A New Year

Hello there!

It has been a while since I have posted!

Life tends to go crazy and you look track of the days, but I am definitely happy about having some time to sit down and share some exciting, inspiring and thought provoking things with you all!

Today’s Thing:

We Are Diabetes


Around this time last year I was approached by my friend Asha Brown about a Mentor program she was looking to launch. Asha is the Executive Director of We Are Diabetes. An organization that helps Diabetics with Eating Disorders and their loved ones find resources, support and a whole lot more.

She asked if I was interested and there was no other second thought for me.

Becoming part of an amazing group who would be offering help to Type One Diabetics with Eating Disorders?




Over the course of my training with this group I not only got to know some amazing women, and learned a variety of new and useful ways to help those on their journey with recovery – but I also learned ways I could continue to  stay strong and focused during my own continuous journey with Recovery and Diabetes as well.


A feeling of pure happiness and PURPOSE came over me. I remember frantically texting Asha in all caps saying WE ARE GOING TO HELP PEOPLE. WE ARE GOING TO SAVE LIVES, I CAN FEEL IT.


It’s now almost a year later and the We Are Diabetes Mentor Program has officially launched with a beautiful new website to add to the excitement.


As the chaos that is known as “The Holiday Season” begins to calm down, and we enter the slow, cold lull of deep winter (and more endless rain here in the PNW) , the Mentor program is NOT calming down, not going into hibernation and not intimidated by endless rainy days.


We are here for you. We are ready to help.


It is my personal goal to work together with WAD and keep the conversation going about Diabulimia.  

By inspiring honesty, conversation, and proper education I believe we can open more doors for SUCCESSFUL and SAFE treatment of ED when involving a Type One Diabetic.


If you would like more information or if you or someone you know is suffering from an Eating Disorder (even if you do not have Diabetes) please visit our website:



Wishing you all a happy & HEALTHY New Year 2019 !



Tips For The Rough Days

Hi Everyone!


It is Diabetes Awareness Month!!!

I wanted to share this with you. I have recently wrote out a few things I have picked up over the years that help me get through those rough days. I have been dealing with extremely high levels of stress and anxiety over the last two months and these tips that I use definitely make a difference for me. It is my sincere hope that someone will read these maybe gain peace from it. Wishing you all the best. Stay strong<3


  1. Wash your hair– It sounds weird at first but I found that on my most high anxiety days when everything was super overwhelming, getting in the shower to wash and condition my hair was a task that gave my hands something to do. Focusing on the task helped slow my mind down and I was able to concentrate more on my breathing while doing it.
  2. Keep your glucose meter in the room you are in the most: For me that’s the bathroom and the kitchen. Seeing my meter next to my coffee pot reminds me that I can check my blood sugar quickly as my coffee brews in the morning, giving me a blood sugar to start my day with. A post-it is also a great thing to write a gentle reminder to yourself in spots your meter may not be able to stay.
  3. Before Bed Practices: Write down (or just think of) ONE good thing that happened to you that day. Simple things work best for me, like a really good latte, a friendly encounter with a stranger, going to counseling that day, or even just being on time for work – those all count. Ending the day with a positive thought can help start the next day off on a better note!
  4. Water. Water. Water. Water: On my WORST days with Diabulimia I could barely walk, and I wasn’t strong enough to wash my own hair like suggestion one. Drinking a glass of water won’t make you suddenly feel like a million bucks but that glass of this delicious liquid is a basic and easy form of self care. Your body will thank you- I promise.
  5. The Famous Deep Breath: To me it still sounds super corny BUT I STILL SWEAR BY IT. Stopping what you are doing, no matter where you are or what is going on, take a DEEP, FULL breath in through your nose and slowly exhale. I’ve been in recovery for almost three years, but I still struggle with anxiety. Taking those deep breaths throughout my day (or just when I remember to do it) helps center my thoughts and bring awareness to my body and mind.


I hope these tips can help you all on your journey to and through recovery.

You got this!


I Quit My Job For The Summer And This Is What Happened…

It was the end of May when I brought up the idea of quitting my part-time job and taking the summer “off”.

