Over a period of nine years, four of our five children were diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. Yes, that’s right: four children with T1D. Many people hear our story in disbelief and wonder how we manage. Well, we do, and my husband Bubba and I are proud of the amazing, independent, talented children we’ve raised. They have excelled as students and athletes alike—in fact, our 14-year-old twin daughters Ashley and Emily, diagnosed at ages 3 and 4, are now BMX Olympic hopefuls.
THE STORY BEGINS…
Ashley was diagnosed in 2004 at the age of 3. Like any parents of children diagnosed with diabetes, we were shocked, scared and confused. But just when we were
getting comfortable managing Ashley’s diabetes, her identical twin sister Emily began having the same telltale symptoms. While it was heartbreaking to have the second diagnosis, I felt like I could make some sense of the unthinkable because they shared the same DNA.
Five years later, we were blindsided when our daughter, Melanie, was diagnosed with T1D at the age of 11. We persevered and added her to the insulin prescription list and worked her into Ashley and Emily’s daily routine of injections and finger sticks.
Three years later in 2013, our world was rocked once again, when our son Mack was diagnosed at the age of 14.
The Dexcom Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) System has made the management of the kids’ diabetes…well, a lot more manageable. We have better information now, so I’ve been able to make adjustments to the kids’ insulin therapies based on the trends and patterns I see. With more information, I’ve been able to tweak basal rates, which makes me feel more comfortable and confident that they’re spending more time in a good range.
Ashley and Emily are fierce competitors on Bubba’s Blaze Factory BMX team and both girls are ranked in the top 10 in the nation for their age group. They work incredibly hard to be at the top of their sport and are at the gym several times a week. A lot of exercise though meant they were testing 4-5 times during a workout. Now they can be at the gym without the hassle and annoyance of the interruptions, and they don’t have to call attention to diabetes. With the Dexcom CGM System, all they have to do is check their glucose on their phones and do a finger stick if they need to.
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