Tag Archives: dietitian

Goodbye journalism

(One of the only photos I could find of me working circa 2012)


Today, I did something I never imagined I would do when I first read that birthday horoscope 22 years, 2 months, and 1 day ago. A horoscope, that if I dug deep enough in my boxes of memories, I’d find still taped, albeit faded, on the front of the thick black journal I carried on my person everywhere I went as a teen. A horoscope that told me I shared the same birthday as Marky Mark Wahlberg (sigh!) and told me I was destined for journalism.


Today, I started the month-long goodbye to a career I forever dreamed of, a career I loved, a career I always thought would be a part of me.


Today, I handed in my resignation. Effective Aug. 28, 22 days from now, I will no longer be an actively employed journalist.


Today, I am a bag of emotions. I am excited for this new journey towards becoming a dietitian. I am nervous as hell about once again becoming a full-time student after a 13 or 14 year absence. And I am incredibly sad to be leaving a career I loved prematurely. Don’t get me wrong, it is time, but it is only time because of the abysmal state of the newspaper industry.


Today is the start of a new chapter in the Book of Katie.

super duper...

Gift of the gab… or not

I’m a great talker, always have been, my parents used to tease me for talking their ears off, they’d tell me to go outside and take a breath (I’m pretty sure they needed a breather from my nattering too). I love talking so much, I even entered a business where I needed the gift of the gab to get the story. And yet, when it comes to big crowds, when it comes to me standing before a class of 10, 20, 30 students (regardless of age), in front of a video camera destined for the world, and even a small wedding audience consisting of my nearest and dearest – I freak out. My hands shake, my voice quivers, my body goes into full-on sweats.

Presentation speaking is NOT my thing.

This week, however, I tried to quash those fears with a presentation to a mass communications class at the University of the Fraser Valley. The professor, a friend of mine, who we will call TV Prof (seriously, he’s a TV prof!!!) approached me last year requesting I talk to his students. I tried getting out of it, and I thought I had the perfect excuse by having Little Ring right around the time he wanted me to speak, but dammit all to hell, it seems the guy teaches the same class every semester. I tried telling him I suck at public speaking. I tried telling him about the flip book you could make of all the faces I produced in my wedding speech. I tried telling him about how “uhm” takes over my usually awesome vocabulary, being inserted into every second breath of a sentence. But that only encouraged him more.

Just a sampling of my flipbook!

And then, he gave me a topic I just couldn’t refuse: The demise of journalism.

And so, on Monday afternoon, I stood before that class for about an hour (that felt more like 10!). My eyes twitched. My shirt went from dry to soaked. And my voice shook uncontrollably as I read from a script of talking points. I relaxed somewhat when I wandered off into tangents, which anyone who knows me knows I’m akin to do, and during the Q&A portion at the end, I almost forgot I was presenting – answering those questions from the depths of my journalistic heart.

I told them about my long-lasting love for the craft of journalism, how I had always felt I was destined for this career, how I loved getting into the heads of my subjects, hearing their stories and retelling those stories through the written word. And then I slapped them – and their dreams – in their faces with the reality of the news business, going into great detail about how the powers that be are doing everything in their means (knowing or not) to kill this business. I told them love isn’t enough to keep me going. I told them that I, like many others in my position, am working hard at getting out of this business I once called a dream.

Yeah, I’m a bit of a killjoy 😉

And with that, my friends, I share with you that as of this week I am one step closer to becoming a fancy schmancy dietitian! All the upgrading I’ve been working on is now officially complete. The final course, Chemistry 12 (my nemesis!) was completed two weeks ago, and I got my grades this week, finishing with a respectable 86 per cent!!! Holy smarty pants!!! And now, it’s off to real university courses for me – wahoo!!!


  • 3:30 p.m. BG before: 5.9
  • Temp. basal: none (3 crackers and peanut butter (20 grams carbs) no bolus)
  • Distance: 5.25 km – 5 minutes warmup/20 minutes tempo/5 minutes cool down
  • Time: 30:57
  • Total average pace: 5:54 min/km
  • Tempo average pace: 5:41 min/km
  • 4:30 p.m. BG after: 5.4

A much deserved post-run Kombucha; 14 grams carbs.

