In the four months since Ocean was diagnosed we have had many lows. In the first days we were home from the hospital Ocean could have multiple lows during the day and night. We didn't sleep (still don't actually) and lived in constant fear of the death that can occur when too much insulin is in the body. When Mommy doesn't calculate the carbs right and gives too much insulin. When the carbs given burns up too fast and peaks before the insulin. When Ocean runs around like a normal little boy but doesn't have enough sugar in his body to keep up. As I write this, I realize these are obviously still very real fears. However, I have learned the rhythms of Ocean's body a bit more. I have learned what foods burn faster. I have learned that I can trust my instincts and I will know when my sweet little boy is going low and needs me to save him with sugar water. Then again in 30 minutes I'm probably going to think I have nothing figured out.
Oceans blood sugar goal is between 100-200 and his most common lows are between 70 and 90. However, one scary day he got down in the 30's. And I wasn't there. I wasn't there to protect him. To see that he was dropping. I was with a massage client in my office downtown. Like is most common, Ocean and my husband Scott had come downtown with me to walk around. Before we had left the house I had given Ocean his insulin based on juice (the only thing I could get him to eat) and a high blood sugar correction (that ended up being an inaccurate high obviously.) At the time, he was rebelling against almost all food and having a lot of random high and low blood sugars since he was not getting proper nutrition. And due to something called the honeymoon period - stupid name and something I will explain in another post. Mostly living on juice that i was forcing on him through a medicine syringe and probably creating all kinds of psychological issues (insert therapy here.)
As is our usual routine, Scott and Ocean came up to my office while I got things ready for my client. I proceed to have my usual panic attack when leaving Ocean and we checked his blood sugar right before they left to walk down to the Park. It was 368 so we both thought, ok he is good for the next hour and shouldn't need to be checked unless he ran and played really hard. In that case, his blood sugar needs to be checked every 30 minutes since strenuous activity burns carbs and obviously makes the blood sugar drop.
I tried to contain my panic as I waved goodbye to my crying child at my office door. Trying not to picture Ocean's face as it was while lying in the Pediatric ICU. Trying not to imagine his face looking like that again while I am not there to protect him. Just like I couldn't protect him from the diabetes. Just like I couldn't protect him from the torture as they tried to get him stable in the hospital. I tried not to picture the possible seizure he could have if his blood sugar dropped too low. As they rounded the corner at the bottom of the steps I took a deep breath and tried to focus on my massage client. I kept him talking about himself and tried to distract myself by listening to his stories about his day to day life.
At about 5 minutes before the end of the session I got a call from Scott. If he actual calls while I am with a client I know something is really wrong. Because in fact he had never called while I am with a client in the almost 10 years we have been married. I answered and in a calm voice he said, 'come to the park. Right now, come to the park right now.' He didn't take the time to tell me anything else, he just said stop your client and get here as fast as you can. I didn't have a way down there so my sweet client drive me the couple blocks to the riverfront.
I tried not to completely lose it on the way over. Not knowing if my son was already in a coma. Already dying. I got to the park and ran to the playground area. Scott had Ocean in his arms and was shaking him to keep him awake. Diabetes supplies were scattered and flung all over a nearby bench. Sugar packets, juice, syringes, kisses, med wipes. Just by looking at that bench you could see the panic. The desperation. For some reason Scott had been led to check his blood sugar at 20 minutes instead of 30 after playing and running around. Thank God he did, if he didnt Ocean would have ended up in a coma. As Scott poked his finger with the meter, Ocean began to sway on his feet. He seemed to have trouble holding his head up and when the reader read 42 Scott knew why. He took it again because 42? Seriously? I can imagine him watching the meter as it thinks.......33. Shit. Somehow Scott was able to get 4 sugar packets in water and in Ocean's mouth before he started to slip into unconsciousness. Scott started shaking him and taking to him loudly to keep him awake. That is about when I came up. The sugar takes about 15 minutes to work and thank God it did. He held him in my arms and again tried to control my panic. As he started to become more aware he reached for the kisses. Needing more. His body probably screaming at him for more carbs. He was ok but I wasn't. Scott wasn't. All we could do is just keep moving forward and trust that we will always be led to check his blood sugar when he is in danger. Just like we were that day. In just enough time. Lots of fear in our lives these days.