Advice to My Younger Self

If only I had these letters to read when I was growing up. If only I had this advice when I was going through these key points in my life. What could have happened if I went outside more? What could have happened if I had known more about diabetes before? Maybe these letters can help you or someone you know make the right choices in their life.


Dear 12-year-old Me,

For the love of everything that’s good in this world, please get off your butt and get outside. Go outside and enjoy the world. One day soon, it’ll be too dangerous to go outside as kids. Enjoy the outdoors. Run around, ride your bike, be stupid. Enjoy the outdoors. Your activeness now will be a savior in the future.

Sincerely,
Present Me


Dear 16-year-old Me,

Please get some sleep. Stop staying up late. It’s not cool to stay up late. Also, please stop eating garbage. Just because it’s easy to make doesn’t mean it’s good for you. You don’t have the rest of your life to correct your mistakes in life. You have this one life and if you want to live it to the fullest and see everything on your bucket list, stop making these mistakes. It’ll be easier to just not make the mistake than to try and fix it later in life. Don’t be dumb, don’t make those mistakes.

Sincerely,
Present Me


Dear 19-year-old Me,

Please, please, go spend time with dad. Go outside and walk with him. Go downstairs and watch tv with him. I know you want him to be here forever and I know he makes it seem like he’ll be around for a long time to come, but he won’t. Go spend time with him. Learn more about diabetes. Help him with his diabetes. This is your last year with him. What you do won’t prevent him from leaving but maybe it’ll help you come to terms with his death, that at least you tried. Please, just try. For me.

Sincerely,
Devastated


Dear 20-year-old Me,

I’m so so sorry. If only we had made better choices in our life. We could have avoided this diagnosis somehow. Maybe. Here’s my advice to you: DO NOT STOP TAKING YOUR MEDICATION. EVER. Take them on time, every time. Even when the side effects seem unbearable, they’ll get better for us. Don’t stop taking your meds and go and get educated on diabetes. Get educated early. There might still be a chance for you to bring your numbers down and maybe even reverse your diabetes, if that really exists. You have a chance. You just need to lose 10% of your body weight and make better food choices. It’s still early on in your diagnosis. You can do this, I believe in you.

Sincerely,
Present Me


Dear Future Me,

I hope we finally got our life in order somehow. I hope we got the baby we always dreamed of having and I hope we’re finally at that healthy weight we’re been hoping for. I’m just starting to retake my life and I hope I’ve made it. Please continue to work hard to keep your numbers down. I have faith in you and I love you so much. I hope we can change our life for the better. I love you.

Sincerely,
Courtney ❤


I definitely encourage you to write letter to your past selves and your future self. What do you wish you could have been told back then? What do you hope for in your future? Maybe it’ll help you come to terms with your diagnosis. Remember, you can never turn back the clock, but you can keep moving forward. You can CHOOSE to keep moving forward. I believe in you and I love you.


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30 Day Low Carb Challenge: Week 1

I would like to note that you don’t have to read these. They’re are my documentation of my journey through this challenge and it will be lengthy. Each one will be an entire week’s worth of entries. This is mostly for me to log and read. Thank you!


Sunday, June 21, 2020

For breakfast, I had 3 strips of bacon, 2 hot dogs, 2 eggs scrambled and 2 slices of toast with butter. Usually my tummy gets queasy when I eat this sort of greasy food without rice to control the grease, but this morning it wasn’t so bad. It came out to 33g of carbs. My limit is 45g. Oh but my grandma bought a Boston Cream Cake and I wanted to try a slice so I had half a slice, 1/16 of the cake, and that put me right at my limit: 45g. I was a little upset but at least it wasn’t more than 45g. Also this morning, I had a daytime detox tea which doesn’t say if there’s carbs in it but I should think it doesn’t.

For lunch, I had some hummus and cauliflower stalks with a BBQ Chicken Creations sandwich, again with white bread. That wasn’t so bad. I actually really like the cauliflower stalks and hummus together. Also, I had a Mountain View Stone Cookie as a snack which was a mistake. 200 calories and 29g of carbs in just one cookie!