This was supposed to be a tempo run with me averaging a 5:30 min/km or faster speed. And I thought, despite my legs feeling heavy and fatigued in the five-minute warmup, that I was killing it for the first half of the tempo pace… that is, until I turned around at the half-way point and was suddenly faced with a thick wall of wind. Damn you homeward bound wind, damn you!

First shorts run of the season… and yes, I know I have Casper white legs thank you very much 😀

Wishing you all a super duper Easter weekend!

The lasts

Hallelujah, my friends, we have entered the week of the lasts. The last pregnancy related appointments I will ever have to endure. Wahoo… I mean, I’m so sad this is ending… note the sarcasm 😉

1. Blood work: After two years of monthly blood work, which involved more than one year prior to getting pregnant to ensure my blood sugars were perfect pre-conception, and then nine months of once-a-month tests to ensure BG perfection throughout the pregnancy, I held my pin cushion of an arm out for the pretty little vampires one last time last Monday.

When you get blood work done this much, you learn which labs are the quickest and which ones have the best (and by best I mean least painful) blood suckers on staff.

2. Diabetes in pregnancy clinic: Last Tuesday was the last time I will ever step foot in that god-forsaken, numb-skull driven place again. When you have a nurse who works in a pregnancy in diabetes clinic who asks if you might be pregnant – one month after regularly going there! – and when you’ve got an evil hag of a dietitian who makes you want to go and vomit every time you eat, I’m thinking you got a problem.

Goodbye! Goodbye! Goodbye!

3. Eye exams: Each trimester of this pregnancy I have required an eye exam to ensure the pregnancy hormones and pregnancy blood sugars haven’t caused diabetic damage to my eyes. And you know, I figured, given that I had to endure those blinding eye drops, the eye gods could have done me a solid and granted me my wish of finally being sentenced to a life of eye glasses (when a girl looks as great as I do in glasses, she should NOT be deprived!) but nooooo, the eyes continued to be the epitome of sight perfection.

Not even pregnancy could mess with my sight 😦

4. Non-stress test: As of Monday, the one-and-a-half months of twice-a-week non-stress tests, which at times were actually quite stressful, were no more.

We aced those tests kid 😀

5. Obstetrician: Today, I went in for my last obstetrician appointment, which means no more freaking the crap out of me, no more poking and prodding, and other evil things to me (in the office that is) and no more peeing all over my hands. Oh happy day.

This book in the obstetrician’s office always made me laugh, but nine times out of 10, I left not feeling like a hot mama.

6. DINKs: Tonight could very well be the last night Big Ring and I are a Dual Income No Kid family.

Oh crap! Oh crap! Oh crap! Oh crap! Oh crap! Oh crap! Oh crap!

The reason for the lasts: My due date is Sept. 20. It was suspected I’d be induced around Sept. 6 (the day before my grandpa’s birthday; the most amazing man I ever knew). But following the results of my last ultrasound last Thursday, which showed a long-legged, pot-bellied, eight-pounder with a highly visible “layer of fat,” it was decided I’d be induced on Monday. Labour Day (how appropriate!). But today, that all changed. After complaining of an incessantly itchy belly last week, I was sent for some blood work, and it turns out my liver enzymes have elevated (yet another pregnancy side effect I’ve been plagued with) and they figured it would be best if we start the process sooner rather than later.

Cue the freak-out session!

26 weeks: Channeling Aretha

R-E-S-P-E-C-T! That’s the song I felt like belting out as I soared out of the diabetes in pregnancy clinic earlier this week all afloat with good momma-to-be vibes swooping through me.

