Friday, February 28, 2014


By Angeline M Duran Santiago

We hear a lot about being there for special needs children. Many people want to bring attention to the conditions that make them stand out as different or special. I don't want my child to be seen as different because of the condition he battles with daily. I want him to stand out for being a winner and an overcomer in the midst of each daily moment.

Many of my dear friends have children with Autism, Type 1 Diabetes, Physical Disabilities, to mention a few. I'm inspired by those parents that don't draw attention to their child's limits, but to their strengths and their amazing potential to excel in what they do. Some parents put up a fight and want this pity all the time. I honestly don't want or have the time for pity. 

We live in a world where we don't have time to make excuses for our children because the world just isn't going to step aside and make life easy for them. I have a friend with a son who has learning disabilities, and when I see her showcase what he cooks, I am so amazed. This is a young teen, and he's smart and excels. Why? Because she has taken the time to build upon his strengths and abilities. Another friend has placed her daughters in sports, dance, horse back riding and constant fun events. Why is she succeeding? She sees the awesomeness in her girls. She refuses to focus on what is lacking, but rather focuses on not only preparing for the future, but making a big deal that her kids can do it all just like other kids.

Jacob with one of his trophies.
Yes, my son's daily situation is hard. Type 1 Diabetes sucks big time. I hate it and he hates it more. But, I want to put on a pedestal not that he is hurting, but that he is pushes through the hurt, not that he's had to take a break, but that he goes above and beyond his limits. Last year was his first year in football. Many people told me I was making a huge mistake. For me, it was a great year of learning, challenges and great victories. I saw my son come alive and he gave me the reason to come alive with him. I saw him get in there and do great things. This year, he has asked to go back. 

I will be in the stands once more cheering him on. We can't limit our kids. We can't put excuses. They have it in themselves to strive, succeed and be winners. Have a disability, a physical condition, a sickness or even a mental disability is not a reason for exclusion, moping around and living like life is over.

Today, I challenge you to get ready to do great things with your special child. Fact is, once you see them get excited, you'll get pumped up and excited, perhaps even more. You and I have super, amazing children. OK, yes, I won't deny, they struggle more, go through more and have a harder time in the mornings, but oh, they're perfect to me. Our kids are great! Our kids are fantastic! It's time you start telling your child all these great words and start confessing them because they are true and will make the difference in your home. I guarantee it! 

Monday, February 24, 2014


When your Type 1 Diabetic child begins to get older, being a parent that wants to help them but teach them to be independent is not an easy task. We want our kids to be able to go into survival mode without our help on the side, hiding behind the bushes to make sure they're doing what they need to do in order to be healthy.

My friends with diabetic children, like mine, share the burden of seeing their teens begin to pull away and want to go on their own and not follow the routines we've diligently worked to put in place for their physical success. I want my son to be independent and be able to live feeling wonderful all the days of his life. But, I also see what my friends have shared. I see where he forgets to check his sugar or do a bolus because he's lost in a game or playing with someone. I've seen where he tunes me out, not on purpose, but he does, when I question if he's done what he's supposed to.

Jacob feeding his cousin, Sophia
Our job never ends as parents but we have to be aware that we cannot always be there. Our jobs, careers, and other demands of life call out to us today and question us, "Have you prepared your child to grow up and be away from you?"
This is the concern inside me after taking some days to visit family and letting him have a sleepover. Independence. Sounds like a scary word, like a slap to the head and a wake up call. Can my child, soon to be teenager, handle doing on his own what I've helped him do since he was four years old?

I guess it all comes down to encouraging our children, teenagers and young adults. We need to let them know that their lack of commitment will render hurtful consequences that will be painful for them and for us to see. We want the best for our kids, especially physically. Today I want to concentrate on teaching my son the value of knowing he can do all things,not only with God's help, but that he has the ability to take care of his diabetic needs. 

