The Keurig sputtered another hot, steamy mug of happiness while the girls blared music from their bedrooms and loudly asked to borrow each other's things in order to look "cute" - the new word that has surfaced whenever they dress. The Naturally Sweet dad bounced from room to room, "looking" for things that he had inadvertently scattered upon coming home the night before and the family cat swished around the kitchen hoping for someone to notice that he needed a kitty treat.
Although it was another happy bustling morning within the series of many, everyone seemed to be energized and ready to tackle the day.
As I strategically went through the mental checklist of schedules, plans and after school activities, I quietly checked purses for glucose, changed lancets from meter bags and packed extra carb-filled snacks into backpacks.
Only later, after dropping off our girls at school, did it occur to me that what I was doing was intentionally planning for worst case scenarios. Sadly, this is what we need to do. There is not a choice.
Anyone peeking into our buzzing hive of a home would only see a typical active family. The truth is that our home is our haven. Everything that we need to survive a severe low-blood sugar or a raging bout of ketones is carefully stored in this house. Our guard drops ever so slightly when we know that we at least have the safety of our medical supplies, our glucose and the expert T1D eyes of our family of four.
Outside of our home, we head out into four different directions each morning, there is no guarantee that anything or anyone will be available in case of an emergency. Much like my own mother advising to always carry cash in case I was ever stuck, I have cultivated the mantra to plan ahead for not one low blood sugar, but three. Except in the world of T1d, this is actually the difference between life and possible death.
Before they leave, I have already quietly processed a thousand gruesome 'what-ifs' and reconciled that I may have not prepared for everything.
I'm sure that they have too.
Before they leave, I watch the look on my youngest daughter's face as she opens her pencil box and shakes a thin vial of glucose tabs. Hearing a rattle, she opens the container to peer in and see how many tabs remain. Her mouth frowns ever-so-slightly and I watch as she heads to the pantry to refill from the larger bottle.
Before they leave, my husband, tugging at his coat, reminds us that he will be unavailable for several hours in the afternoon due to a meeting. While not clarifying his statement, the intent is clear; he will be unable to monitor the CGM app (our blood sugar safety net) during that time. We are on our own.
Before they leave, as we load into our minivan, I noticed my oldest daughter patting her pocket. She quietly mumbles "Phone, CGM, Meter" as she checks her jeans. She smiles when all three are accounted for and then says, "I have everything. Let's go!"
And so we do.
While the rest of the world does much of the same routine each and every Wednesday morning, before they leave, T1D safety planning has already taken us for a ride.