Wednesday, September 3, 2014

We Want a Diabetic Alert Dog!

More Than Just a Work Dog, It's A Friend

Long post alert, but it's worth it;)

It has been awhile since my last blog post, and I felt it was past due time to update anyone who may have been following my previous blog posts. In the past I have blogged about a variety of topics, including fitness, nutrition, my time in the navy, as well as my experiences being a mom of a type 1 diabetic.

Do you or someone you love, or know have type 1 diabetes?

Many of you may know that my 6-year-old son, Isaac, is a type 1 diabetic. Type 1 diabetes means that my son's pancreas no longer produces insulin, which requires him to get insulin through his insulin pump that he wears at all times. Insulin is the key to our cells, which allows cells to use the carbohydrates we eat as energy. Without the insulin, and thus, without the energy for our cells, we die.

On September 20, it will have been 2 years since Isaac's diagnosis. It has been a quick 2 years, filled with many good, and many not so good days. We have watched him finally gain weight and height. We have gone from injections, and now are using an insulin pump. It's a little less tedious at times, but still a struggle to change his infusion set every 3rd day (as it still involves a needle).

There have been many mornings where he has woken up with wonderful blood sugars, while other mornings (many of them happening in the past couple of days), in the 50s (his blood sugar range I'd like him to wake up around is above 100, but below 200). It has been rough!

Previously, things were going fairly smoothly with Isaac's diabetes (as smoothly as I could hope, considering). Then, life happens, and it may be (and probably is) a variety of factors that come into play.

Stress, growth, activity, and so much more can affect blood sugar, and boy have we had a lot of stress and activity, but still not a lot of growth. I know that he is growing, and I know that all kids grow at their own pace, but it can be disheartening to see the scale sitting at the same number for months. It is also disheartening to hear this 6-year-old shout 'why do I have to have diabetes?!' For a time, I was checking my blood sugar at the same time that Isaac would check his, and it has helped, but I know that he feels alone in his battle. Yes, I see diabetes as a battle, and what I can do for Isaac is to pray, hope for a cure, and give him my love and support.

Recently, my son attended a 1-day diabetes camp, where he got to spend the day with other type 1 diabetics. They did a lot of fun things like horseback riding, digging for gold, leather working, and hiking. When the day was drawing to a close, parents were invited to meet up with the group at a large park, where we were introduced to some diabetic alert dogs, and their trainer, KC Owens, who is also the founder of Tattle Tail Scent Dogs, which breeds and trains dogs to alert for type 1 diabetics (among other needs, as well).

I got so excited listening to KC talk about the dogs she has trained, and occurrences with her own alert dog. Her passion for these dogs, and the importance of the job that the dogs do made me vow that I would get one for Isaac. Not only are these dogs awesome for catching low and high blood sugars earlier than we could, they are incredible companions! Since they are work dogs, they are able to go just about everywhere.

I truly believe that having a diabetic alert dog would help Isaac in so many ways, not only for his low and high blood sugars, but for friendship! He feels so alone, and depressed at times, and I wish we could afford an alert dog now! Since I'm a student, and my husband works full time (many days he works 12 hours) at a low wage to pay the bills, we are working hard to save as much as we can.

The past couple of months have been the craziest for our family. Not one, but both of our old vehicles stopped working, so we drained our savings to purchase a third, and much more reliable vehicle, all at the same time that we decided to buy a house (since our mortgage will be close to what we are paying now for rent).

Being a Team Beachbody coach has helped me during the past year, but life has a way of allocating my time, so I have not focused on helping others as much as I should. I want to do more! I have goals that I want to achieve, including getting a diabetic alert dog for my son!

I love to help others achieve their goals, and Beachbody can help me to achieve my goals through helping others. I employ you (if you have been touched by my son’s story and our longing for a diabetic alert dog) to step forward if you are ready to commit to your health and fitness.

What are your goals? What do you want out of life? Now, what is holding you back?!

You can help us, while I help to support you, and help you to achieve your goals of losing weight, feeling healthier, gaining confidence, and gaining (or regaining) your health.

Send me a message, friend request me on Facebook (Sarah Biesen (Shull)), or visit my website: I look forward to hearing from you!

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