Monday, November 9, 2009

D Blog Day- Would My Life Have Been Different?

Would our life have been different if Jada had not been diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes? Would your life have been different if you or child had not been diagnosed? I've been pondering that question the last couple of hours and at first, I told myself that "Heck would be WAY different!" And then I began to reflect over the last 20 months since her diagnosis, and realized that not a whole lot about us has changed.

We were living in Katy, Texas at the time of her diagnosis. Jeff was working for a restaurant chain and we had just moved from Alaska to Texas a few months before. When we move, (and we're DONE moving by the way) we spend a lot of time exploring our new surroundings and enjoying the benefits of living there. Our first road trip after her diagnosis was to McAllen, TX a month after her diagnosis. Jeff was spending a few weeks down there for work, so the kids and I drove the 6-8 hour trip to go and see him. That trip included time on South Padre Island at the beach. Diabetes didn't stop us that time.

A few months later, my cousin in Iowa was getting married, so we took off again. I'll never forget the myriad of supplies that I had to take along with me. Traveling with diabetes is a pain! It was on that trip I felt like I was packing for a newborn baby and all the gear that goes with them! It was on that trip, that I realized that I didn't have to stop the car to give her insulin before we ate! Have diabetes...will travel! Again...diabetes didn't stop us- but it was a PAIN on that trip!

Later in the summer, Jeff was promoted and we moved to Tulsa, Oklahoma. I was scared to death about leaving our endos and had even been discouraged by them to move so quickly after a diagnosis. Her last appointment with the endocrinologist in Texas happened the day we left- with the Uhaul sitting in the parking lot of the dr.'s office! But- we moved and survived! Again, Diabetes didn't stop us.

When we moved Tulsa and had cooler, less humid weather, we jumped back into one of our favorite past times. Hiking. I remember the first time we went- I was so worried about Jada and that she would have a low and I wouldn't have enough food with us, so I way over packed the granola bars and snacks! We took our Kelty backpack with us so she could ride on Jeff's back. But, she was a trooper and didn't ever want to ride. Diabetes didn't stop her that day.

Moving back to Alaska suddenly came to the forefront of our minds again. We missed it and the life we had here so much, but my biggest concern was for Jada's health. There are no pediatric endocrinologists in the state and the closest endo to us is 6 hours away. So, I called the diabetes center here and was able to talk to the C.D.E and she was more than helpful in easing my fears. It was she who told me about the two dr.'s here in Fairbanks who have taken on diabetes as their "specialty" and were doing a phenomenal job. At that point, Jeff and I were confident in our ability to care for Jada and whatever issues may come up. So, the search for a job began and we didn't let diabetes get in our way.

Jeff got a job and we made plans to move. Everything just seemed to go our way.... until we got on the road. We had major vehicle problems in Wyoming and Montana, drove through a blizzard on the way out of Montana and into Alberta and we kept having LOW BLOOD SUGARS!
When we pulled into Ft. Nelson, British Columbia, Jada had the lowest blood sugar she had ever experienced to that point. It really scared me, because we were in a VERY remote small town- and if there had been an emergency, I don't know what would have happened. However, we pulled through and diabetes DIDN'T stop us.

And now we're here. And we're still not letting diabetes get in the way. There are times when it has to take the forefront. For the last month, the d-monster has had our attention, because it's been a bear! I'm not comfortable leaving Jada with anyone right now, because of these lows that just seem to happen out of no where, but they are fewer and far between now.

So, I don't know if it would have been much different for us. We've just added some things to our day- like finger pokes, shots, midnight checks and at times, what seems like endless worry and fear. But that worry and fear isn't always there....because I know that we have the right tools to take care of her and to teach her how to take care of herself.

I do know one thing..... I would not have met some absolutely INCREDIBLE women if it weren't for this diabetic journey. My life is better for knowing you and so is Jada's and the rest of my family. You have helped me to keep my sanity and have encouraged me to reach deep inside so that I could pull myself back together. I know I'm not alone. I would have missed out on all of you if it weren't for diabetes. Maybe that's the one thing that I can thank the d-monster for!


phonelady said...

wow and I thought I moved alot . LOL !!! well I for one think that you and Jada are just awesome and glad to know you . Take care .

Hallie said...

I love it! Awesome post! Man, I sure I hope to get to where you are - so confident! You're awesome! I'm so glad the D monster didn't stop you!

Meri said...

Diabetes doesn't have the power to stop us, only our fear does. Good for you for standing up to that fear and living your life! I remember when our first was diagnosed, the doctor told us he just had a little girl with T1 take a trip to Europe. I thought that family was CRAZY! How could they travel across the seas with this overwhelming disease! Sure enough, 1 year later we took J to Germany. It was wonderful...and thank goodness...Diabetes didn't stop us either!

Laura Houston said...

Awesome post. I admire your confidence with the D and look forward to being there someday. Thanks for sharing!

Melissa's Thoughts said...

You go girl!!! God stretches us sometimes and we don't like it, but on the other side we know that it was for us that he stretched us. You are doing great and it's been a pleasure "meeting" you and Jada and the rest of the crew. If you had asked me 17 years ago about Diabetes, I'm not sure of my response, but today I would tell you that I have a very healthy 18 year old in college that just so happens to have diabetes. Diabetes is not who he is, it's what he has delt with.

Shamae said...

Great post! I love it! You guys have not let the big D (diabetes not diareah ;) stop you! Way to go!

Laura Houston said...

Amy - I commented on my own post but wanted to thank you for your message and let you know that I would love to join the next live chat. Sounds like you gals had a great time!

Sarah Jane said...

At this point I have to say no. My life would not have been different, because for about 10 years I lived in diabetes denial. I took my shots, but other than that ignored my care.

The past six months have been different and I hope my answer will change dramatically over the next few years!

Wendy said...

We would never have moved to AZ had it not been for D...we needed a better job with better, her we are.

This move has been a huge blessing for our family. Diabetes aside, this is where we were meant to be!

(((HUGS))) I'm so glad our paths have crossed...and I hope to make it up your way one day :)

Diabetes Super MOM said...

Love your post, so positive!!

Bethanne said...

Great attitude! [and crazy doctors! but I'm sure they had Jada's welfare in mind, so we'll forgive them, right? :)] I often wonder how my parents would answer this question. One thing I know for sure, God's will was always first for them...and because of that, my health fared well.

BTW, what does your husband do that you went from Texas to Oklahoma to Alaska? Does he drill for oil or something? :) just curious. Have a great day and thanks for visiting my blog.

:) Tracie said...

I sometimes feel that our lives would be different in that we wouldn't have to worry about who to trust her with or how long to leave her with someone. I think if we didn't have medical issues to worry about, then we could enjoy the whole movie without leaving the theatre to check in or worry about having to leave church during service or the everyday being interrupted for school lunch doses and sleepovers could actually happen without feeling like we're burdoning another family.

But I cannot imagine our life differently. In the whole scheme of things, we are a better family and individuals for our trials. Sure it sucks....big time...but who knows where we'd be otherwise. And who cares? This is where we're supposed to be and it's only forward from here.

It took almost these entire 7 years to get to this point though, and I don't want the's because of our faith that we have come as far as we have. Trusting in The Lord makes it so much easier to deal with! (we still have our days though...boy oh boy, do we ever):)

Anonymous said...

mm.. good style ))