Friday, January 29, 2010


I cannot even begin to share how many times in the last 3 years I have had to check Joe's number to determine if he is low...or if he is just being a pre-schooler having a tantrum...heck or a 5 or 6 year old having a melt-down. Sometimes he is low and sometimes he is a normal child displaying normal behavior patterns.

I vividly remember an incident in February 2006 (Joe was 3 at the time), we were playing on the playground at Bridget's elementary school and it was time to go. Well, Joe didn't want to go...I did what any proud parent would do, I gave him the "transitional warning"..."Joe in 5 minutes it will be time to go." Well the 5 minutes were up and it was time to go...Joe screamed and cried and pulled the "limp noodle" on me. Any parent of a stubborn toddler/preschooler is well-versed in this maneuver...the child literally becomes a floppy blob on the ground. Oh and did I mention we had on full snow gear?...we had a recent storm...the snow banks were 2 and 3 feet high. So there is Joe pulling the "limp noodle" and me and Bridget. I am trying to scoop his blobby carcass up off the ground and carry him to the car...and he is still screaming...we come around to the front of the school where a bunch of parents have congregated and are staring at us...very embarrassing...not one of my stellar parenting moments. After what seemed an eternity of lugging...I finally get him to the car. Now as I put him into the car seat...he transitions into a stiff board. It took me a good minute to force him to bend at the waist and to defend against his fists to buckle him...and then I yelled at him "YOU BETTER HOPE YOUR LOW BUDDY!" I checked his blood sugar and it was a respectable 117. Lucky for him, I was able to cool down on the drive home...and it was a simple time-out situation and then peace ensued.

Unfortunately, this is how it should go, before you give a consequence for bad must think "is he low?" The only energy source brain cells can use is sugar...if your blood sugar goes low you become irritable, tearful, angry, sleepy, hungry, shaky, pale, clammy etc. The symptoms can be subtle. The above example said...there are many times I have yelled at Joe and given him consequences...without checking his blood only find out after the fact that he was indeed is so difficult to always be "on"...usually I am trying to entertain a few kids, make dinner, etc...and blow-off the obvious. Luckily, 3 years into this, I don't beat myself up quite as much or as vigorously as I used to...

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