Monthly Archives: November 2012

What Diabetes Looks Like: Diet…juice?




Sugar-free French Vanilla creamer with 1 g of carbohydrate per serving?

sugar free vanilla creamer

That’s not so weird.

But diet juice?

diet juice?!??

Diet. . . juice?!??

That’s weird.

Diet juice nutrition facts. Only 2 g of carbs per 8 oz. Only 2 g of carbohydrates per 8 oz serving? What did they do to it?


Why I Love String Cheese


I stood outside my dorm, dressed in a borrowed blue formal and wilting curls. As my boyfriend came into view, wearing his new suit bought for the occasion, he held out a blue gift bag and said with practiced formality, “Allow me to present you with a symbol of our relationship.”

I took the bag and looked inside. It was full of string cheese.


Since the annual Thanksgiving play is a fairly formal occasion, it’s traditional for guys to give their dates flowers. My guy, however, enjoys shaking up tradition, choosing something weird but significant. Once, he got me a computer mouse because I had been complaining about my computer track pad for weeks.

And I’ve always loved string cheese. It’s a delightfully tactile food. Growing up, I used to beg my mother to buy string cheese when she took me grocery shopping. Occasionally, she’d cave, and as we drove home, I’d eat a stick string by string, lingering as long as possible on each bite.

I rediscovered this favorite childhood snack last semester shortly after my diagnosis. Now that I’m on an insulin pump, I snack frequently. But last semester, while still on injections, snacks could be a hassle: there was the fuss (and potential waste) of using needles and I couldn’t take insulin doses smaller than a unit–rather annoying for someone as sensitive to insulin as I am. String cheese was something I could eat without having to think about it first. And it’s really nice to just eat something.

Now if only I could get myself this excited about vegetables…


The Problem with Grad School


I’m tempted to say that the problem with managing diabetes in grad school is a lack of time, but I know that’s not true. I have 24 hours, just like everyone else. Really, it’s a problem of priorities.

It’s not that managing my diabetes isn’t a top priority. It’s just that everything else is top priority too.

My school work is a top priority because it’s the reason I’m in school in the first place.

But my teaching is top priority too. After all, it is my job. And I have 62 students who need me.

My relationships are also a priority. What’s the point of good grades and a good job if I wreck my relationships to achieve them? People matter most in the end, right?


How do you prioritize when everything is a top priority?





The emotion experienced after eating a doughnut as a special treat while grading research papers. Also commonly experienced when one fails to catch overlapping support in a student’s research paper during a rough draft conference or when one takes entirely too long to grade the first batch of research papers.



I like how little kids react to my diabetes. “What’s that?” they ask with blunt curiosity when I pull out my pump or check my blood sugar.

“I’m checking my blood sugar and taking my insulin,” I say simply.

They look at me for a second and then say “ok” as if they actually knew what insulin is. They then promptly absorb themselves in their peanut butter and jelly sandwich for a minute before asking, “Are you going to eat a brownie?”