Embracing Life & the Child with the Disease

Posts tagged ‘Hope’

A Text + A Friend = Hope

Attention D-Mom’s


I have a friend, Tiffany, that I have known since I was 13.  We are exactly one month apart.  I am older than her for 30 days every year.  We have walked through most of our lives together, even the “missing years” have all been caught up and it’s like there was never an absence.  We’ve shared first loves & first heartaches, the joys of marriage, the heartache of miscarriage, shopping days, pedicures, the passing of grandparents, failures, scary times, times we got in trouble together, times we should have gotten in trouble together, and we can sincerely JOY in each other’s successes.  No pretenses.  No expectations.  Complete, total and unconditional transparency.  We are kindred spirits and I.LOVE.HER.

She had her first and perhaps only child last December, a miracle baby after waiting for about a decade for him.  G is the most precious baby.  A bundle of happy.

But back in the summer, she faced her first hard time as a parent when G had to be treated for plagiocephaly, which is when a baby’s head is flattened on either the top or the side.  The treatment is rather inevasive – the wearing of a band, or what I all too often crudely referred to as a “helmet”, to protect and reshape his head.

Now, while that may not be the scariest infant disorder/condition, those of us with children understand the fear and the ache that takes place when our children have to go through anything.  And when it’s a child you have waited for, wept for and prayed for nearly a decade, it’s just simply hard to deal with.  It broke my heart that G had to wear this band and had to have something “corrected.”  But it broke my heart for Tiffany knowing she would ache because this was happening to her baby.  She has let me walk this road with her, taking every step, every update, every frustration in stride.  We, together, counted down the days G could take his band off forever.

Monday was that day.  Band off.  Life good.  G perfect, as usual.  A victory.  And something they could put behind them.

I smiled when I looked at my phone and saw a text from her expecting to see a pic of G without his band.  But instead, this is what I read:

“I meant to tell you this Saturday — as I have been counting down to today and thanking God we have only had to deal with G’s band for 3 months that I also am praying for the day that you (and all d-moms) can count down to that last insulin shot . . . ”

Ok, d-moms.  Go get a kleenex . . . I’ll wait.

Is she the absolute most amazing friend ever?!?!  Isn’t that all we ever want, just someone who doesn’t live the life to somehow “get it”?

No, I am NOT sharing her either.  She’s MY friend.

And I’m praying for that day too.  Hoping.  Believing.

And when that day comes, as we do all events in our life, BIG and small, one of the people I will be celebrating with is Tiffany.


Hope in #17

Yesterday, Jason came home with 5 tickets to the Dallas Stars game ~ not just any tickets, but company BOX SEAT tickets.  The boys screamed like little girls when I told them the news.  We are NOT big hockey fans.  It’s not that we don’t like the sport, we really just don’t know much about it.  As most of you know, we are really more of a football family!  Shoot, we live in Texas, so we’re supposed to be.  So the excitement to go to this game was not about the Stars, it was actually about DIABETES.  And it’s a story of hope for our family.  It’s the story of #17 Toby Petersen.

Toby and Ryan, both dx'd at age 5

In July, we went to a JDRF kick-off dinner event for our Walk in September.  Petersen was the keynote speaker for the evening; you can read more about our dinner here.  We were still so early in the d-game that seeing someone who had been dx’d at the same age as Ryan and was now pursuing his dreams in professional sports, well, it was emotionally moving for this d-momma to say the least.  But since then, Petersen has been labeled one of Ryan’s heroes/role models. 

I’ve never been to a professional hockey game before.  The boys did once last season, but really weren’t very in to it then.  But last night, it was AWESOME.  The box was great, the seats were great, the boys LOVED that a food buffet was right there and they could go get what they wanted.  Of course, d did tag along, as usual, we can’t just leave it at home or turn it off for a while.  😦  BUT, it did cooperate! Anyway,  for buffets, as I’m sure all d-families do but maybe not all, Ryan goes through the line, gets his plate and then sits down and we do some carb calculating (aka GUESSING) and then take his sugar and administer insulin. 

This is what it looks like. 🙂

Ignore my creepy expression & NOTE THE NON-D BOY!

ATTENTION D-MOMS . . . I have included this second picture of the glucose monitoring, carb calculating and insulin administering for you.  Please, as much as you can, try to ignore the horrid look on my face.  I have no idea! But I was scrolling through the pics last night on my laptop and saw this one and almost vomited!  Not because of d or because of Ryan or even the expression on my face (although it did make me a little queezy).  LOOK AT MY BABY BOY!  I cemented a note- to-self in my mind last night to NEVER let d steal my focus so much that I allow my other children to wander into grave danger.  Aaron looks like he’s about to hop over that 12 inch plastic guard and plummet down to the floor seats below.  OH.MY.WORD.  Not my proudest moment as a mom!!!!

Moving on . . .

My job for the 60 minutes of play was to point out every time Petersen entered the ice.  So the whole game, I was yelling and pointing, “There’s Petersen!”  or “Toby’s back out!”  And immediately six little eyes were glued on #17 until he barreled back over the wall to rest in the box.  I was sure the people behind us thought we knew him personally!

It was a wonderful night.  We laughed and hooted and hollered together.  We all got bummed out all at the same time when the Stars were up 3-2 and Ethan started the 10-second countdown to end the game.  I can still hear E next to me, “10-9-8-7-6 . . . WHAT!?!?!?!?  You’ve got to be stinkin’ kidding me! You couldn’t stop ’em for FIVE MORE SECONDS!!!”  The Ducks scored with 5.4 seconds left in the game locking it up 3-3. And only 1:42 into the five-minute over-time, the Ducks scored!  BUM.MER.

I don’t know what Toby Petersen really means to Ryan at this point in his life.  I don’t even think he thinks about how d COULD limit his life if he lets it.  And I’m so thankful for that.  It would be just fine with me if that thought NEVER crossed his mind. Ever!  But what Toby Petersen and others like Jay Cutler, Sean Busby, Kris Freeman, Nick Jonas, Crystal Bowersox and so many more does for this d-momma’s heart . . . there simply are no words.  NONE.  I can tell my diabetes boy that d doesn’t have to stop him, to limit him, to keep him from his dreams.  It just might mean he might have to work a “little harder than the average bear.” (words taken from Petersen’s keynote speech at the JDRF dinner in July). 

FACT: #17 offered HOPE to our family last night and all he was doing was playing a little hockey!

(see all pics on my Facebook page!)

Happy for HOPE!