacerbates the symptoms of fibromyalgia, our current situation is giving me flare-ups. We’re being posted to Germany this summer, which means we’re busy getting our house ready to go on the market. Add to that the fact that we have two dogs who we cannot take with us because of medical conditions, along with the COVID-19 pandemic and you can just imagine what the stress levels are like around here!

So when I found this link I’d sent myself, I knew I had to share. It made me both nod my head and chuckle. Which I needed 🙂

This is a long story about Type 2 diabetes and it’s complications.

Now I’ve had T2 for a long time, diagnosed in 2010.  I had gestational diabetes with my second child, but with none of my other three pregnancies.  The fact I didn’t have it with my last two children was startling since they were 11lbs 14oz and 12lbs 1oz!

So after many years of being sedentary and eating poorly, I was diagnosed.  I was put on the starter med of Metformin and monitored.  Things chugged along and were stable.

In 2015, Gliclazide was added to my meds as things seemed to be a little off and my A1C was climbing.  Again all was stable for a while.

Three years later, Invokana was added.  It was new and we were hopeful that it be a good fit to help get the A1C under control as I was on the max of Metformin and Gliclazide.

After trying the Invokana for 18 months or so, I had had it with the side effects. Because Invokana’s mechanism was to bind with the sugars in my blood and then eliminate them in my urine, there were “uncomfortable” issues.  While my NP was on parental leave, I saw the physician at the clinic and told him I wanted off the Invokana.  He DOUBLED my dose.  Talk about arrogant and not listening to what the patient is saying.  Ugh.

So once my NP was back, I hightailed it into her office and explained the Invokana debacle.  She added Januvia, got rid of the Invokana and we had a follow-up the next week.

That was 21 January 2020.

At that appointment, it was determined that I needed to start insulin.  Deep down I knew it was coming, because my A1C’s had been climbing again and I was still sedentary and eating like a goat – three gumballs and a tin can for dinner type shit.  My eating habits have been atrocious and I absolutely know that this is my doing.

I have not paid attention to vegetables. Even when a friend hung a grocery bag of kale on my doorknob for me to try when we lived in Winnipeg! Thanks Andrea!

I have not consistently exercised since the late 90’s.

I have enjoyed far too many bags of milk chocolate chips, chocolate eggs, chocolate rabbits and Giant Tiger BBQ chips.

I have consistently taken in FAR more calories than I have burned off.

So here it is.  Insulin.

I’ve been started on Tresiba, a long-acting injectable that is quite painless to use.  The goal is to have a 4-5 fasting.  So first thing in the morning.

This leads to today’s events.  Since Tuesday, I’ve been hyperconscious of what I’m eating.  Unfortunately for me, the large flake oats we have makes my sugars go up instead of down, so that’s out.  Yogurt and strawberries gave me awesome results, but the people I live with insist on eating MY STRAWBERRIES! Bums.  Apples and peanut butter spike my sugars so that guilty pleasure is out.  Shreddies do the same – can you say CARBS!  Which also means perogies, pizza, fries, potatoes, sweet potatoes and so on are gone.

Anywho, I had some expected side effects on starting insulin.  I was incredibly woozy Tuesday night after my first dose and woke up Wednesday morning with a killer headache.  I was woozy again Wednesday night.  I didn’t have a headache Thursday morning, which was nice.  I was woozy again last night after taking the insulin.

This morning, I started out with a 7.8.  Which is the lowest fasting result I’ve had! Which is great!  But I developed a headache and so had a banana, some ibuprofen and went back to bed.

When I got up again, I was decidedly unwell.  I was shaking and anxious and a bit of an all around wreck.  I was immediately suspicious and took my sugars – 4.6! I was having a hypoglycaemic episode at the level I was supposed to be at fasting!  I took a spoonful of sugar, and made some peanut butter toast on whole wheat.  Things settled over the next 30 minutes or so but I was frightened.  I haven’t driven since starting insulin, which is a major drag, but after this hypo episode, I’m glad I’m not.

I’m pretty sure this is karma for having been diagnosed for ten years and doing nothing to protect my health in that time.

Since the best time to start taking care of my body would have been in 2010 when Dr. Haggard told me (or you know, from birth), the second best time is now.

Because I’m a fussy eater, I’ve been focusing on what I can’t have rather that what I can have.   By turning that around, I’ve gone looking for diabetic friendly recipes for me with ingredients I can eat.  Beef, chicken and fish are all still on the table, and I’m quite happy to put them to work.

Most of the veggies I tend to like are starchy so I’m looking for others that I can enjoy.  I can have starchy ones occasionally but not regularly.
This is a journey that I am working hard to manage and hopefully, this time, I’ll get it right.

TL;DR – I’m on insulin because I didn’t treat my body well.

If you have any yummy recipes, let me know below!

I found the article referenced in the title of this post the other day and was intrigued with what it had to say.

First, a definition. According to Urban Dictionary, “high vibe” culture is defined as “A naturally high state. The state of joy one achieves when a persons actions and beliefs are aligned and all the pieces of their life have integrity and love at it’s core. The state of bliss experienced when at full health as a result of being substance free.”

So when I’d read the quote below, I was floored.

No bad vibes,” means that it’s not okay if you have been the victim and are in a healing process, or if you are simply having a bad day, moment, or month. And, it completely gaslights those who deal with chronic physical or mental conditions.

I deal with a few of the chronic physical issues, not the least of which is my own struggle with obesity, fibromyalgia and Type II diabetes.  This is a great read for you even if you are not one of us who try to manage chronic illness.

Read for your self! Let me know what resonates with you?

Came across this awesome article about how to use a worry list! Enjoy!

Humans are funny animals; we tend to have lots of thoughts and ideas going on in our heads at any one time.

Interestingly, many of those thoughts are actually half-formed, fuzzy, grey ‘worries’. What’s even more interesting, is that because they aren’t fully formed, you can’t really process them. And that means, they aren’t going away.

One of the first things we think of when planning for productivity is how we can accomplish more in our finite 24-hour days. But if we think that “catch-up” sleep or trying to more on less rest are good ideas, we may be sadly mistaken. So are we doing sleep right?

The links between sleep and productivity have been mused about for years.  As any parent or entrepreneur will tell you, some of us know this a bit too well.

But are our sleeping habits helping or hindering our productivity?

The short answer is yes, a lack of sleep can contribute tremendously to a low-level of productivity.  Here are a few resources for you to help determine how to make the most of your sleep so you are recharged and ready to go when you wake up to face your day.

Why Weekend Catch-Up Sleep is Not Good For Productivity

Most of us look forward to the weekend just so that we can pay off the week’s “sleep debt” with more napping hours over the weekend. But that’s not a good idea.  Pooja Singh explains how a study at the University of Colorado-Boulder shows that “catch-up” sleep may be doing more harm than good.

Productivity and Sleep

Whether you have a big presentation at work tomorrow or you’re running a marathon, friends and family are quick to tell you to “get a good night’s sleep.”

This post at Tuck.com addresses the problem of trying to be more productive on less sleep, and shows how that idea is the opposite of helpful.

Why a Lack of Sleep is a Productivity Nightmare
Feeling a little groggy? Hitting the coffee first thing in the morning to jolt yourself into alertness?

Maybe you aren’t getting enough sleep.

When we don’t get enough shut-eye, we have trouble concentrating, working, making decisions, remembering things, and being our best selves. We get crabby, tetchy, and unpleasant to be around. But the problem is more serious than just being in a bad mood.