Friday, November 27, 2009

Diabetes Mine Holiday Survival Contest: Back In The Day, Christmas Cookies Were My Contraband of Choice

Want a chance to win some fantastic prizes by simply telling your Diabetes related holiday story? Here's your chance. Over at Diabetesmine, Amy is offering just such a contest called the Diabetes Mine Holiday Survival Contest.

"Your mission, if you choose to accept it," is to write and submit your “Best Of” or “Worst Of” stories about surviving the holidays with diabetes by Friday, December 11th.
You'll have the chance to be one of four winners chosen to receive a prize package of 5 different boku items!

The winners stories (and some honorable mentions) will be featured in an ebook- which will also feature holiday photos of people with diabetes. You can email Amy your photo submissions as well.

To read all about the contest, click here. You can also email Amy your submission (s) at

What have you got to lose, except of course the opportunity to win some great prizes?

Here's my submission- which I'm emailing Amy today! GOOD LUCK!

Back In the Day, Cookies Were My Contraband Of Choice!

Holidays were tough in our house for many reasons. We had a large family and money was tight, plus we had lots of people with diabetes, which made holiday treats a challenge.

Half the people at the table could eat whatever they wanted, and half couldn’t- it was rough on everyone!

At the beginning of December my mother would start baking and freezing Tollhouse cookies for my brother Johnny who lived in California.

She’d bake late at night, when I was in bed, but I could smell the chocolate and it kept me up at night. I’d wait until everyone was in bed and the house was quiet.

Then, I’d sneak downstairs (skipping the creaky 5th step) and make my way past the dinning room & through the kitchen, and finally arrive in the heater room. We kept our second refrigerator in the heater room, and that’s where all the good stuff was stored.

Before I actually opened the fridge, I went to the cabinet to the left of the utility sink, where the tinfoil was kept, and I'd tare off a sheet.

Then, I’d open up the top freezer portion of the fridge and see the tin of cookies that my mother had just made. I’d take the tin,place it on the washing machine and remove the lid gingerly.

I'd pull back the top layer of wax paper and plastic wrap, revealing the treasure trove of Tollhouse cookies underneath.

It was as if the chocolate chips were looking into my very soul, beckoning me to break all the diabetes rules and give them a try!

My 9 year old self could not resist such a delicious and forbidden temptation.

Ever so carefully, I’d take 3 or 4 cookies and wrapped them tight in the tinfoil, (which was a great way to get rid of the evidence,) and I’d rearrange the cookies that were left so that the remaining contraband didn’t looked disturbed.

I’d grab a carton of milk from the fridge and go outside on the back porch, unwrap and eat my contraband cookies in the dark. Pathetic I know. But also brave when you consider a 9 year old was eating contraband cookies well past midnight on the back porch in the dark of night.

I’d sit on the porch steps, look up at the stars and enjoy my cookies. I'd wash them down with swigs of milk and I'd relish in the fact that I was enjoying something that most people took for granted.

When I was finished, I’d crumble up the foil and toss it in the alley between the garage and the house. Hiding the evidence from any who would look for it.

I’d go back in the house, lock the back door, put the carton of milk back in the heater room fridge, and then go to the downstairs bathroom where I’d wash my face and hands and rinse out my mouth with Listerine.

I’d tiptoe up the steps, avoiding that creaky 5th step and jump back into bed.

The next morning when I tested my urine (back in the diabetes dark ages we didn’t test our blood, we tested urine) was almost always 3% or more, and getting up for school was difficult.

Soon enough, my mom would discover the fact that cookies were missing. You see it wasn’t just me that was pilfering the Christmas Cookie Stash, my sister and dad (both type 1's) were doing the exact same thing I was.

My mom started sending out the cookies to my brother on a weekly basis instead of sending one big batch.

Am I proud of my "Holiday Fail" as a child? No, I’m not. But, I absolutely understand it.

Back then there was no such thing as carb counting or bolusing for extra food.

The Diabetes diet was strict and didn't allow for any holiday treats.

I’ve come along way since then, and I’m proud of the fact that I test my blood sugar between 10 and 15 times a day, and have figured out how to reach “Blood Sugar Nirvana” for most of my favorite bolus worthy foods.

Today, whenever this woman eats a Christmas Cookie, I think of that little girl and enjoy my cookie extra special in her memory.


babscampbell said...

GREAT story. I can just see you sitting in the dark, knees curled up under your chin, dreaming of someday. . .
and washing it down with cookies and milk. Thanks for sharing your story,

Scott K. Johnson said...

This is a great story K2. I chuckled out loud when you said your pops and sister were doing the same thing! Ha! Just TRY to tell someone living with D what they can't have, right?!

Lora said...

I've seen pictures of you as a little girl and I can totally see you in your pjs on the back porch swigging milk and munching. I'm glad you can do it anytime you want now. (Want me to send you your own tin of cookies? I make a mean batch...)