What I had planned:

-More time with Devon

-More time to train Nova

-More time with my band

-More time to write

More time, more time, more time…

Isn’t that what we all want? More time to spend with loved ones, get our houses just the way we always wanted them to look, do what we love to do, experience something new, explore, listen… breathe…

More time. More time…

I thought quitting my job would allow me to have more time to do a plethora of projects I had lined up.

However there were still the same amount of hours in each day. Suddenly I had to figure out a way to occupy those hours in just the right way. I was imagining a schedule that seemed wide open when the reality is that life was never going to slow down or become easier so I could do what I had to and wanted to.

“Where the do I begin?”

I wake up on my first “job free” morning…

I do the same thing I would have done on a scheduled day off.

Make coffee, walk and feed Nova, drink coffee while listening to diabetes podcasts, check my blood sugar, count my carbs for breakfast, more coffee, clean up the house, get Devon off to work, drink more coffee, run errands, check the mail, make phone calls…

It goes on and on and before I know it the day is over, then the next day, then the day after that.

Writer’s block weighs me down. I feel words and song lyrics inside me but when I pick up my pen nothing comes out. I begin to collects snippets of notes and ideas but when I focus on them I come up with nothing. I either don’t know where to begin, or I lose all motivation halfway through. This lasts the entire summer.

I begin focusing more and more on my diabetes. I get really good at counting carbs, I begin to see less high numbers and more straight lines on my Dexcom graph instead of the mountain ranges I saw all winter and spring. There are still days when all hell breaks loose and my blood sugars do not cooperate, but more good days begin to happen.

Walking Nova everyday keeps me active. We go to training every Monday and she consistently shows Devon and I how intelligent and alert she is becoming. She grows like a weed and now I look next to my office chair and see a twenty pound puppy who is VERY attached to her Mama.

I struggle with disappointment in myself when she has a bad day and doesn’t respond to my commands – and Devon reminds me not to be too hard on myself, that we are doing our best and is never as bad as I think.

My hormones rage out of control. My body does not like life without my IUD. I am tentatively diagnosed with PMDD and begin spending A LOT of time reading about hormone imbalances with Type One Diabetes. I struggle with mood swings and depression, anxiety and aggravation. Most of the time I do not let my emotions get the best of me. I try to stay strong.

On July 24th – Devon and I bring two of our closest friends to the beach. The county clerk meets us there and we exchange quiet, loving vows and “I do’s” in front of the raging Pacific Ocean.

Nova wears a tutu. Devon wears his favorite (lucky) button down shirt and vows to love me no matter what – for the rest of our lives.

I do the same. Without hesitation. I marry my soul mate.

I slowly begin to get more organized. Nova begins to sleep through the night.

By not working I am able to align my sleep schedule with Devon’s so we are able to spend more time together after he gets home from work. I look forward to the walks we take when he gets home and Nova goes to bed. Sitting under the streetlights, sharing a smoke and talking about our day. I appreciate more and more how hard he works, and how easy it has always been to relax when he is around.

September is here.

The leaves are beginning to turn. I am driving down the highway and realize that although it feels like the summer flew by and nothing happened, that is not true.

So here are a few things I learned:

  1. Time management is difficult. For me it requires a lot of self-discipline. Make the schedule and stick to it the best you can. Post It’s and a physical planner helped me a ton as opposed to the one on my cell phone.
  2. Creativity follows no schedule. It doesn’t care if you quit your job to write more. It will hit you when you least expect it. Dry spells do not mean you have lost your ability to create your art, whichever form that comes in.
  3. This was the first time in my life I completely acknledged that Type One Diabetes is a full-time job. The time and energy I have spent on my health and recovery this summer is absolutely invaluable. I have gained such a better understanding of my body and my illness. I have learned so much about my body and my mind. I am so much more resilient than I imagined. I never thought I would have gotten to this place. Even with the hormone imbalance, the mood swings, the low and high blood sugars, the neuropathy flare ups and sleepless nights… I am AWARE.

I thought I took the summer off to have more time –
What I got was a new level of self-awareness

And I could not be happier about it.




Lessons from Nova – Part One

“Get that out of your mouth.”
“Oh God there is poop on my hand!”
“I’m only crying because I’m so tired. She just won’t sleep.”
“Please eat your food.”

