Five seconds. Seems like an unbelievably short amount time. Especially considering how much runs through my mind in that amount of time every night when I check Medium’s blood sugar.
From the moment that strip sucks up the perfectly formed drop of blood, to the beep that signifies the moment of truth, a lifetime of thoughts rush through my head.
It is possible to have really good control of your blood sugar as a diabetic and rarely be surprised by the number. But the truth is with Medium, his numbers are all over the place most of the time. I attribute this to his being fairly newly diagnosed, him being 11 and pre-pubescent and the fact that it is not my body, so I don’t know how he is feeling. But what number that glucometer displays is always a surprise to me.
I don’t like surprises.
I am a planner.
A self-proclaimed cotrol-freak, and I don’t like that every night for 5 seconds I hold my breath and pray that the surprise is a good one.
In that 5 seconds, I worry that it is too high. I worry that it will be too low. Somehow in 5 seconds I am able to concurrently think about giving a correction bolus and then setting my alarm to ensure that it brought his number down. In that five seconds I decide between juice and a Quick Stick if he is low. I choose peanut butter crackers and a temporary basal rate if he is only slightly low. And I choose just a 1 hour temporary basal rate if he is just slightly higher or lower than I want. In that five seconds I worry that if he is really high, is it because he is coming down with something or because he forgot to bolus for his bedtime snack? I can already picture myself systematically choosing the correct order of the buttons on his pump to deliver a correction versus setting a temporary basal rate. In 5 seconds I am able to wonder why he is low, feel sorry for myself that this will be another one of the many nights that I won’t sleep, and picture myself hysterical if I were to find him cold and dead in his bed in the morning from this low.
Seems impossible to think all of these things in five seconds.
But I do.
Because in that 5 seconds every night, the world stands still as I hold my breath and my son’s life hangs in the balance.