Friday, August 29, 2014

Dear 97.

Dear 97,

The world would have me think that you’re all that.  I know better.

You are reckless and unpredictable, in fact I’d venture a guess that your middle name is Danger…I think it’s time the truth got out there.

Last night you came to visit just as my son was going to bed at 9:23pm.  Admittedly, a visit from 54 or 398 would have been a bit more disconcerting, but the pinnacle intention of this letter is this: you are just as dangerous.  You lull us into a feeling of comfortability and then, without warning, drop.

And drop hard.

It’s a cruel cruel joke.

I know that the possibility of you staying 97 is slim to none.  And even though I know that the possibility of you growing into a larger number exists also…I know the odds are not favorable to do so.

So I feed you.  You know I’m going to feed you.  That is why you come.


And then you give me the virtual finger by jumping to a 248.

Even if I give just a couple bites of something, you put all of your effort into jumping as high as you can.  We all can see you are doing it on purpose.

97.  You are a selfish number.

97.  You hide under the guise of security, of “normality.”  You make us feel like you are a successful place to be, and then you take advantage of that vulnerability and cause frustration.

All I can do is shake my head at you and ask you to leave for now.

One day your impact on this family will be one of Styrofoam…neither here nor there. 

Until that day, I bid you adieu!

Ever so Sincerely,  

P.S. If you want to drop by for lunch on Saturday, I guess it'd be ok.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Their Diabetes.

We’ve arrived in new territory.

I started this blog just over five years ago.  Five years ago my oldest was 14 years old.  J was 11.  B was 7.  L was 5.

Today, our lives are not what they were five years ago.  Not even close.

As I look down the dusty road behind us, I see an enormous amount of progress.  We’ve covered a lot of ground…five years ago isn’t even visible in the rear view mirror anymore. It’s more of a memory than a point of reference.

Things were harder for me then.  Diabetes-wise anyway.

Going from doing everything, all the time…to where I am now, blows my mind.

Case and point: This morning I woke up before the boys and checked their blood sugars as they lay asleep in their beds.  I grabbed one of the boy’s pumps to correct and couldn’t remember the last time I had it in my hands.  It had to be at least a few days before. 

Can you grasp the enormity of that?

Five years ago my hands were on those pumps upwards of ten times a day, each.  Easily.  Now, even though it’s like riding a bike, it felt a bit awkward to give him insulin.

It didn’t feel like my pump.  It felt like his pump.

As I sit here and collect my thoughts, and try to collect my emotions too, I realize that it doesn’t feel like my diabetes anymore either.

It feels like theirs.

Sure, I'm aware it was always theirs.  But for a season, I held the stewardship in my hands.  I stripped their burden bare and wore it on my chest.  Piece by piece they've taken that burden back from me.  They are heavy with responsibility now.

All the boys are doing their own set changes.  J has been doing the midnight checks for the past month.  The two youngest confirm carb counts with me, but when I’m at school, they count/SWAG on their own…and they’re doing a pretty amazing job at it.  The scale has tipped.  They are doing more of the work than me.

In fact, they are doing most of it.

It gives me pause to think where this blog will go in the next five years.  It’s been easy to blog about my diabetes…but now that it is theirs, things get a bit more complicated.

I can blog about my mistakes.  I can’t blog about theirs.  That isn’t my story to tell.

I can blog about my feelings about diabetes.  I can’t blog about theirs.  That isn’t my story to tell.

I can blog about my journey, but now that my boys are taking the lead…its time for them to climb their own mountains and tell their own tales.

No, I’m not going to stop blogging.  I have too much to say.

But my authority on teens and tweens with diabetes will be flimsy at best, as authority infers the power to make choices and enforce obedience.  My boys are old enough to make their own choices now, and we all know how easy it is to force teens into obedience…

I won’t go as far as to say I’ll be a spectator…but I’m a supporting player now. 

My job will be to encourage. 

To lift up. 

To rally. 

To enhearten. 

To praise. 

To buoy. 

To console. 

To applaud. 

And to fortify what’s been taught.

The road is bending and the scenery has become uncharted territory, but my boys fearlessly blaze their trails anyway.

Honestly, I’ve never been so proud of them as I am in this moment.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Becoming comfortable with the unknown.

I’ve been marinating in new experiences.  (Meri-nating?) My life is full of the unknown, which in and of itself isn't anything new...but for the first time in a long time, the unknown  has become a thrilling prospect.

I’m not unsure anymore.

I think part of that has to do with finally making decisions, and another part is the fact that the unknown isn’t new anymore.  Each day I’m stepping further into it, gleaning familiarity with the landscape.

It stands to reason that the unknown isn’t unknown when it is more known.

(I’m good writer.)

Humor me?

Take out a pencil/pen/crayon/charcoal briquette…and write your full name...with your left hand.  (Or with your right hand if your dominate hand is the left.)

I’ll wait. 

Try it.

Ok, I know most of you didn’t do it.  I'm super sad about it, but you can keep reading...just imagine that you did.  What did it feel like?  Can you describe what the writing process felt like with your non-dominate hand?


Now think of yourself when you were faced with a new diagnosis.  Do these words fit?  How about starting a new job?  Maybe you were just divorced?  How about meeting someone important for the first time? A job interview?

All of those words are typical of the unknown.  Thankfully, as time passes, the unknown goes from shaky to stable.  From uncomfortable to comfortable.  From awkward to ease.  From harder to easier.  From slow to a steadier pace.  From painful to enjoyable.  From silly to amusing. From Different to normal. From regressed to progress.  From frustrating to encouraging.  From forced to natural. We don't feel so clumsy after fact we begin to feel sure footed.

The combined components of time and the journey find us relaxing despite our fears and worries.  We look back and see how far we come, and confidence creeps in.  “If I made it so far, certainly I can make it so far more.”

I’m thankful the hardest is behind me.  I’m thankful I can stop looking at my feet, concentrating on every step and begin moving forward with my eyes on the future.

I feel like I’ve written my name with my left hand a million times since I lost Ryan.  It has taken time, but I’ve finally become accustomed to the new way.

Moving forward into the unknown feels natural to me now.  Any anxiety I have is melting away, revealing a core of sureness.  The unknown used to be a bed of nails, and now it seems to be more of a comfy couch.

I’m excited about my future.

Every step into it has reaffirmed that everything will in fact, be ok.

I’ve been saying it’s all going to be ok for so long, it’s been my mantra repeated over and over and over again...

I don’t have to convince myself anymore.  

I don't have to fake it 'till I make it...

I've made it.