The Beautiful Feeling of Relief

Ashleigh 4.2014
Ashleigh 4.2014

Ashleigh walked into the kitchen this evening to give me a kiss, it was then that I smelled diabetic breath on her.  I grabbed the glucose tester and without warning pricked Ashleigh’s finger.  She wailed in a mix of anger and pain, I sucked her blood up onto the test strip and swallowed hard.  {BEEP}, I glanced down and before I knew it the mix of anger and pain stabbed me in the heart.  208.  Tears flew out of my eyes, Ashleigh looked at me, I struggled to gain composure.  She wiped the tears from her eyes and yelled: “I’m not sick, I don’t have Diabetes!” I got her some ice water and explained I didn’t think she did, I want to do everything in my power to keep her healthy.  I reminded her of the sweet breath Carter has sometimes and let her know I smelled that in her breath.  I told her we weren’t going to worry about it right now, and kissed her finger and sent her off to play with Carter.  Once she left the kitchen I immediately grabbed the phone to call Greg who was on an errand, with no answer, I called Carter’s Endocrinologist.  I had to call Carter’s latest blood sugar numbers in anyway.  Upon the endocrinologist call back, after working with her to adjust Carter’s insulin to carb ratio’s, I made mention of the issue with Ashleigh.  I let the endo know that my plan was to feed the kids dinner, wait 3 hours and see what Ashleigh’s reading was then.  If it were over 200 then I would take her to the doctor.  The endocrinologist concurred, stupidly I wished she would have told me I was overreacting, and that Ashleigh was fine and I didn’t have to worry.  I thanked her for her advice and let her know I would be in touch and keep them updated.  I hung up the phone and slid down the wall in defeat.  As I sat on the kitchen tile, tears streaming down my face, I searched desperately for the strength I knew I needed to have.  I called my Mom and quickly told her I needed her to pray for our current situation, she did and I hung up and gathered myself, wiped my tears, and moved on.    This, the all too familiar modus operandi I function in these days.  Greg came home and we chatted about the new discovery while he was out that could again completely alter our world.  In an effort to find the positive, we realized that should things go down that road, we know what to do, what to expect.  In the next moment we realized the trauma that was associated with having to do this with a 4-year-old.  We watched the kids eat dinner, (Greg and I had lost our appetites) we laughed, and bathed the kids.  Two-and-a-half hours later I decided it was time to check both kids blood sugars now.   Greg fetched Ashleigh who, when she realized what was happening put up a fight.  I encouraged her to be brave and she reluctantly stuck her finger out to be tested.  I pushed the button and counted down, with one eye closed I read the result *89!  I could have fainted!  The complete relief I felt is difficult to explain.  I embraced my daughter and explained what had happened this afternoon, I explained that as her mommy and daddy we need to always make sure that she and her brother are healthy.  That it is up to he and I to manage their health, sometimes that means pokes, or shots, but ultimately it means health in the long run.  I emphasized that for the next couple of days we were going to monitor her to make sure she was OK and the reading I received of 208 was a fluke.  Greg explained that for the next day or so we would be checking her blood a few times a day to make sure she is OK.  She was a little nervous about that, until I asked her if she wanted to check my blood.  She perked up, and said “yes!”  I let her poke me, and retrieve my blood and that seemed to soothe her.  I told her that anytime she needs to check her blood I will too and she was OK with that.  The relief I had longed for when we went through this with Carter was delivered to me today.  My world stopped for the second time when I thought Ashleigh might have to manage Type 1 Diabetes as well.  All-in-all, the teaching moments we had tonight were unequivocally educating.  Ashleigh is more aware now of what Carter manages through multiple times a day, as well as the reality that our health is a forever managing necessity.  The relief I felt is still there at the surface, after good testing results tomorrow, I will allow the relief to completely sink into my soul as we move on past this trial and cherish Ashleigh’s health in ways we didn’t know were possible.

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