There is a certain feeling you get as a parent when you are told that your child is sick. It is beyond the empathy you feel when your little baby has a runny nose (yes, I called the doctor like 42 times when Henry first had a cold). There is this feeling that you did something to cause it, that you took your prenatal vitamin at the wrong time of day, that you rode a snowmobile before you knew you were 1 week pregnant (yes I asked the endocrinologist if that caused it), that you weren’t supposed to have a child… but then you look at their face and realize that, yes, this child of mine was 100% supposed to exist as a future awesome adult. The world would not be the same without them. I moved through so many emotions since Henry was first diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes, it was like losing your child while he is still there, it is utterly confusing and for the most part, only another parent that has faced this can feel the same way that you do.
There is that horrible nagging in the back of your mind that he could die (he won’t), that terrible feeling Henry gets that his life is different, that people will treat him differently and for the most part we hope they will (in a good way).
We were floating after diagnosis, that dream where you know you are going to fall? You wake up before you hit the ground? Except, I felt like I was hitting the ground every other day and I couldn’t wake up. And then after a few weeks, I woke up before the fall, that anxious feeling of failure started to dwindle, I repeated in my head “this is a marathon not a sprint”. I took a deep breath when the blood sugar numbers went up, we called the Endocrinologist less, we listened to ourselves more…we learned that when we said “Yeah we got this!” we would jinx ourselves. We slowed down.
Then, a couple of weeks ago while I was at boxing I saw a message from my friend Jennifer Beck Furber through instagram with this picture:
His name was Angus and he was being sent to Children’s Hospital via ambulance because he was just diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. I moved backward, that feeling of floating and falling came back. First, I walked away from my phone and punched the living crap out of the bag in class and afterwards, I got in touch with Maggie (stay tuned for her super cute new blog design). I suppose that I should just confess right now, that without having actually met this woman I love her, hear that Maggie? Super love this lady.
(these videos might take awhile but they are well worth it)
I stopped by Henry’s school to give him insulin with his lunch and I told him about Angus. I told him that Angus and his Mama were scared, I told him that Angus was so scared to have his blood sugar checked and do you know what he did? This:
Apparently it helped. Angus let the nurses check him without freaking out, he even asked Maggie to let Henry know!
Henry was so excited for him:
Aside from my flurry of messages to Maggie about what scale to get, which lancet hurts the least, what works when he has a low and needs a fast sugar boost, Henry had something important to share with Angus:
And Angus took notice:
And then he asked him for a playdate with promises of blood:
What has really struck a chord with me here, is that Henry was so curious about Angus, his face would light up with joy when I told him that Angus had let someone check his blood sugar, or that he was getting out of the hospital. His little reassurances for Angus meant so much to all of us. It’s my hope that we will meet up one day and that Henry and Angus will have each other as a friend to talk to.
Oh and Happy New Year!
Maggie have that baby already, we need to have a drink.