Something like a Duck

If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it's not a cat

Sugar is Sweet, Until it is not

on May 11, 2012

As a parent, I know my children are the brightest and the cutest and the sweetest. If a fairy farted magical glitter, then my boys would out-shimmer even that gold. HAHAHAHA! I’m sorry, that waddled like a big fat cat! Okay. So, truth be told my boys can be trolls sometimes. They are mischievous monkeys. Happy, spry, creative little monsters. But my one boy, Zach, really is the sweetest.

Just last June (2011) we stumbled upon the horrors of Type 1 diabetes as my son lay in the ICU saturated with sugars at the 819 level. We are a rather educated bunch in this house (or so I fancy myself), so the frustration at being completely ignorant to the symptoms (and ultimately the disease) was phenomenal! Upon diagnosis, my husband and I sat startled and silent. We googled, WebMd’ed, ASKed. “Type 1 diabetes” searches spiked a million percent that day. We had siblings and parents and friends calling, suggesting, researching, praying. It was our fast-paced frantic life on Red Bull poured into a shot of espresso while reeling from a crack-is-whack roller coaster. That often heard little nugget of wisdom was suddenly applicable: We blinked and almost missed it. Life happened. Within days, the whole world sat on its head. Here we were a perfectly normal bunch of lunatics living average lives. Three boys from age 10 to age 3 running amok with volumes as loud as their personalities. A husband knee deep in business and bills. And I with my kerchief, Papa in his cap, had just settled down for our long winter’s nap. !? Maybe not so much on that last one, but you get the drift. It was immediate our lives would change, obvious it must to ensure certain small humans were happy and healthy.

So much more than our diets, our schedules, or our faith would be altered by this disease. I found my creativity actually being inspired by this fight! Everyday with diabetes is a challenge. As a caretaker to a juvenile with diabetes, the pursuits are relentless and the efforts constant. But how could I as a parent reach the necessary goals, complete basic upkeep with an iota of cool to keep my 8 year old boy focused and fun? Well, I first had to kidnap the power of positive back from the depths of complacency. Somewhere over the years, I forgot how to believe. I guess I figured if I was already on board with the action, who cared about the cause or the effect. Not good. Not good at all. So first things first, if we were going to this, we were going to do it BEST! When one member of the team sinks, everyone else had better start swimming really hard to keep him afloat. We decided as a family that WE were diagnosed and that WE would abide by the treatment plans (minus the actual insulin/syringe thingee) to see us to the finish line. We o.c.d.’ed the heck out of our supplies, allocated special d-spots in the home for testing, and counted and tagged every single chip/ goldfish cracker/ grape in a 2 mile radius. We tagged that child like prize winning buck in deer season: medical alert bracelet, a necklace, glucose tabs in every pocket, and a syringe sewn into his britches. Certainly I joke!! Just checking to see who was actually still reading…. Anyhow, we were very strategic about our attack against the ‘betes. But our 6 month 3D-anniversary (the diabetic diagnosis date) was fast approaching and I hadn’t seen the light shine in my boy. We were set to start an insulin pump in no time, and then inspiration hit! I sat in the silence only the nights can know in this house and played on the computer. I created for Zach and his new plastic pancreas a certificate. Something to commemorate the beginning of a forever friendship between a boy and his bomba (that is Spanish for pump. see!? we really are fancy pants!).

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