Dinner was garlic butter shrimp. I was blown away that garlic butter shrimp has almost no carbs whatsoever. The only carbs I had was in the veggie rice medley I had with the shrimp in place of my usual white rice. Good thing my sister had a bag sitting in the freezer this whole time. Otherwise, I’ll be having quinoa as my rice replacement for the rest of this challenge.

In total, I have had roughly 125g of carbs which is a complete plus for the first day! My goal is between 90 and 175g of carbs per day. These are my choices for the rest of the challenge.

Downfalls: The slice of cake and the stone cookie were complete mistakes to have but at least I had them now in the beginning. It can only get better from here. My post-meal blood sugar after lunch was 199mg/dL so there’s still a lot of work to do. We didn’t get to walk the dogs today so we’ll see how walking the dogs can impact everything.

Upsides: I was completely in range as far as carb intake. And with this number, I’m 100% sure that I’m satisfied and not hungry. 80% full is 100% satisfied.

Calories Consumed: 1840Calories Burned: 2327Caloric Balance: +12 (over)
Protein: 80.1gNet Carbs: 125.6gFat: 111.7g

Monday, June 22, 2020

Today was rough. I was so hungry. But my husband made sure I didn’t give in. I had a detox tea this morning. I fasted 16 hours from the night before and that ended at 10:30am. I also had a Herbalife raspberry tea. Before breakfast, I had some roasted red pepper hummus and baby carrots. For breakfast, I had two hotdogs on two slices of bread and some baked fries (skin on). It wasn’t the best breakfast but it’s what we had until we can go to the store again. At least there was no ketchup.

Half an hour later, I got hungry again. I asked my husband if I could have ramen, but he said no and tossed me a protein pack instead. But I was still hungry! So I had some cauliflower and broccoli rice and some leftover shrimp from dinner. That kind of tied me over. I took my dog out for a walk, took us an hour. It was a good walk.

For dinner, my husband made slow cooked pot roast. I had quinoa with my dinner. Wasn’t that bad. I had a pretty decent sized dinner. Lunchtime was hard. It’s only the second day and it really sucked. I have to go out and get more alternatives to the carb heavy snacks in the house right now. I’m going to be week during this first week, I know it.

Downfalls: I had white bread slices again today. I need to get whole grain bread soon. I ate a lot more today just to feel full. I also forgot to take my blood sugar after all the food.

Upsides: I went out and walked my dog which was good. This experience will help me prepare for the next week. I had less grams of fat today than yesterday! I burned more calories today than I consumed so I’m on the path of burning one pound a week!

Calories Consumed: 1697Calories Burned: 2434Caloric Balance: -239
Protein: 100gNet Carbs: 126.8gFat: 82g

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

So today I cheated. Badly. I was craving beef stroganoff and we tried to do it as low carb as possible for dinner but we couldn’t find any alternative noodles for egg noodles ANYWHERE. Not even Safeway had any. So we had to get egg noodles. I also had furikake chicken for lunch. It was so good. But it came with rice and potato mac salad. No alternatives. Considering how much carbs I eat normally, I’m still pretty stoked that it took me two days before I went back to eating rice. However, I can’t make a habit of this. LOW CARB DAMMIT.

Breakfast was two hotdogs, two eggs, and two buttered white toast. We finally got whole grain bread! Today was a bad day but a good one too. We bought some great low carb alternatives. We bought veggie tots and sweet potato fries. We bought a lot of fruits too. We forgot to grab whole grain pasta at Safeway though, so we have to go back because I want spaghetti tomorrow. Either we get whole grain pasta or veggie noodles whichever one we can find. But, at Safeway, we found low carb ice cream! I know this challenge says no ice cream, but it was no ice cream high in refined sugar. Each bar has under 10g of carbs and is high in protein so I think it’s a plus. But we forgot to grab that too, so tomorrow we’re gonna grab those, pasta, and some shrimp, they go on sale tomorrow too.

I’m very upset about today, but I can only go forward from this and do better. I also did go over my carb limit today and I’m really sad about that. I was going to walk my dog today, but I fell asleep and slept for two hours! I’ve been really tired since starting this challenge. I think it’s because I’m not eating a lot of carbs so my body is working harder to burn protein and fats instead maybe. Also, I had diarrhea after eating the furikake chicken. My stomach was so upset with me. Was it the grease from the chicken or the rice and mac salad? No idea but it was definitely lunch that did it for me.

