Lilly Diabetes Pulls T1D Racecar Driver’s Sponsorship-What Grinds My Gears

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Conor Daly and Cut The B.S. Girl, Arlene at ISM Raceway April 2018

Lately, I’ve been listening to a Podcast by two Indycar Drivers, James Hinchcliffe and Alexander Rossi called “Off Track with Hinch and Rossi.” On that podcast, they occasionally have a segment called, “What Grinds My Gears,” where they talk about pet peeves or what sets them off.  I woke up today reading a story and as I read it, I found that it really…grinded…my gears.  Anyhow, here’s the story:

Lilly Diabetes, has pulled sponsorship of Conor Daly, a racecar driver, living, driving, and thriving with T1D, because of a potential racial slur his dad, Derek Daly, made before Conor was even born.  If that isn’t the largest load of crap ever.

“Unfortunately, the comments that surfaced this week by Derek Daly distract from this focus, so we have made the decision that Lilly Diabetes will no longer run the No. 6 at Road America this weekend.”

What grinds my gears here is the fact that Conor, who is working to be quite the advocate of self care with diabetes (Type 1 or 2), has lost sponsorship dollars as a result of something he had no control over.  It would have been one thing if he lost his sponsorship because the kid decided not to work out and decided to eat junk food in preparation of this NASCAR Xfinity Road America race, but that is just not the case.  It’s even documented in this video.

They call themselves company that is focused on raising awareness for treatment options and resources for people living with diabetes.  To me, it seems that this action of pulling Conor’s sponsorship is a bigger distraction to both the racing and diabetes communities.  The kid has done nothing wrong to lose said sponsorship.

If we all lost something that could affect our livelihoods as a result of something our parents said or did, well, we just would not progress as a society.  It’s bullshit.

In addition, its pretty ironic that Lilly Diabetes would be so unforgiving considering the product they sell to us people with diabetes and parents of children with diabetes, insulin, is a product that aids us in forgiving the number we see on the meter, correcting immediately with said insulin, and then getting back on track with our lives.  We as people with diabetes can’t even boycott, because our insurance dictates which insulin to use, regardless of what we discuss is best with our doctors.

I was so excited to watch Conor too as I haven’t even looked at NASCAR in years, despite Ryan Reed also being a driver with Diabetes.  I’m still gonna watch Conor this weekend but just with a tinge of irritation for Lilly.

I’ve been following Indycar and it’s drivers, since my then boyfriend, now husband, took me to a qualifying day at the Long Beach Gran Prix in 2003, and subsequently, we got engaged after that race.  I was a fan of Charlie Kimball, another Indycar driver with T1D, when he was in Indy Lights even before I was diagnosed with Diabetes myself in 2012.

Good luck this weekend, Conor!  Good vibes, back on track, keep driving, and get on that podium!

Ode to my D-Bag

When this diabetes journey began,

I was embarrassed and kept you discreet,

Keeping you out of sight,

In a purse at my feet.

💖💙💖

Sometimes I’d forget you at home

And regret it while I’m out,

As my blood sugars roamed,

Up, down, and all about.

💙💖💙

I must say I’ve improved,

At taking you everywhere with me,

I’ve even given you a better look,

So you stand out to everybody.

💖💙💖

For holding all my crap,

Oh D-Bag thank you so much,

Holding my pricks, my meter, my insulin…

You know, my pancreas and such.

💙💖💙

Until that awesome time,

When the cure will come our way,

My buddy you will be,

With me each and everyday.

💙💙💙

Want to spread diabetes awareness while donating to diabetes research!? Go to www.teenanigans.com and order some chariteenanigans today! Proceeds from the sale of charity shirts go to JDRF via Team Cut The BS’s OneWalk team!

10 Reasons Why it Rocks to Hang with a T1D Parent!

I was invited by a T1D mom (that means her child has T1D) for a night out since her amazing daughter with T1D was away at Diabetes Camp. Basically this means that she can have a little break from managing her daughter's diabetes (the camp counselor and nurses assist with that during that week.). I had an amazing time and thought…T1D parents rock and I just had to share or with my Cut The BSers…so here is:

10 reasons why it rocks to hang out with a T1D parent!

