Thursday, January 5, 2012

'I Can Only Imagine' by Mercy Me

I just finished an assignment for my Fine Arts class to select a video/song explaining how it's a work of art and how I personally identify with it. I think it speaks for itself, but this is what I wrote:

URL for video and song, ‘I Can Only Imagine’ by Mercy Me:

I chose this particular video because I can relate to the people in the video missing their loved one. I know the song is about seeing Jesus when you get to Heaven, but it also can be about seeing all your loved ones too. I like the beginning where they hold an empty photo frame. The empty frame represents the emptiness and grieve that I feel by the void of losing my precious son. The frame with the picture represents the special space that I feel in my heart and the overflowing love within that never vacates. I instantly feel my heart strings tug and a lump form in my throat as soon as I hear even the first few chords of the song, ‘I Can Only Imagine’ by Mercy Me. This song floods me with elation of happy thoughts and sad thoughts all at the same time. How can something as simple as words and music stir so much within me in just seconds, regardless of where I am? Well, it’s because of what I associate with the song and the memories that rush in with it. There are some things in life that can only be imagined, like arriving in Heaven and seeing my loved ones. How will I feel? How will I react? I imagine seeing my son again. Noah was only a baby when he died, and I wonder what will he look like, will I recognize him? How will it feel to embrace him again? I cannot even begin to imagine the joy and completeness that I will feel to have him in my arms again. But, when I hear the lyrics in this song, I can begin to imagine such a thing. How amazing! The song brings me a moment of comfort at the image of embracing my child once again, and for a moment I forget the gloom of that hospital room where I last held onto him. Nothing was harder than having to leave that room, and I really do imagine just running into the gates of Heaven surround by His glory. God is in the music and I just want to sing out loud when I hear this beautiful song. Music can stir so many emotions of memories, happiness, sadness, and has the ability to stop me in my tracks. I thank you Lord for the wonderful sound of music.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

April is National Donate Life Month - ATL article

April is designated National Donate Life Month. During this time LifeLink of Georgia, the local organ procurement organization, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the transplant community honor and pay tribute to the generosity of organ donors and their families. In 2006 more than 28,000 lives were saved through heart, lung, liver, kidney, pancreas, and intestinal transplants. An estimated 500,000 tissue transplants prevented amputations; replaced bone tissue lost to cancer, infection, and injury; restored sight with donated corneas; helped burn victims heal faster; and restored heart function through heart valve transplants. Donna Schwedt, wife and mother of two, suffered with complications from high blood pressure which resulted in kidney failure. She endured dialysis treatment for two years before receiving a kidney transplant from an anonymous donor. “I don’t know where I would be today if not for the generous decision made by a complete stranger to become an organ donor and save my life,” says Donna. Since her transplant, she witnessed her youngest son’s college graduation and today Donna helps to educate Georgians about organ and tissue donation through LifeLink’s volunteer program; she also facilitates a transplant support group in her community. She stays healthy by participating in water aerobics, bowling, and community activities. National Donate Life Month inspires individuals to designate their donation decision by signing up on the state donor registry or signing a family notification card. LifeLink promotes community events to highlight the critical organ shortage in the United States. Currently more than 94,000 people are listed for an organ transplant nationwide; in Georgia over 1,900 of our family members, friends and colleagues await their Gift of Life. “LifeLink of Georgia works compassionately with families who have lost a loved one,” said Kathleen Lilly, Sr. Vice President/Executive Director, LifeLink of Georgia. “During National Donate Life Month and every month, we share vital information about organ and tissue donation throughout the state. I encourage every Georgian to learn the facts about organ and tissue donation and commit to saving lives,” she added. You can become an organ, tissue, and eye donor by signing up on the Georgia donor registry at your local driver license office; or by signing a family notification card. For more information about organ and tissue donation contact Terri Medina, Public Relations Coordinator at 800-544-6667 or visit

Thursday, February 12, 2009

What Everyone Should Know.....