My goal this month is to make sure he really knows how to set up his Medtronic Pump with insulin. I truly want to make sure that when I am not near and it comes off or is running low on insulin or battery, that he will not panic or wonder who will come to save the day. My son will be able to handle it all stress free. But, I have to teach him, model and continue to encourage him. Is it going to be as easy as it sounds as I write it? Oh, no, I don't think so. But, we have no choice but to begin. 

Saturday, February 8, 2014


By Angeline M Duran Santiago

Sometimes parents carry hundreds of pics of their children saved, no longer in wallets, but now in the latest gadget. Pride beams through their eyes as they share the faces of their heavenly gift. Bragging rights take center stage trying to outshine others by sharing their child's skills, abilities and latest accomplishments. Celebrating our children is a wonderful right parents have and I commend parents that encourage, motivate and live to inspire and celebrate their child's every moment.

What about the parent whose child is considered special, different, or challenged? How often do parents of so called perfect children recognize that there is no real difference in children, except that all children are unique? They are just as worthy of celebration. I am often challenged, and know I'm not alone in this, by parents, (who mean well) but really don't. I love hearing about everyone's child. As a mother, aunt and teacher, my life is complete when I can be with children. But, I've experienced the parent that wants to seem concerned and understanding, but all the while, they are really signalling my child or another child out to bring attention to their condition, instead of seeing them just like every other heavenly gift God has sent to earth. 

It is sad to see how even the best intended people let fear rule their hearts. They keep people out of their lives for fear of the unknown. They think if they invite your child to play or to a party, that their child will "catch" what your child has. Some parents behave as if being around your family stops them from having fun. You hear things like, "Well, you know, my son really likes ice cream, lots of snacks and pizza. And, since we know your son can't have any of that we didn't want him to feel left out." To me, that is ignorance at it's highest form yapping away.

Dear Beloved Parents, Your child will not get Diabetes playing with my son. Your child will not become Autistic playing with an Autistic child. Your child will not have seizures if they're around a child being treated for seizures. I assure you that your child will not get cancer, asthma, blindness, cerebral palsy, food allergies, sensory disorders, speech disorder, down syndrome or any condition like these by being in the same classroom with a child that has any condition like these. Can you separate the child from the label?

Breaking News:
Your child will get hugs! Your child will get smiles! Your child will be blessed by the great knowledge all these children have because they've had to deal with so much at such an early age. Your wimpy child may get exposed to a brave, courageous and daring child who is not afraid of needles because they've had to inject themselves with one before they held a pencil to learn and write their names. They will get excited to see someone run with them that needs to use an inhaler before running. 

Your child will learn that a very young friend can memorize information and learn about things in amazing ways while listening to a child with Autism. Your child's life will be enriched, and filled with greatness because each child is filled with greatness. Your child will be surrounded by love and strength because these children who have it a little harder than others are just so amazingly filled with extra love and more love. Health conditions is not who you are. The child's heart is who they are and each time you push one of these amazing children away, you are saying, "NO." to the gift that is ready to enter your life and your child's life.

I've been extremely blessed to work with children. They are all gifts that have been placed into my life. I acknowledge they all have different needs but I would never make them feel isolated, left out or different. I would never leave them out of an event or a moment in my life. Gifts. We all love them. We all want them. It's time to not only see your amazing, almost perfect child as the only gift before you. It's time to see that some parents may have more to do that others in caring for their child, but we all have kids worth bragging about.

So, the next time you want to make comments about our children, take your time thinking about what to say. Words push people away. I know what my son deals with daily, or at least I try to imagine it. Treat all children brought into your life the way you would treat any other super amazing child, as a treasure. Let your love and genuine affection be real and equal with every child. Don't be fake because they can spot false love immediately. Be true and real and you will discover that the greatest gift is the smile of a child that sees you really care. When you see a child, don't see the condition, see the bright, strong smile reaching out to you. Embrace them and your world will be all the richer as you allow your lap to be filled with the greatest treasure of all, the gift of a child's smile, hugs, and love.

