Saturday, January 18, 2014

I'll take it. All of it.

I cried myself to sleep last night.

I haven’t done that in a long while.

Literally falling away from the world with tears streaming down my face.  Angry that some would judge me because the moment scared me so.

Angry that my children had a disease that would put their lives at risk just completely so out of the blue…

Angry that I was angry.

And yet amidst all of that anger, love.  A love so strong it flooded every inch of my body.  My chest lurching towards my son’s room, fighting off the urge to continue staring at him all night.

The thought of losing a child can make even the calmest of mothers completely insane.  The what-ifs take flight like a sea of bats exiting a cave for the hunt, clouding all my self-assurance in their wake.  The fact that I’ve lost my husband, that I’ve intimately felt the loss of someone so completely precious, makes it all even more raw. 

If you have a raw wound and rake fear over it, it hurts more.  Take your fingernail and gently graze from your wrist to the crook of your arm.  You maybe felt something.  Maybe you didn’t feel anything.  But if there was a large, festering open wound there?  The tears would come.  I promise you.

So if you haven’t experienced what I’ve experienced, you just can’t know the conflict of emotions bouncing off the walls of my story.

And if you think I’m being dramatic?  Well I can't think of a response without using a swear word, so I'll just leave that question there for now.

If you think I’m complaining about being up all night taking care of my child, you would be wrong.  Sleep is completely irrelevant here.  I could care less about sleep.  I can’t remember the last night I was up with a worry such as this.

I don’t need to recount the entire story to you.  All you need to know is most of the time I play with diabetes like an old dog around the house.  I give it the attention it needs, I feed it, I check on it, I take it to the doctor, I do what I need to…but I separate my children from it.  My children certainly aren’t diabetes.  It’s a visitor. 

But on nights like this I feel like this old dog grew fangs and is holding my children hostage.  I want more than anything to rip them away from their captors grasp.

Last night I looked that old dog in the eye and wondered how I’ve gone years thinking it was completely harmless.  Years thinking I was stronger than it.  Years believing my vigilance would trump any of its efforts.

Because the truth here is…THE TRUTH IS…it only takes one time.

And knowing that stings my eyes, my heart, and my soul as I realize tomorrow I’ll have to continue taking care of that dog like he is simply a harmless visitor.  It just goes against all my sensibilities when I’m in the moment.

Even though I will do it.

Even though I know I’ll be lulled back to a sense of security, and I know that tomorrow I will stand on firmer ground than today.

As the tears fell my mind fell back to the previous day.  My son’s hugs.  He must have told me he loved me a dozen times.  Maybe two dozen?  Making dinner side by side with him.  Holding his hand in the car.  Him scratching my back for a couple seconds as he walked by.  His big, sincere smile.  Our secret handshake. 

He is a miracle. 

He is my miracle. 

And I thank the good Lord that these moments are only sometimes.

Because most of the time diabetes is like brushing his teeth.  A job.  Just a whatever thing that he does.  I know what a blessing that is. 

But on nights like this, you’re damn right I’ll cry.  The wounds on my heart will forever be there and I realize that’s on me. 

Though if those wounds have taught me anything, they have taught me that we will survive.  We will get up and keep moving and the world will continue turning and that old dog will still be lying on the rug tomorrow, the next day and the next.

Somehow, everything will be ok.  Somehow, everything will work out in the end. 

My son doesn’t know what happened last night.  He doesn’t know I cried myself to sleep.  And that is how it should be.  Someday he may read this and see the fear that his mother wore on her sleeve one night.  I hope when he does, he’ll have children or a wife of his own, and he’ll understand that this night I waited for his blood sugar to come up is completely insignificant.  What is significant is my love for him.  

He is everything.

I’m doing what every parent does.  Whether it be a fever, an ear ache, night terrors or diabetes…I’m loving him and worrying about him.

That’s my job. 

And let me tell you, I’ll gladly take every facet of this job in exchange for those hugs.

Because he’s worth it.  He’ll always be worth it.  And in a strange, twisted way, these moments make me love him even more.  They make me realize how lucky I am to have him in my life.  I don’t wish these moments on any family, but regardless, appreciating my son, and loving him even more is a blessing.

