Wednesday, August 31, 2011

life doesn't play fair -part 2

This is a continuation of yesterday's post, so you may want to go read it, or you will probably be lost.

Almost immediately Eric and my mother are taken into an ER exam room, which to be honest is kind of surprising for a college town ER on a weekend morning... considering the one Sunday morning in college I needed to go to the hospital for a foot x-ray resulted in a seven hour ordeal.

They sit in the exam room, my mother's lips pressed into a straight line, most likely rifling through her purse to keep her hands busy out of worry, as she glances frequently at my now almost gaunt 18 year old brother, the football player, the hard hitter, the one who has been puking his guts out and running into walls the past two weeks, while still completing grueling practices and adjusting to college, the one who can now barely get out of bed. They wait for the doctor and hope for the best.

"Oh my, I can smell it from the doorway. Come here and let me smell your breath." Sounds the initial greeting from the Doc. He just arrived and he already knows what's going on here.

After some tests to confirm, the case was cracked and a diagnosis was reached: Type 1 Diabetes.

When they brought Eric into the hospital, his blood sugar was above 550 and he was entering Renal failure.

I know nothing about blood sugar, but according to my compulsive research,  a reading of 90 is normal in the morning. I do know what Renal failure is, or at least enough to recognize that you don't want your major organs or those of anyone you love and care for shutting down for the hell of it. The way our body says "I'm done."

 Just absurd.

 Thank goodness for mothers and their tingly spidey-sense feelings when something is wrong with one of their children.

And Eric will be fine, a fact for which I am so, so grateful. He was kept in the hospital for a few days until they could get his sugar levels down and teach him how to measure and administer the correct amount of insulin for his body. I went and visited him on Monday and he seemed okay. As okay as someone whose life is shifting underneath them without warning. As okay as someone can be hooked up to machines and unsure of what's to come. I'm grateful that my brother has the resources available so that he may learn to resume a life as close to his now as possible, with time.

But I'm also so, so angry. It's the side of me that wants to let out my fiercest growl start shouting toward the sky. The side of me that is confused, and hurt, and pissed- because the shell of invincibility I had fully believed  was extended around myself and those closest to my heart, swaddling us like a blanket from anything terrible- well, let's just say it was a mirage of mind.

 And it could be much, much worse. And I'm truly grateful that it's not. But this is a serious chronic condition.

The lifelong kind, where you have to monitor your every move. So all the sudden, Eric might not get to play college football, the thing he hinged all his decisions on and worked for almost his whole life.
 How do you tell a healthy, smart, regimented 18 year old, who is reaching for the stars and just starting the part of his life that's actually HIS OWN that he can't work out with the rest of his friends because you don't yet know how certain insulin amounts will react with his blood when he's exercising? Or that if he hadn't been brought in RIGHT THEN he would likely have fallen into a coma he'd have never woken up from? I don't know.

I just don't know anything.

I mean, I supposed I know it could be SO SO SO much worse, but at the same time all the sudden my baby brother has this huge thing to carry with him for always, influencing almost every decision he makes for the rest of his life. No drinking or partying or last minute road trips or ice cream stops or maybe even football, for now. Isn't that what being 18 is all about? Can you imagine not being able to grab one of those suckers from the bank or share a soda with your significant other, or just snack for the sake of snacking? For Christ's sake, I SNACK ALL THE TIME.

It feels like maybe there's been some mistake.

Life is this wonderful, exciting, intoxicating ride that sends you on all sorts of adventures and puts good music in the speakers and gives you so much.

But it just doesn't play fair.

Or maybe it's just incredibly fragile.

Like I said, I don't know.
Xo Sare

1 comment:

  1. Dude. This is what happened with my younger brother, too. I felt the exact same way as you. It still scares me and saddens me that he's been burdened with such a heavy load. But diabetes is a very manageable disease if you take responsibility for it, and you bro sounds like a smart and motivated kid- I think he'll be just fine!