The ambulance driver, in his rescue car, pulled in our driveway.
“Do you want to come in?”
“No. I’m good. Need to be by the radio.”
“OK. Busy?” I ask.
“Nonstop.” He answers.
I enter in the house as Kaitlyn leaves. She is not planning to stay the night…
“But I don’t know. In any case someone will drive me home.”
Cars cannot get out in our neighborhood.
Plows have become stuck and need to be hauled off the road.
The roads are now sheets of ice with packed down snow.
Over 30 inches of snow are now ice.
Mounds and mounds of ‘street glaciers’ from feeble attempts at plowing are on every corner making visibility almost impossible.
She has a lot of reading for ‘orgo chem’ class. She will do it when she can; if she can. She could be home in her warm room tonight doing just that, reading. Did she choose to do that?
No she did not.
Instead she will be volunteering at the ambulance tonight. Trained as an EMT and riding the ambulance; saving lives. Or trying to. On a night like tonight, who knows? Worse than that; every call she and her colleagues will answer, they too are endangered, the roads are that bad. Tonight will be a rough night. As the last two nights have been.
In our house tonight, our stress level will be higher than normal. She does NOT HAVE to do what she does; she chooses to………even with diabetes.
Yes, even with diabetes.
Kaitlyn is too good to jeopardize anyone else with her having a low blood sugar. She will take extra steps tonight. Usually very good, tonight she needs to be even better, and she will be. This is important; the potential to have someone else’s life in your hands usually is.
If the choice is to allow our kids to do anything and everything even with diabetes, that means no limits. NONE. She NEEDS to be allowed to do what SHE WANTS to do. Even if that means putting her life on the line to benefit others.
Sharing stories is not as a boast, those who know me know that to be true. Rather, I share this story not just because I am an overly nervous and proud father, which I am; I share this with the many who worry if their child will be able to make a difference in this world even with diabetes. Will diabetes stop them at all?
The take-away here is that next time your child asks you about what life will hold for them with their diabetes; share the story of a young lady named Kaitlyn. She is 22 and diagnosed at age 2 and on a winter cold night full of ice and snow; she was busy saving lives when the alarm went off; and she did it while managing her diabetes. Tell them that Kaitlyn is only limited by her imagination. She has no time to settle at grabbing for straws; she’s too busy reaching for the stars.
And so should your kids. Even if it raises our stress level while they’re doing it.
God please protect her and her colleagues and bring all those who serve; home safely.
I’m a diabetes dad.
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