#diabetes #diabetic #typeonediabetes #t1d #t2d #juvenilediabetes #asthma #asthmatic #autism #autistic #seizures #epilepsy #cancer #illness #childdisease #childsickness #special #specialchild #challenges #lovekids #downsyndrom #chidwithspecialneeds #blind #blindness #cognitivedisorder #foodallergies #rejection

Thursday, February 6, 2014


As I sit here to write tonight, we are on our second week of making and drinking Okra Juice. I've read as well as been told that Okra (Hindi/Lady Fingers) is used in many parts of the world to help lower high blood sugars in persons with Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes. I have zero proof it works except the testimonials of people that have shared it with me and given me sites to read on it. In my previous blog, Believe, I shared that information. I am currently researching side effects as well as I don't want to harm my son in any way. Reading medical journals can be very difficult and tiresome at times. I am having a Lorenzo's Oil moment as part of my journey to see my son's health improve long term.

I've read that eating Okra can effect males in both positive and negative ways. Instead of basing my facts on unofficial websites, I am looking for published medical journals that can guide me. If I find information that can harm my son, I will immediately discontinue using the Okra Juice. So far I am finding only positive. If you find anything, feel free to share with me. I promised to share and I hope you stay with us in this journey. Here we go, Lord, the test begins.

Step 1- You will be able to find Okra (Lady Fingers) wherever vegetables are sold. Wash them before starting.

Step 2- Cut the ends of the Okra. Cut the Okra in half and then into thirds of fourths. Or use your own cutting style as long as it's opened. You will immediately feel a gel like liquid come out. The first week, I used two Okras. This week, I started using three okras. My goal is to use four Okras by the end of the month. I want Jacob to get used to the taste which is really just like water but with a tiny tartness.

Step 3- Find a large cup. Add some cold water and then place the Okra pieces inside the water.

Step 4- Leave overnight on counter or refrigerator. I've read at least six hours. I've also prepared it in the morning and then it's ready for my son when he gets home from school.

 Step 5- Cover the cup. I used a small plastic plate.

Step 6- In the morning, or as I did here, after school, remove the cover off of the cup. Pour the water into a smaller cup. Make sure you remove all the seeds and the Okra. This makes two mugs for my son. 

Step 7- Serve with love. I pray that the Lord will use this to decrease my son's blood sugar levels. Too many people are sharing that it works. I don't know if it will make any difference in my son at the end of six weeks, but for now, I'm believing that if it has and is working for others, it can work for my son. And now, the taste test....

Jacob's huge smile is ready 
for his tasting moment. 3, 2, 1.....

Yuck! He makes a face and I feel horrible! Oh, no. Does it really taste that bad?

He tricked me! Jacob gives me 
a thumbs up and gobbles it all down.

Just to make sure, I made enough to drink with Jacob. The taste is just like water only with a small taste like lettuce. Well, like Okra, duh, right. But, it is not yucky or horrible to tolerate. Just look at that smile. I wouldn't lie to you.

Side note:
Once more I share that I lay no claim or proof that this has been proven, except shared testimonials of persons that have tried it and say their glucose levels decreased greatly. I am not telling anyone to go crazy and do what I am doing. I am only sharing what I have chosen to use to see if natural remedies will work. So, please, do not hang me if you choose to try it and it doesn't work for you. I am simply sharing my moment of testing something and I chose to publicly share it with hope and faith that something good will come out of it or I'll learn to never do it again and move on to something else.

#Okra #hindi #ladyfingers #okrajuice #type1 #type2 #diabetic #diabetes #t2d #t1d #juvenilediabetes #diabetictest #highbloodglucose #highsugar #naturalcures #naturalremedies #testing #experiment #healdiabetes

Monday, February 3, 2014


By Angeline M Duran Santiago

I shared a while back how someone, unknown, shared with me that I should give my son Okra. In his country and culture, he shared, (Hindi, Lady Fingers) known to me as Okra, is used to bring down and control blood sugars. He said, people don't have money to buy medicine so they have to try natural remedies and this one will work. He also said, Pray to your God. Have faith in His Word and Pray because He can heal your son. I smiled and continued to enjoy my learning experience with this turban covered head man who all of a sudden was telling me he knew the God I served could heal.

