The story of a boy living with Type 1 and his family's journey to raise and train a diabetic alert dog.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Sometimes We Miss

It happens; sometimes we miss an early morning check. Today was one of those mornings. I awoke to my 2 o'clock alarm only to turn it off and fall back asleep. It wasn't until an hour and a half later when Bo woke me with an alert that I realized what I had done.

I immediately got up and followed him to Austin's room. There I fumbled in the darkness as my hands navigated Austin's nightstand in search of his pack. Finding it, I removed the meter, test strips and lancet then gently grasped Austin's hand and pricked his finger under the meter's illumination.

While I waited for the number to register, Bo stood in front of me with the frisson of anticipation.

The meter beeped and it read 79 — smack in the middle of Bo's low reward range. Once again, he nailed it.

"Good low Bo," I said.

Recognizing my words with the fervor of what was coming next, he began wagging his tail with an intensity that shook his rump.

"Let's get a treat." I said after giving Austin juice.

He followed me to the refrigerator and waited patiently for me to open the meat drawer and dish out his reward.

"He's low. Show me low," I said as I fed him bites of chicken between his paw swipes and bows.

He ate the last piece and I closed the refrigerator door.

"All set," I said.

But instead of returning to Austin's room, he stood looking at me with eyes asking for more.

"You wanna play?" I asked extending my arm to the top of the refrigerator to get his reward toy.

I grabbed the plush toy, tossed it and he ran after it. "I'm gonna getcha," I whispered.

He took the toy in his mouth and began jogging around the dining table. I followed behind him in a child-like game of chase. After a few laps, I ended the game. He brought the toy to me and exchanged it for one last treat before returning to Austin's bed.

Before leaving them, I re-checked Austin's blood sugar. It was 121. I kissed Austin's cheek, covered Bo with a blanket and returned to my room full of gratitude for the team we've become.

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