A Year Later...

It’s hard to believe it’s been a year since my world was turned upside down. In some ways it seems like it was just yesterday. I have lots memories from that day. Waking up that morning and realizing that something was seriously with Audrey . Her blue lips and sunken eyes are burned into my memory. I remember Tim saying he would stay home with her so I could go to bible study (he had taken a comp day to work on the truck), since her Doctor's appointment wasn't until that afternoon. When I got home from bible study I remember her looking so sick, and Tim telling me she wouldn't eat and was just drinking. She wouldn't put her cup down.

At the doctor’s office, I remember Dave (our doctor) walking in and telling me we need to get her admitted to the hospital right away. They had tested her blood sugar there and it was high enough the meter couldn't read it. (I know now how serious that was!) Then came the phone calls, picking Annaliese up from school, and trying not to break down every time I opened my mouth. Going home and packing for the hospital and the ride to the hospital. Then getting her admitted and watching them put an IV in my little girl’s arm. I remember the sound of her screaming and then the quiet from her sleeping from exhaustion. The doctors asked if it was normal that she slept that much. I said no, but she had never been sick before either. She was so tired and looked so sick. I kept wondering what was going to happen next. There were lots and lots of questions from the doctors and more phone calls to friends and family. Then the ER doctor coming in with the official diagnosis…..Type 1 Diabetes. It all seemed so surreal. I knew it was serious when they told me, but just how serious I would soon find out.

I remember her waking up and trying to take the IV out of her arm. She just kept asking me over and over again to take it out and then the screaming that followed…..for a whole hour. She really wanted that IV out. Not even her favorite movie, Cars, would cheer her up. Then finally we figured it out, she was hungry, for the first time in almost a week. Those were the first signs I saw of her returning to her “normal” self. Then realizing as quick as I thought it, that my little girl would never be “normal” again. She just wasn’t the same little girl I had brought to the hospital a few hours earlier. She had a devastating disease. Later that night we got moved up to her permanent room. Yet another Doctor came in to asking more questions. Then finally, I had a chance to lay my head down. I couldn’t sleep though, every time Audrey moved in her bed I woke up. When she wasn’t moving a nurse was coming in to take her vitals. Then our neighbor came in, a little girl just out of surgery from a broken leg. She was in traction, and screaming.

When the sun came up the next morning I remember wondering if it was a bad dream. I looked around, thinking, nope, it’s real. Then the nurses started to come in. My good friend Julia stopped by, letting me borrow her computer so I wouldn’t get completely bored. I remember her bringing Audrey come coloring books, crayons and stickers. Then I met the Endocrinologist, and the Diabetes Educator. I remember wondering how I was ever going to take care of her. I was scared and I was suffering from information overload.

Then the news came that we would get to go home that day, but only after 3 hours of training. Training, so I could take care of my little girl at home. This was critical. If I didn’t know how to do this right, she could get seriously sick again. Those were the longest three hours of my life. Learning how to give shots, check blood sugar, use the meter, signs of high and low blood sugars, ketones, filling and changing insulin insulin pens, how to use a syringe, draw insulin from a vial, counting carbs, reading nutrition labels, and how to calculate doses, just to name a few things. My head starts spinning just thinking about it all over again.

Then, finally, we got the okay to bring her home. Praise the Lord for our great friends Matt and Jenny that brought us dinner that night. I’m not sure what I would have done with out it, probably eaten McDonald’s again for the 4th time in a couple days. I gave her her first shots at home that night, then let out a big sigh of relief when I realized, I could do it.

In the weeks and months that followed, I started learning all I could about Type 1 Diabetes and how to control it. I even researched insulin pumps. I thought that would be something that we would look into down the road in a couple years. The more I learned the more though, the more I realized how much the pump would benefit her now. So, I took my research to our Endocrinologist and he agreed. In July we were on our way to getting Audrey’s insulin pump. We ordered it and it came in August and then after 3 weeks of training, she had her pump start on September 10, 2009.

A week later we walked in our first Walk to Cure Diabetes for JDRF. That was when it really sunk in that she has this horrible disease. That she won’t ever outgrow this. She is stuck with it, as well as our whole family, for life. Unless, they find a cure. I pray everyday for that.

Through it all, I feel blessed. The Lord has blessed my family with a little less then perfect, and that’s okay. I see the world as little more broken now then I used to, but, I know that I will never be alone and that the Lord (has been and) will be there with me every step of the way. Luckily, I have also been blessed with some wonderful friends and family that have been there to support us. I don’t know what I would have done with out them. And without my husband. He has been my rock and my biggest cheerleader. I couldn’t have gotten through this first year without his love and support.