Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Chronic Sinusitis Vs. Cheese

I’ve had chronic sinusitis for about a year now. I’ve visited two different ear nose and throat specialists with no improvement. Yesterday I had my second appointment with my second doctor. He told me:

The ringing in my ears (known as Tinnitus) is never going to go away and I might as well make friends with it.

The pressure in my head is ACTUALLY cause by my workspace and how I sit at work. He’s never seen me work, nor my workspace. Grasping…

The sinus infection isn’t that bad. The two drugs I’ve tried (antibiotic and steroid nose spray) haven’t done anything. The CT scan showed that it’s not bad enough for surgery. His solution: nothing. Come back in 6 months.

I realize that doctors are not gods. I realize that chronic sinusitis is very hard to treat when drugs don’t immediately fix the problem. I also can recognize when a doctor isn’t treating me properly and isn’t giving me any information. I literally left the office in tears of frustration. He merely walked out of the exam room, forgetting me immediately.

I talked to my roommates about it last night, getting worked up again and starting to cry. My brother said “It amazes me that you have this major, chronic disease (diabetes) that you rarely complain about or get down about, and then it’s this stupid sinus infection with a myriad of crap doctors ends up being the biggest drama.”

Anyway, I have done a bit of research on my own and am going to try some different changes in my lifestyle to try and cut down on the symptoms before I find yet another ENT specialist.

The most drastic thing I will be doing is cutting dairy out of my diet completely. I’ve read all over that casein, protein found in cow’s milk and other products, is not good for you. It causes all sort of things, one of them being ‘excess mucus’. Okay, so that’s gross. Anyway, I’ve read on a few sites that people dealing with chronic sinusitis who cut dairy out of their diet noticed dramatic improvements after 2 months.

Two months is a long time to go without cheese. But at this point, I’ll try just about anything. My dairy free days started last night. Here goes nothing.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Good blood sugar dance

Sometimes, after I've been battling with seemingly endless and inexplicable highs, I get a row of amazing blood sugars. The past weekend has been full of them. Each time I check and I'm around 100, I get this amazed, relieved, and fantastic feeling. Sometimes, after a big meal that I pretty much had to guestimate on, if I get a great reading I'll give a bit of a 'yessss!'. Then, sometimes, after weeks of high reading, I'll get a good number and I'll do a little dance.

Never in public, but still. If someone glanced up at my apartment window at that exact moment they'd see me doing a little dance. It's kind of like my end zone dance. I did one this weekend.

I also went to a dog show this weekend. My roommate enjoys watching dog shows on TV so for Christmas we promised her we'd go to a dog show in Chicago. We went yesterday and saw the whole spectrum, from young handlers to individual breeds to the hounds (with a commentator making lame comments) and, my favorite, the courses. It was so fun to watch the small dogs leaping over hurdles and running through those poles. The best part was once they finished the little dogs would just LEAP right up into their owners arms. It made me want a dog.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Do you want that diced or minced?

I had my 90 day review on Tuesday at my part-time job. I help prep and clean lots of dishes for a fabulous cooking school. I work two nights a week, which is just about perfect. Not only do I get to learn, but I’ve met some wonderful people and eating some even better food.

The review was good and I now have a 40%(!) discount on everything in the store, and a dollar raise. This will obviously be spent in the store. I’m trying to decide which knife is my favorite, as that will be my first purchase. I’m pretty excited.

Also fun, my boy sent me an email the other day that said “Heard about this on NPR. Science is such an awesome thing: http://www.ahc.umn.edu/news/releases/diabetes022006/home.html”. It’s an interesting article. I normally don’t keep up on all the scientific advances, but it’s good to know it’s all moving forward.

Marathon Shmarathon!

A few posts back I mentioned some high morning blood sugars. I’ve tested and made corrections to my basal over and over and still, two hours after my normal breakfast, was too high. Finally today, two hours after eating, I was low! Not something I’m normally excited about, but today I was somewhat happy to see a 66 instead of a 200.

I believe the highs have been due to some sinus problems I’ve been having. Actually, for the past 9 months or so I have had major sinus issues. Went to one Ear Nose and Throat specialist 3 times and nothing changed. I finally went into get a CT scan this January and I was diagnosed with Chronic Sinusitis. I found a new ENT specialist who I’ve met with once and will meet with again on Monday, after he’s had time to review all my medical history and scans. Hopefully things will turn around shortly. In the mean time, I am just listening to the constant ringing in my ears, accompanied by the popping when I open my mouth, the headache and the bobble head feeling.

I also must admit that I’ve been lurking lately. Sometimes I just don’t have much to say about diabetes. But watching some of you jump on the exercise bandwagon, I can’t help but get pulled back in. I’ve been slacking a little (okay, a lot) the past three weeks.

While I don’t think the ‘exercise everyday’ routine would work for me (some days I am at one of my works for 16 hours), I do have a goal of 4 times a week. I also want to sign up to run a 5k at the end of April. I know that I could go out and run 3 + miles right now, if I wanted to, but having this goal with give me that competitive nudge that I need to make me just go to the gym.

