Embracing Life & the Child with the Disease

Loves the Crickets

Ryan is back at the elementary school here just north of Dallas that he attended when he was dx’d.

There are about a hundred reasons why this is important and wonderful, but I’ll leave that for another time.

In first grade and the beginning of second grade here, I have not requested a teacher for Ryan.  I don’t know teachers unless Ryan has had them so I wouldn’t even know who to request.  I know that G (The nurse) and Principal S know Ryan and all he needs and know me and my needs as a parent and I trust them to place Ryan in the class with the teacher that best fits him and diabetes.  They did superbly in first and second grade, so why would I not trust them for third?

FYI – I do the same with Aaron.  They know what he needs and the high maintenance parent I am and choose a teacher accordingly.  I have loved all of Aaron’s teachers as well.

On Thursday before school started, only about 10 days after moving back to Texas, I walked in the office and asked if they knew who Ryan’s teacher would be yet so I could connect and educate before Monday (I know, fellow d-moms, I was very behind!  But seriously, I just moved across country AGAIN for the second time in six months, give a momma a break!  LOL).

When I asked the attendance secretary, who is a friend of mine that I go to church with, about a teacher, G butted in —

“I’ve already taken care of that.”

As I inquired further, a teacher had already been hand-picked for Ryan and G had already done the diabetes educating.  She kept his folder from last year and gathered all the handouts and educational sheets, took his parameters and orders from last year and went over them with the teacher and even planned out a tentative sugar check schedule.

All I had to do was come in Friday morning when the three of us met, went over what G had organized, asked if I had anything further and it was done.  Easy-peasy.

The teacher, Mrs. W, is amazing.  She took detailed notes.  Wanted to know much more than just getting by.  She doesn’t want to just depend on G, she wants to know how to take care of him.  I Love Her.

In the first email that I received from G (which Mrs. W also gets copied on all the numbers so she knows what to watch for) on the first day of school that lists his snack sugar, carbs and what was bolused, there was also a phrase tagged on the end, “He loves the Crickets.”

Crickets?!?!  What the heck?

So I asked.

Ryan goes to the nurse three scheduled times a day:

9:25 – Snack sugar check and bolus

11:45 – Lunch sugar check and lunch

2:20 – End of the day check to go home

Mrs. W set her phone to alarm at those three times and set the ring tone to be crickets.  Now, when he hears the crickets, he quietly gets up and goes to see G.

As trivial as this may sound, it meant so much to me . . . and to Ryan.

It’s all a part of making him feel safe and secure and letting him be a kid at the same time.

Today he had a sub.  We knew in advance and prepared Ryan for it (side note – Ryan hates change and gets anxious with subs because of d).  Ryan was fine until I was leaving school and he was going to class and he nervously said, “Mom, what about the crickets?”

With d, just like in life, it’s the little things, the individualized efforts, that make all the difference.

Love you, Mrs. W, and are looking forward to a wonderful year!

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After Dinner D-discussion

A VERY protective and defensive BIG brother

Okay.

After dinner tonight, Ethan, with much frustration, began to tell us about his science class today.  They were discussing photosynthesis and how plants produce glucose in this process. The teacher began to discuss glucose and, according to Ethan, decided to equate how glucose works in our bodies.  And, you guessed it, diabetes came up.

And it came up like it usually does.  All diabetes lumped into one generic term.  It all begins with being overweight.  It all has to do with too much sugar.

Blah. Blah. Blah.

And Ethan was, again, upset. He said she was also asking questions about diabetes.  Like:  What hormone is needed in diabetes?  What happens to the body when blood glucose is high?  Low?  What you do to lower or raise blood glucose?  Ethan said he looked around and he was the ONLY one answering questions.

I told him last time this happened in Maryland that he is absolutely allowed to RESPECTFULLY correct a teacher when they insinuate or SAY that diabetes is caused by being overweight.  Or when they generalize things into one narrow category. I encouraged him to raise his hand and say that not all diabetes is the same.  That not all who have diabetes have it because of poor life habits.  That HIS BROTHER has Type 1 diabetes and that his body will NEVER produce insulin again.

And then I went on my own tyraide in laymans terms about how the immune system went haywire and attacked the cells that produce insulin and attacked them until they were all gone.  I told him that unlike hair and nails that these cells do not grow back.  They are all gone.  And I answered a few questions he had.  Then Ryan asked a few and I answered them simply, very un-medically, but in a way they understand.

