February 29th, 1992…Leap Year. It was an extra day on the cartoon calendar pictured and pasted on our kitchen bulletin board. The news anchor of our local television station signed off the night before by reminding me to, “Have some family fun the next day!” Yes, I remember……No, I’ll never forget.
February 29th of that year began much like any other. Indeed, I did have something fun planned for our family. We were going to spend the afternoon at the park. Our two young boys, ages six and four were up early and dressed. The breakfast dishes were washed, and handy snacks were already packed.
It was unusually warm in St. Louis for late winter in the year of ‘92. Beautiful and bright with skies painted royal blue. I remember daffodils bloomed beneath willow trees in the back of my yard. They were splashed in colors of variegated canary yellow, dancing to melodies that sung through whispered breezes blowing beneath the trees. Later, I saw them everywhere. I clung to them as a sign of hope.
We never made it to the park that day. Only hours later my oldest son was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. Too weak to play with his little brother, he simply wanted to “go to sleep.” In a panic, my husband scooped him up, ready to race towards our pediatrician. Just before walking out the door, I turned to him from our kitchen window, the same one where daffodils had sung songs of miracles to me. “Make sure the doctor checks his blood sugar,” I stated, matter-of-factly.
Back then, I knew nothing about diabetes, nor of blood sugar. Yet the words that I spoke to my husband did indeed come out of my mouth. They sounded strange, and monotone as if coming from a body suspended above. Looking back, those were God’s words, never my own. They were His words that saved my son’s life that day.
Much has happened since then, but it is a fact that Chronic Conditions brought me to WordPress over three years ago. Little pieces of me are in the posts that I write and share here. So, what are some of the lessons that I’ve learned in life? The most important one is to stay positive in the face of adversity.
If your child is diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, I’m not going to lie. It knocks the wind out of you. It hurts. Remember that it’s okay to cry. Share your feelings. Don’t keep them bottled up. Even today, I’m still learning….http://wp.me/p41md8-2D4
Most importantly, be strong and SMILE for the sake of your child. Children take their cues from their parents. Please be a positive role model, won’t you? They will forever set their childhood goals and dreams in life with you by their side. I promise things do get better. Technology has improved and will continue to get better every day in the future.
It’s been 24 years ago today since my son was diagnosed, “No, diabetes isn’t easy.” But, “Yes, his life is wonderful.” I am so very proud to be his mom, to call him my son….
In dedication to all of the children living with type 1 diabetes together with their families. My heart and blessings to you today, tomorrow and all of the days of my life.