Downfalls: I was weak today and gave in to white rice. I went over my carb limit and I didn’t go out to walk my dog today. Today was bad.

Upsides: I did a lot of walking in the store today while shopping. Dinner was really good too.

Calories Consumed: 1684Calories Burned: 2347Caloric Balance: -164
Protein: 60.8gNet Carbs: 198.1gFats: 72.7g

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

So today was a little better but not by much. I’ve been weak. I had a slice of pizza and a breadstick with two mini cinnamon rolls for dinner. For breakfast, I had fruits and hummus and baby carrots. For lunch, I had a Subway sandwich on whole wheat bread. But I did get some exercise in today which was great.

I must be strong and not give in to the carbs! I’m really upset about it. My husband had been craving pizza while we were on this challenge. Today was just a bad day.

Downfall: I had too much carbs today.

Upsides: I got out and walked a lot while shopping and walking my dog.

Calories Consumed: 1753Calories Burned: 2334Caloric Balance: -82
Protein: 64gNet Carbs: 181.6gFats: 77.8g

Thursday, June 25, 2020

Okay so today we were out almost the whole day. I had simian for breakfast with three medium boiled eggs. It’s not my finest moment, but then I didn’t eat until dinner. Not because I was forcing myself not to eat, but because I wasn’t hungry. But because I missed lunch and didn’t have anything since breakfast, I was hungry at dinnertime and that’s where I lost it.

Dinner was teriyaki chicken and rice with a salad topped with a couple slices of blackened ahi. I also had some sort of salad dressing with it. We ordered takeout from a local restaurant so I’m not sure what the salad dressing was. The plate came with three teriyaki chicken breasts and I didn’t save any of them for later. I am ashamed of that.

My only compensation is that we were out in the sun for most of the day and it’s been super hot and sunny all day. We also walked the dog at the walking park after dinner so we got to walk off dinner a bit. There was no breeze but the clouds finally covered the setting sun so it wasn’t hot and sunny. We did a pretty good pace with my good old girl. We could only do 1.5 laps around the park because she was starting to get tired and panting a lot.

We’re planning to make morning walks without the dog a thing soon. We just have to buy my husband walking shoes so we can get some serious laps in. He only has his work shoes. It’s Hawaii, we don’t usually wear shoes here. Maybe we’ll get to run a bit, too.

Downfall: A lot of freaking carbs today. Too much.

Upside: We’re making plans to be more active. I got a personalized weight loss book in the mail that walks me through the best food choices to make and tips for beginning my weight loss journey. I’m really excited about it and can’t wait to make the necessary food swaps towards weight loss. ALSO, I now weigh 209 pounds. I’ve lost three pounds since starting this challenge. I’m sure it’s water weight but that’s still something.

Calories Consumed: 2203Calories Burned: 2368Caloric Balance: +334 (over)
Proteins: 148.4gNet Carbs: 221.3gFats: 72.7g

Friday, June 26, 2020

Today the cravings were non-existent. I had a blackened ahi salad from the night before for breakfast. It wasn’t that bad. I didn’t finish it so I gave it to my husband to finish. I had one serving of M&M peanuts, I actually opened the share size package and split it in to three servings. All for me of course. Then I tried out my Breyer’s ice cream. It was surprisingly very good and it helped on the super hot day we had.

For a snack, I had a pair of chicken sliders from Market Pantry – Target. They’re pretty good. For lunch, I went to Subway and had a 6-inch turkey sandwich on wheat bread. I couldn’t hear what the guy said but they didn’t have all the options available anyway so I went with wheat. Loaded it with veggies and had a little bit of mayo to make it not so dry.

For dinner, we had spaghetti with whole grain spaghetti noodles. The noodles were actually really good. I thought they were going to taste weird but they were actually really good. However, my tummy wasn’t having all the sauce and it was getting queasy, so I had a scoop of rice to help calm my tummy down. It helped but at what cost?

Downside: I had quite a bit of sweets and starch.

Upside: I ate a lot less than the other days.

