Sweet Friends

This particular purple pouch is a very special pack of Annie’s Bunny Fruit Snacks. In our family we just call them gummies. After a day of low blood sugars at school, I picked up Grasshopper. Nurse L and I had been in contact throughout the day and she had just checked his blood sugar at 58. He had a few of these Annie’s Bunny Fruit Snacks while still in her office and a few minutes later she walked him out to car line.

Some days we have a series of lows. We use a technique called Sugar Surfing, developed by Dr. Steven Ponder. When Grasshopper has a low, or even before he is technically low, we try to bring it up with just a small amount of sugar.

We learned fairly soon after diagnosis that the standard recommendation of 15 grams of fast acting sugar for a low would shoot his blood sugar into the 400’s easily and then we would play rollercoaster the rest of the day and night trying to bring his blood sugar back down into a safe range, giving him more sugar to bring it back up when it dropped too low… it was a wicked cycle that left him feeling drained and irritable. I am NOT a doctor so I am not recommending this over doctor’s orders. Talk with your doctor about altering any treatment plans you have been given.

Now we watch his Dexcom graph and use it as a guide. One Annie’s gummy is about 1.5 grams of fast acting carbohydrates. The packs fit easily into his glucose meter kit, they are easy to eat, they are delicious and they literally save his life! For a low that is slowly going down we might have him eat just 3-6 grams of fast acting carbohydrates, or 2-4 Annie’s gummies.

So after a day of lows I checked Grasshopper’s blood sugar again and it was still at 58. I pulled out this purple pack of Berry Patch Annie’s Fruit Snacks. He piped up, “My friend C gave me that! He told his mama to put an extra pack in his lunchbox for me.” Cue. The. Waterworks.

It’s not about the gummies. We have plenty and should probably buy stock in Annie’s. The fact that C knew that Grasshopper relies on these gummies to keep his blood sugar in a safe range, was thinking of Grasshopper at home and asked his mama for a little gift for his friend is beyond priceless to me. Kindness is so needed in our world today and I am so grateful for C and for his parents who are raising a kind, considerate boy.

On the first day of school I read a book to his class about type 1 diabetes called Rufus Comes Home: Rufus, The Bear With Diabetes. Grasshopper was his usual good natured self and showed off his pump, Dexcom, test kit and the Annie’s gummies stashed inside. His sweet teacher Mrs. H told the class the gummies are like medicine for Grasshopper, and that he sometimes needs to stop and eat a few. And that he can’t share them.

These sweet friends of his were really listening and I am so grateful! If he ever does have a significant low blood sugar when he is too disoriented and confused to check his finger and eat some sugar (which hasn’t happened yet) his life literally depends on the people around him recognizing the situation and acting quickly to get fast acting sugar in him. These kind souls in his first grade class may save a life in the future because of their growing awareness of type 1 diabetes.

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