1. They're so ready for a night out. Having the opportunity to let your hair down and have fun is rare for a parent of a T1D child…so when it does happen…ya wanna be around!

2. They know what you're doing at the happy hour table. No questions as to what we are doing and why there's blood on my finger.

3. They know how to carb count!!! Since they do all the carb counting for their child…they can do it for you too! Bolus me!

4. They're always in mom/dad mode. Adulting can be hard…adulting with T1D…can be even harder. Sometimes it's a relief to pass the torch on to someone who understands because I won't argue with them they way their T1D child might. Tell me what to do…it's cool! I'm soooooo ok with that!

5. They always have a juice box ready! They also have glucose tabs and other random treats on them. They are always equipped in case of a low!

6. They probably volunteer and are members of the same community you are in. So those days when you can't go on…they're there to remind you to keep going…but not before we enjoy this happy hour!

7. They have a sense of humor about diabetes. Sometimes we have to and they have some of the best stories! I'll drink to that!

8. They don't judge…ever. I've never heard, "Should you be eating that?" from a T1D parent. It could be because they have spent so much time helping their own T1D kid(s) live normal lives and bolusing for normal things that they don't blame us one bit for ordering that elephant ear!

9. We can be a resource for them. We can be here to be sounding boards. They can ask us if we were rebellious at their kid's age and why, or how they can be supportive of their child. They can ask us to describe what a low feels like and how we may need to be helped. It feels good to be able to give back to the people who take care of us.

10. They have the biggest hearts ever! Their hearts are overflowing with concern, advocacy, and love. They are true crusaders to our cause.

Cheers to all the T1D Moms, Dads, Brothers, Sisters, and Friends out there! You inspire me and empower me to continue on this T1D journey. Until our next outing…line dancing perhaps?

Donate to my JDRF One Walk Page by clicking here!

5 Years a Diabetic, Where Did The Time Go? 


This week I celebrated my 5 year Diaversary.  I can’t believe it has already been five years.  I’d like to ask where did the time go, but I know exactly where it went.:

  • 1 visit to the ER. 
  • Over 9125 finger pokes.
  • Over 10,950 insulin injections/inhalations.
  • Hundreds of Jelly Belly Jelly Beans (my quick sugar of choice when treating a low BS)
  • 2 Research Studies.
  • Over 20 blood draws and endo appointments.
  • 5 glucose meters
  • 3 generations of Dexom Continuous Glucose monitors. 
  • 7 different insulins.
  • Over 350 followers on Instagram @cutthebsgirl.
  • Over 400 Likes on the Cut the BS Facebook Page.
  • Over 45 blog posts with over 2300 visits to the Cut The BS Blog. 
  • 1 5K run completed…slowly but complete! 
  • 4 JDRF OneWalks walked and one more on the way
  • Almost 50 walkers recruited.
  • $16,699.30 raised for T1D research from hundreds of donors!
  • 3 cruises.
  • 5 Wedding Anniversary Trips.
  • 10 Indycar races 
  • 1 Diabetes unConference.
  • 1 radio show.
  • A community of my peeps. 
  • Countless laughter.
  • Immense love.
  • So much pride.

I say “celebrate” because the last five years have truly been a gift.  Every single day has been a gift.  It’s been a gift to me.  It’s been a gift to my family. I hope it has been a gift to anyone my life and efforts have touched.

I’m so grateful to those before me that relentlessly raised funds and conducted research so that I can have these five years.  I’m so thankful that they didn’t give up on finding insulin.  It has been an absolute honor to benefit from better treatments and I am extremely hopeful for a cure.  I have to be.

I’m so stinkin excited for what the next 5 years have in store!

Cut the BS y’all! Much love.

How I Learned to Take Insulin Shots From ‘Always Sunny’


Did you see that episode of ‘It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’ when Mac decides to “cultivate mass” and ends up with Type 2 Diabetes?   Now please note that I am fully aware that type 2 diabetes doesn’t work that way nor does everyone find shows like ‘Always Sunny’ as funny as I do.   

