Karen Hargrave Bio
Karen Hargrave-Nykaza's 14-year-old son, Joel, was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes on October 16, 2003. Since that time, Karen and her husband, Kevin, have done what they can to learn as much as possible, not only about the disease itself and how to manage it, but how to deal with the disease while maintaining a "normal" life for Joel and their whole family. After Joel's diagnosis, Karen began searching without success for the unique information needed by the parent of a child with diabetes .When she didn't find that information, she found her own way through dealing with the school system, kids' birthday parties, finding support as a parent, and educating friends and family members about diabetes. After she had done that, she came to the conclusion that she was the best person to write the book she had searched for and imagined was a parent who had just muddled her way through all those things and more. She decided to offer what she had learned with other parents when she wrote My Child Has Diabetes. Her book was published by iUniverse in April 2006 and is available on www.barnesandnoble.com.
Karen's educational background includes a Bachelor of Science degree in Art from Nazareth College of Rochester, New York and a Masters Degree in Human Services Counseling from Oswego State University. She also completed a Masters Level Program in Art Therapy at Hillside Children's Center in Rochester, New York. She currently works as the Volunteer Coordinator at Vera House, a non-profit agency for victims of domestic and sexual violence. She has worked as a Rape Crisis Advocate for the past eight years.
Karen resides in upstate New York with her husband, who is a New York State Trooper, and their two sons Joel and Casey. She brings to the dLife community her column, A New Normal, the unique perspective of a mother raising a son with diabetes. Through her column, Karen will share her no nonsense approach to life and parenting, as well as her thoughts about living a new normal, a life that includes type 1 diabetes, but is not limited or defined by it. It is a life that includes as much fun, humor, and the many activities her son and family enjoyed prior to the diagnosis of diabetes.
Fighting For Our Kids
Making sure children with diabetes are safe at school.
A Tribute to My Son's Healthcare Provider
Her patience and compassion have helped us through tough times.
The New You
Finding the motivation to achieve a healthier lifestyle in 2012.
"Should You Really Be Eating That?"
How to deal with insensitive questions.
A New Stage
Sending your child to school without safeguards.
Diabetes and Section 504
A mother finds frustration.
Great Strength from Great Adversity
How diabetes makes our kids stronger.
The Line Between Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes
News coverage needs stricter definitions.
Managing Your Teen's Diabetes
Break it down into tasks to get good results.
To Ink or Not to Ink
The question of branding a diabetes ID.
It's Hard Enough Being a Teenager
Can you imagine being a teen with diabetes?
Depression and Diabetes
Experiencing depression is not an inevitable consequence of diabetes.
Having diabetes is a burden, but it can also bring maturity.
Between Two Extremes
Finding the balance in diabetes management.
To Each His Own
Making the most of a new year's resolution.
An opportunity to look back and realize what we learned.
Back To School Checklist
When your child has diabetes, emergency information is part of the back-to-school checklist.
New School, New School Nurse
The difference one person can make is incredible.
Living with type 1 diabetes, children are challenged to be "just kids."
Someone Who Will Understand
No one understands the early signs of diabetes, and of worry, than the parent of a child with diabetes.
The Diabetes Bully
Managing diabetes in school can mean battling bullies.
Adult Consequences For Kids
A personal growth with the side effects of diabetes.
Schooling the Teachers
Dealing with diabetes at school requires attention to details.
Those Tween Years
For tweens and teens with diabetes, it can be a tough haul.
Setting Our Kids Apart
Finding a sense of belonging with diabetes.
Playing The Odds
What happens when half the family has diabetes?
What About Me?
How diabetes can affect the child who doesn't have it.
Diabetes Teen Angst
Connecting with other parents helps you handle the tough stuff.
Adapting As Necessary
Learning to manage the changing needs of a child with diabetes.
Paying It Forward and Back Again
Sometimes it takes a network to make school changes stick.
The risks are well worth the rewards.
Setting ground rules for a healthy perspective on food.
A Countdown of Lessons
Ten things I have learned from my child's diabetes.
Finding the Balance
Understanding how to manage diabetes as a team.
Just How Far We've Come
Learning, growing, and thriving in spite of diabetes.
Teaching the Basics
Preparing your child, your child's school, and yourself for back-to-school.
Connecting with Others
Finding a support system makes all the difference.
Test to predict diabetes may be more trouble than it is worth.
Join the Crowd
Support groups great prescription for struggling families.
Taking Care of You
Managing your child's diabetes requires the occasional time out.
Keeping your cool in a crisis best bet for your kids.
Each One, Reach One
Connecting with another parent can be a rewarding experience.
On Being a Diabetes Advocate
Battle for field trips a small victory in ongoing war.
Becoming Dr. Mom
In a world of medical professionals, the real expert is you.
The Questions I Keep Asking,
One mother asks the question, "How much is too much?"
Learning a New Normal
Diabetes diagnosis can send whole family into tailspin.
dLife's Daily Living columnists are not all medical experts, but everyday people living with diabetes and sharing their personal experiences. While their method of diabetes management may work for them, everyone is different. Please consult with your diabetes care team to find out what will work best for you.
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Because I wear my Dexcom on my arm, I’ve slowly adjusted to the fact that people will ask me about it. Sometimes it’s the rude and inquisitive “What’s that?” and sometimes it’s somewhat sincere curiosity “Is that a (insert random type of medical device that they assume)?” Sometimes it bothers me more than others depending on how they ask and how they respond once I’ve told them what it is. I have limits to how much myth-busting I want to do in everyday conversation and how much rudeness I can...