Who Says a Zebra Can’t Change It’s Stripes?

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I have been compensated by Glucerna for this post; however, I am sharing my own thoughts. All opinions are my own. #SteadyIsExciting

Just about three and a half years ago I received a call from a hospital in Las Vegas that turned my world upside down.  At the time, I was 22 weeks into an extremely high risk pregnancy that left me in emotional shambles as it was, so this call did nothing for the “stress free pregnancy” my doctors demanded.  The lady on the phone told me little details, but that my dad was being treated for heart failure and that I needed to get to the emergency room immediately.

I called my brother and together we listened as the doctors told us that our 66 year-old dad had went into cardiac arrest and IF he made it through this, he likely would never be the same.

Today, I refer to the summer of 2012 as the biggest testimony builder of my life.  Never have I felt so completely out of control and that vulnerability left me clinging to faith like never before.  I was told that there was a 50% chance my growing baby might not make it, and now doctors were telling me that my dad might not make it either.

The doctors told me that when my dad’s heart stopped, his brain and kidneys lost oxygen and were left damaged, but the extent of the damage was unknown.  He was intubated and sedated at the hospital for over two weeks.  When he finally came to, it was clear that our dad wasn’t the same.  The damage to his brain and kidneys, on top of his damaged heart (that the doctors described as walking on 1 leg), had left us faced with some very hard decisions; decisions I pray everyday my kids will never have to make at the age of 26.

I’d be lying if I said my passion for health and fitness hasn’t been fueled by my dad’s health.  I’ve seen him suffer through consequences of years of poor health choices that make me eager to get to the gym every day.  You can read more about that in my I Can’t Afford to Get Fit post.

Fast forward 3 1/2 years later and all I can say is that God is SO good.  He has provided abundantly more than I could have imagined.  I had a perfectly healthy baby in September of 2012 AND after months in a rehabilitation hospital, my dad was discharged to live in an assisted living facility that has brought more life into my dad than I had seen in him in years.  Prior to his heart attack, “Pa,” as we call him, lived alone and didn’t have any close friends.  He was not only depressed for years, but had a severe gambling addiction that left him antisocial and lonely.  My jaw dropped the first time the activities director told me that my dad was the social butterfly.  He plays BINGO everyday, he heads up poker night three times a week, and this year he was in charge of the facility’s New Year’s Eve party.  Pa has changed.  He hasn’t seen the inside of a casino in 3 years.  After a life time of smoking he gave it up the day his heart stopped beating.  He’s made some of his closest friends at his new-found home, and I love supporting my social butterfly in any way that I can.

Heading to “Grandpa Dave’s BIG house” is one of my kids favorite things to do.  They love helping him put puzzles together and participating in the great activities the assisted living has to offer.

The story of a young girl faced with putting her father in an assisted living facility.

Diabetes is prevalent among many of the residents at his assisted living facility as well as the Latino community at large.  My grandpa (my dad’s father) suffered from diabetes years before he passed away, and so when we had the chance to team up with Glucerna from Target to bring some of my dad’s closest friends a tasty treat, I jumped at the opportunity.  I remember my grandpa pricking his fingers daily to make sure his blood sugar was within the normal range.  My grandma’s daily concern for his diabetes is something that will always stay with me.  Managing diabetes for my grandparents, my dad’s friends at the assisted living facility, the latino community, and so many others is a real challenge and can leave their loved ones full of worry.

The story of a young girl faced with putting her father in an assisted living facility.

Glucerna is the #1 Doctor recommended brand of nutritional products formulated for people with diabetes. It contains CARBSTEADY®, a blend of slow-digestible carbohydrates clinically proven to help minimize blood sugar spikes. With a variety of flavors, Glucerna shakes and bars help people with diabetes manage both their blood sugar spikes and hunger.

The story of a young girl faced with putting her father in an assisted living facility.

January 10-30 you can get 10% Off Glucerna Shakes & Nutrition Bars through Target’s cartwheel offer!

If you or someone you know has diabetes you’ll have to pamper them with this delicious (and simple) Banana Milk Shake recipe from Glucerna Approved Recipes!The perfect tasty diabetic treat made with Glucerna.

Step One: Purchase a 6 Pack of Glucerna Ready To Drink Vanilla from Target.The perfect tasty diabetic treat made with Glucerna.

Step Two:  Blend together 1 8-fl-oz bottle of Vanilla Glucerna Shake, 1 medium banana, 1/2 cup ice cubes, and 1 tsp of vanilla extract.The perfect tasty diabetic treat made with Glucerna.

Step Three: Pour the milk shake into a smoothie glass and share the love with that special person in your life that’s battling diabetes.

The perfect tasty diabetic treat made with Glucerna.

The perfect tasty diabetic treat made with Glucerna.

Are you or any of your family members managing diabetes?  Have you been faced with caring for a parent or the decision to place your parent in an assisted living facility?  The story of a young girl faced with putting her father in an assisted living facility.

Let us know in the comments below or our Facebook Page where we love getting personal.

Follow us on Pinterest for more great recipe suggestions!  We love seeing Stay Fit Mom recipes in your kitchen!  Post your meals to Instagram and be sure to tag @stayfitmom_Krista and @stayfitmom_Tracy!

If you like this post you might also like our I Can’t Afford to Get Fit post.


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1 Comment

  1. Such a heartfelt story, I am a caregiver and I know how it is to have a loved one in a nursing home and an assisted living facility. Thanks for sharing your recipe and experience with diabetes. #client