Calories Consumed: 1550Calories Burned: 2266Caloric Balance: -217
Proteins: 67.5gNet Carbs: 170.7Fats: 64.9g

Saturday, June 27, 2020

Today was hectic. My sisters, husband, and I went down to our storage unit to find Crystal’s high school diploma so she can apply for grad school in Germany. The storage unit is crowded with crap and there’s no light or air conditioning. It was pretty hot. I sweated a lot.

For breakfast, I had leftover spaghetti and some rice. Not so great. I also had some Hello Panda candies, also not good. After we were done with the storage unit, I had a chef’s salad and hot dog from 7 Eleven not the best choice but it wasn’t completely unhealthy. And we went to the mall and I had a Gotta Guava Jamba Juice, so good, high in sugar.

For dinner, we ordered out and I had some mochiko chicken, white rice, and a salad. I thought I had ordered the mochiko chicken curry but turns out I was wrong. So I had a very carb heavy day but I did get to burn off some of those calories. Not really.

Calories Consumed: 2512Calories Burned: 2546Caloric Balance: +465 (over)
Proteins: 94.4gNet Carbs: 347.8gFats: 74.5g

Overview:

The first week could have gone better. I didn’t stick to the challenge very well and that is completely my bad. And I’m starting to pay for it. My blood sugar levels aren’t going down and now my insulin dosage is going up. It’s very frustrating. I need to try harder next week.

The Journey: Episode Sixteen

JUNE 29, 2020

My first week of this low carb challenge down and it sucked. I did really well the first two days and then I dropped off. I guess I really can’t quit carbs cold turkey like that, but I’m going to keep trying. It’s been especially hard with cravings and eating out. On days where we don’t want to cook or don’t have time to cook, we’d order out and there’s not a lot of low carb options out there. I am trying though, that’s the most I can do. We’re running out of low carb snacks to eat and that’s affected me a bit.

I am very frustrated though. I’m being more conscious of the carbs I eat and trying to lessen them and yet my insulin continues going up. Last night I went up to 80 units and this morning my blood sugar was the same. I’m so frustrated! It’s like nothing I do will lower my blood sugar! Going up on my insulin doesn’t do anything for my blood sugar. It stays the same. Only twice during the first week my blood sugar was slightly within range and even then it was high. AGH WHAT AM I DOING WRONG!!!

Besides this super frustrating and irritating run, I am trying to destress my life. I think this whole pandemic is stressing me out and keeping my blood sugar levels high. Before the pandemic, I would eat whatever and take my insulin at night, then the next morning my blood sugar would be in range, that was at 50 units. Now I’m at 80 units and my sugar levels don’t change. I hate this. I want to go back to work. I want to stop stressing out. I just want my sugar levels to go down.

I’ve gained over 20 pounds since the pandemic started and I can’t seem to lose any of the weight again. It’s not like I can go out and relax somewhere, I’m afraid of catching coronavirus with all the people gathering at the beaches and everything. This has just been very frustrating.

This is just a very negative, ranting post. I’m sorry about that. Let’s see if there are any upsides to all of this.

On the bright side, I get to spend more time with my husband. He might be going back to work next month, fingers crossed. I get to spend time with my sister before she moves to Missouri then on to Germany with her husband. I probably won’t see her for a long while, which is both good and bad. She’s super annoying but she’s still pretty okay to hang around with.

I finally got my iMac to work and can now work on my desktop while sitting on the floor in the middle of the living room. I have a new fountain pen that I’ve been using to journal and that’s been pretty therapeutic. Honestly, I can’t think of anything else. Hopefully things will get better and I’ll be able to take better control of my life. Hopefully.

The Journey: Episode Fifteen

June 21, 2020

I woke up this morning and checked my blood sugar, it was 156 mg/dL. No bueno. So tonight I’ve decided to go up to 80 units of insulin. I’ve poked my right thigh as much as I could while keeping at least 1/4 inch distance between injection sites. I just can’t bunch up enough skin and fat to have a less painful injection, I think I should put the injection sites closer together. I’ve only injected four times into my right thigh.

I’m a little nervous about injecting in to my left thigh tonight because I don’t trust my left hand so I have to reach over and inject while making sure my hand stays steady. When it moves too much while the needle is injected it can hurt a lot.

