Wake Us Up Damnit!!!!! Nitetime Lows???? Warn Us!!!!

WAKE_UPI was asked to rerun this column and respectfully I post it again.

Okay—here is the idea.  While we wait for so many things from a cure to better tools for management like a bionic/artificial pancreas; here is my idea.

Knowing one of the BIGGEST fears for parents is losing our child(ren) (or loved one like a spouse or a  person with diabetes) while they sleep from a diabetes reaction—I offer the following challenge for better minds than me to work through, and could be done fairly quickly I imagine.

Knowing that tools like the CGM are already in place where a radio frequency is sent from the sensor to the device that reads blood sugar (and I get that it is not perfected yet)—cannot the same radio frequency be utilized to send a low or low trending blood sugar alarm to a device that could be triggered to wake up the entire household with the warning that the person with diabetes may be in trouble.  Perhaps at 60—or 55—or perhaps you can set it to the number you like that works best for you.  THIS cannot be a far stretch for the device to do from the alarm it is already activating—just make it a real loud activation. REAL LOUD.

Why does it have to be the whole ball of wax for an AP with reading glucose numbers and dispensing insulin and all that yada yada with FDA, algorithms, etc etc etc . (when it comes, great; but we have a long haul before it gets here—this is for the NOW—this is technology available NOW).

JUST WAKE US UP DAMN-IT

Ring bells—turn on lights—send in the cows—-make the frequency trigger something; THIS cannot be all that hard with available technology.

The CGM is already equipped to set of an alarm, based on info it receives from a sensor…right? All I’m saying is to have an ad hoc attachment that can sit on the night stand and get the same frequency that the CGM receives and activate whatever is needed to wake up the entire household when that number from a diabetes reaction is reached.

The answer?  Nope.  But a step until what we wait for is ready? Yep.

I would sleep a little better…….wouldn’t you?

Send this and share this with everyone and anyone to whoever is out there and willing to listen.

Thoughts? 

I am a Diabetes Dad

Please visit my Diabetes Dad FB Page and hit ‘like’.

The Final Text Message Before Death at the Wheel……Share with Your Kids.

TextMany different news sources are running the story about Alexander Heit, a University of Northern Colorado Student who was driving and texting and in the middle of the text message, I have posted here, he swerved into oncoming traffic, jerked his wheel back and rolled his car; he died a short time later.

My own daughter, Kaitlyn, was in a head-on collision because of such a distraction from an oncoming driver.  Even after almost a year of physical therapy, she still has both the pains and the nightmares.

Alexander’s parents have courageously shared this, his final text message (you will see he was in the middle of the message when the crash ended his life), in the hope it might save just one person’s life.  I highly applaud them for their incredible efforts and offer condolences on such a senseless way to die.

Share this with your kids.

The message could have been about anything, there is nothing significant in this message–why could have it not waited until it was safe to converse?  Why?  WHY?

DO NOT TEXT AND DRIVE; TURN THE PHONE OFF.  And while we are at it, if you have diabetes NEVER START THE CAR until your blood sugar is checked. EVER!

I am a diabetes dad.

Please visit my Diabetes Dad FB Page and hit ‘like’.

Our Fragile Homes…….PLEASE Take the Time to Enjoy. A Moment Can Change Everything!!!

home sweet homeBeing on the road as much as I am; I always enjoy the first morning I am back home.  As I poured my coffee this morning I thought to myself, “Ahhhh, this is nice.”  I love the amount of energy I put in which truly is nonstop.  To make a difference in the lives of people with diabetes and to constantly be on the look-out for when this will end forever is all part of making a day, week, month, and so on go ver, very quickly.  I do love it.

But there is always that ‘something’ when you are standing in your own kitchen pouring a cup of coffee. 

Home.

I wonder if our kids feel like that feeling as they venture out into the world whether it be for just a day or for weeks/months at a time.  DO they come home and feel that same relaxation?  Do they feel safe?  DO they feel that ‘it’s great to be back home’ feeling?

And those who move out; do they feel strange returning to the place they have nestled; and walking up the steps knowing they no longer live in the world that made them so comfortable; what do they feel?

There is something to be said in the amount of work given into a building.  The laughter, the love, the gatherings, the traditions, and yes even all of the ‘not-so-good’ occurrences we all experienced all make up that sense of home.  But it is also as if that solid home sits on a tree branch that could break at any given time.  We need to take the time to appreciate it; NOW.

It is not a size or a style or anything more than who is inside.

Many people we know have taken major ‘hits’ to this family structure; to this home.  Take the time to enjoy it.  Take the time to realize how fortunate you are because in an instant; it can be changed for life.  Look around you—–oh yes we are dealing through life, that DOES happen, and it CAN BE tough.  But know that those who have left us would want all of us to keep living with what WE DO have.

