Monday, February 21, 2011

guest blogger: janet

janet and i met through a mutual friend a few years ago. we've learned over time that we have a lot in common, and she was fortunate enough to take part the only time that the effects of diabetes sent me to the emergency room. lucky girl. :)

I was very lucky to meet Meredith a few years ago through a mutal friend. I'd hung out with Meredith a few times, but we really became close this past year. I have a lot of fun memories with Meredith but there is one memory that scared the crap out of me. At least looking back now we can joke and laugh about it. When I think of Meredith, diabetes doesn't really cross my mind. Now and then, I ask her, as I call it 'dumb diabetes question'. But to me it's one of those out of sight, out of mind things.

The night of this 'event' was the Saturday before Superbowl. I was throwing my husband a surprise party for a promotion he'd gotten at work.  I invited all of our close friends (who miraculously didn't spill the beans to him). The party was a lot of fun and the husband was very surprised. Shortly into the party, Meredith said she didn't feel well. She was extremely pale and her blood sugar had dropped. I've grown up around family members who were diabetics. Both my grandfathers were, and my uncle is as well. I have never seen any of them have an episode where their blood sugar dropped. I panicked, naturally. I'm a panicker and can't rationalize very well when I think there's a crisis. To me this was a CRISIS! I start running to the kitchen to find anything with sugar. If I remember correctly, I think I gave her coke and chocolate. She wasn't getting better. A friend of ours who works in a hospital was very concerned. She tried to get her to eat peanut butter and jelly. Nothing seemed to work. So being the good friends that we are, three of us took her to the hospital with her boyfriend. We weren't going to take no as an answer. And trust me, it took over an hour to finally convince her stubbornness to go. We were scared.  When we got to the hospital, things got worse. Meredith was vomiting and her heart rate was fast. The three of us stayed in the waiting room, very concerned while her boyfriend and mom went to a room with her. I didn't care that I had a house full of people for the party, all I cared about was Meredith getting better.

We learned that they were giving her fluids because she was dehydrated, they were watching her blood sugar and watching her heart because her heart rate was elevated. Meredith was in the hospital til Monday afternoon, it turned out her heart rate was elevated from dehydration and she had a stomach bug, which is why her blood sugar wouldn't stay up - she couldn't keep anything down!

I learned a lot about Meredith that night. For one, she wasn't freaking out as I would have been. Two, she is very in tune with her body and knows the warning signs immediately. Even though now we can look at pictures from that night as say 'aww, we took that picture pre-ER visit', it was still scary to me.
 the picture: a few hours before our trip to the ER

So now when she comes over, I very nicely ask, 'can we please not go to the ER this time?!'

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