Then I offered to email the teacher and just tell her to ask Ethan about his Type 1 diabetic brother.

Hm.

He sheepishly declined ( I think he didn’t want to burn a bridge with his teacher so early in the year).

He did say he approached her after class and told her that his brother was a Type 1 and he felt she acted almost as if she was busted (his words not mine).

By this time, I was completely and totally frustrated.  And trying very hard to maintain as much calm and civility as possible.  But my mouth was going ninety to nothin’ about diabetes and what it is and what it is not and spitting out every bit of medical information that I knew, even when they weren’t listening . . . at least I thought they weren’t listening.

Then totally out of the blue, interrupting my spewing, Ryan said, “Mom!  How do you know so much about diabetes?”

And for a moment everyone froze and was silent.

And I thought …. Huh?!?!?

Then Jason, being every so very Jason, said, “Because she has a son with Type 1 diabetes!”

And the room erupted with laughter.

For Meri

Today, I wish to honor a woman, a wife, a mom, a d-mom and big sister to so many in the DOC (Diabetes Online Community) – Meri Schuhmacher

I want those who are not part of the DOC to know who she is and for many to know who you prayed for these past six months and urge you to continue to pray after learning more about her.

This is Meri
and her Amazing Men

I have never met Meri.  Not face to face.  I have heard her voice through a few short videos and even heard her sing a diabetes version of Imagine.  I am not on her top 5 list of friends, shoot, I don’t even make a “top” list in her book at all,  I am sure.  But that doesn’t matter . . . I still love her.

But like so many others, I know her diabetes story.  She is a pillar in our community, the diabetes one.  She is so often referred to as the “big sister” of the DOC because she’s been around the diabetes block a few times.  She advocates, she educates, she blogs and she has always been that friend on my computer, as well as so many others, ready and willing to answer questions, offer support and do a diabetes jig with you celebrating victories, even the smallest ones.

I don’t remember when I first “met” Meri.   I’m pretty sure it was through Tina Bell and/or Allison Littlefield sharing her blog.  But I do remember in September of 2010 when Ryan had the stomach flu, she kept up with me, with Ryan, offering advice on how to deal with a puking Type 1 child who’s blood sugar was seeing new record lows (for Ryan) and the ketones were on the rise.  I was one afraid momma.  But Meri (along with so many others) was there, offering words of concern and encouragement and instructions on how to administer a mini-gluc.

I also remember in June of 2011, I became very discouraged about blogging, about diabetes, about who I was and how I fit in the DOC and basically, I needed a good kick in the pants.  And guess who was there . . . yep.  Meri was.  And she took time, wrote to me privately, shared her heart and vulnerability; she gave me the “kick” I needed in a way that only Meri could and these four words still resonate with me, “Your story DOES matter.”  And Meri is just one of those people that if she says it, you believe it.

Meri’s diabetes story is big.  You can read it here in her words.  But what you should know about Meri’s diabetes story is that she has four boys ranging from about 8-16 and three of them have Type 1 diabetes.  She lives in California.  She is MY AGE.  She’s a blogger and boy howdy can she ever write.  Her style is easy, creative, vulnerable with just the right touch of humor.  I fell in love with her instantly through her blog.  We are facebook “friends”.   And I love and value her greatly.

The funny thing about the DOC is that I feel like I have about a hundred that I follow, who I feel like I really know, can tell you their dx story, their children’s dx story or that I go to with questions, concerns, complaints and such.  When I talk to my husband, I can say, “Reyna’s Joe, Joanne’s Elise, Laura’s Nate, etc.  And there are countless others like that.  Countless.  And then there are some that fall into the category of “I know them more than their diabetes story.”  When first names like Katie, Tommy and Levi are enough because I know them, my boys know them or know who they are.  I talk to these precious ones about more than just diabetes.  Our non-d children are even friends with their non-d children and they facebook, text and instagram!  We in the DOC all have them, don’t we?  If there were a cure tomorrow, we would still be friends even if diabetes ceased to exist.

