This year I am walking with a dear friend to support her grandson, Ashton.
The team is called Ashton's Army and he is the sweetest little boy that ever existed. He always has a smile and is always polite. He is also very special to me as we share this Diabetic Bond.
As I do not know Ashton's story I will tell mine/
First, from My Mother's Point of view:
The phone rang in the middle of the night, never a good sign. It was my son-in-law, Bruce. He wanted us to come over and watch Simon as he needed to take Laura to the emergency room. He couldn’t wake her up.
I went into DKA. That is Diabetic Ketoacidtosis. My sugars were over 800 and my PH was 6.0. The doctor told Bruce he had never seen a PH that low in a living person before and by text book definitions I should be a corpse. They didn't think I'd come out. My priest, Father Tom came in and gave me "Last Rites" aka sacrament of the sick. I still believe to this day that that sacrament saved my life.
I was working at Integrity Printing in Michigan. We were VERY busy and for the two weeks prior we were working an average of 60 hours a week. (I think we might have been working a few hours on Saturday, but I cannot remember) Anyway, I was working 5 ten hour shifts a week. It was March and (if you've ever been to Michigan) we were still fighting off Old man winter. Everyone was getting sinus trouble and I was no exception. I went into the readycare (in the hospital) Thursday after work and was prescribed some heavy duty antiboitocs to deal with my sinuses. The Pharmacy said they would have my script ready Friday afternoon when I dropped it off Thursday night. (I went into work at 5 am) I don't remember that day at work except I noticed that an hour after I put on hand lotion, my hands were looking cracked and white. (Like they do when you handle a bunch of cardboard) I remember driving home and being SOOO tired. I kept telling myself "Just get to the Pharmacy." When I got my medicine I considered taking it right there in the parking lot and taking a nap in my car. Then I thought how much Bruce would worry if I didn't show up at home around the scheduled time and he couldn't reach me. So I kept telling myself "Just a little ways further." When I got home I could hardly find the energy to walk up to the door and open it. I told Bruce I was going to take my medicine and lay down. I didn't even get undressed, just flopped down on the bed with a pillow under my head. The next moment, or so it seemed, I woke up to a man in scrubs looking down at me. I thought I was having a very vivid dream until I moved my head and could read the poster on the wall. (I cannot read in my dreams, never have been able too. I vaguely remember reading and article about things you couldn't do in dreams. Anyway, I am getting off track here.) The guy in scrubs asked me if I knew where I was. I said the hospital. and he then asked me which one. I saw the CMCH "stamp" on his scrubs and told him "Central Michigan Community Hospital." He than asked "What day is today?" I replied, "Saturday." He looked at me and said "It's Tuesday. You're a very sick girl, you have diabetes." I felt myself tighten with the conformation of one of my fears and willed myself not to show it in my face and NOT to start crying. I then asked, "Okay, can I go home now?" He very politely said, "I'll check on that." Very shortly after that conversation, Bruce come rushing in. The look on his face was indescribable. It was so filled with Love, relief and concern. I was in the hospital for a week. I was out of ICU the next day. I remember a lot of nurses coming in and teaching me about how to give myself shots, (and I had to practice on myself, not a teddy bear or an orange!) What numbers were good, what to do if I was below a certain number, what to do if I was above a certain number. I talked to a diatieacian a lot. Found out the foods to eat and what to limit. I remember seeing a huge boquet of flowers with a card that said Love, Dad. Of course, I thought of my step-dad. When I thanked him he told me he couldn't afford flowers, and then realized they were from my Biological Dad. I also got a modest boquet from work. I remember I started to get an irititis bought when in the hospital and telling the nurse what I needed to get it cleared up. After the second day when any little light was extremely painful and My eye was starting to puff up, I told the nurse if the doctor didn't treat the irititis I was calling a lawyer. I got the medicine within a half hour. I wondered why I only got 2 non family visitors and found out that Bruce didn't want anyone to see me because he wanted me to get all the rest I needed to get better. I remember that my mother's neighbor/Simon's friends mom/my hairdresser, Krista came and saw me, and my supervisor/friend, Peg (who Snuck into ICCU) came to see me. Of course my Mom & Step-dad came in and Bruce was there pretty much all the time.
About diabetes and the Walk:
Type 1 (Formerlly known as juvenile or Brittle) diabetes, is a devastating disease that affects millions of people, a large and growing percentage of them children. Many diabetics, like me; do (did) not know they are diabetic. Most of these undianosed diabetics are not as lucky as I was.
There is some good news, though. JDRF is our best hope for finding a cure. And we are so close with the this year's developments. The most exciting for me is Encapsulation. What is that? Well, they insert a credit card size implant into your forearm every 2 years. The "card" has beta (insulin producing cells) in it that are surrounded by a technology that the imune system cannot penetrate. A shark cage so to speak. It has been proven to work in rats and is going into human trials next year. Type 1 rats who had this implant show no diabetic signs. No insulin needed, no more daily shots are panickay runs to the pharmacy before they close because you had a bad week and had to use more insulin than the doctor put on your prescription that you need on a normal basis.
How you can help:
Most of our team members are only asking $1.00 from each of thier friends. We understand that times are tough right now and that is why we are only asking for $1.00. It will make a difference if everyone gives us $1.00!! All donations are tax deductible, so if you want to add that dollar to your taxes, we will write you a reciept)
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