This became so real for me when I recently picked up the phone to call someone to share a story that SO REMINDED me of them.  Just as I reached I also realized they are no longer with us.  Anyone else ever do that?  At first I felt sad, but as I thought about it (staring at the phone thinking ‘how dumb was that move?’) I began to smile because it was almost as if ‘that action’ was the very same person reminding me that I should look around and be grateful for WHO is here and WHAT is here.

Take a look around….be grateful…do not wait until something impacts your household….fully believe and enjoy the fact that there is no place……..like home.

I am a  diabetes dad. 

Please visit my Diabetes Dad FB Page and hit ‘like’.

 

Mother Sentenced to 16 Years for Death of her T1 Daughter; Neglect……What Are Your Thoughts?

Jail

She was nine years old when she died.  Did we, perhaps, light blue candles back when we heard?  As months and years went on, the story unraveled.  The incredible horror of life was told, and the results were as baffling as they were horrendous.  How?  Why? 

Who stood by and only watched.  In this day; in this age?  How so sad.

I would be very interested what you think after you read this story.  Kindly hit reply and feel free to comment and give your input to this horrendous story.

Reported by the New York Daily News via Dallas Morning News :
A Texas mom was jailed for the death of her diabetic daughter after failing to control her condition by letting her eat sugar-filled sweet treats.

Georgia Jones, 31, will spend the next 16 years locked up after confessing to feeding Chasity Butler, who was just nine, foods that were high in glucose.  (Diabetes Dad NOTE: Other stories on this news showed that there was ‘other neglect’ over the years and this reads a bit differently than some of the other stories I found.  That neglect was stated in other stories beginning before her daughter’s diagnosis of T1—FYI)

She also left Chasity — who died on her mom’s bed in May 2008 next to a bag of candy and a half-eaten cupcake — to take her own blood-glucose-level readings and insulin injections. (DD Note: remember she was 9 at the time of her death)

Jones, from Dallas, was arrested a year after her daughter’s death — which a coroner ruled was natural from complications of her Type I diabetes.

But Jones was, according to cops and state Child Protective Services, responsible for not preventing the death as she did not monitor or treat the condition. (DD NOTE: Other reports I found were that Ms. Jones was responsible to send her daughter’s glucose numbers to CPS much more frequently than she did.)

Investigators in the case revealed Jones did not turn up to a Diabetes 101 class a week after her daughter fell into a coma and was diagnosed with the disease in 2005.

The night of her death, they also found that Chasity — who had dangerously high glucose levels, stomach pains and diarrhea — was fed candy and noodles to celebrate her sister’s birthday.

Jones’ husband Marqus Butler, whose mother now has custody of Chasity’s four sisters, previously said his wife let their daughter take a nap.

When they went to check on her, he added, they found she had died.

“Chasity’s diabetes was not monitored properly causing her to be constantly sick and in bed rather than leading a normal life-like other children her age,” Dallas police documents said.

Jones pleaded guilty and was sentenced by Judge Gary Stephens on Monday, the Dallas Morning News reports.

I am a diabetes dad.

Please visit my Diabetes Dad FB Page and hit ‘like’

It Happened Again……..DAMN-IT……This MUST STOP….Do something!

Blue CandlesAgain.  It happened yet again.

I am beside myself with complete rage and I apologize if my title annoyed or offended you.  I AM JUST SO ANGRY.

Mom takes her child to the Doctor with flu-like symptoms. The doctor advises that the flu has been going around and her child must deal with it.  Five days of hell and it will subside, she is told.

By day three her child would become extremely lethargic.  The Docs office would be no help this time.  The child became unresponsive.  The mom calls 9-1-1.

Two days of intensive intervention and despite the heroic efforts, it it all to to no avail and the child dies.  DKA.  And why?

I am so furious that once again a simple test might, AND I SAY MIGHT, have had an extremely different end to this story.

Throughout the month of March, many organizations will making their annual drive to Capitol Hill.  I know it is to ask for funding, but is there anyone else out there that thinks these organizations may want to find one of these parents who lost their child and ask them to join in the efforts.  To tell their horrible and compelling story.

I get it.  Great photo ops and kids and people with diabetes talking to congressional leaders.  More money for funding.  More money for treatment.  Makes sense, but more needs to be added.

I beg these organizations who are experts on approaching Capitol Hill and our elected leaders in Washington to also remember that there are children and people with diabetes who cannot speak for themselves.  Because when they were diagnosed, they were already dead.  SOMEONE NEEDS TO SPEAK FOR THEM.  If not a diabetes organization……….let me know who?