Meri, for me, would fall somewhere in the middle of the two categories.  We both have all boys and ONLY boys.  She totally gets the madness, chaos and noise of boys in the home.  We both are deeply seeded in our faith.  It’s not uncommon for us to swap spiritual encouragement one another.  We both share the struggle between trying to be positive and upbeat and encouraging, but still struggle with the valleys of diabetes because they are real.  But something that I have always loved and appreciated about Meri is her love and adoration for her husband, Ryan, and their loving marriage.

And her Ryan is why I write today.

Back in February, her husband of almost 19 years was diagnosed with cancer – again. You can read about it in her words here.  This rocked the DOC.  It is hard enough to care for a child with a high maintenance disease like Type 1 diabetes let alone three children.  Pumping x 3.  Carb counting x 3.  Night checks x 3. Treating highs, flushing ketones, 504s, d supplies, endo appointments, etc x 3.  And she does it with such grace, strength and vulnerability.  And then she began to, again, fight a beast we have all been touched by in one way or another – Cancer.

We, the DOC, jumped to action any way we could.  Praying. Sending packages. Praying. Writing cards. Praying. Making cds. Praying.  Posting on her wall. Praying.  Praying. Praying.

We showered her with love and support as did so many who live life with them outside of diabetes.  On March 4th we were called on to pray.  And pray we did.  Believing.

Meri kept us updated on Ryan’s health.  They continued to fight.  But that was not the amazingness of the story of the Schuhmacher family.  It was their unwavering faith.  Their “Faith Bigger Than Their Fear.”  Their constant positive perspective.  Their living life in the moment believing in the miracle, trusting God, staying grounded.  Yes, there was fear.  Yes, it was hard.  Yes, there were days . . . really hard days.  But if there was ever an example of how to live and fight through cancer, the Schuhmacher’s picture would be there next to the definition.

In the next six months, there were a number of posts about successes and setbacks.  As we all know, it’s a total roller coaster ride.  But somehow, their updates always resonated with hope.  If I were to describe from the total outside, which I was/am, how they handled the last six months in five words . . . my words would be:

Hope. Strength. Faith. Vulnerability. Love.

I know there are many other amazing words to use but I just want to paint an accuarate picture for those who do not know them at all.

Then on August 28th, this is the update from Meri posted in the Schuhmacher Family’s Miracle page:

Dear Friends,
We received the news last week that our most recent brain scan shows a new army of tumors. Ryan no longer qualifies for radiation, or any trials. We will begin our last med option tomorrow morning. Urvoy is a medication given once every three weeks for 12 weeks. The medicine works on a small number of patients and takes a good 5 to 6 weeks to make any improvement. As things are progressing fast and furious, that is a very scary timeframe for us. Despite the odds, Ryan remains convinced that he will be ok. More than ever we need your prayers, as Ryan’s body is so very weak right now. Our family is setting aside this Sunday as a day of prayer and fasting on Ryan’s behalf. If you feel as though you would like to join us, we would sincerely appreciate each and every prayer offered. Thank you so much for all the good thoughts, love and prayers you have directed towards our family. It is now time to ramp up our prayers again. An army of believers has to be stronger than cancer. It just has to be. Much love ~Meri

This alone embodies Ryan’s resolve to hope and Meri’s ever present realness but belief in faith, in prayer, in Ryan.  And we vowed to pray.

I woke up Sunday morning, September 2nd praying for Ryan, before I even got out of bed.  I’m sure hundreds did.  We all love the Schuhmacher family.  Every time God placed them in my mind, on my heart that morning, I prayed.  There were reminders all over facebook and in the DOC to pray for Ryan.  And we did.

As God would have it, that very morning that Ryan’s Army (as Meri would call it) was fervently praying for Ryan’s healing and Meri and the boys, Ryan, peacefully and in his family’s arms, passed from this life to the next.

And in Meri’s brief post sharing Ryan’s home-going, she wrote this, “Our miracle was that he did not suffer.”

I wish I had known Ryan personally.  I wish I had more to share with you first hand about the amazing man, husband and father I have read so much about.  But this is what I know —

His family was German.  They owned a bakery.  Ryan worked at this bakery for quite some time.  Meri worked there too and that’s how they met.  They fell in love and soon married and began having children – boys.  In recent years, he shut down the bakery and sold bakery supplies to other bakers.  He embodied the term “a family man.” I learned on Wendy‘s wall that Ryan tucked Meri in bed every night.  I read on Meri’s wall that he made her breakfast on Saturday mornings, rather large ones at that.  😉  Every word I have ever read in a plethera of places about this man was that he was a good man, a loving husband, an engaged father.  He actively participated in diabetes care.  He maintained hope through his fight.  He believed in miracles.

