Riley had a ballgame yesterday afternoon. He had lunch just before the game. When I checked his sugar right before the game it was on the higher end of the spectrum but I didn’t give any insulin because I knew he had plenty of insulin on board and was getting ready to run around in the hot, hot sun.
After the game there were the usual snacks. This time it was Doritos. They are not too bad but they’re not too great either. Really, I’d rather him have the cupcake from the week before. Cheesy snacks sometimes affect his sugar in a weird way.
Anyway, Riley started the usual “Can I have it now? Can I have it now?” To which I gave my usual, “Let’s wait until we get in the car and check your sugar.”
We got in the car and I handed Riley his machine. He started checking as we drove away. I heard the beep of his machine. In a whiny voice he said, “It’s 425.”
“Can I still have my snack?”
It’s times like these that I want to crawl in a corner somewhere and throw a blanket over my head and hide away for a little while. “No, baby, you need to wait for your sugar to come down a little bit, OK?”
“Why, Mom? It’s not fair. I hate diabetes!” Then, he started to cry.
I reminded him of the week before when he was on the lower end of the spectrum and he got to eat treat after treat. That was no comfort to him. It was probably a dumb thing to say, but I just wanted to do something, anything to make him feel better.
Accepting that your child is hurting and there is absolutely nothing you can do about it is one of the most difficult things in the world to handle. I wanted to cry too, but for Riley’s sake I held it in.
It was time for a site change anyway, so when we got home I started gathering the supplies. Riley started up. “I don’t want to change my needle!! When do I get to eat my snack?”
I disconnected him from the pump. He had a few minutes to run around free while I drew up insulin and primed the tubing.
When I pushed the side of the inserter and the needle pierced his skin he seemed to be fine. He kept carrying on a conversation with Michael like nothing had happened. I was relieved. When he’s high at a site change is when it seems to bother him the most.
I decreased his pump 50% for 3.5 hours (like I always do after site changes to try and prevent lows). I also did not fill the canula (another trick to try to prevent lows). I dialed in the amount of insulin he needed for his high sugar (minus a little, to try to prevent lows).
When I pushed “OK” and the insulin injected Riley let out a howling scream. His eyes filled with tears and he began to bawl. I hugged him and tried to comfort him. All the while he was crying on my shoulder. After a while the crying stopped. But, every few seconds he’d say “Ow, ow, ow” and tense up. Then, he’d cry a little more.
This went on for several minutes. Finally, it stopped hurting.
Right after the change we needed to leave to go somewhere. Riley started to complain. He didn’t want to go anywhere because it hurt to sit down after a needle change. We told him it was a short ride, just over a mile down the road, and he got in the car and did fine after that.
An hour after his needle change his sugar was 217. He had dropped 208 points in one hour (even after all the things I did to try and prevent a low). So, he got to eat his Doritos. He proceeded to go low anyway.
Then, high, then low, then high…..You get the picture.
During church yesterday morning his sugar was dropping so I decreased his basal, I decreased it a little too much I guess because he ended up high after that. At the end of the day his sugar graph looked more like something you would see on a heart monitor.
I hate days like that. I hate that I can’t do anything to take away the pain. I hate that I help cause that pain. I hate that my full-time job is being a pancreas. It’s the most important job of my life, yet I didn’t go to school to do it. There’s no such thing as a degree in pancreatology. It’s all on the job training. And, when you screw up, your child pays for it.