How are you?
Life in general is busy when you are raising little ones, but the last year and a half has been full of ups and downs! Every trial and struggle has just grown my faith as I am coming to grips with the fact that I just don’t have control. When you surrender that fact to God, it really does make things much more simple and possible.
Since my last blog, we had amazing friends and family that helped contribute to Wyatt attending monthly trips to Stanford University in California which greatly improved his health and made advances to a study which will hopefully one day lead to an artificial pancreas. He only has 3 visits left as part of a second study he is also participating in which will document the affect of low blood sugars on brain development. Because of the extreme costs associated with the daily challenges of managing Type 1 Diabetes, I returned to teaching so we could also get Wyatt an insulin pump and offset some of the daily costs of his constant care while my husband grew our photography business and art gallery.
Today, Wyatt continues to wear an insulin pump which we change the sites on his body every 2-3 days and a continuous glucose monitor with site changes about every 5 days. I am so thankful for Jon who is amazing at helping manage all of this technology and Wyatt is so brave and allows us to help him with the needles for site changes, finger pokes, and carb calculation, which make living with this a bit easier to manage and have tremendously helped his blood sugars stabilize.
Deciding we can no longer live in Arizona because of the extreme temperatures, lack of quality medical care, and high cost of living, we have decided to move to Branson, Missouri and the Stanford Study actually has a site in St. Louis where we will be able to continue and have access to wonderful doctors and positive new outdoor experiences.
Teaching over the last year allowed Wyatt to be at the same school where we learned the ins and outs of managing Diabetes at school and had wonderful support of the school staff. I am now an expert on implementing a 504 plan and know the challenges families face trying to have their child have the best care, while being in a public school setting.
Not sleeping at night being up with Wyatt’s low and high blood sugar alarms and monitoring him so he won’t slip away or have another seizure and working full time at school really took its toll on my health this year. You do what you have to providing for your family, but because Wyatt is still so young, we know that our best option right now is to work together and have a business we can do as a family, to allow for the rough and sleepless nights that are just part of life for Type 1 Diabetics and their families.
We suffered a huge loss this year when Jon’s father finally passed away after a 3 year battle with brain cancer. Through this grieving process, we are determined to find a way to help our family draw strength from our faith and in each other as we really pull together to heal and grow. Love, faith, hope, and the ability to believe that he is in a better place and that we will one day be together again is encouraging us to take action now while our kids are little and we have our health. We are determined to use our strengths and talents to really make a solid life and future for our family. While it has been wonderful raising our children in our home town and having them around their grandparents and family, our situation with Wyatt and his health needs is not allowing us to stay here. Accepting our new reality for what it is, is helping us to build a life around diabetes in a positive way. We are very hopeful that this move will allow us to heal in time from the loss of Jon’s Dad, have access to great doctors and care for Wyatt in state, and moving to a major destination area with tourists, things we love to do and enjoy are a way to get this positive spiral going up, up, up!
I really do believe that challenges can make you stronger if you just allow yourself to grow from them. I am embracing the life we have been given and know that God blessed us with Wyatt and Type 1 Diabetes because He knew this challenge could serve as an example to other couples so they can see that struggles do not have to break your marriage, but you can use them to build on.
Almost four years ago, I was so broken and angry. Then, I grew to just a numb state of depression and pretty sad existence. Shortly after, I decided to become an expert as a parent so I could not only help my son, but so that I could help other families not have to go through the same struggles I did. Now, I am a confident resource for others and want to continue to help people grow from the challenges life throws at them. When we know we are not alone, we can live and thrive and truly be a blessing to others by embracing our God given gifts and talents.
Instead of being a victim to my life, I embraced my challenges and became involved with the JDRF including having a fundraising walk team, attending events with Wyatt so he could meet other children living with his condition, Donating to the DYF, attending a meeting with Congressman Gosar when Wyatt was selected as the JDRF Promise to Remember Campaign child, participated in Stanford Studies, helped other friends and families with trials and celebrations in their life, and was recently asked to be on a show to share my story and how my faith is a key to my strength. I look forward to sharing future successes and struggles with you in an effort to encourage you that nothing is impossible with God. Enjoy today for TODAY and don’t put off something that’s on your heart until tomorrow.