'What Everyone Should Know About the First Year of Grief' Getting through the holidays without our loved one is one of many challenges we face in the first year of our loss. We are challenged in so many ways that we cannot take loss in all at once. We can only see the world from where we stand; and to most of us, our new world looks and feels like a landscape without gravity. There are no maps to guide us through this fresh grief. But others who have made the journey can help by sharing what they have learned. They show us it is possible to turn stumbling blocks into stepping stones along the way. I learned that the first year's grief doesn't flow neatly from one stage to the next; it has multiple patterns, fluctuating cycles, lots of ups and downs. First-year grief will surprise you in many ways, but here are a few things you can expect.
EXPECT SUDDEN "GRIEF ATTACKS."Practical matters demand attention in early grief when we are the most confused and least interested in things we used to care about. We must decide how to get through each new day. Some days, getting out of bed may take all the energy we have. Trips to everyday places like the grocery store feel so different. In my case, simple things like seeing the baby aisle in the store brought immediate, excruciating pain. I call these unexpected reactions "grief attacks." And unlike the response we would get if we had a heart attack while shopping, those around us don't know what to do. We get good at hiding our pain, at postponing grieving for a more appropriate place, a better time.
EXPECT EXHAUSTION AND DISRUPTION.Early grieving is perhaps the hardest work you will ever do. It is common to have difficulty sleeping, changes in appetite and blood pressure, tense muscles that are susceptible to strains, a weekened immune system. Be sure to tell your physician about your loss and any physical symptoms you have. If your doctor can't or won't listen, find one who will.After a loss, many people return to work, school, or other activities feeling vulnerable, less confident about their capabilities, less able to concentrate, distracted by memories, and flooded with emotions that disrupt thinking. For others, work is the only place they are able to concentrate--focusing on tasks helps take their mind off their loss for awhile.Those around us may have unrealistic expectations as we return to work or school. Expect to be stunned by the ineptness, thoughtlessness, and discomfort of some people, and to be thrilled and deeply touched by the kindness and sensitivity of others. Sometimes those you expect to support you the most can't or won't meet your needs, while others you weren't that close to before reach out unexpectedly. Our loved ones are still, and always will be, a part of us. They are threads in our fabric and we cannot lose their love.
EXPECT ONGOING "ECHOES."We experience so many emotions after a loved one dies. We may feel relief that our loved one is not suffering, then feel quilty about feeling relieved. For a time we may be unable to feel much at all. While learning to live with the hole in our heart and fatigue in our body, other responsibilities beckon. We must pay bills, work, decide what we want to do with our loved one's possessions, and on and on.Just when we think everyone surely has heard of our loss by now, the reality of our loved one's death echoes back to us. A call comes from the doctor's office about scheduling a checkup, or we run into an old friend who just moved back to town. Once again we must tell our story, respond to someone else's pain, experience fresh waves of grief. Knowing certain events are coming, such as seeing the grave marker or reading the death certificate or autopsy report, does not prevent us from hurting. These are tangible reminders of the reality of death, while part of us still hopes it's all been just a bad dream.
EXPECT "IF ONLYS" AND "SHOULD HAVES."Most grieving people have some unfinished business with their loved ones. It helps to talk with someone you trust about these concerns. You may not have had a chance to say good-bye or resolve certain issues. You may regret doing or not doing something. Perhaps you believe their death could have been prevented, or their life prolonged.As much as possible, sort through and separate the thoughts, feelings, and beliefs that accompany your loss; then decide what action to take. Do you need to forgive yourself or others? To ask your loved one for forgiveness and guidance? Grieving requires enormous energy, but pretending that you're not grieving requires even more. You begin to sense that your world is anxious for you to get on with your life, and no one understands that this is your life and you are getting on with it. "This is it, folks." Then other times you pretend and you wear a mask and perform like a trained seal just to keep what's left of your world from leaving you.
EXPECT DEEP QUESTIONS.Loss causes us to re-examine our beliefs about the Universe, God, and how the world works. Your faith and belief system my comfort and sustain you during the first year of your loss, or you may feel angry and disconnected from it. Remember that it is okay to question. As Job learned, God wants to be in relationship with us no matter what we are feeling.You may be drawn to people who have experienced a loss like yours and can understand some of your feelings and questions. This is one reason many people in early grief find comfort in bereavement support groups. But remember that no one can ever totally understand you grief, your questions, and what your loved one means to you. Like all relationships, each person's grief is unique and complex.
TAKE YOUR TIME, BUT DO YOUR GRIEF WORK.During early grief, you may want to stay busy all the time, avoiding painful emotions and the exhausting work of grief, hoping time will heal you. There's no set schedule and no recovery period for grief. But time alone does not heal--it's what we do with the time that counts. Take the time you need to do your grief work. But also take time away from grieving to do things you enjoy, to rest and replenish yourself.When a loved one dies, our hoped-for future dies, too. Beginning in this first year, and continuing on from there, living with your loss means taking on new roles, new relationships, a new future-without forgetting your past. Sometimes, life takes surprising turns. Confronted with loss, we can weave the strands of our past into a new, meaningful future we never would have planned to live. Doing so is a conscious choice.
TAKE HEARTGetting through the first year of your grief is like winding a ball of string. You start with an end and wind and wind. Then the ball slips through your fingers and rolls across the floor. Some of the work is undone, but not all. You pick it up and start over again, but never do you have to begin at the end of the string. The ball never completely unwinds; you've made some progress. May your loved one's spirit and your continuing bond of love give you strength each day. May your loved one be there to help you during the painful first year, and in all the years to come.
Take from: 'CareNotes' by K Talbot, Ph.D.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas Noah

