March 3rd, 2008

Sweet Freedom

This may fall into the TMI category (too much information), but I feel like we’re friends now.  So I can share.

This past Friday, my youngest son was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes. We spent three days in the hospital getting his blood sugar under control and learning, as parents, how to manage his diet, his multiple daily blood tests and insulin shots.

Boy, was this an awakening. My son is 3.

We also did a fair amount of crying.

My husband and I are now in charge of keeping our son’s insulin function running smoothly. This is quite a responsibility. And one I’ve taken for granted as just something that happens in my own body on its own.

I’ve become quite educated these past 4 days in the maze that is the diabetic diet. And, friends, I’m happy to tell you, steak is A-okay.

For the Type 1 diabetes my son has, he must adhere to a constant carbohydrate diet. Meaning he must eat between a certain range of carbs per meal or snack. Steak and meats are 0 carbs.


That made me so happy to know that when my son is old enough, he can share the joy of a good steak with his old man and his mom. (His palate is not quite there yet. But if genetics have anything to do with it, he’ll be a huge steak fan in due time.) It really is funny the things that pop into your mind when you’re trying to wrap your head around what a startling diagnosis like this means.

You just want some normalcy. And you don’t want for your child to miss out on any of life’s joys.

And, speaking of steak, I dreamed of it every night in the 30 minutes of sleep I was allotted in between shots and blood work and vital signs and various other noises on the floor.

I spent the three days in the hospital avoiding the food, while smiling and encouraging my son to eat every bite of it. A big, juicy steak was all I could think of when I closed my eyes at night.

A woman cannot live on Dr Pepper and packaged peanut butter crackers alone.

We finally busted out of the hospital on Sunday night. And there are 4 sirloin steaks in my freezer calling my name.

I’m going grill them up this week and celebrate with my husband our being on the other side of a very trying time.

It’s good to be home!