Thursday, November 21, 2013

A Glimpse Into The Life Of A Non-Morning Child

NSS Dad and Youngest Daughter
At 7:00 a.m., I gently kissed the face of my youngest daughter while she cocooned in her blankets and bed.  Without fail, every morning she smiles with her eyes closed, puckers her lips for a kiss and then, promptly rolls over (and under her covers) to sleep some more.

I take pity on her.  Mornings during the school week seem to come quickly.  My worry is that with the extra night time blood sugar testing or Sigum alarms (beloved continuous glucose monitor), our daughter never really gets a full nights' worth of rest.  Of our two children, she is the one that has always needed a bit more sleep. 

Quietly I set about to load a new lancet and strip into her meter.  After I hear the beep, I reach under the covers to retrieve a finger and quickly make a poke to get enough blood to test.  (Mornings are usually good for a quick blood droplet.  It is the middle of the night where sometimes I have to squeeze her fingers too much and too hard, just to ensure that she is in a safe zone.)

A drop on the strip and I await the results so that I can also calibrate Sigums.  Happily, her wake-up numbers are in range with a 83 mg/dl and a side-ways pointing arrow.  Glancing over the entire 24-hour chart on the receiver, I can tell that the basal changes we made after our last endocrinology appointment are working. 

Quietly, I wrap a Kleenex tissue around her finger, which immediately is hidden back under her covers.  Scanning the room, I smile.  There are less tissues floating around, so that is a good sign of knowing she had a good night.  Not too many blood sugar checks.  The sad truth is some days, her bed and floor are covered in floating white blobs with red polka dots.  Thinking about those moments makes me shiver; even as I write this post I do so with goosebumps.  Those nights are not good at all.

Feeling my heart strings tug again, I decide to let her sleep a bit longer.  It is a good morning as Sigums appears to be trending appropriately.  With a bit of foreshadowing, I think about the mornings where I have no choice but to wake her so that she can immediately start eating breakfast. 

Quietly, I tip-toe downstairs and make a coffee and scan my email.  About fifteen minutes later and I hear a loud "BLEEEP"!  Sigums has decided that the side-ways arrow was temporary and that our youngest daughter needs to wake-up NOW! 

Breakfast time it is.

Without hesitation, I quickly run back upstairs and into her room.  Sigums is lighting up with a warning of 70 mg/dl and falling.  Youngest daughter has no choice in the matter.  She has to wake-up and getting moving NOW.  Breakfast is immediately in order and as quickly as I can, I shuffle her back down the stairs and to her seat at the counter.  I opt NOT to pre-bolus her due to her low blood sugar and instead, plop down her favorite morning meal of two waffles and real maple syrup to dip into.  With a glass of milk, her meal is 65 carbs, which part way through, I do bolus for. 

The entire time she is eating (with her eyes closed), I am thinking about her daily routine.  It is a quiet event as neither of speak out loud.  Morning snack?  Check!  Bottle of water for school?  Check!  Lunch packed? Check!  Afternoon... oh yes, she has practice for Alice in Wonderland and will need another snack?  Check!  And maybe I should add an extra snack for 'just in case'?  Check! 

Knowing that she can not possibly think about her agenda at this moment, I grab her planner from her backpack and write in a note to remind her that I packed extra snacks and that she would need to text me before she went to play practice with her blood glucose. 

She finishes breakfast and slides off her stool to head back upstairs to get ready.  Halfway up the stairs, I hear her sigh.  She walks back into the kitchen and retrieves Sigums.  I give her a big smile and tell her how thankful Sigums was to not be left behind.  In return, she rolls her eyes and sighs again. 

Back upstairs, I hear her finally starting to wake up.  Her iPod is on and she is softly singing and moving about her room, carefully choosing the perfect outfit to wear.  Then, she moves into the bathroom to brush her teeth and carefully style her hair.  The singing is louder now and it makes me smile.  Despite type 1 diabetes, her day is moving ahead happily. 

Back downstairs, with her insulin pump and Sigums clipped openly to her skirt, she shuffles through her backpack to find her purse.  She needs more strips she tells me.  I hand her a bottle and notice the pile of used ones sticking to her meter.  Without asking, I clean them out and she giggles.  Her trick that she learned from her sister is to stick the used ones to the back of the meter.  I wrinkle my nose and look at my hand in an effort to make her really laugh and she does!  Great big belly laughs over mom having to clean out the strips.  I laugh too but because her laughter is contagious.  Since she was a baby and despite the endlessness of type 1 diabetes; it is true that when she smiles, the whole world smiles back. 

Finally in the car, we drive to school.  While we are waiting in line, she panics for a moment and asks me if she bolused for her breakfast.  I tell her that I did it for her and ask if she remembers anything from her wake-up. 

"No.  Not really.  I was just sleeping and then, I had to eat."  She says with a thoughtful wrinkle on her brow as she opens the car door.

"Actually, I do remember something.  I was dreaming that I was I flying!" 

She is out of the car before I can respond.  As I drive away, I am left with a huge smile of my own... type 1 diabetes, no matter how rude or intrusive it is on her sleep, does not stop her dreams!

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