One thing I’m not happy about is that I can’t really tell where I have recently injected. My most recent one still shows sign of the site, but the earlier ones have already started fading. I’ve been thinking about marking my skin with a sharpie or something but then, you know, skin absorbs all kinds of stuff and I don’t want it to absorb ink near my insulin injection site. But I’m afraid I won’t remember where I injected on my right thigh when I come back to it in 4 to 5 days. I’m not sure what I can do about that.

Also, I’m on the low carb diet. Hopefully this will help bring my sugar readings down in the morning with the increased 80 units. Given my sugars have been pretty high lately I’m not too worried about lows on this challenge and with more insulin. However, if I should go low, I will adjust my insulin accordingly. Now I can only get three shots out of each pen. Diabetes is so expensive.

None of my insurance covers insulin but thank goodness for the Lantus savings card otherwise I’d be paying for all of my insulin at once. But I still have to pay $92/box of five pens. Now one box is only good for about 15 days unless I use up the last of one pen and then use some of the next pen to make 80, but that means two injects on that night. Yikes, maybe not.

I need to take better control of my diabetes management. I have to do more indoor exercising for sure. The weather here in Hilo, HI has been all over the place. One day it’s hot and sunny, the next is pouring rain. Some days it’ll start out hot and sunny then end up pouring from noon to dusk or vice versa. So I should rely more on at-home exercise. I should make any excuse to get up and move around too.

I also need to drink tons of water and use the bathroom a lot. Which means we need to buy more toilet paper. There’s a lot I have to and sometimes it feels very overwhelming. So much so that I don’t want to do much sometimes. But even just a little bit of something is better than nothing.

If your diabetes has you down and you’re just overwhelmed with managing your diabetes, don’t give up. Do something, anything, no matter how small. Doing something like drinking more water or drinking water at all, is a step in the right direction. You’ve got this! We’ve got this! Never give up on yourself. Diabetes will make you stronger.

EDIT: I have decided against upping my insulin to 80 units. Since I’ve just started the 30 Day Low Carb Challenge this could impact my blood sugar so I want to see how it goes from here for the next couple of days. Also I have another doctor appointment on Friday so we’ll see what happens.


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30 Day Low Carb Challenge: Introduction

So I saw this post on Tumblr of all places. Someone posted about going on a low carb challenge for 30 days. During the next 30 days, I have to:

  1. Avoid food high in refined sugars
    • candy, ice cream, soda, energy drinks, etc
  2. Avoid fast foods
  3. Avoid white bread and pasta
    • limited to only whole grains
  4. Avoid alcohol
  5. Reduce salt intake
  6. Drink more water (about 125 ounces per day)
  7. More fruits and veggies

To avoid annoying everyone with daily posts for the next 30 days, I’m going to post on Sundays. So each week will have a daily log of what I’ve done or haven’t done, how I felt doing it, and if I’m struggling. Since I would be writing at night and the last entry would be Saturday night, I’d schedule it to post on Sunday afternoon. On the last week it’ll just be two days and then an overview of what the whole challenge was like.

My first day of the challenge is today. If you want to join me, feel free to join. Who knows, maybe after the 30 days I might actually change my lifestyle and diet because of this.

Why am I doing this challenge?

Part of me wants to see if I can even do it. But another part of me knows that I need to do it. My blood sugar hasn’t been within range at all for the last three months. No matter how much insulin I take, my sugar doesn’t go down it just stays the same. I’m too afraid to go up another 5 units of insulin to 80 units. I hope this is what I need to do to lower my sugar.

I have always had a lot of trouble with my diet maybe by taking this challenge and turning it public, it’ll make me more accountable. I don’t want to fail in front of you guys. I’m no punk!

But I have to remember that this isn’t just for you guys, this is first and foremost for me. This is for my health and my life. I have to be able to do this, because if I can’t then, well, I don’t want to think about what would happen next.

Wish me luck guys!

Remembering My Dad

Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there! I know all you dads think you’re the best and your family loves you, and you are absolutely right. Your family loves you, even if they never tell you, they really do love you.

I once heard something from somewhere a long while ago and I can’t even remember where I heard it from, but it’s stuck with me ever since.

“Anyone can be a father, but only a real man can be a dad.”

In honor of Father’s Day, I’d like to remember my dad. This is one of the hardest posts I’ve ever made. I started crying uncontrollably when I first started.


Brandon L. T. Baysa was born in Hilo, HI on February 21, 1971 to Benjamin and Lorna Baysa. He was the third of four children and the only boy. He attended the schools in the Waiākea district. He attended one semester in college before giving that up and going in to the workforce. At the age of 18, he was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.


He was a very hands-on person and liked to fix up cars and build things. As far back as I can remember, he would have fixer-upper cars and every weekend or so he would go out in the garage or on the driveway and fix whatever car or truck we had. He had model cars and airplanes that he built from kits and kept them in plastic cases to display on the shelves. We still have some of them.

He loved helping people and made friends fairly easily. He was always going some place to help someone with something. And all the while he would talk everyone’s ears off. He was the podagee of the family and I know I definitely take after that.

A podagee is someone who likes to talk and talk and talk and talk. They have said goodbye to you at least five times in the last two hours and still haven’t left yet. Most of the time it’s meaningful conversation and as they’re just about to finish they remembered something else they wanted to ask you or tell you about and it was definitely because they thought of you not because they like the sound of their own voice. They have two-sided dialogs, not one-sided monologues.

Anyway, he loved my sisters and I. Whatever new thing we were interested in, he would indulge us in it. I wanted to join karate, he made my tonfa when I advanced in the class. I wanted to join soccer, he made sure I went to every practice, he came to every game. He had my sisters join too and he coached them for a few seasons. I wanted to take aikido lessons and when I advanced to the adult class he made my jo staff, wooden tanto, and bokken and he even sewed the bag to put them in.

I was surprised my dad could sew. I found out that for his wedding, he made the sashes he and his best man wore and he helped clean my mom’s veil (she had used her mother’s wedding dress and veil for her wedding).

He was a huuuuuuuge geek. His interests included but were certainly not limited to: Star Wars, Star Trek, DC Comics, Marvel Comics, X Men, and Legos. He loved ninjas, survival gear, hunting and fishing, camping, guns, and pretty much anything outdoors. He even had a couple ghillie suits.

I remember one Halloween, he dressed in his ghillie suit and sat next to a table with a bowl of candy on the driveway and sat really still. When a kid came up very warily because they didn’t know what was on the chair, he’d jump at them and scare the crud out of them. He had to try and convince them to come back and grab some candy.

Later in life, I noticed dad was having complications with diabetes. His legs and feet were swelling and he lost feeling in his feet. He had sores on his body that took forever to heal and he would just randomly bleed. At one point he had to use a walker to get around and then he had to use a scooter. But then it started looking up, he was walking more and he didn’t need his scooter.

One thing I remembered was his insulin injection scars. He would inject into the same two locations on his abdomen every time and it became discolored. I don’t remember how often he took his insulin. I don’t think I ever heard him in pain when he injected either.

In 2014, he looked like he was getting better. He had lost weight and was moving around more and there was hope. But on May 20th, my parent’s 20th wedding anniversary, he came home from dialysis early complaining of a massive headache. I should have taken him to the hospital but instead I took him home. My mom came home from work that night and wanted to spend time with dad but he had fallen asleep. The next morning, May 21st, we were startled awake by my grandma. The world never stopped turning.

My greatest regret was not caring enough. It’s not like the internet wasn’t available at the time, so I could have educated myself, I just didn’t care enough. I was young and carefree. I thought dad was going to be around forever. I thought my dad was going to walk my sisters and I down the aisle. I thought dad was going to become a grandpa. I thought I had time. I never told my dad how much I loved him.

My dad is the reason why I do what I do. Everything I’ve done, I think, has led me to this blog, led me to help people with diabetes. I went to college and got my degree in History, my research skills are on point. After college, I worked at a credit union because I wanted to work with people. I left because I realized I wanted to help people not just work with them. I thought I wanted to help people with their finances, but I really wanted to use my degree. So I became a tour guide to teach people about the history and culture of my island. Then in October 2019, I had a spark. My diabetes was out of control.