Merry Christmas From Heaven
I still hear the songs; I still see the lights.
I still feel your love, on cold wintry nights.
I still share your hopes, and all of your cares.
I'll even remind you to please say your prayers.
I just want to tell you, you still make me proud.
You stand head and shoulders above all the crowd.
Keep trying each moment to stay in His grace.
I came here before you to help set your place.
You don't have to be perfect all of the time.
He forgives you the slip if you continue the climb.
To my family and friends, please be thankful today,
I'm still close beside you in a new special way.
I love you all dearly now don't shed a tear,
Cause I'm spending my Christmas with Jesus this year.


To All Parents
By Edgar A. Guest
"I'll lend you for a little time a,child of mine," He said,"For you to love the while he lives...and mourn when he's dead;It may be six or seven years, or twenty-two or three...But will you...till I call him back,take care of him for me?He'll bring his charms to gladden you; and shall his stay be brief,You'll have his lovely memories as solace for your grief."
"I cannot promise he will stay, since all from earth return,But there are lessons taught down there, I want this child to learn;I've looked the wide world over, in my search for a teacher true,And from the throngs that crowd life's lane...I have selected you.Now you will give him all your love, nor think the labor vain?Not hate me when I come to call to take him back again?
"I fancied that I heard you say, 'Dear Lord, Thy will be done!'For all the joy thy child shall bring, The risk of grief we'll run...We'll shelter him with tenderness, we'll love him while we may,And for the happiness we've known, forever grateful stay;But shall the angels call for him...much sooner than we've planned,We'll brave the grief that comes...and try to understand!!!
Wrapped In Mommy's Love
I'm going to tell you something I hope you'll never have to know. I'll tell you how a heart can break And tears can constant flow. I lost my baby boy you see, An angel in my eyes. God chose to take his hand one day And led him to the skies. But please do not forget my child He was a person too And forever he will live Inside of me and you. So, please don't ever tell me That time will heal my pain Because not even time Can bring him back again. Just tell me he is happy In that land way up above He's snuggled in an angels wings All wrapped in Mommy's love. ~Author Unknown

So True....

My baby has died. Please don't tell me you know how I feel. You don't. You can't. God knows I hope you never do. Don't tell me that he's with god and that I should be happy. How can I be happy when everytime I go into his room all I see is an empty crib and toys that will never be played with? How can I be happy when my heart longs for him and my arms ache to just hold him. Please don't tell me god needed another angel. Its hard for me to understand why god would take away this little one who is so loved. Maybe I'll understand later, but for right now let god find another angel. Please please please don't tell me I will have other children. Maybe I will. But my baby is not a puppy that ran away he CANNOT be replaced. Maybe you could just listen when I remember out loud all of the things we did together. The walking the early morning feedings. The screaming and crying. The first time he rolled over and smiled. Maybe you could just sit with me while I cry over the things we will never do together. Please don't tell me it could be worse. How? I really don't want to hear about your grandfathers death. Its not the same. Don't think my pain will be eased by comparison. Of course I'm glad he didn't suffer but I'd be a hell of a lot happier if he hadn't died at all. I know you think its hard for you, but would you mind looking at his picture just one more time. We don't have many of him and I'm just a little bit afraid that I may forget what he looked like. He wasn't here for that long you know. Could you please just listen? Don't tell me to get over it. There is no "over it". Only through it. Maybe you could just be with me while I take my first steps through it. Please don't tell me I should be glad he was just a baby, or at least I didn't get to know him that well. I knew him before I even saw him. He is a part of me and now he is gone. And a part of me is gone and will never return. I haven't just lost a 13 month old baby. I have lost a part of myself. I know you mean well, but please don't expect me to tell you how to help me. I'd tell you if I knew. Because right now I can't hardly put one foot in front of the other. Maybe if you looked around, you could find some things to do. Like going out for a walk, the dishes or making some coffee. Please don't try to remove my pain or distract me from it. I have to feel this way now. Maybe you could just listen...