If you agree with this please pass it on, share,  comment, yell, scream, and kick your feet because if we can get one legislative on national health initiatives to hear us and help us to inform Doctors to run one simple blood test for diabetes than perhaps we will safe a life.  Pretty tangible result, don’t you think?

Anybody hear me out there enough to help do something?   Contact any organization you know going to Washington next month and show them this article………what do they think? A diabetes organization that will be on The Hill anyway; will they add to their agenda an idea that practitioners and pediatricians will add a simple glucose blood test to save one life so no one is ever again diagnosed at death?

Contact someone because if we don’t speak for those who cannot; someone else will be added to the list.

I am a diabetes dad

Please visit my Diabetes Dad FB Page and hit ‘like’.

A Blue Flame that Should Never Be Lit……Your Input is Requested to Extinguish it.

Blue flame extinguishedI had just read about a 7-year-old child that was diagnosed with diabetes upon their death.  I was livid. 

This just seems so unacceptable to me.  My experiences from hearing prior stories go something like this:
flu-like symptoms take place, it gets worse, trip after trip happens to medical offices/hospitals, no one can figure exact cause, and by time anyone can figure everything out……the individual passes away.   Now I DO NOT know if that is what happened in this case but I am informed the diagnosis was at death.

Unacceptable.

I am so angry that I decided reading about it and not doing anything about it is just not in my DNA.  Just ‘Don’t do Nothing’ has been written or stated by me a million times.  I reached out to The American Academy of Pediatrics to discuss the matter.

I am in the process of figuring out what we all might do.  Poster campaign, public service campaign, and I am not sure what….but SOMETHING.

I’m not stating that someone or a group is doing anything wrong.  All I am saying is that we should do all WE can to make sure it doesn’t happen again.  There are many laws on the books named after people who, upon their death, the families felt a change needed to be made.

In our diabetes community, that law (or action needed) would have an entire list of names. 

You know it was really incidents on playing fields that made the defibulators placed everywhere.  It was death in kids that made a rallying point to become a reality to make defibulators placed everywhere.

I might be wrong, but if a blood test would have revealed something, it needs to be done.  I may be way out of my league, here but something needs to be done, what do you think?

I learned, AGAIN, yesterday that his community can make a difference.  Not merely hundreds, thousands of people, responded trying to help yesterday in an incident now resolved.  When we as a community set our minds to do something we can change the tide.

Once I figure out a course of action, I will let you know.

Are you in?  Do you think that we as a community SHOULD try to do something?  Reply to this blog as I want/need to hear if I am just angry or DO YOU think something can/should be done?  What are your thoughts?

I am a diabetesdad.

NOTE: Hit ‘Like’ on my Diabetes Dad FB page to stay informed

Please God, with Everything that is Holy !!!!

We are the diabetes community. We are. We are not short for words. When we have an opinion, we speak. Today, I am asking you to have an opinion. In fact today I am asking you to scream. I am asking you to rally around one family.

Why this family? We all have problems; we all have to deal with what life throws at us; why this family? The answer is this: sometimes no matter what we go through, when you see someone going through absolute hell, you can step up to the plate in some way.  A way that will help no matter how small.  A way to show you care.

This is what Meri Schuhmacher wrote on her blog today. Meri has 4 boys (ages 16-14-10-8) and 3 of them—3 OF THEM–have type one diabetes. Her husband, a young man, passed away last weekend. Six months ago he was strong, vibrant and active; he was diagnosed with brain cancer; and his battle was lost last weekend.

Here is what Meri wrote today on her blog:
Aching
I wasn’t expecting it.
Looking back it should have been more clear to me what was happening, but in the moment…I was just coping with him. Loving him.

How everything happened last Sunday is so personal I can’t write it down here, but I can tell you that without a doubt…we received our miracle.

I sit here completely humbled, and shocked. How God got away with this without me cursing him is the monumental miracle itself. Each detail of the last week was carefully seeded so that on the other side I could not deny this timeline was always set. It just wasn’t for me to foresee.

My body is barely hanging on. I am so weak, and tired, and aching. I ache everywhere. But my brain is working overtime…leaning on the muscle mass it has gained the last few months.

I wish I could turn it off. I wish I could flip a switch and give my body a break from feeling it all.

I wish I could know exactly what to do for the boys, and what to say. I hate guessing my way through something so important. They are my number one priority right now.

He fought the fight so valiantly. Last night as I was staring at the wall trying to convince my brain to sleep, I realized that not once did Ryan ever complain. He never questioned why this was happening to him. He was only always positive. Hope was the only option in this house…it was how he lived. Finding the joy in the little things was his legacy, and looking back I do not regret one minute of our journey.

