Sunday, February 22, 2015


Buzz … Buzz … Buzz.

I open my eyes but I see nothing.  It’s dark.

Buzz … Buzz … Buzz.

I slowly wake up, realizing Ben’s CGM is vibrating on the night stand beside me.  I reach over carefully slapping around trying to find the buzzing CGM without, at the same time, crushing my eye glasses I stupidly placed right next to it.  Eventually my hand feels the familiar leather case.

Buzz … Buzz … Buzz.

Will Ben be high or will he be low?  My foggy midnight brain is unable to guess.  I flip open the case and push the button.  The bedroom lights up from the glow of the CGM screen.  I squint to diffuse the too bright light and see … 275.  I guess he is high tonight.  I check the time, trying to decide if it’s worth getting up and leaving my very warm bed.  It’s only 1 am, 6 hours until we start our morning business, too long to let this high go unattended. I throw back my ever-so-warm covers and feel a rush of cold winter air.  I shuffle to the bathroom where I assemble Ben’s test kit and then shuffle down the hall to Ben’s room.

I flick on his bedroom light.  Ben doesn’t move.  He is used to these middle of the night intrusions.  I wait a second and let my eyes adjust.  I don’t see Ben.  I never do.  He sleeps in a ball completely covered by his blankets.  I sit down on the edge of his bed slowly pulling back the covers searching for a limb, an arm, a hand.  I find his elbow and try to pull his arm out from under the covers without twisting it into horrible hurtful positions.  I finally find his hand and place it in mine.  It feels so big, so strong … Wait! What?  Ben’s hand is almost the size of mine.  That can’t be.  He is my baby.  Maybe I have the wrong child.  Maybe someone else is under that pile of covers.  But then I see the tell-tale signs, this hand, these fingers have been pricked before.  I see on the sides of his fingers the calluses that have developed over the years, 6 years of blood checks.  And I know its Ben.

6 years ago when Ben was first diagnosed he had just started 1st grade.  He really was my baby, so sweet and fun loving.  He was still wearing his Harry Potter costume to the movies and his Obi Wan Kenobi costume (his Ben namesake) to the super market.  And I was scared.  I was scared for my baby to be out of my sight.  I picked him up every day after school because I was too scared to let him take the 30 min school bus ride home.

But it’s been 6 years and Ben isn’t my baby.  He is in 6th grade, in the middle school, writing papers and taking math exams.  Just this weekend he went to movie night at the all-girls school down the road, he went out for pizza after and spent the night at a friend’s house, all without me (or his dad) hovering and nagging.  He managed his diabetes on his own.  I was still scared.  I didn’t sleep a wink the night he wasn’t sleeping in his own bed right here at home.  But as I sit here holding his hand, his grown up hand, marveling at how much time has passed, I have hope … hope Ben will grow up healthy and strong.  (We have already made it so far.)  And despite all my fears I have hope Ben will be OK.