I had my first appointment with an endocrinologist because my A1C was 9. He prescribed once a week Ozempic, but I couldn’t afford it. Then in January 2020, he prescribed me insulin. It hit, my diabetes was bad. My A1C was 11 and now I had to take insulin. I was going to end up like my dad. I didn’t want to so I decided to take my diabetes and get serious I should have done that from the start. I started this blog to become more accountable to myself and manage my diabetes better.

It’s because of my dad that I am here. I saw what this disease can do to you when you don’t properly manage it. I saw it take away someone I loved and it doesn’t discriminate who it takes. It doesn’t matter how much you love someone, poorly controlled diabetes will take them away from you.

I hope that the information I share on my blog helps to educate those with diabetes and those with diabetic loved ones alike so you never have to go through this. You can see the signs and take the necessary steps to manage it for yourself or help someone manage their diabetes so they never have to go through this alone. Please take this time to hug your children, call your parents, tell them you love them. Tell them you’re here for them.

Happy Father’s Day, dad. I hope I’ve made you proud.

The Journey: Episode Fourteen

JUNE 14, 2020

I’ve been getting pretty frustrated lately with my blood sugar. No matter how high I go with the insulin injection my blood sugar doesn’t seem to change. It doesn’t go up and it doesn’t go down. I’m not sure what’s wrong. Maybe it’s my diet, maybe I’m not doing enough with diet. Maybe I need to go on a low carb diet. Or maybe it’s because I need to exercise more. Maybe I need to do more cardio or more strength training. Maybe I need to do more.

I’m seriously considering upping my insulin from 75 units to 80 units. The only thing is my insulin pens hold about 300 units each which means at 75 units I can get four injections from each pen. If I go up to 80 units I won’t be able to make four injections per pen and that means spending more money for insulin. That’s so frustrating.

The Facebook group I joined shares a lot of low carb recipes and I think I should try some of them as well as change my diet and lifestyle to be more low carb, high healthy fat and protein. That means carb counting and dissecting food labels at the grocery stores now and being mindful of high carb snacks and food. Which means learning about the glycemic index and which foods are okay and not.

I plan to take on a 30-day challenge which will involve going low carb. Here are the rules:

  • No food high in refined sugars – candy, ice cream, soda, energy drinks, etc.
  • No fast food
  • No white bread or pasta – only whole grains
  • No alcohol (that’s not a problem for me)
  • Reduce salt intake
  • Drink more water – about 130 ounces
  • Add more fruits and veggies

I was thinking of doing the 30-day challenge in July but I think I might have to do it sooner than that, which is fine, because it’s just 30 days no matter when they are. I’m not sure if I’m going to do a single post detailing everything or if I’m going to post every day or maybe just once a week with a daily log. Maybe I’ll do that one. One post per week on a specified day with each of that week’s days on it. I think that would be a good way to document my challenge.

I think I’ll start next week Sunday and post on Saturday until the last two days. Well I guess I’m going to go on this journey and share it with you folks to help you on your own journey. If you want to go on this challenge with me feel free to join me!

The Journey: Welcome!

Hey there! I wanna give you a big, massive ALOHA from me to you! I’ve been getting some new followers and I want to let you know I appreciate you *hugs and kisses* so much.

My name is Courtney and I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes in February 2017. My dad also had T2 and he passed away in 2014. I wish I knew then everything I know now about diabetes, maybe then I could have helped him through it and avoided being diagnosed myself. But alas, here we are. I want to help educate people about diabetes in an informal, modern way with as much information as I can find. That’s why I created this blog.

The Young and Diabetic has been an eye opener for me. I’m learning more about myself and my diabetes every day because of this blog. All of these topics are basically me answering my own questions by doing the research and finding all of the information I can find. By no means is this all the information out there on any one of these topics, but it’s a start for you, for me, for everyone. This is where we can start asking questions and finding our answers.

I figure if I have all of these burning questions, there are others out there who have these questions too. Don’t consider these posts as gospel, consider them to be your gateway to asking the right questions and finding out more. I firmly believe that one should never stop seeking knowledge throughout their lifetime.

With that said, if you have any questions or feedback, don’t be afraid to message me or comment below! I don’t always ask the right questions and maybe I haven’t even touched on whatever topic you want to learn more about, so let me know! As much as I would love to, I can’t read your minds all the way across the internet.