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Light of Hope Candlelight Service In Remembrance of Our Children, Sunday 12-14-08

Lights of Hope Candlelight Service In Remembrance of Our Children, Sunday, December 14, 2008
Lights of Hope ♥

Candlelight Service
(just west of Westover Road intersection next to the American
Families and friends of deceased children are invited to gather
with others during this special time to remember and to celebrate
the lives of our children. We will have a special picture board
and table so bring a photo of your child. This event is open to the
community and is free of charge.

For more information, contact the
Albany Community Hospice at (229) 312-7050

Thursday, August 28, 2008

As many of you know, juvenile diabetes is a very important cause to me. It is the disease that took my baby Noah's precious life on October 13, 2007, at only 13 months old. I'm making as many efforts as I can to support the JDRF, so that another child will not have to endure the fatal complications of type 1 diabetes. I'm writing to you to ask for your support in a very special cause.
This year, I'll be taking part in the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation's Walk to Cure Diabetes (10-04-08), along with a half-million other walkers across the country. Our goal: To raise $100 million to help fund research for a cure for type 1 diabetes and its complications.
Type 1, or juvenile, diabetes, is a devastating, often deadly disease that affects millions of people--a large and growing percentage of them children.

Many people think type 1 diabetes can be controlled by insulin. While insulin does keep people with type 1 diabetes alive, it is NOT a cure. Aside from the daily challenges of living with type 1 diabetes, there are many severe, often fatal, complications caused by the disease.
That's the bad news... and yes, it's pretty bad.The good news, though, is that a cure for type 1 diabetes is within reach. In fact, JDRF funding and leadership is associated with most major scientific breakthroughs in type 1 diabetes research to date. And JDRF funds a major portion of all type 1 diabetes research worldwide, more than any other charity.

I'm writing to ask for your support because now more than ever, EACH of us can be a part of bringing about a cure.Each of us can make a real difference.

Won't you please give to JDRF as generously as you're able?
Together, we can make the cure a reality.

Thank you,
Miranda Spangenberg (Noah's Mommy)
Joshua Spangenberg (Noah's Big Brother)
Leesburg, GA

Please visit my Walk Web page if you would like to donate online or see how close I am to reaching my personal goal:

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Diabetes Info

Diabetes info:
Current mood: blank
Category: Life
Gestational Diabetes
Gestational Diabetes, or diabetes that occurs in pregnancy and resolves at birth, occurs in approximately three to eight pregnancies of every 100 in America1.

Risk factors for developing gestational diabetes include:
A family history of diabetes
Being overweight
Having prediabetes
Having given birth previously to a child weighing 9 pounds or more

Gestational diabetes mellitus, or GDM, is diabetes that first appears in pregnancy and resolves at birth. An estimated 200,000 American women, approximately 5% of total pregnancies, are diagnosed with GDM annually. Women who develop gestational diabetes have problems metabolizing glucose. Their pancreas produces plenty of insulin (the hormone responsible for "unlocking" cells so that glucose can enter them and provide energy), but a condition known as insulin resistance prevents them from using it effectively. When insulin doesn't work properly, blood glucose (or blood sugar) builds up in the bloodstream, and gestational diabetes is the result.
Gestational diabetes requires treatment with dietary changes and exercise and/or insulin injections to keep maternal blood glucose levels as close to normal as possible and to prevent complications in both mother and baby. Women with GDM are also encouraged to self-test their blood glucose levels often.
A fetus of a woman with GDM may become large for date as it stores the excess glucose it is receiving from mom as fat, a condition known as macrosomia. A large infant may have a more difficult time descending down the birth canal. Other potential risks for baby include hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and jaundice. A pediatrician or a neonatolgist, a physician that specializes in high risk infant care, is often present at the births of GDM babies to handle any potential complications.
Gestational Diabetes: Causes And Risk Factors
The hormones produced by the placenta in pregnancy—including estrogen, cortisol, and human placental lactogen (HPL)—are what trigger the insulin resistance in women predisposed to the condition. As pregnancy progresses and the placenta grows larger, hormone production also increases and so does the level of insulin resistance. This process usually starts between 20 and 24 weeks of pregnancy. At birth, when the placenta is delivered, the hormone production stops and so does the GDM.