I hope one day to be able to follow his lead and live with the assurance that all will be well. Today that seems impossible. Nothing is well. Saying I miss him is not even close to the pain that I feel. He was my everything. My favorite. The love of my life. My best friend. He got my sense of humor. He never judged me. For the past 20 years we did everything together…our hobby was each other.

Writing things out is my best therapy. Letting it out and knowing my feelings are there to look back on help me get through. I don’t know how long it will take me to navigate this road I’m on…maybe forever…but I will continue to come here and lay it all out.

It is my way.

I hope that it will help me get through this day. And then tomorrow I’ll figure out a way to get through that one too.

Thank you for raining down love and support to me and my beautiful boys. Thank you for your tears, and for being my friend.

I don’t know that I can do this. I’m completely scared out of my mind. But I know that Ryan knows I can do this, and that gives me the hopeful inkling that maybe, just maybe…I will.

—MERI

Imagine the size of Meri’s ‘blue candle’; imagine her heart, imagine her life.

Is it enough to only hurt for her or can we do something?

What Meri does not do on her blog is ask for help.  It is why I copied what she wrote instead of just sending you to her site to read it.  With everything that the God of this earth may find holy I’m asking you to do one of two things (or both if you are so inclined)…….today!
This link:
http://www.giveforward.com/schuhmacherfamilymiracle2
1. Go to it and donate.
2. Go on Facebook and share this link with everyone including your own words how important it is to make a difference for this one family. Have your kids go on Facebook and share with everyone and anyone asking to help.

Really? 3 kids with T1 and now no husband, father, and/or best friend to help get through every day. How bad do we actually have it that we cannot, on this day, help a family from our very own community?

All of our collective causes will all be there tomorrow, I promise. Today, to actually have the power to touch a life; is the power to change a world. Let’s do it together…….thank you.  I’m a diabetesdad.

A mad as hell tragedy…we can all help. Read, do, & share.


It’s not enough. You have to get mad; so mad that you do something.

Dammit I’m angry as hell. You get mad too. Please read.

Meri and Ryan Schuhmacher with their 4 young boys (teens and below in age) were just like any other couple; you, me, or even your friends and/or relatives, they’re a family. Meri is the type of woman who somehow always finds a blessed light in the darkness of things that happen in this world. She is a fabulous writer and her “OurDiabeticLife.com” is about as refreshing and real as it gets.

Did I forget to tell you that 3 of her 4 boys also live with T1 diabetes every day? Figure it this way 24/7/365X3.

Six months ago she revealed to the world that her husband would be battling a rare form of brain cancer and to say the fight was valiant would be an understatement. With 3 kids living with type 1 diabetes, fighting valiantly is a way of life for the Schuhmacher Family.

I saw them in July and you could tell it was a struggle but Ryan had a smile to give and his family around him at the Children with Diabetes conference in Orlando Florida.

Ryan lost his battle over the weekend. Just like that, six months apart, total upheaval of a family. That should make me angry at life. That should make you angry too. Meri wouldn’t want that and truly, it’s not in my make up; but make no mistake—I’m real angry. I’m asking you to get angry too.

Diabetes, Cancer, MS, Alzheimer’s, Autism, and so many more diseases that strike a chord with one of us, or all of us, are always asking for money. Camps, hospices, hospitals, and educational institutions are all also constantly asking for money. And it is understandable, times are tough. Money is needed for extremely important issues.

Recently a woman was bullied on a bus and the world thought it was horrendous and raised $702,384 for this woman. That was fabulous.

This is horrendous also.
Think about this: a woman with 4 young boys and 3 of them with type one diabetes, and not only is the love of her life gone, but so is the family’s source of income. Meri must now ‘go it alone’. Medical bills from Ryan’s cancer battles, three boys with diabetes, daily living with a house and all that goes into running it and the food bills for 4 growing boys; plus so much more—-you get the picture.

A site that was started to help with Ryan’s medical bills is now the financial lifeboat for the Schuhmacher Family’s enormous expenses. Life has completely bullied Meri and I’m asking you to be angry right along with so many others and angry enough to care. Meri will move forward in life because….well….that is Meri. She is a proud woman and a great mother. We can impact the future of this family. Let’s do it……together.

http://www.giveforward.com/schuhmacherfamilymiracle2

By clicking the above link is a way every single cent will make a difference to a family in need, both now and for years to come. If you have $5, it will make a difference. If you can give more, please do so. Give because you are doing okay, give because your kids are okay, give because you want to see your money actually help a family and make a difference, give because that is what we all do when someone needs our help; this help is needed more than you will ever know. Please, give.

PLEASE–give today and share this blog somewhere else. We’re all God’s creatures, even when we’re mad as hell. Thank you. I’m a Diabetes Dad.