8.28.2014

DIABETES AND DISNEYLAND

A friend texted me tuesday after she saw on instagram that I took graham to disneyland for the first time on my own... she knew I was nervous about it and was so sweet to want to check in and ask how everything went.

Here's how the texting went:
L: "how'd dland go with graham??"
K: "ummm, ok. it was hot and his blood sugar was at 420 when it should be in the 100s, so he was a little not into it. but we did our best, Molly was such a good friend helping me out… all the things i don't put in a picture caption. I must make diabetes look easy."
That last thing I texted to her is definitely something I'm struggling with. Diabetes is not easy. And I don't know how to talk about it without scaring everyone away. My life now is full of needles, and supplies, and meal schedules, and food restrictions. I have a shelf in the refrigerator door that is now designated for the glass bottles of insulin and lantus. I cleared out an entire kitchen drawer so that I had space for all the alcohol wipes, bandaids, needles, lancets, and food logs. And I now have an insulated diabetes bag that I carry everywhere with me thats has a travel version of everything we have at home.

My friend went on to ask:
L: "did you have to do shots at disneyland?
K: "at 420 he needed insulin, so shot in the bathroom stall. he also needed lunch, so insulin for that too. and no mickey ice cream treats anymore on a hot day is such a bummer." 
L: "is he still fighting the shots or does he roll with it?"
K: "he's getting better. I wrap my legs around him standing or pin him in the stroller so he doesn't move and make me miss, which has happened. he knows he needs it, I know he needs it, so we get it done."
All of this doesn't fit into a cute caption under a cute picture of graham at disneyland. But it is our reality. I'm so thankful for friends who want to check in, and ask questions, and give me that outlet to share how things really are. Also thankful for the friend who did disneyland with me, and waited while I checked graham's sugar levels, stood by us while he threw an irrational fit in fantasyland because his levels were high, made finding the right carb friendly food for lunch a priority, and skipped mickey treats with us even when I told her to go have some.

On the outside I'm always trying to keep it together like I know what I'm doing, but on the inside my brain is a constant chaotic mess thinking about his next meal and where his blood sugar levels are at at all times. Thank you Jesus for friends that are a source of strength and understanding. I was able to bring his levels down from 420 to 80 with the right food and insulin. And we rode small world and pirates of the caribbean before we called it a day. Graham and I officially survived our first trip to disneyland, just the two of us.

8.14.2014

TYPE 1 DIABETES - WHAT I KNOW SO FAR

It's been a month. And I took a picture of what a months worth of needles looks like, but it seemed too graphic to post. Graham gets 4-5 shots per day, multiplied by a month, and you can imagine what that would look like.

I haven't talked much about the specifics of type 1 diabetes because I am still in the soak-up-every-bit-of-information-possible stage. But I have been asked a lot about what the signs were in Graham and how we came to the diagnosis.

He had been acting weird for a month, becoming super whiny, tired all the time. Then about a week before he ended up at the hospital, he was going to the bathroom every 30 minutes, 24 hours a day. He hadn't slept for days, always coming in our room asking for water throughout the night. I was changing accident sheets all the time, and cleaning the floor when he didn't make it to the bathroom fast enough. The final straw to me calling his doctor was him vomiting a few times in one day. I immediately made a next day appointment thinking it was a stomach virus.

Before his next day appointment, we had him fast over night and skip breakfast so that he wouldn't throw up again. His doctor was able to do a quick finger prick in her office which revealed his blood sugar / glucose levels were sky high, which then lead us to the unexpected whirlwind to the ER. You can read the rest of the day of diagnosis here.

With that, here are some things to know...

Signs of Type 1 Diabetes (Graham showed all of these):
  • tired all the time
  • thirsty all the time
  • bathroom all the time
  • rosy / flushed cheeks
  • irritable / irrational / whiny
  • only ate / craved sugary things - his body was searching for a source of energy
  • lost about 10 pounds in one month

Please read more about type 1 diabetes here. The article was written by a 60 year old woman who has lived with type 1 diabetes for 42 years. She details how those with type 1, and parents of children with type 1, are working around the clock to regulate normal blood sugars… how it is an all day all night, every day and every night, non stop battle. I have recommended this article to all my family and friends as it explains diabetes on a personal level, not a scientific one.

I've also been pinning recipes and articles on my pinterest board here. give me all the carb free recipes.

And my friend Lindsay posted on her blog here after Graham was diagnosed, sharing tips for parents with newly diagnosed children. I cried when I read it, as Jeff and I have been pricking our fingers each time with Graham.