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Mindy Bartleson’s Kickstarter for Her New Self-Published Book

Mindy Bartleson is writing a book and she needs our help to crowdfund in order to self-publish. The Kickstarter campaign is already live, please go  check it out here –

Below is a guest post from Mindy talking about her book.


Over the years, I’ve adjusted my blog. I wanted to talk about it all together- the type 1 diabetes, PCOS, endometriosis, anxiety, OCD, ADHD, (other diagnoses), loss, and more- because like the title of my blog says- “There’s More to the Story”. I wanted to talk about it honestly- the good and the bad. I didn’t used to do this. I thought I had to pick a viewpoint and couldn’t change my mind. I had to either be positive or negative so I found myself not only lying to the world around me, but also to myself. I eventually changed this mindset and aimed to be honest.

Mental health is important- regardless if you have a mental health diagnoses or a chronic illness. Sadly mental health is taboo and a lot of people don’t see it as important. I used to not acknowledge it at all, but over time I realized how important it is. I also realized that I cannot just focus on one thing in life- one diagnosis- because that means that things can get missed.

About two years ago, I made the decision to start a project. I decided to write a book about chronic illness and mental health. I’m aiming to balance the positive and the negative together on growing up in general but also with chronic illness and mental health along for the ride.

Over the past two years, writing this book has pushed me to process a lot of my past. All of it. I’ve seen how far I’ve come and realized the importance of so many situations.

I’m pursuing self-publishing and utilizing crowdfunding to make this dream happen!

Mindy is self-publishing an honest book about growing up with chronic illness and mental health. She wrote the content before rose colored glasses impacted her experiences too much. To help this book get published, you can visit the crowdfunding page to learn more, back her project, and help spread the word. You can also follow Mindy on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and her blog “There’s More to the Story”.

Mindy Bartleson Kickstarter

Guest Post from Rick and RADiabetes – RABlog Week



First, thank you to Chris for allowing me to post about #RABlog week on his web site. Chris volunteered this space to let me explain #RABlog week which is September 21 to September 27, 2015. This will be our first ever #RABlog week, so I appreciate the opportunity to explain why it is being held and why my web site is the sponsor. But first let me answer the biggest question .

Why are you talking about Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), I thought you had Diabetes?

I am a person with Type 1 and was diagnosed with diabetes when I was 16. That means I have been a PWD for 41 years. So it is natural that I most closely identify with the diabetes community. But in 2000 I was also diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis and in 2010 Ankylosing Spondylitis (spinal arthritis). While the three diseases are not related they all result from an over active autoimmune system which destroys things like Beta cells, connective tissue and other necessary stuff. We like to say RA is the body turned on itself. But in truth all autoimmune diseases result from the body turning on itself, so that is nothing new to we type 1’s. Read More

Diabetes Spotlight – Melissa Benesch Discusses the DOC

Happy Friday to everybody.  This is week two of the new Diabetes Spotlight series, where I will be hosting guest posts or interviews of those that are advocating for diabetes either offline, or even online via social media, but without a blog.  Give them more than 140 characters.

Today’s spotlight is on Melissa Benesch, which many of you will already know her from Twitter @MelllBe.

I asked Melissa the question, “What has the DOC done or meant to you, in your first year of having diabetes?”

Please enjoy. Read More

Grayson Willson Interview – Type 1 Diabetes Advocate

I recently came across an online news article during my weekly roundup of news articles featuring diabetes topics.  I like to find articles about people who are doing great things in their community and may not have a blog or twitter account with a huge following, so we can all try and help support them in their advocacy.  Last week I saw this article from  I encourage you to read the short news story, but a brief summary for context of this interview below.  Grayson was participating as a Patient Champion in the Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus and wanted to help spread education and awareness of Type 1 Diabetes.

I think that this is awesome that she did this and I knew instantly that I had to interview her and introduce everybody to another awesome diabetes advocate!  So, without further delay, the interview.

Please introduce yourself (name, twitter, blog [ if any], and area you are from.

My name is Grayson Willson and I’m from Dublin, Ohio

When were you diagnosed with diabetes?

I was diagnosed on January 8th, 2009 when I was 8th grade. I was 13 at the time

 Could you please give a few details about the diagnosis?

