A Story of a 3 year old Princess and her diabetes

Saturday, April 9, 2011


This is Libby the day she was rushed to the hospital. Her dad is a type 1 diabetic and was diagnosed at age 14, so I knew that it could happen to any of my kids, and have always kept it in the back of my mind. When I noticed Libby's excessive thirst and urination I started to get worried and had her blood sugar tested. The meter we used only reads a BG (blood glucose) of up to 600 so at first it didn't register. My heart sank when the meter read "hi". Hoping it was a mistake we tested again and it read 565 this time. Shaking, I rushed to the doctor's office and they called an ambulance right away. Some friends took my other kids home and my car full of groceries to unload (Thank you Alice and Kristi :) ) I had called my husband John (Libby's dad) and, bawling my eyes out, told him my worst fear, That Libby had a bg of 565 meaning she had type 1 diabetes and he had to meet us at the emergency room.

Libby, usually bubbly and spirited (a.k.a doesn't stop talking), seemed in a daze. for the first several blood tested she just stared into space and didn't whine much. I think it was when she realized that we weren't going to stop poking her that she started to put up a fight. John and I were in shock and just sort of stared at each other for those first few hours in the ER. John got frustrated with a few of the doctors who acted like he was an idiot. I now look back and understand why he was mad. They would give her a juice box and then act confused when her BG was 400 again. After several hours they admitted her, I was already exhausted, and 6 months pregnant.

They put us in a room and started teaching us how to take care of her. They wouldn't let us go home until they were confident that we knew what we were doing. John has had Type 1 for 16 years now, his younger brother has had it for 22 years, however, the rules have changed a lot since then! So while I did already know quite a bit about diabetes, I didn't know nearly enough, and John has taken care of his diabetes on his own our whole marriage, I had no idea he was even doing. I won't say that he was stubborn, just used to his ways. He has actually come a long way since Libby's Diagnosis, it has helped him a ton. He now has to set a good example, and has had to learn to use a new method of carb-counting. He does really well now and even asks me for help often, as I have to be very precise with Libby and have become a great resource for carb values.

Libby was definitely the favorite patient at the hospital. She came back to life after her blood sugar was stable, and was her old, funny, talkative little self. She was dressed as tinkerbell for most of our 4 day stay, with her hair in a bun and wings strapped on. She would "fly' around the hospital whenever she could and had the hospital staff smiling all the time. We were blessed to have very good nurses, and and excellent endocrinologist (Dr. Barela) and a dietician who we adore named Jennette, she was definitely my biggest help those first few nerve racking weeks at home.

I will never forget those first couple weeks at home and how scary they were. I would spend ten minutes or so just trying to figure out how much insulin to give her at each meal. I was probably testing her BG at least ten times a day, and through the night. We would have to hold her down for every shot and that was hard for all of us. Then she got sick and sent her BG into the 300-400's and sent me into a panic. But, I started to get the hang of it and we got into a groove. We did, have some scary moments including a BG of 26 when Libby was passing out and her eyes were rolling back into her head. I had to literally shake her into consciousness to get her to drink juice. Our first Sunday at church was a learning experience also! I learned that Libby likes to fall asleep when she is low, the opposite of what we want. Wouldn't it be nice if she could just come to me and say "Mom I'm low". She does do that now, but all it means is "Mom, I want candy".

She thinks she is so clever. Shortly after she figured out that she had to have a shot to eat anything good, she would try to trick John and I all the time by telling us she already did her shot, by herself. Hehe, she is such a cutie. And she knows how to melt your heart by saying things like "I have diabetes and I'm not afraid of shots" and she likes us to say "1, 2, 3, poke!" for every shot and BG test. She also knows how to break you heart by saying things like "I wish I was a little girl again" or "I don't wanna be tough anymore"

So Libby is our little hero. I am learning more and more all the time. Right now Libby is on insulin shots, 4 or 5 a day. Hopefully everything goes as planned and she will have her very own pump within the next few months! But for now, shots it is! She is a tough little cookie and I am proud of her and excited to blog about it! Hopefully I'll make more posts every week, I've added a link to our walk for the cure team page, we are Team Libby Lou and would appreciate a donation of any amount. Just find the link on the right side of the page!


  1. UGH...the "I don't wanna be tough anymore" got to me.

    Hi! My name is Reyna and I write Beta Buddies...just found you through Kortnie's D-Life. My son Joe is 7 (almost 8) and he was diagnosed with type 1 over 4 1/2 years ago. He wears a pump and a CGM. Good to meet you.

    You will love the DOC (Diabetes Online Community). I have met so many wonderful friends and have felt more myself since I started sharing out our life with "D". Welcome.

  2. I just posted about you and Libby on our blog and put up the picture I took of them. Put ya'll on our blogroll too.

  3. I love you, Meems. You, John and Libby Lou are my heroes. Kiss that baby girl for me.

  4. Libby is beautiful! What heartbreaking things she says :( but I promise you it does get "better"......nice to meet your family, I'm happy you have found the doc!!!!

  5. Wow...you have been through so much. I have a friend here whose daughter has T1. I think she is 7 now, dx at 4 (I think). I can't remember. She has a blog and regularly talks about diabetes stuff. Thinking of you and your sweet family.

  6. She is beautiful(all of your little ones are).

    I write mydiabetic-child.com. I found you through a comment on Meri's blog. My son, Justin(10) was dx'd 2 1/2 years ago at the age of 7. I am in awe of their strength everyday.

    I look forward to reading more about you guys.

  7. I just found this blog and am so thankful! Your accounts of life with a diabetic child are refreshing and really hit home. I don't feel so alone anymore. Lily is our T1D of the family, diagnosed 2 years ago at 13 months. It's been a rollercoaster ride and I am glad that there are others out there who understand carb counting, Lantus, Levemir, insulin correction, etc. Keep posting!


Libby's CGM fund!

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