Life Changed On October 6

Latest Activity

Elizabeth replied to Linda Rabe-Frady's discussion 'High Lipids in teen' in the group parents of kids with Type 1
"Try eliminating dairy -- almond milk and coconut milk have the same level of calcium but w/o the cholesterol. He'll have to go without cheese, I'm afraid... but coconut milk ice cream is awesome, so it isn't total deprivation. It is a…"
Elizabeth replied to Elizabeth's discussion 'Have you see the new A1c recommendation for pediatric type 1 diabetes?' in the group parents of kids with Type 1
"I was somewhat relieved that the target (<7.5) is relatively close to where I've had Eric these past few years. I was worried that they'd be asking us to target <7.0, because the only way I've ever gotten below 7.0 has been with…"
Elizabeth commented on Penny R.'s group 'parents of kids with Type 1'
"Also, I want to second the suggestion about having the thyroid checked. Hypothyroidism is very common in people with T1 diabetes and it can cause high cholesterol."
Elizabeth commented on Penny R.'s group 'parents of kids with Type 1'
"Linda, in addition to what marnie suggested, you might try eliminating dairy products for 3-6 months. Cholesterol comes from eating animal products, and while dairy is a top source of calcium, which your son obviously needs right now since he's…"
kaitype1 replied to Elizabeth's discussion 'Have you see the new A1c recommendation for pediatric type 1 diabetes?' in the group parents of kids with Type 1
"Yes. Currently less than what it was previously stated. I am a firm believer that as close as possible to normal is where we it should be."
Elizabeth replied to Hooly's discussion 'Question for parents about diagnosis of Type 1' in the group parents of kids with Type 1
"With a significant family history of T1? No. They won't think you're crazy. They'll be delighted that for once they don't get a kid in DKA who is in danger of dying."
Jul 17
Elizabeth left a comment for rick the "Blogabetic"
"Thanks for the validation -- I am pretty much making it up as I go and any advice/insights I get from the people who actually live with diabetes is helpful. It often feels like fumbling in the dark. Actually it feels like fumbling in the dark most…"
Jul 16
rick the "Blogabetic" left a comment for Elizabeth
"Elizabeth, I do not know what it means to have a child so young with diabetes. I am thankful. Though I grew up with diabetes I was not diagnosed until I was 17. But I do know a few situations where children have diabetes and live in a multi-child…"
Jul 16

Profile Information

The PRIMARY person in my life who has diabetes is
1 or more of my children
The PRIMARY person in my life who has diabetes has
Type 1 or type 1.5 (LADA) diabetes
How do you hope to benefit from TuDiabetes?
Support, ideas, sympathetic ears, community
Date diagnosed
October 7, 2008
Most recent HbA1C %, date of result (optional)
6.7 (June 2014)
Type of treatment/devices you use
What pump model do you use, if any?
Medtronic Paradigm 522
Enter your website, if any (blog, Facebook, Twitter)

So here's my basic story

I suddenly became the mother of a child with Type 1 diabetes in an odyssey that started on October 6th, 2008, when Eric was a toddler. Before that date, I'd noticed that Eric was peeing through his diapers at night, that he was really thirsty all the time in the evenings, and the possibility of diabetes had crossed my mind and was lurking there. But October 6 was the day Eric's daycare provider phoned me at work and told me she'd noticed he was thirsty all the time during the day, too. As soon as I got that info, I called the pediatrician and left a message — I wanted Eric checked out. All the drive home I was praying that we'd find out it was something else. But the next day, when I picked up my boys from the daycare en route to the pediatrician (Eric was 18 months, Nate was 3 1/2), I felt pretty sure what the verdict would be. And when Dr. Foster came into the room looking uncharacteristically anxious and said, "Well, Mom, you were right..." my heart just sank.

What I DIDN’T know was that he was already in serious trouble—diabetic ketoacidosis was underway, though you’d never know it to look at him, and the next stop on that train is a place no parent wants to go. I picked the boys up from daycare and went to the pediatrician thinking I’d get my diagnosis and go home with instructions to see an endocrinologist within the next day or two; instead, we were sent straight to the ER, do not pass go do not collect $200, met at the door by the pediatric endocrinologist on call, with me trying to keep Nate under control while listening to doctor explain what was happening, while the Dread Hamster of Parental Fear used my brain for a exercise ball. His blood glucose was 569, that much I remember, and his ketones were high too — the rest is something of a blur. Eric did well, even laughing when we were wheeled through the halls of the hospital on a gurney; considering how sick he was and how terrible he must have been feeling, it shows just how cheery his nature is. And of course Nate was with us and just loved it, although he kept doing little kid stuff like pointing at some guy on a stretcher who looked like he was having a heart event and saying loudly, “Mommy, is that guy REALLY TIRED?? Why’s he lying down?” Or at the person on chemotherapy: “Look, mommy, that guy has no hair!” (it was a woman. Aren’t kids great?) At one point Dr Olshan himself took on the task of keeping Nate locked down while the nurse was attending to Eric with my help, and he asked me if I’d ever before had a $200-an-hour babysitter. Which made me laugh, but also made me think about Eric’s less-than-stellar insurance coverage (but that’s another gripe for another day).

From there we went to the ICU, with tubes and wires and all that stuff. Mark took Nate home, while I got to stay to comfort my little pickle. What followed was an agonizing night in which I got no sleep, had to hold my screaming son down as ICU nurses drew blood and inserted IVs (I’ve threaded sewing needles bigger than his little veins, so it was torture to watch), and was wakened hour after hour to assist as they performed blood glucose and ketone tests. By the time they came for the 3 am round of testing, Eric was so exhausted he didn’t even wake when they stuck him... And I was little better, waking just enough to identify who it was leaning over my son before closing my eyes again. Thank GOD, Eric responded very well to the insulin—by mid-day he was practically back to normal.