I was still in my transition as a new person with Type One diabetes when I saw this episode.  Besides all the many ways this episode was inaccurate in how Mac handled life with diabetes as well as mishandling the tools involved with diabetes care, there was a scene that absolutely stood out to me.  

Mac and Dennis were sitting at a high top table at Paddy’s Pub talking about who knows what and eating chimichangas out of a garbage bag.  The table is stacked with food.  Mac with giant chimichanga in hand, without hesitation, jabs an insulin filled syringe into his bulging belly.  He then continues to eat and talk with his friend like nothing happened.  

At this point, I was still closing my eyes and my heart would sink into my tummy as I waited for my glucose number flash across the screen of my meter during checks.  I would also carefully select the spot of my next shot on my abdomen before I slowly stuck the needle in.  Well, duh, that would would hurt.  

What if I did it without hesitation? If Rob McElhenny, the actor who plays Mac, can plunge a syringe in his belly to get a laugh…then I can definitely do it to effing save my own life every day.  

My next scheduled shot was at around 10:00pm that evening.  “I’m gonna do it.” I thought to myself, determined.  I took out my Lanuts pen, screwed on my pen needle, cleaned my injection site, and jabbed.  I jabbed quickly and without hesitation.  Guess what?  It didn’t hurt.  I couldn’t believe it.  It was so quick in that I didn’t even notice the prick.  I pressed the button down, held it there for a few seconds, (I count to 8-it’s my favorite number) and removed it.  Success!

Who knew I would end up learning something about my diabetes care from dark comedy?  Who knew my sense of humor was sicker thank my pancreas and even more twisted than my sweet demeanor gives off? Who knew?  

I’ve been jabbing ever since.  Thanks Mac!  Cheers!


Diabetes Blog Week 2016 Day 3:  Who’s Down with PWD?

Today’s prompt asks us on our view on language and the power it has over us and the use of certain phrases over others.  As of today, I am going on 4 years with Diabetes and I’ve only learned about some of the politically correct terminology within the diabetes community in the last year.  Really, there has got to be a whole diabetes dictionary out there that I don’t know about.  I even have an unpublished page on this blog of diabetes terms or my “Diaglossary” that I’ve been adding phrases to as I learn them.  I didn’t even know there was such thing as a DOC-Diabetes Online Community until last year (thanks Diabetes Unconference!)

The main question here is where I stand on this diabetes PC spectrum.  As much as I’d like to say I don’t care either way, there are some terms that I have made my mind about:  

  • Testing my blood sugars: The term “testing my blood sugar” infers that I might pass or fail such a test, making me less willing to take such a test.  Who wants to fail at anything?  Not I.  I felt like crap every time I tested my blood sugar.  Even when they were good, I was more likely to be a little sarcastic and say that if I sneeze, that number would shoot straight up.  I’ve learned since that performing the same action and calling it “checking my blood sugars” is less daunting and I am more willing to check on how my body is doing and more willing to take the necessary steps to get back in range.
  • Blood Sugars: Some people don’t like the use of the term because my meter doesn not really measure the amount of sugar in my blood.  It is checking my glucose glucose levels.  Saying that “I’m checking blood sugars” feeds the assumption that sweets are what cause my high glucose levels-that’s false.  The intake of carbohydrates without proper dosing of inulin  is what causes my high glucose levels-sweets just happen to be carbohydrate heavy.  I still use the term Blood Sugars, though..calling my blog, “Cut the BG” doesn’t seem as fun.
  • Diabetic:  This is a big one in the diabetes online community.  There are some who find that being called “diabetic” lumps the individual in with their condition and they are not their condition.  Some see it as a label with a bit of a stigma.  Some prefer being called a Person with Diabetes, or PWD.  I don’t think I’ver ever referred to myself as a Person with Diabetes.  I’ve told people, “I have diabetes.” And before learning of the distinction, I’ve definitely told people I was diabetic.  To me, the term diabetic is the quickest way to identify myself in certain cases.  For example  have you guys checked out the Diabetic Ink Facebook Page?  Rarely have a seen a tattoo that says Person with Diabetes or PWD.  I don’t have a tattoo, but if I did, it would be for medical identification purposes and the quickest way for an Emergency Medical Responder to know I have diabetes is for the tattoo to say, “T1 Diabetic.”  