I’ll take it.  All of it.


  1. I read your Facebook post earlier and immediately a feeling of panic came over me. I know what it is like to see those numbers. It is not a nice feeling. Of course you cried. How can you not? You are an amazing Mom and inspiration to so many, but seriously everyone needs to vent, scream, cry sometimes:). I am so relieved that is is okay. That is what matters. Your love for your boys is so immense and I see it in all your posts. Have a good day Meri. Enjoy your boys. They are miracles.

  2. Oh Meri....... I have no words but that fear...? I know that fear. Overly dramatic? No. You did good. So many of us live with that old dog.... The wolf in our children's rooms. We know. We understand. You are not alone.

  3. ((HUGS)) there is nothing like that moment when you go into fight/flight/freeze mode for your child. Crying is normal, these things are just not predictable or every calm feeling. I am so glad he's okay and you are, too. You guys are one strong team and I am glad that you share so many moments with us all so that I know when I am there sobbing about d that I am not strange, that this tangible fear is real and protecting our kids no matter what is necessary. I hope you guys have a relaxing weekend, with no more tanking numbers.

  4. Meri, you are an amazing woman with incredible insight and wisdom.

  5. Your blog makes me cry, EVERY DAMN TIME! Peace to you. Thank you for writing.

  6. Wonderful and candid. We've all been there. One day we roll with it, the next day it ticks us off. Meri, I wrote a book about the emotional journey of my boys' first year with Diabetes. So many books are there about caring for Diabetes, but not many talk about how crazy you can feel...and it's normal. Check it out! As you said, my boys will never know how much I have worried, cried...and aged over this! It's not their burden to bear. Mommy Can't Fix It on Amazon.

  7. My Goodness!!! Even though we have never met, I read your words and it is as if they pour right out of my own heart. I cry with you because I know that fear you write about all too well, as so many of us do. Reading your blog is so healing for me. It reminds me that I am not alone that there are so many of us that share similar experiences and feelings as parents of T1D children. You are a hero and you remind me that I am too and that we all are. We do what we need to do, "playing with the old dog" day after day (as you put it so well), then we are faced with it's fangs one day and reminded of how tenuous life. It takes me to my knees and fills me with tears then knowing I have no choice, I get right back up again and play with that old dog again. Thank you again for your powerful words. You are my hero and though we have not met, when I feel I can't get up off my knees I remember you and your story, and I find the strength to get up! A big hug to you!!!

  8. meri - i can't tell you how much i appreciate your authenticity here. i think it's so important to lay these raw emotions out when they are still raw so that others know they are not alone. if we wait until we can clean them up and put a pretty bandaid on them we somehow imply to others that we kinda have it together and the truth is...some days we don't. some days we realize completely how helpless we are against this disease...and that's hard...but it's the truth. and it's an opportunity for opportunity for His strength in our opportunity for gratitude to bury itself way down deep in our hearts for the things we might otherwise take for granted. thank you.

  9. I'll be praying for you. We have one with T1D as well. Also praying for a cure!

  10. Wow, the dog in the home analogy is so spot on! Brought tears to my eyes. It's hard to live most days acting as though he's friendly, knowing what he could do. :( Hugs.

  11. It only takes once. Gotta be one of the biggest things I hate about diabetes. Hope this week brings some peace.

  12. Been here too often lately myself Meri....only you can say it oh so perfectly. ((HUGS)) Love you!!!

  13. It's so true.... it only takes once. I'm so glad your son is okay, though I can read you are still shaken. We experienced that once her first day home from the hospital.... she dropped on the sidewalk one hour after dinner. We didn't even have Glucagon, just a script. Thankfully, we were able to revive her with glucose gel massaged into her cheeks. Never happened again, and we have gotten a lot more comfortable over the years. But once it happens, you never forget. You are able to put into word perfectly what so many feel. One day, I hope you write a book. You are a talented writer.

  14. Tears. Tears for the many times I've been there myself with my own diabetes and tears for the fears I have for my son who doesn't have diabetes. Beautiful, beautiful post. (And maybe a few tears because I'm an emotional, pregnant basketcase.:)


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