THE STORY OF ONE FAMILY'S JOURNEY WITH TYPE 1 DIABETES AND CELIAC DISEASE.
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Sunday, September 5, 2010

Dreaming: The Repost

I had a request from a FB friend (HI ALLISON!!!) to re-post this one from my archive.  It was my final post from Diabetes Blog Week 2010, on 5/16/10, and I'm pleased to share it again.  If you have a specific post in mind that you want to see included in the transition from my old blog to the new one, please don't hesitate to leave me a comment, find me on Facebook, or drop me an email.

Day 7: Dream A Little Dream

I have to admit that I almost pulled the Wild Card today. Today's topic of "dreaming about life with a cure for diabetes" drums up some difficult emotions for me to face. Preparing for today's post has taken me to a different level. A deeper, transparent, inner level that's hard to bring to the surface.  For a week, I've wondered what this post would look like, and, to be honest, even as I click away on my keyboard, I still don't really know what to expect.

I invite you to grab a cup of your favorite comfort drink -- hot chocolate, herbal tea, coffee?  Or maybe just a beer...no worries - there's no judging here.  Seriously, whatever suits your fancy.

Come along with me.

It's journey to the deep end of Wendy's Candy Heart...

I want a cure for Sugar.  I want type 1 diabetes to go away.  I want Sugar to grow up without the increased risk of heart disease, kidney failure, stroke, amputation, and blindness.  I want her to have a carefree childhood without worrying about interrupting her school day for trips to the health office and how many carbs are in every single thing she eats or drinks.

Except...type 1 diabetes is a fundamental part of who Sugar is.  She has brown eyes, curly hair, ten toes, and a pancreas that doesn't produce insulin.  No, she wasn't born that way.  Instead, she was born with a pancreas that would function normally for 18 months and putter out 3 weeks after her 2nd birthday.

I wonder what it would be like to go through life hearing people always talk about passionately wanting a cure for...ME?  Sugar doesn't understand my fears.  She also doesn't know what it's like to swim without worrying about her insulin pump, eat without checking her blood sugar first, or live life without a juice box in arm's reach at all times. This is just her life.

And everyone around her wants a cure for it.  But does SHE?

I asked her about it.  Honestly, she said she doesn't mind having diabetes. It bugs her more to have celiac. She'd rather be able to eat the same cupcake as the rest of the class, and go out for pizza anytime without thinking about gluten.

I was shocked.  It wasn't what **I** wanted to hear.  I wanted to hear that we're on the same team.  I wanted to hear that we're fighting the same fight, and working towards a common goal.  I had finale music playing in my mind and pictured our family approaching the "Diabetes Finish Line" -- hand in hand, tired, and cheering each other on as the moment finally arrived...

And then she says she doesn't "mind it"?  WHAT?

She followed up with a profound comment that left me somewhat speechless.  And even more unsure of the direction of this post.

"I'm wonderfully made, Mom."

O. M. Gsh.  She quoted the Bible.

Psalm 139:13-14 (New International Version)


 13 For you created my inmost being;
       you knit me together in my mother's womb.
 14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
       your works are wonderful,
       I know that full well.


And that's when I began thinking...REALLY thinking about what a cure for diabetes IS.  And what it isn't.

Maybe...just MAYBE Sugar's cure is in me -- in all of us? Maybe her cure is in accepting that God never said life would be easy.  In fact, He warned that life would come with trials. Perhaps her cure exists in the wisdom I seek while coping with this disease. Perhaps her cure is found when I realize that the example I set while persevering this trial day in and day out is preparing her for what her future will hold.

Will she fall down and cry when trials come her way?  Will she pray for it all to go away?  Will she run and hide? Will she scream at the top of her lungs out of frustration?  Will she lash out at the people around her because it appears they have an easier path? (All of which I'm guilty of doing, by the way.)

Or will she gracefully accept the challenge and rise to the occasion, knowing that God is perfectly capable of seeing her through it?

Have you ever read the Book of James in the Bible?  It's really short and hardly takes any time at all to read. Since you have your comfy cup of whatever in hand, go ahead and take few minutes to skim it.

Don't worry.  I'll wait.
... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 

HA!  Did you get past that first line?

2Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 

Say again?

J-O-Y???????????  You have GOT to be freaking kidding me.

Diabetes can be described as alot of things, but I'm not sure "JOY" is one of them.

The first time I went through James, my heart was convicted in a way I had never experienced before.  Our Neighborhood Group was meeting once a week and breaking it apart.  At the time, I was in a stage of grief dealing with Sugar's diabetes diagnosis, and facing an overwhelming amount of pent up anger over alot of stuff...dia-stinking-betes being just the tip of the iceburg.  (All of that can be saved for a different post on another day.  To keep your jo from turning into an ice cube, let's just say that I have a long way to go.)

Anyway, yeah.

JOY.

I've spent the last 2 years intentionally acknowledging the JOY of raising a family that includes a child with diabetes. This blog has been my way to document that journey.  It's not always chipper...but...then again, LIFE isn't always chipper either.  Like I said...I'm working on it.

But I gotta tell you...JOY is there. When we have 24 hours of beautiful numbers -- that's  PURE JOY, my friend. When she is able to climb the highest play structure, ace a spelling test, read us a book, and teach her sisters a new game...JOY. There's JOY in waking up each morning, and being thankful that diabetes didn't steal her during the night.  There's JOY in knowing that technology has come SO FAR, and that we have been blessed with an insulin pump.

The truth is that I DO believe there will be a cure for diabetes in the physical sense.  I DO believe that, one day, the burden of blood sugar checks, carb counting, and fear of complications will be alleviated.

But I don't believe science can do it alone. A cure will come according to God's plan and only with God's provisions.

In the meantime, is it possible that a cure already exists in the way we respond to the challenge?

Perhaps this diabetes journey is a tool for shaping something much bigger. A tool for molding our family's faith in Jesus Christ so that we can reach our true destiny -- regardless of whether or not there is a physical cure for the physical disease.   Everyday, we are building character skills to carry us through the trials of life that are yet to come.  As a family, we've learned how to evaluate what is most important.  We've realigned our priorities. We've learned to find contentment in what we DO have instead of dwelling on what we don't have. We've learned to let go of unhealthy habits and relationships.  We've built compassionate hearts, and find it natural to connect with others who are hurting.

Sometimes it seems like Sugar's cure is taking too long.  I feel like I just can't do it another day.  I can't deal with more numbers swirling in my brain, and face yet ANOTHER situation that involves troubleshooting, uncertainty, and guessing games.

But then I must remind myself of something very important:

She is wonderfully made.

(Broken pancreas and all.)

2 Corinthians 4:17-18 (New International Version)

17For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.


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This post is participating in Diabetes Blog Week

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7 comments:

  1. Everything about Addy is perfect. Addy has fought for her life ever since her conception. She is astonshing and accepts what life offers her with a simple"OK." If only I was so brave.

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  2. Joe says the same thing..."D" doesn't bother him. He doesn't see it as an obstacle. I wonder if that will change as the caregiver role shifts from me to him?

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  3. Ahhh - YES!! I remeber this post. I remember how I felt after I read it that first time. And I feel the same way as I do this time. Sugar gives ME Hope when she says that! She gives me Hope that someday my Sugar Boy will say the same words... and believe them with all his heart. She gives me confirmation... that in our Hope His will be done.
    Thank you for re-posting, Wendy... absolutely BEAUTIFUL post! =)

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  4. Wow Wendy . . . I LOVE reading all your posts. THis one really got to me. Well most of yours do. Sugar is one sweet girl and lucky to have a momma that is right by her side every step of the way.

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  5. I'm so glad to read this a second time! Sweet little Sugar made me cry! SHE IS WONDERFULLY MADE!!

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  6. another awesome blog... funny my baby girl who is now 8 has also claimed she would rather deal with d than with C (celiac)....have to admit when we received that news I was more devastated than I was with the D.... I guess it because my both of my kids were DXd with T1d 51 days apart...

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Life For A Child Button 2
While I'm happy to share our experiences with what works, and what doesn't work, for the management of Type 1 Diabetes and Celiac Disease in our house, please do not mistake anything you read here for medical advice. Decisions regarding your/your child's health care should be made only with the assistance of your medical care team. Use any information from this blog at your own risk.