Thursday, May 03, 2007


Hate is such a strong word.

I have never felt as much hatred as I do now. It’s really not in my nature to hate anyone or anything. I might dislike something, but again, hate is a strong word.

But, I hate diabetes with a passion I never knew existed.

When Riley’s sugar went from 342 to 36 in an hour and a half today my hatred just bubbled over. The fact that he still had plenty of insulin on board didn’t help matters any.

I was riding down the road and I could barely see the truck in front of me through the tears that were stinging my eyes. This time the tears where not from the pain of dealing with the disease, but rather, pure, unadulterated anger for what this disease does to my child.

The word unfair crossed my mind a few times.

I know, life is unfair. The fact that two parents lost their 17-year-old son in a wreck is unfair. The fact that people are going hungry is unfair.

Yes, I do know that life is unfair. But, it’s just supposed to be unfair for me, not my son. One of my jobs as a mother it to protect my children from the unfairness in the world for as long as I can.

But, Riley, he learned how unfair life is at the age of three.

I look at how tiny his fingers are when I do a sugar test, and I hate this disease.

I see him trying to hold back the tears when I change his needle. He’s trying to be so brave. He shouldn’t have to. And, I hate this disease.

I see the look of pleading on his face when his sugar is low. He’s looking for me to help. All I can do is sit and hold him and kiss his head until he feels better. And, I hate this disease.

I watch other kids pick up a snack or a piece of candy and pop it into their mouth without a second thought. They didn’t have to ask their mom if it was OK. They didn’t have to prick themselves with a needle first. And, I hate this disease.

Yes, I hate this disease. But, as much hatred as I have for it and as intense as it is, it doesn’t even scratch the surface of how much I love my little boy.

And, because of that, I know that everything is going to be OK.

I will always hate diabetes, but at the end of the day the love that I have for my child wins out.

I watch him pretending to be a Jedi and my heart overflows with love.

I see his chest rise and fall as he's sleeping and I'm so thankful to have him at all. And, my heart overflows with love.

I watch him run to first base and after he gets there he turns to me and waves. And, my heart overflows with love.

Diabetes thinks it has the upper hand, but it's wrong. It can make me hate, it can make me curse, and it can make me cry. But, it cannot take away the love that I have for my child.

Love trumps diabetes every time.


George said...

OMG! that is a scary drop. I feel so bad for parents of PWD's. I hate diabetes but I cannot imagine what that hate would be like if it attacked my children.

Stay strong and like you said, Love always wins.

Scott M said...

I read this post and realize how lucky I am not to have been forced to deal with diabetes at such a young age. The weight of the disease is seemingly multiplied onto children and family who manage it daily. My heart and support go out to you and other familys like yours who battle constantly in the fight.

Megan said...

Penny, this post gave me goose bumps. So much of this rings true. I'm sorry Riley has to deal with this at such a young age.

Scott K. Johnson said...

Great post Penny.

Bernard said...

That's a scary drop, especially with insulin still on board.

Sorry it's so bad Penny, my heart aches for you. I know it's a heavy burden - you're doing a great job. Give yourself a pat on the back for that.

Lisa said...

Thanks for posting this. I know it is hard to put all of these feelings into words to share with anyone, but it helps me to read them and know that I am not alone. I hate it too.

Cara said...

I can't imagine what you are going through as a parent with a child that has been diagnosed with this horrible disease. I was 4 when I was diagnosed. I have, as i have gotten old and wiser (I think when you hit about 25 you start to look at life differently) wondered what my parents went through. Your blog lets me have a little bit of a window into that world. I'm sorry that you feel so helpless. And I hope for your son's sake (and mine) that there is a cure in the future. Maybe he won't have to hit the 22 year mark with this disease like I have. But if he does, keeping him healthy now will help him so much in the future.
As a side note, be glad that your son has been diagnosed in the "carb counting, insulin pumping" age of this disease. I remember the days of looking at where sugar was listed on the ingredients list and guessing what the food would do to the blood sugars. That was lots of fun. :)