After getting a severe case of strep throat on Thanksgiving of 2008, I became frequently thirsty and was always urinating- the classic symptoms but they were easily overlooked. In December alone I lost thirty pounds. On my return back to school after the winter break, I became nauseous and went home. When nothing further happened, my mother was about to return me to school when I began to uncontrollably vomit. We immediately went to my pediatrician who took a urine test and discovered I was a diabetic and my blood sugar was in the 700 range. She said, “Pack your bags; you’re going to the hospital. You’re a diabetic.” The initial shock was ignorant at first- none of my family had any history of diabetes and we had no clue what it meant. We never assumed it would change all of our lives forever.

Can you explain briefly to the readers what the marathon event was and how you came up with the idea of educating people about diabetes?

I was asked by Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus to represent one of the miles in the Columbus Marathon- also known as a patient champion because that was the hospital where I was diagnosed and I currently volunteer there. As a patient champion I was given my own mile to theme and decorate and motivate the marathon runners. I had mile 10, and decorated it as a Candyland. I chose this theme because I felt it was important to show that Type One diabetes doesn’t have as many restrictions as many people believe. Also, every tenth of a mile we had signs with fun facts about type one to educate the runners since many people are only aware of type two. I jumped at this opportunity because I am all for the education about type one because of the lack of it. Type two is a huge issue today with obesity rates in America and I find myself constantly explaining type one and the differences between the two types. I’m sure any type one can agree that we get tired of being told we can’t eat something that we can or that people “hope we get better with some diet and exercise”. I feel that if we are going to hope for a cure, people need to know about our disease and our daily struggles. The more people know and are educated on it, the more change we see. Breast cancer and leukemia awareness foundations are great examples of this and I hope one day that type one foundations can be at their level.

In part of the online news article that I read initially, you mentioned your frustration with people not understanding the different forms of diabetes. What other ways have you attempted to educate people about type 1 diabetes? Have you had any roadblocks in attempting to spread education to people?

I do my best to educated people by getting involved. My family and I are very active in our local chapter of JDRF and we put together events that raise money for a cure and also teach people about type one. I’m willing to tell my story to anyone who is willing to listen, I actually love it. I will do anything I can to be the person to finally get Type One diabetes one the publicity it deserves. Type two in general would probably be the biggest roadblock I have. When I explain type one to people, generalities about type two are constantly interfering with that. I actually get really frustrated that their names are so similar, and would love to have that changed seeing as they are really quite different, but I’m not sure exactly how I would be the one to accomplish that… But it’s a wish ☺

You mentioned that three students in your school all have type 1 diabetes, please provide insight on the support that you all are able to provide each other.

We are often checking up on each other at school. We all have to go to the nurse when we eat at lunch, or when we’re having a low or high. When one of us gets a new utility or something, we show the others and it’s a neat way to learn about the different things out there and how they work. We make sure to have fun with it too- seeing who has the better glucose or who has the better snacks. I’m sure many people can relate to trying to make a game out of it- sometimes I’ll go in the nurse saying “I’m really high and I feel sick.” The nurse, of course, knows I’m talking about my blood sugar. But other students who don’t know who I am always display priceless faces. Diabetes doesn’t always have to be so bad.

Does this make your parents feel more comfortable and safe knowing that there are others at the school with type 1 diabetes?

Having other diabetics in the school are most definitely beneficial. I was the newest diabetic out of all of them and they helped me with new situations I dealt with like my transitions from shots to an insulin pump. With them being there, the district nurse has become very familiar with our disease and how we manage it. I’ve heard about diabetics being the only ones in their entire school district with little experience from any nurses or aids and I would suggest to them that they look on type one diabetic forums where they can ask other diabetics questions they may have. My dad found these extremely helpful when I was first diagnosed.

I particularly loved the idea of decorating with candy during the marathon to show that people with diabetes can have sugar. Did you receive a lot of questions about this and questions about why you chose this theme?

Surprisingly, a lot of people understood. I would just say, “My theme is Candyland to prove myths about diabetes wrong” and they would get it. I’ve been asked more questions about what I can and can’t eat outside of the marathon especially when someone witnesses me bolusing (this was just autocorrected to blousing. Even Microsoft Word doesn’t understand hahah!) for the first time. Easily I can put together a list of FAQs I’ve come across in the past almost four years- “Does that hurt?” “What’s that in your pocket?” “So that’s like, in you??” “Do you sleep with it?” “Wait, so can you eat that?” “Is that bad?” I can go on, but I bet you completely understand.

What words of advice would you like to give to those who would like to “do something” in their community to support diabetes, but don’t know how or what to do?

