The Mom Report

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My mom is doing GREAT. Like fantastically great. This has been a life-changing event for all of us. My mom came home from the hospital and we immediately, as a whole family, embraced the new DIEt. I think I’m going to rename it soon to something like the “LIVEt” because it is all about living and NOT dying.

It’s amazing how much small changes like cutting most carbs and nixing sodium works. Yes, the food is bland. Yes, we would love to eat pizza and cheese…and a million other things that are now forbidden but it makes all of us feel a million times better. I think I can swallow bland for a while. I think we were all hung up on what we would have to give up that we didn’t take time to focus on what we would gain if we ate properly.

It’s still early days but my mom went to her doctor today and she does not have to go back on diabetes medication or high blood pressure medication IF she continues to improve the way she has been. Did you read that right? Last time we checked in she was in the hospital with KIDNEY FAILURE!!! And now she is improving soooo much, she doesn’t have to take her medication? Crazy, right?

Crazy good.

My dad and I are in this to win it. I’ve made daily worksheets for my dad to fill out with my mom’s numbers and he is doing so with the dedication of a scientist. We have taken on my mom’s health as our new mission in life. And guess, what? My mom is in it too! She’s had to fight so long and so hard with her weight that she’d given up. It was hard. Even though my mom has a bright optimistic personality she was worn down. But now with our new invested intention she is back on track and killing it. I’m so proud of her.

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It’s a work in progress. I’m thinking once we have these worksheets nailed down I might post them here as a free printable. I’m not a mommy-blogger anymore maybe I’ll become a fight-against diabetes blogger. They say one in four Americans has diabetes so maybe this is the new normal.  I’m just really excited that we have cracked the code. Or at least it’s looking that way. Of course, we have to create something sustainable so the strict diet will have to be flexed and loosened now and then but I’m game. I’m in this!

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A perk of investing more time into my mom, I get to take pictures of my barn more often. It’s getting so pretty out there right now. Spring is in the air!

Speaking of Spring, have you noticed my new banner? March is Spring in Southern California and between a few blustery cold days, we have had the brightest, sunniest beautiful days with flowers popping up all over. It’s allergy season. You should see the thin coating of yellow pine tree pollen all over everything. Our cul-de-sac looks like a dusty road except it’s yellow.

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And! I’ve been keeping up the running. Nothing like a near health scare to get you motivated. I’ve been running twice a week. Today I took the dogs. I tied their leashes to a fanny pack that Payam loaned me and we swing-swung our way through the nature trail with not the greatest of ease. But it was good to get out and get sweaty. I feel good.

The DIEt

Cartoon about low-sodium, diabetic diet

The DIEt has been big news around here lately. I’ve been reluctant to talk about it because I wanted to respect Payam’s privacy but lately, it’s become our way of life. It’s a lot.

Then my mom ended up in the hospital and now it looks like she might need to go on THE DIEt too so it’s super relevant.  So, I got everyone’s permission and now I’m sharing.

I’ll talk about my mom first because that is top of mind. My mom had shoulder replacement surgery last Thursday, the 20th of February. She was supposed to have this surgery in December but was hospitalized for an intestinal blockage in November so they put it off until she improved.  It turns out her kidneys have been compromised because of the diabetes medication she takes, which leads to her having complications after her surgery. We are in the thick of those complications. Right now things are looking up but it’s been a sketchy few days and she is far from out of the woods.

She came home from the hospital Friday. She seemed fine but on Sunday she started acting a bit loopy. Bug and I were hanging out with her and she was lost in dreams. We played music for her and she was playing the piano in the air and talking about dead bugs in the towels. She had no pain and started to make less and less sense but then she’d snap back to normal and we would think everything was fine.

Well, it turns out she wasn’t fine. Her kidneys were not processing the pain medication she was on and she was having renal failure. Super scary. I feel partly at fault for this because at one point on Sunday she fell (into her chair, thankfully) and got out of breath. We panicked and called 911 thinking she was having trouble breathing (a side effect of the powerful narcotics the hospital warned us about). The paramedics came out and checked her vitals. Her vitals seemed normal. We all collectively decided it would be more traumatic to take her to the ER than to stay home. This was a mistake. And I should add, my flying-high-as-a-kite mom did not want to go back to the hospital. The last thing she wanted was to go back to that place where they serve her gross disgusting turkey meatloaf. She was so funny, calling the paramedic a cowboy and making nonsensical conversation. But anyway, she stayed home. My dad called the nurse hotline the next day, worried. She still hadn’t urinated in three days.

They told her she needed to go to the ER and now we find out her kidneys have been failing. Her numbers are right at the level where she might have to have dialysis if they don’t improve. But the experts expect her to improve so we wait. We should know by tomorrow and if she is good then she gets to go home. I will keep you posted.

Sigh.

I don’t even feel like talking about the DIEt now which is sad because I had a lot of funny stories to share. Maybe they will come later.  It’s just been a lot, worrying about my mom. I think she is going to be okay. We gifted my parents a cruise to Alaska in May for their 50th (!!) Wedding anniversary (which is actually in October) so we are all hoping and praying that she gets better in time. Of course, her health is the most important thing. Trip Schmip. I’m just thankful that I bought trip insurance so it’s no big deal to cancel the trip if we have to.

I wish my mom lived next door like she used to that one short year I lived in my Grandpa’s mobile home. That was so nice. It would be so great to be able to help my parents with the DIEt and maybe I could even work-out with my dad. Now that my mom has been going through these health problems, I am even more motivated to keep myself healthy. I even took a run this morning which I haven’t done in 10 years. I think I just needed to clear my head like the real runners always say. It’s just too much sometimes when you feel like you can’t control anything.

So if there is anyone else out there trying to control diabetes or has relatives with diabetes and is fighting the good fight with me, I tip my hat to you. This is not for sissies.  We eat to live now.