And he received his miracle on the very day we all were praying.  But although we know Ryan is healed and whole in a wonderful place, Meri and the boys here are sorrowful, are hurting, are grieving.

Meri blogged on Thursday morning a post entitled “Aching.”  Please take time to read.  She lets us into her heart.  She is real.  She is amazing.  And I want you to know Meri if you don’t already.  Because I ask you to pray for her.  Pray for her boys.  Pray for healing now for their hearts.  Pray for Meri.  Pray for the grieving process she will experience.  I pray she goes through each day knowing someone is praying for her.  Someone is going to the Father for her when she can’t, when she can’t find the words.  Pray that Satan stays away from her & the boys and that those lying voices that say they can’t do this will grow silent.  Pray for strength to get through daily, by the moment when necessary. Pray for a peace that passes all understanding.  Pray that they feel God’s loving arms around them.

I will never forget in my darkest days early in my Ryan’s diabetes diagnosis that Meri wrote to me and said, “You are stronger than you think you are.”  I read it through a flood of tears that blurred the monitor as drops fell on the keyboard.  I am sure I am not the only one has ever heard those words from her.

Meri, I say those words to you now.  You ARE stronger than you think you are.

And we, your family, your friends, your DOC, are here on the days you need us.  And every day.  And that same army of prayer warriors that that you called on to pray for Ryan now prays for you.  We love you.  We are here.  Always.

Ethan’s Question

My amazing 13 year old. He is so stinkin’ tall!!

So, my 13-year-old, non-diabetic son walks in the kitchen while I am making dinner and begins to pour himself a glass of milk.

And rather nonchalantly asks me this question:

“Mom, if you had one wish, would you wish that Ryan never had diabetes . . .

And I stopped dead in my tracks, looked up at him and thought, what kind of a question is that?  And before I could answer, he continued:

” . . . or would you wish that Ryan didn’t have diabetes from right now on?”

Still frozen and silent, trying desperately to process my thoughts as he still has not made eye contact with me and is now working to guzzle a very large glass of milk in one breath.

As I open my mouth to respond, he says:

“I was just thinking that I would wish for him to be cured now, not wish he never had it.  We have met so many awesome people that we would have never met without diabetes. Plus, who we are as a family and all that we have learned, it would all be different if he never had diabetes.  You know?”

Then he immediately asked to go to the park with his friends before I could even comment.

Better that way I guess.  He doesn’t always need to see his mom well up with tears.

Encounter with Strangers

After three weeks of Jason working six days a week, 65+ hours AND going on a two and a half day business trip one week back into the job, we had a leisurely afternoon on Labor Day at the pool celebrating Ethan’s 13th birthday.

Yes, I am officially the mom of a teenager now . . . OH MY WORD!

But back to the pool.

We had a huge breakfast out and Ryan had a protein-packed, complex-carbed breakfast.  Important because it was a Texas-hot, mid-90s,big-blue-sunny-sky kinda day.  I knew swimming and climbing the stairs to the water park sized slides would make him burn carbs fast.  But I felt confident.

About an hour and a half into swimming, Ryan got out of the pool and said, “Mom, come with me to check my sugar.”

Go with him? What? This is very odd for him to want me to go with him because he just does it on his own, usually broadcasting the number for all the pool guests to hear.  But he wanted me to come with him.

A bit startled by the request, I got up from the side of the pool and scurried to catch up with my sweet one.

I noticed his hands shaking a little opening the “black bag” to grab an alcohol wipe. So I just decided to take over and my fiercely independent eight-year-old did not protest.

Calmly & with no words, I grabbed a juice box and jammed the straw in the hole, handed it to Ryan and looked to Jason in the pool who was already watching, waiting for the number.  I gave him the hand signals for a 3 and a 7 and sat back in my chair and watched my 8-year-old work to chug down the juice.

Sitting behind me, next to our pool set up under a large shade awning was an African American family including a grandmother, son and three grandchildren who were sitting out drying off getting ready to leave.

Very courteously, the Grandmother asked, “Can I ask you a question?”

I sat up and turned around in my seat, “Sure.”

“What is that?” she asked pointing to Ryan’s pod.

“It’s an insulin pump.”

