Monday, August 2, 2010

One of those moments...

There are moments in everyone’s lives that define them. Moments that move us to a sacred place…a place away from the world’s manipulations of what is supposed to be important.

I think my children’s diagnoses were three of those moments.

But since those three fateful days when my worlds as I knew them were knocked off their axis, there have been an armful of moments that just as suddenly, jarred me to my very core. Like aftershocks in the earthquake of diagnoses. In these instances my true priorities were made clear. Most of these moments lasted just seconds, but their grasping influences left imprints that forever changed the way I look at my life.

Last week I had one of those moments.

Since we were kicked out of our house for termite fumigation, we were lucky enough to house sit for my in-laws while they were on vacation. My husband had to leave unusually early for work one morning and since it was just an hour after the normal nighttime blood sugar check, he offered to check the boys before he left. (Uninterrupted sleep for the momma! Score!)

The next morning I started breakfast and was happy to see that B had finally gotten a good night sleep. It was almost nine and he was still lying peacefully in his bed. My husband called and we chatted about his morning as I scrambled the eggs. A couple minutes into the conversation I mentioned that B was still sleeping like an angel…


“Crap what?” I said.

“Crap, I forgot to check the boys before I left.”


(That was the sound of my heart dropping into my stomach.)

B had been going low almost every night that week.

…And he hadn’t been checked since 11:00pm.

…And he was still sleeping. (An hour and a half later than usual.)

I hung up on my husband, grabbed the blood sugar monitor and ran to the room. I stopped in the doorway to listen…to watch. Frozen…my mind like an ocean, the waves of emotion rolling…willing him to move with my stare.

Please move. Please breathe. Cough! Twitch! Roll over! SOMETHING!

There was nothing. He was motionless.

I walked slowly over to him, my eyes fixed on the blankets twisted around him. I sat beside him and brushed his hair away from his forehead.

It was that second. That one second. I was facing my worse fear.

But his forehead was warm. That was good, right? I don’t know. In that second his warm forehead was like angels singing…the warmth swept over my body.

And then he wrinkled his nose. Thank the good Lord above.

I checked his sugar and found him to be 52. I ran to the cupboard for some juice. And as I ran back I was hit by another thought.

What if he couldn’t drink this juice?

What if?

I gently touched the straw to his lips and he immediately puckered in his sleep…resolutely sipping.

THAT was one of those moments. The kind of moment that we see far too many times. The kind of moment that explains why I have so many gray hairs. Why must we stare our children’s mortality in the face on a daily basis? What purpose can this serve?

I honestly feel there IS a purpose. Without these kinds of moments...the world wouldn't have nearly the amount of good that it has. Once you get a glimpse out the window of what could be…the sadness of losing a child, a friend or a loved one…or once you see firsthand another human being suffer…you are changed…period. Priorities are changed, views are changed, what seemed important before just isn’t important anymore.

I hate that bad things have to happen to good people. But I firmly believe that bad things MAKE good people…the refiners fire molds us into compassionate, empathetic, appreciative human beings. Well, it does this for most people. For some people the fire doesn’t make them better, but bitter instead.

I’m not perfect people. I have flaws for days...but I do appreciate what I have. Every little thing.

I APPRECIATE the fact that my 8 year old child can play soccer.

I APPRECIATE the fact that my son is right now at scout camp…LIVING! Having an adventure without his mother hovering over him!

I APPRECIATE the fact that my oldest son can drink orange juice whenever he wants.

I APPRECIATE the fact that my 6 year pricked his finger 14 times last Friday, sporting a broad smile EVERY time!

I appreciate the little things. Because little things around here, are HUGE! Hugely. Wonderful!! And just when I am about to get absorbed in my selfish ways...WHOA! One of these moments happen and I realize I am DANG lucky to have what I do. I am completely blessed!

God bless those awful, emotional tsunami-like moments. They suck beyond measure, but they clarify what some don’t get the opportunity to see…life is too short to sweat the small stuff. The small stuff needs to be EMBRACED and celebrated!

Diabetes does that for me. It forces me to appreciate the small things, and embrace the wonderfulness of each little blessing.

When we are old…when we are ill…when life hands us crap… it is all of the little things that get us through.

A warm hug.

A sunny day.

A laughing child.

All the things money cannot buy.

I know at night, when you walk through the house to your child’s bedroom, and you see him or her sleeping…dreaming…it is that moment that brings the clarity of what is really important.

Especially when you take that second to pause…and wait for them to breathe.


