Wednesday, August 13, 2008

A Bend In The Road

Got a bit sidetracked these last few days.  My daughter, a diabetic landed in the hospital while visiting friends and we've been holed up as doctors faced the challenge of getting her body functioning properly. 

 For those of you unfamiliar with this territory, having juvenile diabetes and knowing that this is your lot in life is not the easiest road.  Learning that a major body organ, your pancreas, just switched off for the rest of your life is like hitting a brick wall when the diagnosis is made.  How one chooses to live after hitting that wall makes all the difference.  

For the uninitiated,  she wears her pancreas on the waistband of her pants or tucked into a pocket of jeans or strapped to her leg with dresses.  This "pancreas" is a pump really, the size of an mp3 or cell phone.  A vial of insulin is inserted into the pump, which is attached to a long thin plastic tube that slowly drips into her through an insertion site--similar to an IV site that she must put in her stomach, back or thigh.  Much more goes into it but that is essentially what she deals with on a 24/7 basis.  

If any of the above chooses to go haywire, trouble ensues.  This weekend, a kink in her insertion site would not allow the pump to deliver the required insulin.  She went without any for about 12 hours and, well, let's just say one should never be without insulin that long.  So off to the emergency room we went for 3 days of getting all right with her world.  Needless to say, both she and I are exhausted but back home and the only scary thing is I'm sending her off to college in 12 days and as a mom, scared to death.  Fortunately, she's a bright girl and this is the first time something like this has happened.  I am thinking that perhaps the planets aligned themselves just so to have this little wake-up call happen before she leaves to illustrate what can happen if she doesn't take care of herself when mom's not around to harp at her.  We'll see....

This has nothing whatsoever to do with Paris I know, but explains why I haven't been around yet again and will need this day to get back on track.  Moving, hospitals....I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this is it for awhile!!

Additional information and photo credit:  Animas


Je ne regrette rien said...

wow, that sounds challenging. hope things have settled down ...

Shane said...

Kim...what did I say? When it rains it pours! I hope both you and your daughter get everything back on an even keel soon, real soon...

Hang in there!

Kim said...

thank you both so much for your thoughts. she is better, weak, but better. hopefully rattled just enough to be better with her self-care!

Kim Petyt said...

Hi Kim! We were just in Chicago and I was thinking of you. I'm so sorry to hear that you're having to go through this now, and I hope that your daughter is feeling better and ready for school. Take care of yourselves!!


Steverino said...

Bojour Kim:

What a advantage technology has given us enabling us a better life!

I am a photographer and had an assistant who was a diabetic back in the mid '70's. He was along on an assignment in a chocolate factory [in Chicago] during a hot August. [As you know Chicago never shuts down.]

I had a very complicated shot all set up and realized Tom had vanished. I didn't realize he was having an attack. I had to carry on and eventually found him in the grimy factory bathroom.

I doubt he would have had his problem if this device were available at that time.

Good luck to your daughter. I hope she can adjust to Chicago. It is a great town. Be sure to explore all of it, including Andersonville, Edgewater , Hyde Park, Wicker Park and Logan Square.


Kim said...

Thanks for that!
She is doing much better and yes, we are grateful for technology at this point. In the beginning we had to deal with shots and that can be a nightmare.
We are getting acquainted with our surroundings. With moving, hospitals, leaving for college it is going to take some time but we'll get it all in.
My guess is, I'd be able to pick you out along the bike path with eyes like those. I'll be looking!!

Lynn said...

Didn't see this post sooner, but I hope your daughter is well. I agree, I think it was a blessing in disguise for both of you, and I wish you and your family all the best!

Kim said...

Thanks Lynn
She is better, so much so that she is now living in Greenwich Village, studying at NYU and taking advantage of all that New York has to offer. And, taking much better care of health!!