Happy birthday Daddy!

My dad would be 67 today. Unfortunately, he passed away in 2002 from complications of diabetes.

He was born to Alonza Melvin and Ruby Grace Hope Melvin. He was the oldest of five children and took care of his younger siblings while his parents ecked out a living as farmers in south Georgia. He was 6'6" and, for most of his youth, was skinny as a beanpole. Dad said that when he went into the Air Force in 1960 that he weighed in at 170 pounds.

Later, after I was born, he ballooned up to around 280 and it was during this time that he was diagnosed with diabetes. It ran in his family - his grandmother and mother both had it and his brother was later diagnosed. The first 20 years, it ran largely unchecked - his docs gave his grief about it and my mom nagged him incessantly about his weight and eating.

About 5 years before he died, he stepped on a metal hook at work. It didn't bleed and his company nurse determined that it didn't require stitches. 3 weeks later, he was near death. While the wound didn't bleed, it went quite deep and became infected and this was exacerbated by diabetes. After several weeks, gangrene required the removal of 2 toes - I called them the ring toe and the bird toe.. think about it, you know which two they are.

6 months later, a mere blister on his heel progressed to the point that he required removal of the leg up to 2 inches below the knee. At the same time, a heart rhythm problem that my dad had had since birth. For most of his life, it was dormant. Something that the doctors monitored but otherwise caused no problems. However, the double attack of unchecked diabetes and serious illness accelerated the problem to near heart failure. Other diabetes related diseases came then including kidney failure resulting in my dad being put on dialysis. Dad was also put on a waiting list for a heart/pancreas/kidney transplant.

Dialysis put a strain on the heart and isn't as effective in diabetics so it must be done more frequently for longer periods.

My dad's heart wasn't strong enough and on June 28, 2002, he went into cardiac arrest and died.

My dad was one of the smartest people I've ever known. He read extensively. My dad believed in careful thought before stating a belief. Therefore, it was incredibly hard to change his mind about something.

My dad taught me to never be a sheep - because sheep are sometimes led to slaughter. By this, he meant don't just follow the crowd, make sure it's the right thing to do.

He was a proud man and I know he was proud of me.

I miss you daddy.

I think it's working!!

I've been taking glucophage for about a month now. While I still have trouble remembering the 3rd pill in the evenings and I am still overcome by bouts of diarrhea and/or nausea at times, I am beginning to stabilize.

But the part that's exciting is the secretions!!!

I am a new proponent of the Fertility Awareness Method as taught by Toni Weschel in the book and software called "Taking Charge of your Fertility". Because of this, I've been using her methods in tracking my cycles.

If you are squeamish about the human body and it's natural functions in GREAT DETAIL, then stop here and have a nice day.

Toni discusses cervical fluid in great detail in her book. She explains that it has many incarnations and all of them tell us something about where we are in our cycle and what it means to our fertility. For the last few days, I've experienced cervical fluid for the first time! While it was mostly the "creamy" non-fertile fluid (I think I may have missed the fertile "egg white" fluid), it's the first time I've seen this.

Going to the bathroom is VERY exciting!!

Houston, we have a problem

Moo has diabetes. He found out last week. I am in shock. Yes, I know that he's overweight. But he doesn't have the family history I have. I've had a grandfather, both grandmothers, uncles on both sides and a dad all with serious diabetes. Diabetes took out my maternal grandmother and my dad. Well more specifically, dialysis as a result of kidney failure that was a result of diabetes. Neither of their hearts - grandmother's was weakened due to diabetes and numerous heart attacks, dad due to a problem that he'd probably had since birth - could take the strain of dialysis. Further more, dialysis isn't as effective for diabetics so they often have to undergo longer, more frequent treatments.

Moo is being incredibly accepting of the whole thing. He's jumped into learning more about the disease, testing his blood, questioning the food he puts into his mouth, etc. I have to say I'm incredibly proud of him. If I got home tonight and he was on the couch in a fetal position, I'd still be proud of him. Of course, I, in typical bitchy behaviour, told him that if he didn't take care of himself that I'd leave him. I gave him permission to do the same to me.

It's not that I'm not sympathetic. I mean, I always thought it would be ME in this position. Not Moo. And having the type of experience with DM (diabetes mellitus) that I do, I'm well aware of the implications. But being Moo's biggest fan gives me certain permission to kick his ass on occasion. I won't let him feel sorry for himself. In the words of the Secret - diabetes is a result of who you were, not of who you will be. Additionally, in kicking his ass, I kick my own. I can't very well bitch at him for not taking care of himself if I don't try to make the same changes.

At the same time that Moo got this bit of news, he also got the news that his testosterone is low. This is an additional factor in why we aren't pregnant. Moo is being put on a testosterone patch, a med for high triglycerides (often the smoke before the fire) and glucophage. He's also testing his blood 4x at day for the next month.

As for me, I think that the glucophage is working. I've ramped up on two pills really well, but keeping forgetting the evening pill. Much of the tummy trouble has passed with my only going a couple times a day now. Now this is still a lot to me - I'm used to going 3-4 times a WEEK.