  1. Oh, Meri! I know those moments ALL to well.
    What a wonderful way of seeing things. Great post!

  2. You have such a beautiful way with words! You are truly an amazing person, and an example of positive living.
    Diabetes is crap, but I wouldn't trade it, because it's molded me into a person that I've always wanted to be. Thanks for the reminder to be grateful for the small things. They are truly the best things in life.
    Love you Meri!

  3. I had one of those moments last week. We don't have them often,but I now exactly what you mean by when your heart drops and you start moving fast as all get out. Body ahead of brain sometimes.

  4. Bad things make good people..YES YES YES!!! I love that perspective Meri....and I just love you and your way with words!

  5. I have definitely had those that we as D-moms panic when our children sleep not fair! love that you turn these moments into a positive.

  6. Ok- I'm sitting in Wendys crying now!!! This is so true , Meri. I feel like everything changed at dx. My priorities, my view, EVERYTHING. I appreciate it more, now. All of it. I guess that's what happens when you face mortality every single day. Perfectly said! I'm going to share this when I get home from vaca!

  7. Great post Meri. I love your viewpoint and how you so eloquently express yourself.

    Glad everything was okay. I HATE those waiting-to-breathe moments.

  8. Amen my dear friend Meri - you said it sister!

    I feel there is a purpose in me having one child with autism and one with diabetes. It has made me, well, me. And it is so very true, that it can make us better or bitter and I believe with my very soul that it's a choice. I choose to celebrate the moments, celebrate that we get another day on this big blue planet. Celebrate that we are ALIVE with diabetes and able to do what we want to do.

    The moments like the one you had with B bring it all to the forefront again in our lives. We are blessed, we are blessed, we are blessed.

  9. You are eloquent and so right that these moments make us who we are. We are all so aware of how fragile it all is and ae thus able to embrace the now much more. I know what you described so well. And how damn quietly they sleep!

  10. Thanks for the reminder to be thankful for what we have and all the great things are little ones can do instead of dwelling on what we all have to suffer through just to keep them alive and healthy!

  11. I love you Meri. I am so glad everything with B was OK!

  12. You have such a way about you that is very comforting . I also think you should try writing a book you have that way about you .

  13. Oh, I know those moments all too well! When you crawl into bed with your child and gently put a hand on their back or chest to make sure it's rising and falling as it should. So heartbreaking! And you're so right, bad things make good people. Beautiful post!

  14. Beautiful post, Meri. Wonderfully said.

  15. This post had me sitting on the edge of my seat! SO glad B was okay!!!!

    I am so with you on this one. I firmly believe that because of diabetes, I don't take things for granted, that I look on the bright side, that issues that would bother others don't faze me, that I count my blessings daily.

    Beautiful post, Meri!!!!

  16. Beautiful post my friend. I'm going to share this one, I hope you don't mind. I just love you and your beautiful heart! I'm so glad B is ok! Yes D has taught me to appreciate the small things too!

  17. Wow...I hate those moments that make you take pause outside of the bedroom while they sleep.

    Thank you for putting into words what we are all experiencing. BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN my blog-a-licious friend!!!


  18. Oh Meri! I just love you!

    I'm so glad your sweet, little angel was okay.

    You are such a good mom. So encouraging to me....

  19. Perfect! Very well said.

    I think it's those moments where your heart stops and falls to your arse that help remind us of how important our vigilance is and what our real priorities are.

  20. Well, because I am so tardy getting over here to read your fabulous post it looks like all of the good comments are taken. :)

    I love you and your positive attitude and your great perspective on everything. You make me want to be a better person! Thank you sweet friend. Thank you!

  21. I have been having a positively crappy d summer. That said, I thank you for this lovely post. It reminded me to step out of the d funk and enjoy my son and appreciate the little things around us that ARE good.

  22. Thank you so much for sharing your words and experiences. I've been out of the d-blog loop for a few months, but I'm catching up now and I appreciate all that you've shared.

  23. Wow. What amazing relief a wrinkled nose can bring. Your blog post is amazingly well done, and I'm glad it worked out the way it did. Thanks for sharing this experience, and all you and we have in life to appreciate.

  24. Meri-I think there is a woman on CWD forum for parents of children with diabetes that started a thread titled "another diabetic family" whom could use your advice. Her daughter may be enrolled in the same preschool as one of your babes...I think? Just FYI....
    maybe a much better friend to chat with than "molly"!!!

  25. oops meant to say elementary school :)


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