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Arden's Day Blog

Arden's Day is a type I diabetes care giver blog written by author Scott Benner. Scott has been a stay-at-home dad since 2000, he is the author of the award winning parenting memoir, 'Life Is Short, Laundry Is Eternal'. Arden's Day is an honest and transparent look at life with diabetes - since 2007.

type I diabetes, parent of type I child, diabetes Blog, OmniPod, DexCom, insulin pump, CGM, continuous glucose monitor, Arden, Arden's Day, Scott Benner, JDRF, diabetes, juvenile diabetes, daddy blog, blog, stay at home parent, DOC, twitter, Facebook, @ardensday, 504 plan, Life Is Short, Laundry Is Eternal, Dexcom SHARE, 生命是短暂的,洗衣是永恒的, Shēngmìng shì duǎnzàn de, xǐyī shì yǒnghéng de

Low Blood Glucose: Then and Now

Scott Benner

I always think of anniversaries as a perfect time to reflect about how far we've come. It doesn't matter if you are talking about a wedding anniversary or an amount of time since something has happened, once and a while it is valuable to reflect and take a moment to feel not only what has transpired but what you've learned.


On August seventeenth of 2007, the second day that this blog existed, I was preparing to make a video with my kids when Arden's BG suddenly and significantly, dropped. Since my first inclination about the blog back then was to educate, I made the difficult decision to ask my son to turn on the camera as I was tending to Arden's low BG. More difficult was the task of later editing the footage. The video is not pleasant to watch, it's terrible in fact but if you have ever wondered what it was like to try and get a three year old whose blood glucose is dangerously low and falling to take in carbs, well, this sure does show what that is like.

Before you watch the video, I want you to please take a moment to read another post about low BGs that I wrote in June of 2011. I think that the two juxtaposed like this will leave you with more then enough hope if you are still struggling and if you happened to be past this part of your life, I think these two posts together will allow you the benefit of seeing how far that you've come. Either way, be proud of yourself.

June 1, 2011

Twenty Eight

 

I hope that this post serves as a source of hope to families that are newly diagnosed or still struggling to find calm... read on, I think it will.
 
Last Friday we were packing up and getting ready to enjoy a sleepover at Adventure Aquarium to celebrate Arden’s birthday. Arden invited two of her girlfriends and one of them arrived at our door as I was testing Arden’s BG.
 
Minutes before, Arden tripped while walking in her room and when I asked her if she was okay, she responded, “I feel dizzy all of the sudden”, we had just changed her DexCom an hour before so it wasn’t reporting BGs. As we made our way to the kitchen where her OmniPod PDM was I went over the afternoon in my mind and I couldn’t imagine that she was low. 
 
Test strip...
 
Knock at the door...
 
Blood drop...
 
“Hello, I’ll be right with you...”
 
Beep... and her blood glucose is 28.
 
So, there is a woman that I barely know in my foyer, sleeping bags and pillows all over the hallway and Arden’s BG is 28. Not just 28 but very unexpectedly 28 and she was still in the middle of a bolus and I expected (no DexCom) that she was falling.
 
This next bit is where you take hope from the story...
 
I didn’t flinch. No elevated heart, no sense of panic, I wasn’t upset and as a matter of fact I maintained a calming conversation with the woman in my house as she considering panicking.
 
I explained the situation to Arden, shut off her basal and she began eating and drinking. 64 grams later all was normal again - except, it never wasn’t normal. A sad statement perhaps that this all could be a normal part of someone’s life but what the hell, it is... When it was over and the mother left, I felt like I was ten feet tall. In the past I did my best to stay calm in situations like this (they don’t happen often thankfully) but I was doing just that, trying to stay calm. That is, in the past I wasn’t calm, I was frightened and I was trying to maintain my composure and stop Arden from having a seizure. I was scrambling to stay ahead of the situation.
 
Last Friday, I was calmer then George Clooney on an old episode of E.R.. Not ‘old’ George Clooney, the one that is starting to look like he doesn’t belong with those young girls... young George Clooney, back when he was bedding down those nurses in the break room. I was all suave like that, except instead of nurses, I was rockin’ the juice box and I’m fairly positive that the bottom of G.C.’s foot is more handsome then I... However, other then those differences, I was exactly like that. ;)
 
I finally have my 10,000 hours of practice and one day you will too. Moments that now may feel like they are happening at 100 miles an hour will slow down to a Matrix like kung fu speed and you’ll just move through the slow motion around you, completely in control. I bent the spoon baby!
 
Okay, I’m out of odd movie and TV reference so I’m going stop.
Now you can watch the video from 2007... Be prepared, it is tough to watch.

In two more days Arden's Day will be six years old and on the 22nd, Arden will be living with diabetes for seven years. These years have at times been nearly impossible to traverse, there have been countless low BGs and moments that I was sure that I couldn't live through... but I did, we all did. Arden is fine, I'm not crazy, Kelly and I are still married and Cole seems pretty normal (as normal as a thirteen year old can be). Diabetes hasn't stopped us, in fact, and I say this with great deference to all the bad that it brings... I think it's made us better. More tired maybe, but stronger and more resilient. Today, as I reflect on all that has happened to us I can see how far we have come. I no longer feel the fear from that video when I watch it, just the triumph of living through it. My advice is simple, reflect today and give yourself the credit that you are due.