Uttered by my middle son this evening, these four little words made by blood run cold. Only because, a few minutes earlier he has also said “I feel like I’ve had to go to the bathroom a million times today!”.
Please no please no please NO.
I took a deep breath and tried to stay calm. As I was trying to recall if I’d observed any other symptoms lately, my mind was simultaneously jumping ahead to life-with-diabetes x 3. As I was sitting with him I started to feel more and more stressed, and so suggested that I needed to check his blood sugar NOW.
The mere mention of poking his finger reduced him to fearful tears, and pretty soon he was asking me if he was going to get a pump too. Whoa, bud, let’s not go there yet. Managing his mini-freak-out helped me get over my own anxiety enough to let him go to sleep before I poked him. (Not even a flinch, by the way.)
And that was the longest 5-second meter countdown EVER.
This school year, everyone is going to be prepared!
Last year and the year before I wasn’t great about keeping a lot of supplies at school. A box of graham crackers for awhile….maybe a few extra juice boxes. But this year I’m not going to have the luxury of running up to the health room if someone pulls a set or needs more strips for their meter. So, in the hopes that as many issues as possible can be taken care of at school, I put together diabetes supply boxes for Evie and Luke:
I felt like I was packing for a week in the wilderness! Diabetes is all about troubleshooting and planning ahead, so there are multiples of everything that either of them could need at any time; anything they could need replaced, or forget, or run out of is in this box.
Ketone Test Strips
Skin Tac WIpes
Extra BG meter
BG Test Strips
Did I forget anything?
The only thing not in here is insulin, which I will eventually have to provide per Washington State’s Disaster Preparedness Plan. I just don’t have enough right now to tie up two bottles at two different schools. That stuff’s like gold.
Well, we’re they’re as ready as we’re they’re going to be. Happy Back-To-School (with diabetes)!
We are like islands in the sea, separate on the surface but connected in the deep.
― William James
Earlier this week I was sitting in the aisle seat on a flight back from California and got to talking with a mom in the seat across to me, whose teenaged son was headed to diabetes camp. We had noticed her fiddling with a BG meter, and then a familiar blue insulin pump.
I tapped her on the shoulder and asked her about her child, and the pump, and shared some of my own story. We talked about some of the difficulties of being Type 1 parents. We swapped contact information, and went on our separate ways when the plane landed.
This interaction reminded me that we have connections (and potential resources and support) all around us, if we pay attention and have the courage to say hello!
Evie ran in a color-splashed fun run yesterday with some friends who sent me this picture, which I love. Besides the expression of pure joy on her face, I am pleased to see that her pump site survived the run! Although it is even more colorful than usual. Good call on the IV3000, Evie.
This was Luke’s response when I asked if his blood sugar was high, a question brought on by some mildly squirrely behavior. (Although in hindsight, the alligator tears over a minor disagreement with his brother should have clued me into to the hypo-in-progress.)
I could not have been more surprised to see this number on the meter.
If, at 31, he just started to be aware enough of a low blood sugar to tell me, and I just started to see symptoms that would make me ask the question, what was going on in his body in between 30 and 80? Or is the meter/strip just too inaccurate at those low numbers, and he wasn’t truly that low?
He gobbled down 4 glucose tabs and a 16-gram yogurt, and when we rechecked a few minutes later he was up to 96. Phew.
This is the second time this week that he’s crashed into the low 30’s, with no symptoms or awareness, after a breakfast site change. Next time I change out his infusion set I’m going to do hourly checks until I’m sure his numbers are staying up!
We took a road-trip North to Great Wolf Lodge (aka, Kid Paradise) yesterday to celebrate the end of the school year. The boys were in charge of packing the cooler at home before we left, and unpacking it into the hotel room’s mini-fridge when we arrived.
What I neglected to do is double-check their work.
What I found when I went to pull out yogurts for breakfast this morning is that my efficiency-minded little boys had packed all the smallest things into the smallest part inside the fridge. We grown-ups know this part as The Freezer.
Another small thing from the cooler? The little container that held the insulin bottles I brought with us for Luke’s site change he’s going to need this morning. *stomach drops*
Yes, my friends, this is what frozen insulin looks like. And consequently, now completely useless insulin. Dead insulin on vacation? Awesome. Let the trouble-shooting begin….