Assessing Your Risk
Risk factors for developing gestational diabetes include:
Being of African American, American Indian/Alaskan Native, Asian American, Pacific Islander or Latino descent
Being an overweight or obese woman (i.e., BMI of 25 or higher)
Having a first degree family history of type 2 diabetes, prediabetes or a previous history of gestational diabetes
Being older than 25
Having a still birth or a large baby (i.e., 9 pounds or more) in a previous pregnancy
presence of glycosuria (detection of glucose in the urine despite nomal blood sugar level)
diagnosis of PCOS (PolysCystic Ovarian Syndrome)

If you have 2 or more of these risk factors you are at HIGH RISK for gestational diabetes.
If you have ONLY ONE of these risk factors you are at AVERAGE RISK for gestational diabetes. If you have none of these risk factors you are at LOW RISK for gestational diabetes.

SOURCES:1 - National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse. What I Need to Know About Gestational Diabetes. (Accessed 2/8/08). 2 - National Institute of Child Health & Human Development. Gestational Diabetes. (Accessed 2/8/08).
Reviewed by Francine Kaufman, MD. 4/08
Last Modified Date: June 19, 2008


Prediabetes, also called impaired glucose tolerance (IGT), is a precursor condition to type 2 diabetes characterized by higher than normal blood glucose levels and insulin resistance. It's also called impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) or impaired fasting glucose (IFG), depending on the test used to diagnose it with. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the American Diabetes Association (ADA) estimate that 41 million Americans between the ages of 40 to 74 are living with prediabetes, and most remain unaware of their condition.1 Without intervention and appropriate treatment, people with prediabetes are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes within 10 years.

Prediabetes is a relatively new clinical diagnosis. The term was first introduced in 2002 by the DHHS and ADA. One of the reasons for renaming prediabetes from its former clinical name of impaired glucose tolerance was to highlight the seriousness of the condition and to motivate people to get appropriate treatment. With early intervention and lifestyle adjustments, prediabetes can be slowed, stopped, and even reversed.

SOURCE:1 - Centers for Disease Control. National Diabetes Fact Sheet United States, 2005. (PDF accessed 2/8/08).2 - The Expert Committee on the Diagnosis and Classification of Diabetes Mellitus. "Follow-Up Report on the Diagnosis of Diabetes Mellitus." Diabetes Care 26:3160-3167, 2003.
Last Modified Date: March 26, 2008


Type 1 Diabetes
Also known as: juvenile diabetes, insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM), childhood diabetes, and ketosis prone diabetes (Note: some of these terms are now outdated). Type 1 diabetes accounts for between 5 and 10% of all diagnosed diabetes in the United States.
Although type 1 diabetes develops most often in children and young adults (one in every 400-600 children has type 1 diabetes)1, the disease can be diagnosed at any age throughout the lifespan, and is equally distributed among males and females. Unlike type 2 diabetes, type 1 diabetes is more common in Caucasians than in those of Latino, African-American, or other non-Caucasian backgrounds.

Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that occurs when the insulin-producing beta cells within the pancreas are gradually destroyed and eventually fail to produce insulin. Insulin is a hormone that helps the body's cells use glucose for energy. Blood glucose (or blood sugar) is manufactured from the food we eat (primarily carbohydrates) and by the liver. If glucose can't be absorbed by the cells, it builds up in the bloodstream instead, and high blood sugar is the result. Over time, the high blood glucose levels of uncontrolled diabetes can be toxic to virtually every system of the body.

Because type 1 diabetes is frequently diagnosed in childhood, it is sometimes referred to as juvenile diabetes. However, it can develop at any age throughout adulthood. Effective management is important to prevent some of the more serious complications of diabetes, which include heart disease, blindness, stroke, nerve damage, and kidney failure. In addition to following an exercise and healthy eating plan, individuals with type 1 diabetes must receive insulin by injection or pump.

The causes of type 1 diabetes are complex and still not completely understood. People with type 1 diabetes are thought to have an inherited, or genetic, predisposition to the disease. Researchers believe that this genetic predisposition may remain dormant until it is activated by an environmental trigger or triggers such as a virus or a chemical. This starts an attack of the immune system that results in the eventual destruction of the beta cells of the pancreas.
There are several subtypes of type 1 diabetes, including type 1A diabetes, idiopathic diabetes (type 1B), and latent autoimmune diabetes of adulthood (LADA). The basic treatment (i.e., insulin injections) is the same for all.