I mentioned the 5k to the boy and he replied with an email about how, eventually, I’ll get sucked into an 8k, then a 10k. Then, when I know I can do that, I’ll want to run a 10 mile race, and from there it’s on to a half marathon. And, of course, who runs a half marathon and then doesn’t run a full marathon?! So he’s got me running (in his mind) the Chicago marathon next year. I laughed and laughed and laughed! He’s run 6 marathons and is signed up for the Chicago marathon this year. I’ll leave that up to him.

Friday, February 10, 2006

A Family in Need of Support: Please Help!

Awhile back I wrote about a little boy named Noah, whose parents are friends of my parents, getting diagnosed with type 1. Below is the message they sent to friends and family, asking for donations for their local JDRF Walk for the Cure. This family has had a very difficult time figuring this disease out and finding a community that understands what they are going through. From the bottom of my heart, I ask all of you to consider donating (even $5!) and posting a hopeful message on their JDRF fundraising page. They need to know that there are so many other people out there that are going through the same thing. Here is the link to their page: Noah's Hope Team

Here is their story:
As you may already know, our youngest son, Noah, was diagnosed with Type 1 Juvenile Diabetes on September 26th of this past year. Noah, who will be 4 years old in March, will be insulin-dependent for the rest of his life. In just the four-plus months since he was diagnosed, Noah has already endured over 600 finger pricks and 400 insulin injections. We have already made two trips to the Blank ER to have put on an IV because of flu symptoms and the inability to keep his blood sugar levels within range.

Our only wish this past Christmas, was to have a cure for our son. We know this is something that can be done, but we need everyone’s help and support. We will be Walking For the Cure on March 4th, and hope that you are willing to support us by joining our team and walk with us, or support our team by making a donation to JDRF in Noah’s behalf. Our team is called Noah’s Hope Team, and we are looking for anyone who is willing to walk with us or support us on Saturday, March 4th. Our team goal is to raise $5,000 for JDRF, and we optimistically believe we can raise more than this if everyone would just give a little. A link to the JDRF website is below.

There are so many devastating diseases in our world right now, and that saddens us. The difference with Juvenile Diabetes is that wiping it out of existence is extremely attainable and within reach. Noah often asks us, “When is my diabetes going to go away?” It is a painful question to answer looking at his beaming and hopeful eyes. We feel confident a positive answer will be available to him before he goes to high school. But we need your help to obtain this, to keep the hope alive for our son and for every child who’s only wish is to have the diabetes go away.
Please help us help find a cure for this disease. Help us keep the hope going, for our son, and for all children who must patiently wait for the cure to come.

Thank you so much.

Tom and Terri -and Matthew, Zach, Claire and Noah

Tuesday, February 07, 2006


I've been tagged by Sandra...

Four jobs I’ve had in my life

1. Marketing intern for a spice company
2. Assistant web designer
3. Peon at a nursery/landscaping company
4. Line cook/ prep cook/ hot cook/ server/ hostess at Golden Corral

Four movies I can watch over and over

1. Rushmore
2. Mary Poppins
3. The Princess Bride
4. Best in Show

Four Places I have lived

1. Iowa
2. Arizona
3. Illinois

Four TV shows I love to watch

1. Deadwood (I *heart* HBO shows)
2. Six Feet Under
3. Arrested Development (Damn people for their poor sense of humor!)
4. Project Runway (Guilty pleasure…)

Four places I have been on vacation

1. Colorado
2. Wyoming
3. California
4. Northern woods of Minnesota for a week of fabulous backpacking.

Four of my favorite foods

1. My mom’s homemade whole wheat bread, fresh out of the oven
2. Steamed broccoli
3. Cheese!
4. Salmon off the grill

Four websites I visit daily

1. Bloglines
2. Salon
3. Slate
4. Go Fug Yourself

Four places I would rather be right now

1. Home in bed with my boy asleep
2. In a cozy cabin in the mountains of Colorado
3. In Iowa playing with my nephew
4. Anywhere out of the U.S.

I tag Melissa!

Monday, February 06, 2006

To Charleston and Back Again

I'm back. I spent the last week in Charleston, South Carolina training on a new database system with my boss. Let me tell you, database training is not all it's cracked up to be. It was a long week but I survived and am now back to work in Chicago. I must say, I do love Chicago.

While I was out of town I got a call from my general doctor. For the past 10 months or so I've had constant ringing in my ears, popping everytime I open my mouth or swallow, headaches and pressure in my head. I went to an ear nose and throat specialist and for months was on every kind of allergy medicine I could think of, including self-delivered shots (more injections? yay!). Nothing changed. My doctor didn't listen and insisted on allergies. I don't like doctors who don't listen so I went back to my general doctor. She sent me to get a CT scan of my sinuses to see what was actually going on. So, she called while I was out of town to tell me that the report shows I have chronic sinusitis that needs 'immediate intervention.' Sounds like fun huh. I have an appointment today with a different ear nose and throat specialist. I'm hoping he gives me a magic drug to clear it up. If not, surgery may be discussed. At least I know what's wrong with me, and isn't that half the battle sometimes?

I see there are many many blogs I haven't read this week. I'll do some work, read some blogs, and post again later.

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