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Re: [IP] It's not the same.

Dear Brad and Buddy,

	Your post was heartfelt.  I am the mom to a sixteen-year-old son who was
diagnosed a little over three years ago.  
	As a parent, I don't know everything that goes on inside of his head, but
I think I am sensitive and have the ability to empathize.
	When he was diagnosed, we were living in Seattle.  (The moving truck was
in our driveway, literally, as we were moving back to California.)  When
Levi stood in front of the refrigerator drinking glass after glass of
water, with an insatiable thirst, I knew what the diagnosis was.  I have
never had diabetes in my family before.  This was a first.  I knew that we
were going to see the pediatrician, and would not be home for a few days,
so we packed a bag.  Sure enough, my intuition was correct.  The
pediatrician was not sure, as Levi looked pretty darn good, but he also
confirmed that he needed to be tested for diabetes. The blood test, with a
glucose level of 777, confirmed my suspicions and off we went to Children's
	The three day training we received was excellent.  I stayed with my son
night and day, and the rest of the family joined us in the daytime.  Our
training was rigorous, and consisted of classes in the day with a diabetes
educator.  There were classes for kids and for the parents.  We learned a
crash course in diabetes management, meal planning, carb counting,
injections, etc.  We were given excellent literature, and telephone numbers
to call throughout the day as we made our journey to California.  We had to
call frequently to call in our "numbers", have help making insulin
adjustments, etc. We talked to them daily until we had made the change to
physicians in California.  Before we left the hospital, our injection
training including injecting saline into ourselves.  We needed to know how
if felt to receive these subcutaneous injections.
	I had an idea, as I've been on long-term intra-muscular injection therapy
for a chronic disease that I have.  
	I have seen the changes in my son since the diagnosis.  We have seen
positive changes, as he was incredibly small and thin and has grown in
height and weight.  Part of this was puberty, but part, I'm convinced, was
that he was now utilizing the food that he ate and was growing properly.
	I have also seen negative changes.  For these, I hope and pray will turn
around with the use of the pump we are about to receive.  His academic
progress has taken a turn downward since this diagnosis.  He's been tested
for thyroid disease, celiac disease, and anything else that could possibly
be playing a part.  His Hemoglobin A1C's have been in the 5 range.  We
thought origninally this was because he keeps such tight controls, but now
we are convinced that he's had too many nightime lows.  This has surely
affected his ability to concentrate in school, and to learn to his
potential.  We've loosened the control a bit and last fall went to the
multi-injection regimen.  He injects Humulog when he eats, and injects the
long acting insulin in the morning and evening.  This has helped raise his
A1C to a more normal diabetic level.  
	There was nothing wrong with having the A1C's in the 5 non-diabetic range.
 That is our goal.  We now know that with his groginess and lethargy, this
was not a helathy reading.  After reading your stories of success with the
pump, and your particular story of how much better you feel and how much
more energy we have, it brings tears to my eyes.  I am so thrilled my son
has decided for himself that he's ready to go to the pump.  He is anxious
to receive it and so are we.  I feel that there is great hope to get the
son back that we remember.  The one who sits down when he gets home from
school and does his homework right away.  The son who has zest for life and
energy to live it.  I know that depression is often seen in diabetics, and
I believe that this is also part of the problem.  Life with diabetes HAS
been a struggle for him, although he has never admit it.  It has been a
gradual decline in the quality of his life.  We are so looking forward to
this switch.  I have faith that this will "revitalize" him!
	Thank you for sharing your touching story.  You have not rambled in my
opinion.  What you've said is from your heart.  I will write letters to
Washington to help enlighten them to this disease that has such a dramatic
affect on the patient, their family, their school, their workplace, etc...
It is not contagious, but far reaching nonetheless.
	Thank you, again.



At 06:58 AM 1/7/2001 EST, you wrote:

 It is obvious, to me, that 
>DM is not the disease-du-jour.  If everyone on this board wrote just one 
>letter, that is over 2800 letters to congress.
>       I'm sorry that I have rambled on, I'll get down of my soapbox now.
>Brad and Buddy
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