Type 1 Diabetes: Symptoms
Many of the symptoms of type 1 diabetes are nonspecific—that is, they may be indications of any one of a number of different medical problems. If you're experiencing any of these diabetes symptoms, please contact your healthcare provider immediately for medical evaluation.

Diabetes may include one or more of the following:
Excessive thirst
Frequent urination
Extreme hunger
Unexplained weight loss
Fatigue, or a feeling of being "run down" and tired
Rapid breathing
Blurred vision
Dry, itchy skin
Tingling or burning pain in the feet, legs, hands, or other parts of the body
High blood pressure
Mood swings
Irritability, depression
Frequent or recurring infections, such as urinary tract infections, yeast infections, and skin infections
Slow healing of cuts and bruises

Type 1 Diabetes: Causes and Risk Factors
What causes diabetes? Researchers have identified several genes associated with the development of type 1 diabetes. The prevailing belief about the etiology, or cause, of type 1 diabetes is that although someone may have a genetic predisposition for developing type 1 diabetes, it takes an environmental trigger or series of triggers (e.g., virus, toxin, drug) to set the autoimmune process in motion that destroys insulin-producing pancreatic beta cells and causes type 1 diabetes.

Risk factors for developing type 1 diabetes may include:
Family history.
A child that has a parent or sibling with type 1 diabetes has a 2 to 6% risk of developing the disease (the risk is higher if both a parent and sibling or an identical twin have type 1 diabetes). Although family history is important, 80% of people with type 1 diabetes do not ave another relative with type 1 diabetes.
Autoimmune diseases.
The presence of other autoimmune disorders, such as thyroid disease and celiac disease, raises the risk of type 1 diabetes.
Early cessation of breastfeeding and/or exposure to cow's milk.
Clinical research indicates that breastfeeding at least three months decreases the risk of type 1 diabetes. Some studies have also found that exposure to cow's milk or cow's milk-based formula before one year of age may increase diabetes risk3-6, although other studies have not borne out the link.
In America, Caucasians have a greater risk of type 1 diabetes than African-Americans, Native Americans, Asian Americans, and Latinos. Worldwide, Finland and Sardinia have the highest incidence of type 1 diabetes.
History of childhood viruses.

Viruses that have been associated with type 1 diabetes as environmental triggers include coxsackie B, enteroviruses, adenovirus, rubella, cytomegalovirus, and Epstein-Barr virus.

SOURCE:1 - National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse. National Diabetes Statistics. (Accessed 2/19/08).
Reviewed by Francine Kaufman, MD. 4/08
Last Modified Date: June 17, 2008


Type 2 Diabetes
Also known as: adult-onset diabetes and non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) (Note: These terms are now outdated).

Type 2 diabetes is more common in adults aged 50 and older, although it can occur in children and adolescents as well.1 Being overweight or obese and leading a sedentary (i.e., nonactive) lifestyle are major risk factors for developing type 2 diabetes, as is having a family history of the disease. People of African-American, American Indian, Asian American, Latino, and Pacific Islander background are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes is the most prevalent form of the disease, accounting for 90 to 95% of all diabetes cases in America.2 Unlike type 1 diabetes, where destruction of the pancreas reduces and eventually stops the supply of the hormone insulin, most people with type 2 diabetes are still able to produce insulin at diagnosis. However, the insulin they produce is unable to perform its primary job, which is helping the body's cells use glucose for energy. Usually this is due to a problem with the body's insulin receptors, the location ..s where insulin binds so that glucose can enter (although less frequently there may be a problem with the chemical makeup of the insulin itself). This condition is called insulin resistance.

If glucose can't be absorbed by the cells, it builds up in the bloodstream instead, and high blood sugar is the result. The pancreas keeps increasing insulin production in an effort to keep up with rising blood sugar levels, and high circulating levels of insulin (known as hyperinsulinemia) develop. Hyperinsulinemia increases the risk of cardiovascular disease and other health problems.Over time, the high blood glucose levels from uncontrolled diabetes can cause serious long-term health problems with virtually every system in your body. Eventually, they may cause damage to the insulin-producing beta cells of the pancreas, reducing insulin output. An early diagnosis is important to prevent some of the other more serious complications of diabetes, which include heart disease, high blood pressure, nerve damage, and kidney failure. Fortunately, in many cases type 2 diabetes can be adequately controlled through a combination of proper nutrition, exercise, and metformin - which your doctor may prescribe - which is usually the first line of treatment. However, some people with type 2 diabetes do require oral medications or insulin injections.