When I walked into the clinic Tuesday morning, I was prepared to give them hell if they gave me any trouble – any trouble! – with my weight gain or BG control. I’d been practicing in my car all week with strong one-sided conversations with that nasty dietitian I saw last, and I was determined not to let her break my shell again. But the practice was all for not. This week I saw a new dietitian, and my favourite endocrinologist of the clinic was back from her European holidays.

The past couple appointments I’ve felt dread walking through these doors, but not anymore!

So what happened? Well, let’s start with the weight gain: It seems I’m down a smidge from a month ago (0.7 kg to be exact) which could have something to do with the fact that because these medical peeps have essentially freaked the crap out of me, I wouldn’t step on that scale without first removing my shoes, jeans, insulin pump and watch! (FYI: the scale is in the washroom, no one is around me, I could have gotten stark naked if I so desired… and believe me, the thought did cross my mind.)

The new dietitian, who I really liked was a little concerned with my slight weight loss, and so I told her what I did and why. Her eyes half bulged at my reasoning for stripping down. She told me I am in no way overweight for my pregnancy, that in fact, I’m slightly below the range I should be. Not upsettingly low, just 1 kg below the 73 to 77 kg range they’d prefer I be in. She told me not to worry about weight gain, I’m “on the right track.”


Seriously, with meals like this, how could I not be viewed as healthy?

She was also super impressed with how much I check my blood sugars. I half-laughed and told her that over the years I’ve become a bit OCD with my BG control, even before pregnancy, to which she replied I was a breath of fresh air after dealing with so many others who hardly ever check their blood sugars.


When it was time to see my favourite endocrinologist of the clinic, I was so super happy and took the opportunity to combine the diabetes appointment with a counselling session. Pretty much as soon as I walked into her office, I was spilling out every bad appointment I’d had since she left more than a month ago, the tears, the nasty comments, the worries, the fears, everything. And I kid you not, I think she might have been more offended than I was with the situation. She told me in no way should any of that have been said to me. She said my HgA1c is “outstanding,” and that “it’s the best of anyone in that clinic,” and that my belly, which measured 25 and a half inches, was perfectly in line with being 25 and a half weeks at the time, and that the higher blood sugars I was experiencing corresponded to the exact same time that non-diabetics get tested for gestational diabetes due to a healthy placenta pumping out added hormones that make it more difficult for insulin to do its job efficiently. “You are doing everything right,” she said. “Don’t let them freak you out!”


You better believe I was channeling Miss Aretha!

So basically, suck it nasty doctors and dietitians!

Hitting a nerve

It seems I may have hit a nerve with my numbers on a scale post a few days ago, and you know what, I’m glad I did. Because while I knew in my heart that I was doing everything right (I mean, seriously, a girl that eats this much salad while pregnant can’t be in the wrong) on the surface I was beginning to second guess my actions with Ms. Dietitian’s criticism of my weighty outcomes.

Despite my hemoglobin A1c (three-month average blood sugar reading) being a consistent 5.5, which is pretty darn good, and despite my veering away from my love of chocolate and ice cream for the most part throughout the duration of this pregnancy, and massively mowing down on salads galore, when I heard Ms. Dietitian’s words telling me that my weight was far too weighty, all logic flew right out of my head.

I started thinking more about chocolate and ice cream and cookies and pizza. I mean, if I was doing everything right, eating super healthy, being super active, and still gaining more weight than I apparently should be, why the heck not indulge in those oh-so tempting sweets I’ve been forgoing. I kid you not, it was like virtual emotional eating without actually doing it.

Heck, I even had the guilt clouding my every judgement. Every time I was faced with a food/meal option, I weighed every ounce of my decision – is that too many carbs, how fatty is that, what will that do to my ass? Are you freaking kidding me? This is NOT the kind of person I am, and it is the furthest character I should be embracing when trying to cook up a healthy, alien thumb-sucker.

This isn’t the first time I’ve had issues with medical peeps specializing in the diabetes field. And I’ve often wondered if a) they’re either checking out, or b) they have a set checklist that they follow, not keeping in mind that every person is different, every body is different, every file is different.