No, we do not have a toddler.
Devon and I have brought home a rather adorable nine week old Australian Shepherd puppy.

Enter: Nova.

The plan is for nova to eventually become my Diabetic Alert Dog .
We have A LOT of work to do before that day comes.

Until then our lives have already changed pretty drastically.

Gone are the days when I can just run to the store, go to work, clean my house and sleep through the night (for right now). Our days now revolve around caring for this baby dog who needs a whole lot of attention and care. Finding puppy sitters for times and places she cannot be with me, tons of walks, cramming AS MUCH work and chores into her nap times as I can and making sure she doesn’t eat absolutely everything she finds throughout the day.

Much like having a baby, no amount of preparation, literature, YouTube videos or personal advice could have truly prepared us for what we are experiencing.

Despite extreme sleep deprivation, frustration, countless trips outside to go potty and yes even tears – it really is wonderful.

Whether she is sleeping at my feet during band practice, or keeping an eye on me during physical therapy and even when she is hyper AF and attacking my favorite pair of sandals- I cannot help but smile.

Nova, Devon and I are a team. We are learning together. As a family.

Today begins week three and she is now nine weeks old. I am already so grateful to have her. I have already learned a few really significant things about myself thanks to this little ball of fur.

I knew it wouldn’t be long before Nova made her way into my blog. What I did not expect was just how much I would have to say about all the things I have already learned from her in three short weeks. So this will be the first part in a four themed series about the lessons Nova is teaching me.

Part One: Sleep Deprivation

My best friend recently became a mom for the first time. About one month after the baby was born her husband shared this with me in regards to lack of sleep as a new parent:

“It isn’t that you’re not sleeping at all per say. It’s that you get one hour here, then are awake for two hours then forty five mins etcetera. You don’t get a solid block of sleep – and that is the exhausting part.”

At the time I had neither a child nor a puppy – so I was somewhat able to imagine what he was saying but I was not in anyway able to know just how hard things can get when you do not get solid sleep. Nor was I prepared for the absolute insanity that happens when someone with a chronic illness doesn’t get enough sleep.

Sleep deprivation is one of the toughest things I have gone through in a long time. Yet it is also the most enlightening thing I have ever experienced. In the past when I was struggling with depression and anxiety – insomnia was something I struggled with. However what made that different for me was when I did eventually get tired enough to sleep, I was able to do so.

Having a chronic illness I need more sleep than the average person. So imagine a person who needs more than the ‘normal’ amount of sleep getting nowhere near that amount. Like … not even close to what I needed.

On the positive side of this I have not taken my Trazadone since the day we brought Nova home. That is three weeks off sleeping medication.
I have been on some form of sleeping medication for fifteen years.
Now when Nova decides to sleep I can lay down ANYTIME and fall asleep. Never thought I would be able to do that. Thanks fuzz ball ❤

My emotions have also been running rampant. Not only did we begin this journey with Nova (and the lack of sleep) – but around the same time I had a change in birth control, the worst period of my life, and an eczema flare up so painful and serious they had to put me on five days of steroids…which made my blood sugar so f&*king high I could barely keep it all together.

About a week in I started to notice that by giving Nova all this attention and energy, I was putting my own self care on the back burner. Not eating as frequently as I was atempting to before we brought her home. Ignoring trends on my Dexcom so I could get fifteen more minutes of sleep before having to do a finger stick. And a drastic increase in caffeine. Like lots of it. For me even if my choice has no carbs or sugars in it the actual caffeine make my numbers jump if I don’t bolus a tiny bit for it.
Which wasn’t happening because I was chugging energy drinks down super fast so I could dress myself and get to work on time.

Needless to say that shit had to come to a stop really quick.

A revelation at work: Nova is here to help me. Not hurt me. And although I was terrified of making any sort of mistake with her along the way – I still had to come first. She isn’t a newborn baby, she is a puppy. Certain aspects of my life were falling to the back burner and I couldn’t allow that to happen.

This happens to everyone. Whether you just got a puppy or not. Sometime you have to take your first sip of coffee each morning and think:
“What is my passion? What are my goals? How am I going to pursue them today?”