Although the vast majority of individuals with type 2 diabetes are adults, children and adolescents are increasingly at risk for the disease due to growing childhood weight problems and sedentary lifestyles.

Not everyone with type 2 diabetes has symptoms, particularly in the early stages of the disease. In fact, one-third of the over 18 million Americans with type 2 diabetes are unaware that they have the disease.

Type 2 diabetes symptoms may include one or more of the following:
Excessive thirst
Frequent urination
Extreme hunger
Unexplained weight loss
Fatigue, or a feeling of being "run down" and tired
Rapid breathing
Blurred vision
Dry, itchy skin
Tingling or burning pain in the feet, legs, hands, or other parts of the body
High blood pressure
Mood swings
Irritability, depression
Frequent or recurring infections, such as urinary tract infections, yeast infections, and skin infections
Slow healing of cuts and bruises

Unlike type 1 diabetes, which frequently has a sudden onset of symptoms and reaches a crisis point before diagnosis is made, the signs of type 2 diabetes may be gradual and more insidious. Often, the first symptoms that people with undiagnosed type 2 diabetes experience are those from complications of the disease, such as blurry vision (retinopathy) or foot pain (neuropathy).

Type 2 Diabetes: Causes and Risk Factors
The exact causes of type 2 diabetes aren't completely understood, but it is known that the disease has a strong hereditary component. Individuals who have a parent or sibling with type 2 diabetes have 10 to 15% chance of developing the disease (the risk is much higher if the sibling is an identical twin). Environmental factors like an inactive lifestyle or poor diet may act as a trigger for someone with a genetic tendency towards type 2 diabetes. Other potential causes of type 2 include chronic stress, low birth weight (and associated fetal malnourishment), and gene mutations.

Diabetes risk factors for developing type 2 diabetes include:
Overweight or obesity.

Having a body mass index (BMI) of 25 or more
Having a parent or sibling with type 2 diabetes
Gestational diabetes
A history of gestational diabetes, or having at least one baby weighing more than 9 pounds at birth
High blood pressure of 140/90 mm Hg or higher
Poor cholesterol profile.
HDL cholesterol ("good" cholesterol) levels of 35 or lower and/or triglyceride levels of 250 or higher
Living a sedentary lifestyle (i.e.,exercising less than three times a week)
Being an older adult.
Approximately 18.4% of Americans over age 65 have type 2 diabetes
Having diagnosed prediabetes
According to the National Institutes of Health, an estimated 80% of people with type 2 diabetes are overweight or obese (i.e., a BMI of 25 or higher).
Here's why excess fat increases insulin resistance:
Fat cells have fewer insulin receptors (the place where insulin binds to open the cell to glucose) than muscle cells.
Fat cells release free fatty acids, and free fatty acids interfere with glucose metabolism.
Excess glucose that can't be used by the cells for energy is stored as body fat, increasing the cellular mass that the pancreas is trying to "feed" via insulin. In overweight people, insulin production is increased to meet.

SOURCES:1 - National Diabetes Education Program. Overview of Diabetes in Children and Adolescents. (Accessed 2/8/08).2 - National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse. National Diabetes Statistics. (Accessed 2/8/08).
Last Modified Date: May 20, 2008

Friday, June 13, 2008

Monday, June 9, 2008

Update on Noah's organ recipients

Update on Noah’s organ recipients
I received an update today in the mail about Noah's organ recipients. I thought that I'd share the miracle of life with you. It's amazing to me, that my hero saved someone's life. Noah gave the gift of life and I'm so proud of him. I can never measure up to the beautiful person that he is. The ultimate price, one life to save two lives.....WOW! Noah is a HERO!!! I love you baby!

As written in the letter:
Noah's right kidney recipient is doing well. He is home and experiencing a smooth recovery thus far. He is enjoying time with his wife and four children. In fact, I was told that he is expecting another child. He is truly grateful to his donor and the family for this second chance at life.

Noah's left kidney recipient is also doing well. She has been referred back to her primary physician. The last time she was seen at the transplant clinic, her tests and labs showed good kidney function. She too is enjoying time with her family and has returned to work.