So, to all of you who left me messages in one form or another, I thank you. You put reason back into my brain. I’m pregnant. I’m eating healthy. My BG is near perfection. And dammit, if I gain a pound or two or more, so be it – I got a strong little kicker in my belly!

Sara’s comment summed it up perfectly: Let’s say that pregnant women gain an average of 25 lbs during pregnancy. Well, how do they calculate averages? Some are going to gain more than that, some are going to gain less than that. It’s an AVERAGE.

And don’t worry Sara, I’ll be sure to get a second opinion if someone out there (beyond me, of course) suspects I’m growing an alien 😉

So, instead of worrying about the weight I’m gaining, I’ve decided to put that energy into worrying about whether or not Big Ring and I will kill this season’s crop of flowers, herbs, tomatoes and strawberries. We don’t have a very good success rate to date, but by golly, we are determined to have at least one thriving crop in our lifetime.

Fingers are crossed this will be our year!

Plan B: making changes

I have a bit of a secret that I’ve kept from the lot of you for quite some time, and I’m actually a mix of shocked and impressed that I’ve been able to keep it for this long. But that day has come where I must – ABSOLUTELY MUST! – spill the beans.

For about a year and a half now I’ve been working on a plan b to get out of journalism. It was a hard decision at first, rife with many hems and haws and I don’t knows. I’ve always loved to write. For as long as I can remember I’ve been telling people I was gonna be a writer, and at the ripe age of just 14, I defined that focus into journalism. But the thing is, the journalism I dreamed of, and the journalism I fell in love with is no longer the state of journalism today. And with Big Ring and I both in the same field, working for the same company, I figured it was high time I become passionate about something else.

I got this on my first trip to Paris in 2007 when I was still in love with my career. Sigh…

After weighing all my options, and wondering if I could wrap my head around the possibility of going to the dark side of public relations, and realizing I could not, and  trying to figure out what the hell else I might be destined to do, I decided to get out of the writing field altogether.

I want to be a dietitian.

It’s a natural fit really. I mean, I love food and have been dealing with the nutrition behind food for a quarter of a century. But it was actually my frustrations with the current state of the dietetic field, having no idea how to help a healthy Type 1 diabetic, that spiked my passion. I kid you not, every time I go into a diabetes clinic, they look at me like I’m crazy for being there; I actually even had one woman look at my numbers, and ask why I was there. They couldn’t understand that I wanted to be better, as close to perfect as I could possibly be. Every question I had, every inquiry, every wonderment about how to deal with my diabetes while running for instance was met with a quizzical stare. They couldn’t help me. And after talking to other like-minded, athletic Type 1s, I quickly discovered I wasn’t the only one.

So, eventually my goal is to work with active, athletic diabetics, who actually take care of themselves, and want to do better. I want to be the person to give them those answers. It’s not going to be an easy road; it’s a five-year course, two of which I plan to do through correspondence, but the last three have to be on campus.

Back to school I go…

But why tell you this now?

Well, for the past year and a half I have been upgrading my sciences (Biology 11 and 12 and Chemistry 11 and 12 … which, by the way, I seem to be a total brainiac at (despite my regular proclamations that chemistry is the bane of my existence!)). And yesterday I had to take a Chem. 12 test over at the distance ed site. Every time I take one of these tests, I always set out a juice box and my blood testing meter for just in case. Never had a problem with it before – until yesterday.

A few minutes into starting my test, the testing clerk taps me on the shoulder and says I have to put my cell phone away. I look up, look at the contents of my stuff on the desk, look back at her quizzically, and so she repeats herself – pointing at my BG meter. And I was so flabbergasted that someone could actually think my meter, which by no means is sleek and compact, could actually be a modern-day cell phone. I’ve been asked if it was a pager (again, totally laughable given that pagers are so 1992!), if it was palm pilot (really?), or some gaming type device, but never a cell phone. I mean, maybe if we were still in the ’90s it might have passed for one then, but today, are you kidding me?

It took everything I had not to giggle 😀