Believe. The whole conversation was based on believing that natural cures can make a difference when we use our faith as well. What do I have to lose? I put it all aside in the back of my mind for a while until my sister in law posted something about Okra and all of a sudden, the man's face and the words, "Believe" came back to me.

This week, I decided to go all out and begin my journey on trying these natural food remedies. I have been making Okra juice for a week now and although I was told to wait two to six weeks to see indications that it is working, I will share what has happened this week. Is it God? Is it the Okra? I don't know. All I know is that it looks like something is happening.

I can't tell you this works or that it will work. I'm looking at the research online as well as a book I've purchased and other articles I read during doctor's visits. All I can say is that we have to believe, have faith. The God that created heaven and Earth, created all that is in it for a purpose out of His love for His creation. Lord, may Your will be done as I believe, and wait on You.

Resources- My resources are not medical journals only articles shared with me.  I also know Suzy Cohen is not a doctor, but her book was very interesting. Sometimes we have to be willing to believe in the simplest things and this is my time to believe and walk by faith and see what happens. All I need is mustard seed faith, and who knows, if it works for my son,(and we'll know after checking A1c levels over time) then it just might work for you or your loved one as well.

BooK-Diabetes Without Drugs by Suzy Cohen

Internet Resources: 

  1. Wikipedia Okra
  2. Video on CBN about Suzy Cohen's book
  3. Natural Wonders for Diabetes Article
  4. Person Sharing it works
  5. A New Use for Okra
  6. Okra Cures Diabetes
  7. Lady Fingers (Okra) Lowers Blood Sugar


By Angeline M Duran Santiago

There is so much information on the internet that one can have overload before noon. Being able to separate fact from myth, possible and impossible can be misleading. Daring to attempt someone's advice with natural remedies opens the door to new possibilities for improved health. At the end of the day, you have lots of information and still even more unanswered questions.

Here is where my journey has taken a change. I am willing to try experimenting with non-traditional medicine, meaning, using other resources found in nature to try and change what is going on in my son's body. I am not going Dr. Jekyl/Mr. Hyde here, (Frankenstein either). I just need to see if it can make a difference. 

I'm not going to attempt anything harmful to my son. Absolutely wouldn't dream of it. I just found a lot of information on foods I wouldn't normally make and how they have healing properties or something that can alleviate and improve the life of a Type 1 Diabetic. Isn't it worth the try if it can dramatically extend someone's life?

Today, I purchased the Okra and early today placed it in a large cup of water. Nosey me, I lifted one piece up after leaving it there for a while and observed a clear gel oozing out of the Okra. Well, according to what I've read, drinking this water should change his blood sugar levels. My prayer is that I will see something happening in two weeks, and then hopefully, by the end of a month to six weeks. 

This is my experiment. It has begun and I pray the Lord guide me. There are other things I've learned about in the health books. I'm not telling you to go out and do this or that it works. This decision is only mine based on my desire to increase my son's life and see that it's a healthy one. I have faith that there is something in God's creation that will make the difference. 

Please note: I am not endorsing, claiming, or proving any of this works. I am simply sharing, as part of my journal, that I want to try these ideas I've found in books and online. If it works, Praise the Lord! If it doesn't, I will keep experimenting with other things until something helps lower my son's blood sugar levels. 

Resources- Book I purchased: 
Click Here for more information:
Diabetes Without Drugs by Suzy Cohen

Internet Resources: 

  1. Wikipedia Okra
  2. Video on CBN about Suzy Cohen's book
  3. Natural Wonders for Diabetes Article
  4. Person Sharing it works
  5. A New Use for Okra
  6. Okra Cures Diabetes
  7. Lady Fingers (Okra) Lowers Blood Sugar