It brings me so much comfort to know that Noah did is strange sometimes, and this helps me to remember to see the bigger picture. I'm sure that these people think of Noah everyday, just as do. If you have any thoughts, please share them....and remember, SUPPORT ORGAN saves lives!

Miranda ~ mommy of a hero ~ NOAH

Sunday, May 11, 2008

A Special Gift

I received a special gift this morning from my dear friend Jessica.... a photo book made from pictures of me, Josh, and Noah. A special Mother's Day gift in memory of Noah. Thank you Jessica for thinking of me on this difficult day. Josh is a blessing to me and I love him dearly....But, it's hard to celebrate this day when one of your babies is gone. It just doesn't feel the same. I thank the Lord for blessing my life with such a wonderful friend. I love you Jessi-Poo! Friends Forever!!!!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

April 27, 2008

Josh (my oldest son) and I went to church this morning...very late, but we made it. I was very undecided if I was even going to go. Yesterday was a very depressing day, and I was really at a crossroads this morning. I was trying to decided if I'd do what I wanted, which was nothing...or would I do what I needed to do. Well, at the last minute I make a mad dash to get ready! I'm so glad that I did...Mrs. Tina was standing at the front to meet me. She's never been to my church and wanted to surprise me. I sure was surprised and SO happy that I'd came. I felt much better emotionally after the services, which always speaks to my heart. After the service, we went to the Shell for gas, washed the car, and got some ice cream!
Josh is getting baptised today and I'm so proud of him. We've both been struggling with losing Noah in our own ways, and this is something very happy. It'll be nice to have a glorious event and a happy's been awhile. More later, after the baptisim.

Oh boy! Everything went great! Josh's baptisim was such a joyous event. Bryan did a wonderful service and it was so nice. Family and friends attended and the church had a lovely reception. Today was a great day, and made up for yesterday. I wish all days could be this nice.
I only wish that Noah could've been there, but I'm sure he was looking down on his big brother!
Noah would be proud of his butter!
Much love ~~me~~

Saturday, April 26, 2008

A Christmas Card for Noah

Monday, December 10, 2007
A Christmas Card for Noah

It's right before Christmas, I'm all filled with joy,
Except when I think of you, my baby boy.
The stockings are hung by the tree with cheer,
And in my heart, it's as if you were here.
My oldest child is sleeping, in his bedroom he lies,
But I'm still filled with grief for my baby that died.
You see, this Christmas would have made two,
But every Christmas I know I'll miss you.
As I wrap up the presents my thoughts are on you,
And what I'd have bought if you were here, too.
A car, a ball, a red fire truck?
Or maybe a rabbit's foot to bring you good luck.
The tree is all trimmed with bright colored balls,
And decorations hang on all of the walls.
It looks so pretty - - I wonder if you see
Your first Christmas ornament, I've hung on the tree.
I bought it for you, while you were still here,
Not knowing I'd hang it with eyes full of tears.
Soon it'll be Christmas, I'll try not to be sad;
I'll count all my blessings and try to be glad.

Baby Noah...poem posted by Pam

Friday, November 16, 2007

Baby Noah...poem posted by Pam
Current mood: sad


Don't grieve for me, for now I'm free,
I'm following the path God has laid you see.
I took his hand when I heard his call.
I turned my back and left it all.
I could not stay another day
To laugh, to love, to work or play.
Tasks left undone must stay that way
I found the peace at the close of day.
If my parting has left a void
Then fill it with remembered joys-
A friendship shared, a laugh, a kiss
Oh yes, these things I too will miss.
Be not burdened with times of sorrow
I wish you the sunshine of tomorrow.
My life's been full I savored much,
Good friends, good times, a loved one's touch.
Perhaps my time seemed all too brief
Don't lengthen it now with undue grief
Lift up your hearts, and peace to thee-
God wanted me now, he set me free.

In Loving Memory

In Loving Memory
Thursday, September 07, 2006
Saturday, October 13, 2007

If Tears Could Build a Stairway

If tears could build a stairway,
And memories a lane,
I would walk right up to Heaven
And bring you back again.
No farewell words were spoken,
No time to say "Goodbye".
You were gone before I knew it,
And only God knows why.
My heart still aches with sadness,
And secret tears still flow.
What it meant to love you-
No one can ever know.
But now I know you want me
To mourn for you no more;
To remember all the happy times,
Life still has much in store.
Since you'll never be forgotten,
I pledge to you today-
A hollowed place within my heart
Is where you'll always be.