Help for families who have a child with type 2 diabetes

Your  Healthy Home Series

Here’s a great way to get the new year off to a happy and healthy start – if you have a child with type 2 diabetes:Your Healthy Home Series (YHHS). 

YHHS is a 4-week series of video coaching sessions from Helaine Ciporen. Helaine is a licensed clinical social worker who counsels children and families at NYC’s Mount Sinai Hospital, Center for Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetes. 

Even better news – the first 50 people who sign up get it for free! 

Your Healthy Home Series consists of 8 interactive emails, each with a short video followed by a questionnaire designed to help families better understand their needs, so that they can make the small changes that will lead to big changes in their health. One of the advantages of this online program is families are right in the environment where they need to make changes – their home – and now they can have the ongoing support and guidance they need.

Although increasing numbers of children are getting type 2 diabetes, due to escalating childhood obesity, there are few educational resources for parents and families. Helaine’s coaching program, as well as the educational web site she developed after years in the field, DiabetesFamilies.com, is one of those resources. 

Having a child with type 2 diabetes is a different struggle than having a child with type 1 diabetes — but it’s still a struggle for families. Your child has to eat differently and start getting active. And these lifestyle habits that need to change usually need to change for the whole family. 

Further, children with type 2 diabetes often get the same associated ills adults do with type 2:  high blood pressure, high cholesterol and cardiovascular disease. And if a child gets type 2 diabetes and doesn’t manage it, by time they’re in their thirties their quality of life is enormously compromised.

 

 

 

If you have a child with type 2 diabetes, check out the program and web site. If you know a family that has a child with diabetes, spread the word. 

Dear Santa, won’t you please take this diabetes away?

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 I’ve posted this before but I’m posting it again – because it makes me laugh, and humor can’t be overrated living with diabetes.

Dear Santa,

All I’d like this Christmas is for you to take this diabetes away. I’m so tired of it already. All the time stabbing my fingers for blood and guessing when my sugar’s too high or too low.

Now that I’m in menopause I can barely tell whether I’m sweating because I’m losing estrogen or because my blood sugar’s crashing at 50 mg/dl!

And, can we talk… I mean the constant figuring out how many carbs are in a ravioli or bread stick or that fried calamari that will be at the company Christmas party. Some days I just want to lie down and shoot myself. Please, please, Santa, would you take this diabetes away?

Sincerely,
Riva

***
Dear Riva,

I’m very sorry you’re having a tough time during my favorite season. I only want people to be singing carols and drinking eggnog and feeling good cheer. Unfortunately, it says in my contract that I’m not allowed to interfere with life’s natural occurrences. So here’s my suggestion: although you’ve already opened your holiday gifts, go back and look under your Hanukkah bush for the gift in having diabetes.

You may have to spend a few days looking, so why don’t you schedule it for the week between Christmas and New Year’s while you have some down time? Then you can start the new year fresh.

Best wishes,
Santa and the gang

***
Dear Santa,

A gift in my diabetes? What are you, crazy? Meshuggah? Thanks, but no thanks!

Riva

***
Dear Rabbi,

I seek your wise counsel. I wrote to Santa to take away my diabetes, but he wasn’t helpful at all. Surely you who have studied the Torah and represent our people who have suffered throughout history can help me with this awful diabetes.

It’s such a strain, Rabbi. I have to test my blood sugar when I really want to be lighting the sabbath candles. I forgot all about the High Holy Days this year because I was so busy counting carbs in the Challah, bagels and honey cake.

Rabbi, please, what solace can you offer me? What words of wisdom? Surely you would tell me to just forget about this diabetes thing and go shopping, right?

Please write soon,
Riva

***
Dear Riva,

Santa and I just returned from the Caribbean, and he told me about your difficulty. He said he told you to look for the gift in your diabetes. I concur with Santa; there are many gifts to be found in diabetes, if you look. For one, my child, you won’t have to drink the traditional Manishewitz holiday wine anymore. The Counsel all agree that it is much too sweet. Bring out the Chardonnay!

When Santa asks you to look for a gift in your diabetes, he is not saying this because you are not Catholic and he is not bringing you anything, although this is true. He is speaking like our brothers the Buddhists, who profess that there is a gift in everything if you look for something positive that it can bring into your life.

Let me tell you a story, my child. My own Aunt Sheila had diabetes, and after she stopped kvetching, she went to a spa and learned how to eat healthfully. She shopped along Rodeo Drive and bought a cute little jogging outfit and started running. On her jog along the ocean she met her fourth husband, Marvin, and they’re very happy. They just moved into a $6 million mansion in Jupiter, Fla. — right next to Burt Reynolds! Everyone’s plotzing! The house was in foreclosure so they have even more money to decorate!

Darling girl, find a gift in your diabetes, because to be honest, since you’re not orthodox, and all I have are these great wigs I got on sale from my cousin Schlomo, I’m not bringing you anything, either. And really, it’s not very pleasant to whine.

Shabbat Shalom
Rabbi, Local Union 107

***
Dear Rabbi,

I thought about what you and Santa said and have decided to become a Buddhist. I picked up the Dalai Lama’s book, “The Art of Happiness.” He says, “Happiness is a butterfly, which when pursued, is always just beyond your grasp, but which, if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you.” I told my friend Joe I like butterflies, and I like the robe, so these aren’t bad gifts.

Joe said the quote meant that we are the source of our happiness, that happiness can only come from inside us, regardless of what happens in our lives. Hmm, I said, maybe I need to learn more. So I booked a flight to Tibet.

Now if only I didn’t have to drag all this damn diabetes stuff with me…. ohm… ohm… oy.

This year I also posted this on a great diabetes newsmagazine you should check out if you haven’t already, asweetlife.org. And onTuDiabetes, a social media community.

Free Classes at Type 1 University: A holiday gift just for you

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CDE/pump trainer and author, Gary Scheiner, is offering free online diabetes classes throughout the month of January. 

Don’t miss this opportunity to relearn carb counting, lose weight on insulin, make better use of your pump or CGM and more. Gary offers 10 different classes to help you brush up on your management.

T1 University’s online one hour classes are available to anyone who uses insulin and parents and caregivers. 

Pre-registration is required, so take a look, check out this 10 minute sample class and then sign up today. 

You’ll be glad you did.

Back from the International Diabetes Federation World Congress in Dubai

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The lovely David Edelman of DiabetesDaily.com (with a friend)

It’s been an amazing two and a half weeks. December 2nd I left New York for the International Diabetes Federation World Congress in Dubai. 

More than 15,000 attendees arrived for the conference and I reported its opening on the Huffington Post

In between running to press briefings I got to hang with a number of fellow diabetes bloggers and do a night on the Dubai-town. 

Pictured here are Cherise Shockley of Diabetes Social Media Advocacy, Elizabeth and David Edelman of DiabetesDaily.com and Manny Hernandez of Diabetes Hands Foundation and TuDiabetes.

Here is the Congress in pictures(and captions), thanks to my husband and newly minted press photographer.