Now, I must insert here that people ask about Ryan’s Omnipod all the time.  It’s part of him, part of who he is, and people ask.  I don’t mind the asking.  But in all honesty, people are too often not very gracious or say the most incredibly stupid things when you tell them that your child has diabetes.  And I am sure that too many times, I am curt with people from the get-go, particularly when Ryan is within earshot, not wanting him to hear the erroneous things people say.

Her reply, “Does he have Type 1 diabetes?”

Aahhhhhh.  Someone who knows the difference. Or at least that there is a difference.  And I relaxed.

The conversation continued with explaining a little about what we were doing (waiting for his sugar to come up from the treatment of the low) & when he was diagnosed. Her son walked up during the conversation and asked if he could possibly ever grow out of it (a common question, which the answer is obviously no), how well Ryan does with dealing with it and so on.  I took a little time and gave a very rudimentary explanation of what happened to his body and what is going on with it now.  They were very engaged.  Very interested in learning.  Very compassionate.

Ryan was just listening, watching.

They were sincere and animated but there was such concern.  Such love from total strangers.

Then it happened.  Something clicked within this man and he engaged — WITH RYAN — I became invisible.  He asked how he felt about having diabetes.  He asked how hard it was to poke his finger 7-10 times a day.  He asked if it bothered him to sit out of the pool while his blood sugar went up and so on.

Then he praised him.

“You are an amazing young man.”

“God has big plans for you.”

“Your mom must be so proud of how much you work at taking care of your body.”

“You are a young man of great courage.”

And Ryan, even as quiet as he was because we have taught him not to talk to strangers, was a sponge absorbing every drop of every word.

And suddenly the man paused for a moment.  A pensive pause.  And he asked if it was okay if he prayed with us for Ryan right then and there.

I had no words.

As I watched that man offer to hold Ryan’s hand and Ryan take his hand and close his eyes and listen to that precious man talk to God about my boy . . . there just are no words to adequately describe my heart at that moment, or even now recalling that moment.

Our world is changing.  We so lack community and love for mankind, for a child, for unique individual struggles and for the things in life that make living it hard.

But in that moment, the world was right.  Denomination did not matter, race did not matter, age did not matter, nor did gender or economics or status.  We were merely two families brought together by a pool and love for a child – MY CHILD.

And they loved on, encouraged and prayed for my son.

And that prayer.

He called Ryan a courageous warrior.  He pleaded with God to continue to protect Ryan’s organs.  He thanked God for the great plans He had for Ryan’s life despite diabetes AND because of it.  He asked for strength and wisdom for Ryan’s parents in dealing with the challenges ahead.  He thanked God for allowing him to meet such a hero as Ryan.

And he touched my heart.

And Ryan will never for get it.

And the grandmother, Ms. Edna, asked for his first and last name as they were leaving, saved it on her phone, and leaned down looking right into Ryan’s eyes and said, “Ms. Edna promises to pray for you every day, by name, every day.”

Maybe you wouldn’t be so encouraged if something like this happened to you. Maybe it would make you feel uncomfortable.  In all honesty, if I was reading this on someone else’s blog, I might even myself wonder if it would make me uneasy or even embarrass me.  But I will tell you the genuineness and concern for my boy . . . it made everyone and everything else disappear as if we were the only ones at the pool.

And I will tell you, when you hear so much from strangers all their uneducated advice, ridiculous suggestions, their stereotypical solution to diabetes or their way-out-there “sure cure” for this currently incurable disease, it is refreshing to find someone who sees my boy exactly the way I see him — as the courageous hero he really is.

So, I take and pick the boys up every day from school.  Ethan’s school starts at 7:40 (Jay has been taking him at 7:15ish) and gets out at 2:20.  And Ryan and Aaron’s school starts at 9:15 and gets out at 3:55.  It is a pain sometimes and really breaks up the day but I’m at home and I can, so I do.

The car pick-up lines are easy-peasy here.  I’d say 95% of the middle schoolers ride the bus and about the same in the elementary.  So it’s not a long process.

At WWE, Ryan and Aaron’s school, the pick-up/drop-off is in the back of the school and there are two teachers that stand about eight car lengths apart, drop cones to sandwich those eight cars in while the kiddos get out/get in the car.   It’s a pretty fluid, safe process.