We spent 2 1/2 days in the pediatric ward learning how to stick our child with needles, then came home to a completely new reality. We learned about insulin, we learned about needles, we learned about insulin pumps and all their assorted accessories; we learned about highs, lows, ketones, why an antiemetic is a good thing, and the many ways that insurance companies try to dodge paying the bill. I suspect we'll be learning more and more for years to come.

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Elizabeth's Blog

D is for... demigod?

Posted on July 15, 2014 at 10:30am 0 Comments

I've always done everything in my power to make sure Eric and Nate have the same opportunities, D or no D. But this week... Nate went to summer camp.

And suddenly, unexpectedly, Eric was jealous.

I have two very different boys here. Nate is outdoorsy, athletic, rough-and-tumble, enjoys (ENJOYS!) doing farm chores, can take or leave the electronics (unless, of course, he's competing with Eric for control of the iPad), likes to read books. Eric is much less physical, much more…


Just another day in the life

Posted on May 1, 2014 at 6:00am 2 Comments

The morning thus far:

7:00 AM: First BG of the morning was sky high (328). Checked for ketones, those too were sky high (4.5). Looked at pump site, found cannula full of blood (must've been a restless night). Brand new site, less than 12 hours old, clearly was toast. Pasted a blop of lido/prilo cream on the next available site location, dosed Eric with a whopping 7.5 units of insulin to account for high BG, high ketones, and anticipated 65-g breakfast, and…


Checking for monsters

Posted on April 27, 2014 at 12:35am 6 Comments

It's 2:30 a.m., and I just performed what I call a "monster check", and can't get back to sleep for thinking. So up comes the blog.

"Monster check" is one of those expressions that is my way of pigeonholing the fears that go with parenting a child with diabetes. It's a BG test that you make when you wake in the middle of the night and go test your child for no other reason than that you can't stop thinking of their last low (or high) and obsess about whether you'll find them in an…


The Bad Kind

Posted on April 12, 2014 at 8:27am 18 Comments

It's almost a cliche to say that the most annoying response people make to learning your child has Type 1 diabetes is to say, "Is that the bad kind?" To everyone in the know, that level of ignorance is bothersome on many levels, which we can summarize via the various responses that pop into my head (and sometimes out my mouth, depending on how annoying the questioner seems):

• "Well, there IS no 'good' kind of diabetes."

• "If you mean, does he need to take insulin for the rest…


Things that make you want to scream, part 1

Posted on February 19, 2014 at 4:30pm 6 Comments

I have a friend on Twitter who is a type 1 diabetic. We "met" by virtue of the fact that he is a friend in real life of one of my good real-life friends, with whom I communicate regularly on Twitter. He asked me a few questions about how I manage my son's diabetes and I learned, via the (non-public) discourse that followed, that he was extremely limited in his ability to manage his D due to financial constraints.

Like: he was allotted 1 test strip per day.

My jaw…


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At 5:12am on July 16, 2014, rick the "Blogabetic" said…

Elizabeth, I do not know what it means to have a child so young with diabetes. I am thankful. Though I grew up with diabetes I was not diagnosed until I was 17.

But I do know a few situations where children have diabetes and live in a multi-child family. I think you did the camp thing about as good as anyone I know. When I was diagnosed I left one month later for a months worth of backpacking in New Mexico. My mom was ok with it because as I said I grew up with the disease and that was my last summer before my senior year in HS.

Had I been younger, with a non diabetic sibling I think my mom would have said almost the very same things you did in that situation. I cannot give you a higher compliment than saying that.


At 6:13pm on July 14, 2014, Linda G said…

GREAT Elizabeth!!! You're a FEATURE MEMBER!! BRAVA!

At 3:47pm on October 9, 2013, Linda G said…


At 5:32pm on October 8, 2013, rick the "Blogabetic" said…

Elizabeth congratulations on being named a featured member of the week.

At 6:56am on August 30, 2013, Linda G said…


At 4:50pm on August 26, 2013, Mom of a Winner said…

Thank you.

At 6:23am on August 26, 2013, Sandy said…

Hi Elizabeth!! Congrats on being featured!! I'm enjoying your blog! ANd your boys are adorable!!

At 4:02am on August 26, 2013, Mom of a Winner said…


At 10:05pm on August 25, 2013, Gabriella said…

Congrats on being featured! (:

At 6:23am on June 21, 2013, LauraWeiss said…
It sounds like the pump really makes a big difference. I hope SSI will cover it. Do you think if I made an argument about the Autism that would help. I'm so new to all this



From the Diabetes Hands Foundation blog...

DHF Partners with HelpAround in an Effort to Connect People Touched by Diabetes

  Leer en español Technology has the amazing ability to ease the stress associated with diabetes; It simply makes our lives a little more bearable. That’s why we are excited to announce DHFs partnership with HelpAround. This new application will help Read on! →

La Diabetes Hands Foundation y HelpAround uniendo las personas tocadas por la diabetes

  Para nuestra comunidad de diabetes la tecnología ha venido a llenar muchos vacíos y a hacer de nuestras vidas un poco mas llevaderas. Eso mismo nos proporciona una nueva aplicación de geo-localización llamada HelpAround (Ayuda a tu alrededor). HA Read on! →

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