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Thursday, July 1, 2010

Two for One…

I had every intention of writing every day. It is a goal, still. However, there may be a moment from time to time where you will get a "two'fer". These will be days where something went awry in my grand scheme of things and I'll relay the delay to you if possible! More often than not, it will come under the category of "the only sure thing about diabetes is that there is no sure thing". This was the case the night before last…

My ten year old lives with diabetes raging an ever present battle in her body. Since she was diagnosed at seven months old, diabetes is our family disease. We need to monitor her blood sugar 24/7, watch for signs of high blood sugar, low blood sugar, illness, etc. My daughter handles this with the grace of a Queen. We, her parents, probably could take a lesson or two! Most of the time we go along the road and stop to take care of things as they happen with little pause or reaction. It is what it is, as my dad says. I adhere to this philosophy whenever possible, and, when I need to, I move on to "He only gives us what we can handle…" Well, the other night was one of those nights where I looked up and wondered, "Really?!" Now, able to look back, I'm finding the humor and yes, really, I could handle it. That was nothin'. Now, I'm not trying to say I need MORE, just, I guess I'm thanking Him for giving me the opportunity to see that we're still dealing with everything, well…okay.

So, here's what happened:

It was a typical night in our house. After a day of swimming, running to and fro and to and fro in what seemed every direction with the kids and their activities, things were starting to quiet down. I grabbed the bag of chips off the top of the frig (where I keep them to make it harder for me to grab them) and sat down to guiltily munch – I know you are NOT supposed to "munch" after 8pm if you are going to ever lose those last ten pounds—but, every now and then, the chips win! Anyway, I sit down, put my feet up and take a breath. About two minutes later, I realize it is really bedtime for the kids and shuffle them off—my teenager, who is in the habit of using this time to discuss what is on her mind, starts to tell me she has been forced into babysitting the next day (by me) and that she doesn't want to. Yes, teenager, I know you do not want to do anything but hang out with your friends and have an ever flowing river from my wallet for movies and McDonalds, but, teenager, I am trying to teach you a valuable lesson and I am going to keep trying…we "discuss" the situation further to the inevitable end of her going into her room to sulk and me moving on to my ten year old, who grabs the growling dog and takes him to bed to "cuddle".

We check her blood sugar, like we do every night, to make sure she is going to bed in a safe range for the night. To my dismay, her meter signals her blood sugar is high and I begin my "oh, darn, it's one of those night's" routine. (Of course, these are NOT the words I use in my mind!!) The routine begins, "Did you have something to eat that we didn't dose (give you insulin) for?" "Is your pump site okay?" "Are you feeling alright?" As in most nights when this happens, there is no concrete reason why her blood sugar is high. So, we give her the insulin she needs and I tuck her in…my night now begins. When she has a wacky number at bedtime, my routine is to then monitor her until things are right. Which means, every hour, I test her blood sugar and make the necessary adjustments, or change her pump site, while she sleeps. I have vowed to let her be a child, to take care of her, for as long as I can. As the night wears on and I become tired, my love and admiration for her props me up—this body is working so hard to make things right, the least I can do is try to help! I do not use an alarm clock, I keep vigil with my routine as my body has learned to adjust to this life.

To make a long story short, I didn't get a whole lot of sleep the other night, so, I was in a bit of a fog yesterday morning! I tell you this story because I hear from so many people that they didn't realize that diabetes isn't something you "put to bed at night" like the child who has it. There is no cure for this disease, the people and the families that live with it, live with it every minute of every day. It can loom, somedays, as if waiting to strike, as blood sugars go wild and children and adults reel in a fog as they try to stay on top of things and come back into focus. It is worth mentioning, I think, that these children and adults who live with this disease with such grace, are my heroes.

1 comment:

  1. It's funny how after 5 years, people are still surprised to hear I'm up all night checking Ellie. The latest questions are why her pump doesn't automatically keep her bg in check. (No kidding!) So it's a never-ending education for people to understand why I'm crabby and tired and sleep-deprived as if I have a newborn. But I feel the same as you - they are still children, we should allow them to be children - and sacrifice our own sleep. They take on so much other responsibility as it is. Thanks for validating me, Sue - and writing it more eloquently than I could. ;)