Tuesday at pick-up, I turned the corner to the back of the building and was about thirteen cars back, so I had to wait until the next group to pick up the boys.  While waiting, I noticed Ryan and Aaron waiting.  But I also noticed Mrs. S, Ryan’s teacher, right there too – standing right next to Ryan.  This was a bit confusing.

When the boys started out to the car, I rolled down the window and she came to me.  She explained that when he came in from getting his PDM (remote to his insulin pump) to take it home for the day, he looked a little tired and said he felt low.  She had him take his sugar and it was 190, NOT low.  But she said he was still acting low, so she decided to walk out with him to the car line knowing the two teachers “on duty” would be busy watching all the children and would not be able to focus on Ryan.  She continued that she worried that even though he was 190 that she thought he might be taking a dive and dropping too low too fast.  And simply said she just felt the need to walk out with him.

As emotional as I am these days, I struggled not to cry.  No where in the “protocol” does it require her to do this, it doesn’t even suggest it.  She just did it because she grew up with a sister who has Type 1 diabetes and she knows that numbers can sometimes be deceiving.  She has seen her pass out and have seizures from low blood sugars (which Ryan has never had either — thank the Lord!).  And she cares about Ryan enough that she just wasn’t willing to take the chance.

Ryan’s sugar when he got home, just 25 minutes later . . . 174.  So had she not been there, he would’ve been just fine.

But rather she chose to be the teacher of a type 1 diabetic just standing by.

And I love her.  And I am thankful.

Epic Fail

Hate it when I fail this face!

Ryan’s numbers have been roller coaster like.  Lows are not stubborn but the highs have been unpredictable and ridiculous.  And I’ve increased basals three time in the mornings in the last two weeks to try to avoid the 250+ at the 10:30 school check and I just can’t seem to beat it.  Again, a call today on the third day of the 6a-9a basal increase – 262.  Before I started changing basals, I lowered the carb ratio for breakfast.  He’s going to end up with a carb ratio of 1:10 for breakfast and nearly 1/2 of his all day insulin by 9a.  Concerns me a little.  I just don’t get it sometimes.

But the roller coaster is not just in the morning.  It’s all day.  The unpredictable craziness of the numbers simply not making sense.   Last night, I hit a breaking point when he was 70 for dinner and well over 200 at bedtime — and pasta hadn’t kicked in yet.  I said OUTLOUD, “I’m so frustrated with these numbers.”  And ranted to Jason about not getting it and not knowing what to do to fix it.  After I was done, I just sat watching “American Idol” and brewing over it a bit.

Ryan and Aaron had asked if they could stay up until 9p to watch American Idol since it was the finale.  I told them if they would shower and be ready to jump in bed right at 9p that I would allow it because it was the finale.  (Side note – this was silly to do because they will ask the same tonight to see the results show and the winner announced! Insert eye roll here.)

During a commercial, I looked over at Ryan who looked a little down.  Then it hit me.  I am an idiot.  Although I was talking the numbers out to Jason and releasing some frustration, Ryan was within earshot.

Epic.mom.fail.

I called him over to me and took his hand and explained to him that I was frustrated with the NUMBERS not RYAN.  I apologized and said none of it was his fault.  And that I was worried because I didn’t ever want to do anything or allow anything to happen that could hurt his body.  That it was MY JOB to get and keep his numbers under control and I wasn’t doing a very good job right now.  And I apologized again.  Then I told him we would get it.  We’d figure it out.  But mom was NEVER upset with or at Ryan because of any silly number.

And I felt like poop.

But you know Ryan, he was okay with me.  He understood.  He loved me and loved on me.  And then went and took his place to watch Jessica and Phillip sing their last song of the competition.

So the stubborn highs and roller coaster numbers are having their way with me.  They are beating me up.  Pushing me to my limits.  And I’m tired.  And I’m not sorry I’m tired or even frustrated.  I am sorry that Ryan knew it.

I’m so blessed.  He shouldn’t have to be the understanding or mature one.  He shouldn’t have to be mature at all — He’s 7.  But I have an amazing sugar boy who thinks it’s okay to vent.  And loves me unconditionally.

And I wish . . .

. . . it were me instead of him.

. . . he wasn’t chosen to live this life.

. . . I could be a better mom and think before I speak when I’m frustrated.

. . . there was a C.U.R.E.

But for now, I’ll settle for steady numbers.