Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!

So much has happened in the last couple weeks:

Sáin completed her pump saline trial on Saturday. She loved the pump and can’t wait until she gets her own pump in January. I wish she didn’t have to wait until January (she was hoping for a pump in her stocking) but I need to wait for my 2008 healthcare spending account money to become available. Pumps aren’t cheap! For the first time I am putting the highest contribution possible into my spending account. The tax savings are nice but I’m not really looking forward to seeing my first paycheck with the bigger deduction.

About a week and a half ago Sáin, Aidan and I went to see the Sound of Music. I was expecting your typical school production but I was thoroughly impressed by the performance. (Any production of the Sound of Music that can keep a 4 year old boy’s attention for 3 hours has to be good!) A couple things came from seeing the musical – Sáin would now like to try out for next year’s play, I discovered Aidan can yodel (who knew) and every shopping trip is now a musical. Sáin usually has the lead, Aidan is the director and I’m either the extras or the audience depending on what is needed. So far we have performed The Sound of Costco, The Sound of Safeway and have done a couple performances of The Sound of Target. I have to say, singing and dancing through the stores is a lot more fun than just shopping!

Christmas! The kids made out like bandits this year and we haven’t even gone to Grandma and Grandpa’s house yet. I think Sáin summed it up best last Sunday when we were driving home from my Aunt and Uncle’s house when she said, “I feel spoiled rotten!”

This year the kids learned that Christmas isn’t all about getting presents. Sáin’s school does monthly collections for the St. Vincent de Paul food bank and in December most classes do a clothes and toy drive. I wanted Sáin to see where the donations go so we volunteered to sort gifts and deliver food and gifts to a family that was unable to get to the Parish Hall. We spent a Thursday evening sorting gifts and delivered food and Christmas gifts to a mom and her 3 children the next Sunday. It was an eye opening experience especially for Sáin. The family we delivered to was so grateful and humble. You could tell it was very hard for the mom to ask for help. On our drive home I realized Sáin understood the lesson. “Compared to my classmates we’re poor but compared to the poor we are really rich.”

I will leave you with Aidan’s thoughts on Christmas – four is a great age:
- Next year Aidan hopes Jesus has his birthday party at
Pump it Up rather than Christmas Mass. It would be way more fun.
- Aidan let me know that Santa is actually an angel who got bored in heaven because there weren’t enough toys. That’s why he can deliver toys so quickly and get in your house so easily. (I asked him if the elves were angels too… “Don’t be silly Mom, their just elves.”)
- Aidan is convinced Father Gary helps Santa somehow. He’s not too sure what role Father Gary plays but that’s why we always see him before church on Christmas Eve but then he has to go.

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Lighter Side of Diabetes

Sometimes all you can do is laugh at this disease. Here are a few of our lighter moments:

  • When you ask Sáin how much food she wants she responds in carbs. (I asked her how many Nutter Butters she wanted in her lunch this morning and she responded “about 20 grams”)
  • No one in our family says “I’m hungry” it’s always “I’m low”
  • The other day I told Aidan he could get a candy while we were at Rite Aid. He ran back to the pharmacy and grabbed Glucose Tabs
  • I learned first hand that Washington State Patrol is very understanding when you open your glove box to get your registration and the glove box is full of used syringes. (KIA of Renton is a little less understanding and makes you clean the syringes out of your car before they will work on it.)
  • Awhile ago I had to give Sáin a corrective shot during church. It got some strange looks but that wasn’t the best part. When I got up to the front of the line for communion I noticed I still had the syringe in my hand. The look on the Eucharistic Minister’s face was priceless.
  • Sáin is preparing for her first communion and she and Aidan have been debating whether or not Jesus is a “free food.”
  • When I ask Sáin how her day was she starts rattling off her blood sugar numbers.
  • When the nurse went to give Sáin her Chicken Pox vaccine booster this fall Sáin tried to grab the syringe from her. Sáin was a bit surprised that she did have to give herself her own shot.
  • There’s nothing quite like the looks you get when you ask your 8 year old if they are high while you are out in public.
  • Strangest place we’ve done a blood sugar test – in the middle of the Hannah Montana concert while Sáin was dancing and the lights were flashing. Even though Sáin felt low she wouldn’t stop dancing.
  • Strangest place we’ve done an injection – when we were next in line at the US-Canada border. The Canadian agents were very understanding and even expedited our trip through customs.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Insulin Pump

We have our first insulin pump class today! Sáin already picked out which she wants; we will be going with the Medtronic Paradigm. (Sáin will be getting the crayon "skin" to make it more personal.) The insulin pump is not perfect but it’s the best treatment available. Eventually I hope she goes on the continuous glucose monitor for even tighter control but I’ll have to see what Premera covers on that since a 4-pack of the monitors runs over $200 and they are changed every couple days. It’s hard when you have to look at the costs of keeping your kid healthy. The insulin pump we’re looking at today is actually worth more than my car but complications scare me a lot more than the prospects of going broke or working multiple jobs to keep my kids healthy and well educated.