Time to get back on track. Time get get organized again.
With everything.
Writing, reading, puppy care, music , my health care, my relationships…

Sleep deprivation made it very clear to me that I should ONLY give my time, energy, and attention to things and people in my life who MATTER. If it isn’t important to my passion[s], my personal relationships, my dog, or my well being…I am not going to my waste energy on it.

I woke up this morning and made my coffee. Nova ate her breakfast as I shuffled through the house, eyes barely open, scooping coffee into the filter.
Opening my blinds, sunshine came through and flooded the kitchen.
It was a beautiful day.
After taking my first sip of coffee I said it to myself again…
“What is my passion? How will I pursue it today?”

Taking a second, third and fourth sip of coffee I go into the living room, pull out my notebook, turn on my laptop and begint to write…

It’s a good day to be alive my dear friends.
It is a good day to conquer all of your obstacles.

Do not chase your passion.
Run next to it.


A Pat on the Back

How often do you pat yourself on the back?

I often struggle to give myself compliments on a job well done. I am working on that but recently I had a moment where something really good happened and I had to give myself credit for the hard work I have been doing.

It has been one month since my trigger finger surgery.

I look down at my dominant hand in amazement.
Just over a month ago my tendons and nerves were so stressed, tight and painful I could barely raise my arm to dress myself.

The day before surgery I drove to work in tears, gasping in pain with each turn of the wheel.

The day of surgery I woke up with a blood sugar over 300, a bad pump site, and had started my period.

Luckily surgery was still a go.

When I opened my eyes after the procedure I felt the difference immediately. As if my whole body had taken one big sigh of relief. And that was before they gave me the morphine!

This is the sixth time I have had a Trigger Finger Release surgery. I am told trigger finger can be just another complication from uncontrolled diabetes. Imagine that!

However, there was something different about my recuperation this time around.

After the first week I went back for my post-op check up and saw the incisions. They looked… normal. As normal as an incision can look one week after surgery. I was alert, and my pain level wasn’t terrible.

This time around I had chosen not to take narcotic pain relievers and had instead been taking Ibuprofen and other natural remedies that were approved by my doctor. This decision was based on my pain level and how much help I thought I needed to get through it.

My blood sugars were steady. Manageable. Not “perfect” of course but I was responding to my insulin and eating balanced meals and snacks.

I was resting and was able to get time off of work instead of rushing back like I had originally intended on doing. (I can be very stubborn!)

Fast forward two weeks after that and OH MY GOODNESS my stitches were ready to come out!

Three weeks.

An average healing speed allowed me to not have to deal with extended suture time, infection, and over all difficult experience.

When my A1C was 14% and my Diabetes was always out of control, my stitches would have been in for double the amount of time. I have suffered several problematic infections during the last two procedures, and my recuperation was always impaired.

One month later: Physical therapy has been going great. My incisions look fantastic. I have not had a problem with infection. I have gain almost all the movement back in my thumb, wrist and arm.

This is all a direct effect of lower blood sugars!

I can’t tell you how many times I have heard that if I just lowered my A1C my body would heal so much faster. But seeing is believing, and although it took me a REALLY long time to do it – I realize now that it does apply to me too. Not just everyone else.

By deciding to make healthier choices for myself by taking better care of my body (and mind) I am now able to heal from things safely.

My body is becoming stronger each day in so many different ways. Some days are hard, in all departments, but by keeping a positive mind set and observing the progress I have already made – it is impossible for me to deny that I am on the right track to a healthier, and happier existence.

I am on the right track.


Which deserves a pat on the back.


In conclusion I ask you: find something, anything to give yourself credit for today. Did you wake up on time? Make the perfect cup of coffee? Did you carb count today? Did you walk past the scale today?

Whatever it is, you are fantastic. Keep up the good work and keep the fire rising inside you.



Cookies and Revelations.


My blood sugar is high.

The moment I begin to wake up I can feel it.
For a moment a wash of anxiety rolls through me.
PTSD can really mess up your morning.

It takes more then a few deep breaths and several tries to get my eyes to stay open.