I would say get involved with JDRF. The American Diabetes Foundation is great also, but it encompasses both type one and two. I want to turn my focus to type one and, of course, educating people on it. Throw together a easy fundraiser- it can be anything from a bake sale to a night of ice skating to bingo. We always say think of something you love and give it meaning. I love art, and made an art piece for the hospital to use as an auction item for their fundraising. It really doesn’t need to be as complicated as people think. If that’s not someone’s style, just teach a few people about type one. Friends, family, classmates- every person counts.

Any other last words of wisdom or encouragement to the readers?

I was diagnosed when I was 13, a really odd age for type one. At first it was rough because I had lead a normal life and it was much harder adjusting to a new one as a teenager than it would’ve been as a child. But what got me through it was that I decided that I wasn’t going to let this disease beat me- that I got it for a reason. Turn your weakness into a strength. Being diabetic makes me unique; it makes me who I am. I would suggest that all diabetics be proud of who they are because we are strong people who got dealt a rough hand. You just have to learn how to play your cards right.

** On an additional side note. Grayson’s father has mentioned that he will attend a #dsma chat, so please be sure to welcome him like all other newbie #DSMA attendees.

Bennet Dunlap FDA Follow Up

Last week there was a guest post / interview with Bennet Dunlap from Your Diabetes May Vary the FDA.  As promised, Bennet was going to answer a few follow up questions from you all and also add some additional details to a few things he spoke about last week. Since a lot of this FDA stuff can be overwhelming, I am breaking this follow up into two separate parts, today and Monday.  There are a lot of links here, so I suggest that you open them all up and then bookmark them or just bookmark this post and come back to the next link after you were able to read through the previous one. Well, let’s get to Bennet’s additional answers. Read More

Diasight: Diabetes Intuition

For the final day of Diabetes Parenting Week, we have a great guest post from Wendy Rose.  I met Wendy at Roche and noticed her passion and her motherly instincts when it came to the diabetes of other people.  So, without any more delay, here it goes.

Wendy’s oldest daughter was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes in 2005 (age 2) and Celiac Disease in 2008 (age 5).  Wendy was diagnosed with Celiac Disease in 2009.  She documents her family’s journey with Type 1 Diabetes and Celiac Disease at  Feel free to find her on Twitter @MrsCandyHearts or connect on Facebook to stay in touch! Read More

The Summer-to-School Transition – Lorraine Sisto

For day two Diabetes Parenting Week, we have another great guest post from Lorrain Sisto.  Let’s get right into it.

Lorraine is the mother of three children: Colin, Caleb and Lila. Caleb was diagnosed with type one diabetes at the age of three. He is now nine. Lorraine and Caleb both share their stories at You can also find Lorraine on twitter as @colcalli.

Lorraine is currently serving on the Board of Directors of the Diabetes Hands Foundation and the Board of Directors of Diabetes Community Advocacy Foundation. You can also find her co-hosting the DSMA Live Parents Talk radio show every other Monday night with Bennet Dunlap of YDMV.   Read More

Letting Kids be Kids Even with Diabetes – Scott Benner

For the first day of Diabetes Parenting Week, I am honored to have Scott Benner from Arden’s Day.  Below is a brief bio on Scott, and then right after is his post on Letting Kids be Kids Even with Diabetes.

Scott Benner began his life as a stay-at-home dad when he and his wife Kelly decided to give role reversal a try after their son Cole was born in 2000. Some years later their daughter Arden was diagnosed with type I diabetes just after her second birthday in 2006. Scott began writing about life as a type I diabetes CareGiver on his blog ‘Arden’s Day’ soon after.

Scott’s book, ‘Life is Short, Laundry is Eternal’, from Spry Publishing, will be on shelves in April of 2013. You can follow Scott on FaceBookTwitter, Instagram or any number of other social media portals by clicking on these links or going to his blog and choosing the ‘social’ tab near the top of the page. Read More

Diabetes Parenting Week

After having a chance to speak to several different care givers and parents of children with diabetes, I formed a whole new respect for them. Not to say that I didn’t haven’t respect for them already because I obviously did. It’s just that I began thinking about what I would do and how I would act if I had a child with diabetes myself. So, the idea came to me to have a special week dedicated to these caregivers and parents.

That’s where diabetes parenting week is beginning. Throughout this week you are going to see guest posts from parents of children with type 1 diabetes. I will introduce each one of them the night before and day of their post.

Tomorrow you will hear from Scott Benner from Arden’s Day. I had a chance to meet Scott last month and I instantly was intrigued by his stay at home dad lifestyle and taking care of his children. It was a clear, obvious choice to have him write a guest post.

So, come check out the post tomorrow.