Riding For Jack!

Riding For Jack!

The countdown is on for my ride in SARATOGA SPRINGS and I wanted to share a little bit about why I am riding. In September I will be riding in an effort to raise money to help improve the lives of millions of people living with type 1 diabetes (T1D). I am riding for one little boy in particular, one little guy who is close to my heart, who knows of no life without T1D. 

I am riding for JACK!  Below is Jack's story, told by his mother, Katy...

On February 28, 2010 our son, Jack, was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.  He was 11 months old, and because less than 1% of children under the age of one year old are diagnosed with diabetes, Jack’s symptoms had been diagnosed as “colic”, “reflux” and “ear infections”.  He had become inconsolable and had lost weight.  The evening before Jack was admitted into the hospital, he had begun rapid, shallow breathing and was lethargic.  We took him to the hospital where we were told that Jack “just had a cold” and sent home.  His symptoms worsened at home and the “mom” in me said that Jack may not make it through the night.  So we made a return trip to the hospital demanding that they admit him. 

By the time Jack was admitted, he was severely dehydrated, which complicated the blood work that needed to be done.  Finally, they did a simple finger stick on him and with a blood sugar level of 921, he was diagnosed as a type one diabetic.  Before he could be transported, he entered into a coma where he remained for four days. Jack woke up on my 30th birthday with a smile, reaching for me… and I will never in my life receive a better gift.

We spent 7 days in the hospital learning how to take care of a child with type one diabetes.  How do you figure out the carb count of formula when it is not listed on the back of the can?  How do you give a shot to a toddler?  Not once but three to four times a day?  How will we know if he has a low blood sugar?  

We learned… because our job as Jack’s parents is to help him grow and thrive.  At 15 months old, Jack went on an insulin pump.  He tolerates the 10 finger sticks per day to check his blood sugar, and the changing out of his pump site every three days.  He now wears a continuous glucose monitor in his arm that monitors his blood sugar trends and alerts us to dangerous trends, both high and low.  

I am hopeful that as Jack grows, the technology to treat him will only get better.  I look at my little boy who at eight years old is learning to carb count, give himself insulin, and advocate for a cure. He never ceases to amaze me.    

In the quiet of the night, generally after we’ve made a trip to Jack’s room to test his blood sugar and make sure that he will “make it through” the night, I worry.  I worry about a new school year. I worry about him driving a car, going away to college, and being able to live a long and healthy life.  I worry that my Jack will live his entire life without ever knowing what “healthy” really feels like.  That he may never know what it is like to not have to worry about your blood sugar.

It helps to know that JDRF is working on not only a cure for type 1 diabetes, but also preventing and treating this disease.  They are working hard for Jack and for all of those living with type 1 diabetes.

I would be beyond grateful and humbled if you would consider donating toward my Ride to Cure Diabetes. To help Jack and the millions of others who are affected by T1D!


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