I remind myself to take inventory of my body to avoid disassociating. To prevent my mind from separating itself from my body in a attempt to protect itself.

-Blurry vision.
-Heavy and weak limbs.
-Nervous, anxious, and confused mental state.

The stitches in my right hand throb. My shoulder aches more than usual.

All I taste is metal.

All I smell in Ammonia.

I know I need to sit up. I need to check my blood sugar. I need to give insulin, check my site,and check for ketones.

But I am just so heavy…

                                                  So weak.                                                 So tired.


I look toward my window. The light leaking through the blackout curtains causes sharp stabbing pains in my forehead.
My blood sugar is high. I know this. But trying to process my thoughts and command my body to move seems so difficult. The signals from my brain to my body aren’t connecting.

Devon is at work. I need to be strong, motivated and determined. I need to take care of myself.

I can do this.

“You can do this Ash” I say it out loud.

Zedd, my trusted “service cat” knows I’m struggling. He trots over and drapes his giant fluffy body over my feet. (Thanks buddy!) Zedd helps me focus on the present and I find myself in my room and not lost in the empty space of feeling like absolute shit.

The first thing I do after sitting up is look at my Dexcom.
It reads 350. But I don’t believe that.

I prick my finger and watch the countdown.


428 mg/dL

I give the finger to my Dexcom receiver as elegantly as I can manage.

I touch my left hip where my pump site sits. It’s connected, it doesn’t hurt. Good sign. I dial in the number on my pump and receive 5 beautiful units of Novolog. Then I flop back down and sigh. As I reach for my water bottle on my night stand I see the culprit…

An empty package of delicious Milano cookies.

I have sleep snacked again!

Sleep snacking…

Something that I unfortunately inherited from both my mother and father. Waking up in the middle of the night half asleep, and eating whatever I find first.
Not a huge deal for my parents, but quite devastating when you have diabetes and do not bolus before going back to dreamland.

I do NOT beat myself up. There are ways to fix this problem without using negative self talk, and bringing myself down for an honest mistake.

I remind myself out loud that mistakes DO NOT make me “bad at recovery” or a “ bad diabetic”.

Mistakes make me human.

Events like this put something HUGE into perspective for me:

As I feel my blood sugar come down I make a pot of coffee and as I stand there listening to the coffee brewing and feel the warm sun coming into the kitchen from the windows I am reminded of how it used to be

I used to have a 400 + blood sugar every single day. It was completely routine for me to wake up that high every morning and to pull myself out of bed and go to work, or school.

I would not give insulin for a 400 number.

I would allow only a small amount of insulin for a 500 number to prevent DKA, vomiting or an ER visit.

I was always in space. Empty, cold, dark space. Looking at myself from far away. Ten years of neglecting my diabetes made me remove my mind from my body so I would not be constantly crippled by nausea, dizziness, hunger, dehydration, muscle cramps, confusion, and the overall empty hollow feeling. 

I pour my first cup of coffee am struck again by one of my most favorite parts of recovery.

I felt high. I felt like absolute crap this morning!

This is because I am no longer used to high blood sugars. I am adjusting to lower, healthier blood sugars each day. I am now comfortable giving myself all the insulin I need to stay healthy.  I am often shocked by how I could have ever functioned with blood sugars so consistently high and dangerous.

I get dressed in front of a mirror that I have owned for over two years and have NEVER covered it with a towel because I couldn’t bear to look at my reflection. I brush my hair and teeth and give myself a smile. 

Two hours later my blood sugar is down to 164.

I am at a Sharis eating a delicious lunch filled with protein and a biscuit with gravy.

Because that is what I want to eat. Because I am hungry (something I rarely felt in the troughs of Diabulimia).

I do not worry that my lunch bolus will make me gain weight.

I enjoy my food.

I bolus so I can have the energy to go for a walk later this afternoon.

Life in Recovery is amazing.
Reflection during recovery can be hard, scary, and sad. But it can also blow you away. Recovery shows you how strong you are. How you have survived! And it reminds you of all the amazing progress you are making. Some days are harder than others but anything worth doing is hard work.

You can do this.
So can I.

Life is beautiful.

Even when you eat all the cookies.