Saturday, January 30, 2010

Two Year Anniversary for Little Ayla

It is two years today that we almost lost her. Two years today that our lives were changed forever when the ER doc ran bloodwork " STAT!" to find out why she was in respiratory failure and found her BG at 465. Type 1 Diabetes at 19 months old. She was in full DKA and had been for almost 48 hours.
We had already been rushed to this hospital via ambulance, and were awaiting transport via Life Flight Helicopter, but it was January and a nasty storm was going on. Both outside and INSIDE Ayla's body. They couldn't fly, so we waited--I prayed they would make it in time by ambulance.
I'll never forget those first Angels who marched through the corridors of our tiny hospital, in their flight suits, in perfect formation. They surrounded her tiny body on the stretcher--secured airways--got in a better I.V.-- got us on the road to a larger hospital 2 hours away. I couldn't ride with her in the back of the ambulance, so sat in the front passenger seat of that ambulance with a non-stop trail of silent tears streaming down my cheeks.
But SHE made it, WE made it. 5 days in the PICU we were released on Super Bowl Sunday and went home--no idea what we were doing and SCARED to death. I remember we had no idea how to feed her and stopped at a grocery store for sugar free popsicles and string cheese.
So many of you have been here for us through it all. The hypoglycemic seizures, the rocking emotions, my subsequent depression and grieving for the baby and the life we used to have. ( still happening by the way ), and our first JDRF fundraising walk.
Thanks to all the medical professionals, and all the friends and family that have cheered us on, and cried with us as well. I love you guys!
We are CHOOSING to celebrate this day every year instead of mourning it. Sure we've lost a lot, but we've GAINED even more.
Zoie and I are off to pee wee basketball, and then the whole family is taking a trip to " Elmers " and the kids are picking out little $5 presents. We've all worked hard and I think it is often overlooked how much the other children do to help with Ayla, and how much it has changed their lives too. We deserve a pat on the back and a little celebration. Tonight we're gonna go play cards with friends and the kids will form a big troop with the other kids and a good time will be had by all.
I'll edit with a pic later. Time to get out of my long johns and get going!


  1. Happy Anniversary!
    Have a wonderful day, love you!

  2. Have fun today! You guys deserve it. And keep the long johns on -- it's cold outside!

  3. I think a celebration is a wonderful idea! Have fun!


  4. Today is a blessing , indeed.
    Have fun, stay warm!

  5. Many happy returns of this day! Have fun together, stay warm.

  6. Hi, Jess. As an older mom of a spina bifida/blind/wheelchair bound daughter and an only son who is autistic/nonverbal, I can tell you that the mourning never goes away. Somehow you learn to push it into the background and redirect your emotions to focus on positive caregiving. A strong faith in God also helps. Over the years you will find that some event will trigger the deep sorrow and bring it to the surface and you'll be surprised by it. When that happens, just go off and cry somewhere for a while because that is healing for you. Having special needs children places horrible strain on a marriage, too, and expect you and your hubby to reach a point -- I call it "The Hill" -- where you will either summon enough love within each of you to go over the top of the hill together, or not. That crisis point is inevitable. (Believe me, I've sat in on plenty of parent support group sessions!) For us,Tom and I made it, and this year we'll celebrate 35 years together. (He, however, lost his faith in God while my faith became stronger, and that was a major part of our crossing the top of The Hill.) And our Lara and Ed are still here at home with us. I think you're doing a great job!

  7. You paint a wonderful picture with your words. It's as if I am taking that ambulance ride with you. Iam thrilled to read about your celebration! Thank you for sharing.

  8. You are all wonderful! Elderberry--that brought tears to my eyes. I cannot tell you how true that rang with me at this point of my life. I'm sad that you have struggled with your sweet children. What an amazing example of
    love, dedication, and wisdom. Thank you for sharing with me.
    You won't believe what happened at pee wee basketball yesterday on Ayla's 2 year d-anniversary.
    I met another Mom and her son, newly diagnosed type 1 diabetes in October! How strange was that? We talked diabetes virtually the whole time and I hope I was able to reassure her.
    We had a GREAT day!

  9. What's with all the symbols anyway? Weird.