Language is a very powerful tool.  I find it important to be as fluent as I can be in my diabetes terminology.   I also find that being able to speak the proper dialect  with those who are not familiar with my condition and those who are elbows deep in diabetes has the potential to help more people instead of isolating anyone.  I want to embrace everyone with my giant Diaglossary!  

Today’s Prompt:

Our topic today is Language and Diabetes. There is an old saying that states “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me”. I’m willing to bet we’ve all disagreed with this at some point, and especially when it comes to diabetes. Many advocate for the importance of using non-stigmatizing, inclusive and non-judgmental language when speaking about or to people with diabetes. For some, they don’t care, others care passionately. Where do you stand when it comes to “person with diabetes” versus “diabetic”, or “checking” blood sugar versus “testing”, or any of the tons of other examples? Let’s explore the power of words, but please remember to keep things respectful.

Diabetes Blog Week 2016 Day 2: Diabetes Playing with my Head

 

Getting diagnosed with Diabetes can be an isolating thing.  It is pretty big no matter what type you are dealt.  The moment that D-word gets dropped, ugly visions of life and future versions of your body come to mind.  I spent a week in the hospital learning how to give myself injections, looking at menus with number of “carb choices,” and asking myself what I did wrong.  Clearly, the guilt from diabetes started at day 1.  I was never told in the hospital that this diagnosis is not my fault.  It was not a result of eating too many cookies or too much rice, since I am Filipino.  I was not told in the hospital that with a few tweaks to my lifestyle, I would be ok.  

I came home after a week, and my life began, without my nurses around me to tell me what to do.  It’s a scary thing.  It was bad enough that I had to poke my finger to get a reading, but I found myself looking away when the meter was blinking, analyzing my little blood drop to tell me that I failed. And the guilt that came over me with each reading was heart wrenching. Every number that came up on that screen was either high or it was low and I had to drink juice-about 15 grams of Carbs worth.  This is not the right condition for a perfectionist.  Or is it?

The problem with being a perfectionist is that I tend to set things aside for later or procrastinate for the sake of “doing it right.”  I’m here to tell you first hand that being a perfectionist is not, I repeat not compatible with having diabetes.  I can do everything right and that number will still fall out of range and it drove me nuts.  Living life this way was not be fun at all and I really could not afford to procrastinate in diabetes management.  

Besides the physical implications to staying high and low, I’ve gotten cranky at the people around me when that number is low or high.  As someone’s mom/wife/daughter/friend, I can’t to that to my friends and family.  And so over time, from meeting others like me (online or in person) I’ve learned that the number on that meter is just a number of reference.  From there, I have to react accordingly, immediately.  That mindset has since turned into a habit.  I still have my bad days where that number on the meter just stays high for hours or I’ve eaten the whole kitchen and that number lingers at 65. Those days I try to grin and bear it and when I’ve reached my limit, I text someone who just gets it-btw, thank you to those I’ve texted to keep me sane.

As for positive phrases or mantras, the name of my blog was coined by extremely creative friends who know me well.  ‘Cut the BS’ became my go to phrase when readings were high or those times that I made excuses for my lack of diabetes management.  It encouraged me to be better than the situation I found myself in.  The phrase is short, simple, and it helps hold me accountable to myself, my family, my friends, and the diabetes online community.  

Cut the BS…I mean Blood Sugar!

Today’s Prompt:

We think a lot about the physical component of diabetes, but the mental component is just as significant. How does diabetes affect you or your loved one mentally or emotionally? How have you learned to deal with the mental aspect of the condition? Any tips, positive phrases, mantras, or ideas to share on getting out of a diabetes funk? (If you are a caregiver to a person with diabetes, write about yourself or your loved one or both!)