Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Scary Moments

Part of the Promise to Remember Me campaign we're involved with through JDRF is writing a blurb about life with diabetes so our government officials can see why funding research is so important. I thought I would share mine...

I thought about telling you the story of Sáin’s diagnosis (diagnosed at age 5, now age 8.) I could recount every detail of that day. And I thought about telling you our struggles as a single mom with a diabetic child trying to make ends meet. Instead I will give you this; it is excerpt from my journal. This ranked up there as one of the scariest moments in the diabetes roller coaster ride.

Monday, 08 October 2007

I startled awake and looked at my watch -- 5:47 am. The panic set in. I haven't slept through the night in years. Where was my cell phone? (I use it for my alarm) I find it underneath my back -- it's been vibrating since 1:30 am. Why didn't I wake up? Of all the nights to sleep through an early morning blood sugar test this was not it. I frantically go unlock to front door since my dad will be there in 3 minutes, run to the bathroom to put my contacts in (if things are bad I need to be able to see) and grab the supplies outside Sáin and Aidan's bedroom door. I freeze at the door. Last night I upped Sáin's Lantus (long acting insulin) and it peaks about 6 hours after injection and gave Sáin a corrective dose of Humalog (short acting insulin) at 8:45 pm (it peaks 3 hours after injection.) Her 11:45 pm numbers were good but it's the early morning ones that scare me. Sáin's been known to drop into the 30's when tweaking her dosages and that is on the verge of a coma. If she dropped that low and then experienced the "dawn phenomenon" (biologically most people's blood sugars drop just before dawn) she could be dead. A lot of moms are scared to open the door because of a mess or what their kids might've done, I was scared because I might've killed my daughter. I open the door and walk past Aidan. He sleeps fitfully and at that moment I would've given anything for Sáin to be a fitful sleeper too but she was still and quiet. I grab her cold hand and poke. As I was about to get the blood on the test strip she pulled it away. I've never been so happy to fight her on an early morning test. She was low (43) but she was okay. She drank her juice box in her sleep as only a diabetic kid can and her blood sugars were back up in range. I kissed her forehead and told her I loved her. "I love you, too, mom" were the best words I've ever heard!

(Sáin went to school that day never knowing the fears I had that morning. I went to work, sat through meetings, and did my job that pays for this disease and all its endless cost but never shook that fear.)

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