Embracing Life & the Child with the Disease

An Awesome Thing

D-Blog Prompt Today:  Awesome Things.  Today let’s put a twist on that topic and focus on the good things diabetes has brought us.  What awesome thing have you (or your child) done BECAUSE of diabetes?  After all, like my blog header says (Karen’s blog), life with diabetes isn’t all bad!

Well, Ryan is only six.  And we have only been on this d-journey for almost 16 months.  We are a simple family centering our life around family and church.  Ryan hasn’t found his nitch in sports yet (although he is excited about basketball this fall).  He hasn’t won a medal of honor or found a cure for diabetes . . . yet!  So our biggest accomplishments are in the dailies. 

His courage always amazes me.  He seldom ever complains about d — about cleaning his room, YES!  But really seldom about d.  From day #4 of the D-Blogging, Caleb said he disliked changing his pod.  And if I remember right, it was his #1 dislike (Sorry, Caleb and Lo if I’m not recalling correctly, too lazy to go check just yet).  And that is typically the only thing he ever complains about and that’s not even always.  And I think the lack of complaining and lack of unhappiness related to d is a great accomplishment.  I know it probably won’t always be that way.  He, one day, might get old enough to be negative about d.  And we’ll cross that bridge when we get there.  But for now, he still remembers what it was like to be insulin – deficient and have those severe highs and lows, I’m sure, and just feel plain horrible.  And he is somewhat grateful for the dx.  Because now he feels better.

But speaking of awesome things . . . I witnessed one today.

Today was the 1st grade field trip to the arboretum and botanical Gardens and I felt like I needed to go to be with Ryan because the nurse doesn’t go along on the trips.  But I had the privilege of having a little trio of a group that I took care of for the day, or at least part of it.  But before I took my trio and went on our way, we ate lunch.  At a picnic table full of the boys in his class, we did what we always do and checked his sugar.  I was leaning over him helping him to get it done quickly.  And then my eyes looked up to the stares of about eight little boys, watching while chewing.  It all of a sudden dawned on me that they don’t see this.  He’s always in the nurses office when he checks his sugar.  So, I started telling them what was going on.  “His body doesn’t make insulin that changes food into energy.  So we take his sugar so we know how much insulin to give him.”  That was the simplest, quickest way to say something.  Kinda right . . . right?  Much too complicated for 1st graders hearing for the first time.  Not a whole lot was said but just little boys stuff.  Absolutely nothing offensive, often UNLIKE adults. 

But after lunch, we walked all over that garden area.  These three little boys talked about flowers in a way I thought amusing and at times hilarious!  “Are those marigolds?”  One would run ahead and look at the little sign sticking up.  “YES!  They are!!!”  And they would hi-five so proud of themselves!  LOL.  You could tell the teacher had already been teaching and reviewing what they would be seeing on the field trip.  But we walked and ran and played . . . they had a Texas pioneer days exhibit. They ran from little house to little house and romped in the courtyard for quite some time.  I was concerned about Ryan’s sugar with him playing so hard, but he just kept saying, “Mom, I’m good.”  So, I trusted him.  He actually knows his body pretty well.

On the walk back to the picnic tables where we were to meet up and head back to school, Ryan said, “Mom, I think I’m going low.”  I was ready to stop right there and flip open that back pack, but he said he could wait until he got to the picnic table. 

The Amazing Thing starts here.

When we reached the table. Ryan pulled out his PDM bag and began to take his sugar. 

One of the boys said, “Are you going to get that number again?”

Ryan smiled and repeated what the boy said almost laughingly at how he said it and replied, “Yep, I’m going to take my sugar, I think it’s low.” 

Another voice said, “What should the number be?” 

Ryan, “Between 80-150”

“What happens if it’s not at least 80?”

“Today, I’ll get a some candy” (said through giggles).  There were lots of ooo’s and ahh’s and hoots and hollers.

“What happens if it’s more than 150?”

“I’ll push a button and get more insulin.”

Then Ryan looks at me and says, “I’m guessing it’s 72.”  We do play that game a lot, but I think today, he did it for the boys learning around him.

Beep – 70.  The hooting began again, impressed he guessed so closely.  I was equally impressed, as I often at at this game, but not surprised.

A voice from the side said, “You get CANDY!!!”

Two Starbursts it was.  And then he sat and waited 10 minutes. 

As he began to wipe his finger with the alcohol swab and begin the process again, a boy said, “Are you going to check your number again.”

“Yep!”  And here they all came, drawn like a magnet, to see Ryan’s number again.

“Then I’m guessing 120.”  One of the boys in my group called out.

Then the number game began.  About four or five numbers swirled around Ryan, all guesses of his “number.”  Ryan giggled.  I guessed 93.  He guessed 100.  We usually do the winner is the closest without going over, “Price Is Right” style.

Beep – 99.  So on a typical day at home, I would win, but Ryan changed the rules today and yelled out, “I WON!”  And I didn’t question because was in front of his buddies and wanted to look good . . . and he IS GOOD!!

Then they all ran off to play, except for Ryan who was putting his stuff away.  Another momma asked me about Ryan, what he had, when we found out, etc.  I started to explain, but then Ryan cut in and started answering questions, showed her his pod and said it really wasn’t a “big deal, really.”  She was dumbfounded.  She really was great.  Asked great questions and avoided the stupid ones and trying to fix it.  Just listened to this amazing little boy talk very grown up and matter-of-fact about his disease. 

And then he ran off and joined his buddies.

Amazing, really, don’t you think?



Comments on: "An Awesome Thing" (6)

  1. This post made me smile. Thanks for starting out my day with a heart warming tale about Ryan and his buddies Amy.

  2. Lorraine said:

    Very nice. Glad to hear he has all that support around him and he’s a model of composure and advocacy. 🙂

  3. Yes, that is amazing! I love that kids this age are so accepting….hope it always stays like that! Natalie is only in preschool so I go to her school at lunch time, so the kids are used to seeing it all, but they amaze me with how interested they are and all the questions they ask at such a young age.

  4. Wow!!! Ryan is AMAZING !!! You go Ryan!!!

  5. This story delighted me. 🙂

    I agree that most of the accomplishments are the little things that happen on a day-to-day basis.

    The flowers and grounds in the photo are gorgeous! Because we’re in AZ, the botanical garden here is all cactus and desert, and while I appreciate the desert and its cacti for its uniqueness, it’s not nearly as beautiful.

  6. Great Story! I love it when kids want to know what’s going on and we get a chance to help them understand. And that’s awesome that he chimed in when you were talking to the other mom!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: