3 Year Old Sydney

On Thanksgiving day of 1997 our daughter, Sydney, was diagnosed withType 1 diabetes. It was approximately one week before her 2nd birthday.  The first 6 months were filled with lots of stress, crying, disagreements...basically, our lives had turned upside down. After the initial shock, we began to concentrate, actually obsess, on her blood glucose counts. She would range from 20's-500's...and we were doing EVERYTHING LIKE WE WERE SUPPOSE TO!! It would just kill us to say,"No honey, you can't have an apple and a glass of milk...until 3pm" or "Sydney, if you don't eat this food you're going to go low--pleeease!" I couldn't believe that there wasn't a "better way".

In the summer of 1998, I read a letter in one of the diabetes magazines from Jayne Custodio. She was saying how much her son (who was on the pump at 2yrs) had benefitted from the pump. We asked Sydney's Endo about it and he just said, "It's not a good idea, wait until she is older. She will probably just pull out the catheter." My response was what if she didn't? Not one single person could give me one good reason not to try it. After a friend found "CamelsRFun" , and I read about "Drew" and "Hannah", and all the other wonderful kids...I was hooked. We decided to change Endo's because we needed someone who was going to be supportive and a "Real-Go-Getter"...We found Dr. N.  In October 1998, Sydney started pump therapy. Dr. N. was with us every step of the way--even calling to yell at our insurance company for claiming it wasn't "Medically Necessary" (It took three appeals, went to the Florida State Commissioner, and took a letter from Dr. N. to the Governor...but our insurance finally did pay!).

Since Sydney went on the pump our lives are almost "normal"!! She eats when she's hungry and plays as hard as she wants. She sleeps in, doesn't wet the bed anymore, and her "excess thirst" has disappeared! We are truly amazed. Obviously, this is not a cure. We still have some highs and rare lows...but there is no comparison with Injection therapy. Sydney's last A1C, her first since being on the pump, was 6.5! And that wasn't because of lows...believe me, we check her BG's enough!! I sew "pump pockets" for Sydney to put her pump in. Then I attach them to a soft fabric belt that she wears under her clothes. We decorate them with bears and flowers and for Christmas...Rudolph! She really wants a Spice Girls pocket next...I'm not so sure about that one! This pump has put a huge smile on a little girl's face...and you can't get any better than that.

Gail Sommer
January 28, 1999

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