Also, if you would like to share your own personal journey or story about your own journey with diabetes or your loved one who has/had diabetes, feel free to share your story. Sharing your story could be helpful for others to know that they’re not going through this journey alone. It humanizes our disease. We never have to suffer alone.

If you see any content that you think someone you know could benefit from, please share it with them. Share the content to social media, you never know whom amongst your friends could benefit from this information and possibly save their life.

So until the next time, know that you are loved and that diabetes does not define your weaknesses, it proves your strength! Stay safe out there!

Biggest Aloha,
Courtney ❤

The Journey: Episode Thirteen

JUNE 8, 2020

So I had my doctor appointment on May 28. I was given an insulin limit of 85 units. On May 29, I went up to 75 units and decided to stay at that dose, mostly because my pens have about 300 units each and that gives me four doses per pen. Since I have to pay about $100 per box of five pens, I can’t really afford to increase.

I have tried out taking my insulin literally within an hour of going to sleep and I have seen my blood sugar go down in the morning. Not down to the goal level, but pretty close. So far I have been under 150 mg/dL so that’s at least a win.

I kind of hit a plateau. My weight, my medication, my blood sugar, all kind of hit a level plateau for the last couple of weeks. It’s not great, but it’s not bad either. Now I just need to bring all of these numbers down instead of going up. I hope that I can do that. I need to get my health and diabetes under control.

This pandemic isn’t doing me any favors and not being able to work is really bringing me down, but I can get through this. I can make it through this and come out for the better. I know I can.

On another note, my sister is back home from visiting with her husband. The plan is for her to completely move out and in with her husband by the end of July. Then my husband and I can move in to her room and we can actually sleep on a bed again with a little bit more privacy. I think I’m going to miss her, but she’s so annoying that I think it’s going to take a while before I miss her at all. I know I’m going to miss her cat, Penny, because she hunts the cockroaches in this house and she does a good job at it.

I know this one is a little short, but I have to take my dog to the salon now. Thank you for sticking around and enjoying the content. Stay safe out there!

The Journey: Episode Twelve

JUNE 1, 2020

These are crazy times we are living in right now. 2020 is really messing with my mental, emotional, and physical self. My blood sugars have been all over the place and I am taking more insulin now. I have been advised to go up to 85 units of my Lantus and I am working my way up, unfortunately. I am currently at 75 units and my blood sugars are still high. I don’t know what this means.

It’s so frustrating to see my insulin dosage go up but my blood sugar stay the same. What am I doing wrong?!

My diet hasn’t changed but I have been less inclined to exercise and my stress levels have gone up. I am trying to practice with methods to reduce stress but it doesn’t seem to work. Maybe I need to go back to work. It keeps my body moving, my mind working, and I get to interact with other people. I have no idea what I need.

On the bright side, Covid-19 cases have gone down significantly in my state and we’re starting to reopen our economy. I have no idea if my employer will give me a call back and offer my job back. I have to wait and see. The beaches are open and restaurants are opening their dining rooms again. My husband’s workplace is still trying to work out all of the kinks and they took this downtime to revamp their restaurant. We have no idea what is going to happen when they reopen.

But as soon as one thing clears, it’s been another thing this year. The news has been distressing and the violence on the streets amongst and against protestors has greatly saddened me. What will happen to our country in the coming months? These uncertain times really do bring me down. It feels like everything is out of my control, the state of the country, the beliefs of others, and even my own health. What are we to do?


I want to take this moment to show my support for my black brothers and sisters. I see you, I hear you, and I stand with you all the way from Hawaii. As a Native Hawaiian, I know the history of the Hawaiian Kingdom and how black people were always welcomed here. In fact, up until the last one hundred years, many Hawaiians were very dark in skin tone. With generations of mixing blood with other ethnicities, Part Hawaiians now have lighter skin. I am one such Hawaiian. Though my skin is light, I am still considered a Person of Color. I have been privileged to live in a state with so many ethnicities in one place that racism isn’t as prevalent, though it still happens here. I have never experienced being judged because of the color of my skin and I am thankful for that. But I can’t just sit idly by while African Americans are persecuted every day just because they weren’t born as lucky as I was. I stand in solidarity with you. All lives can’t matter until black lives matter, too.