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Guest Post: Candy to You

February 4, 2011

Today’s post is from my cousin Kate.  Cousin isn’t the right term either, and neither is our technical relation: second cousins.  Being an only child, Kate (and her sister Karolyn) are the closest people I have to sisters.  We spent summers together at their pool and winters together on the mountain.  We both started skiing at three years old, but we couldn’t be more different.  She loved horses and was scared of dogs.  I love dogs and was scared of horses.  I went to school for Early Childhood Education and she’s going to school for Business, but that’s probably why our mother’s wish that a little of us would rub off on each other. 

I was shopping at Wal-Mart the other day and wandered into the pharmacy area.  I looked over and saw Glucose Tabs.  Oh, the memories.  Growing up, I guess I never realized that someone with diabetes was sick.  No one in our family ever made it seem that way.  Most of my experience with having a family member with diabetes (my awesome big cousin) was during ski season.  Since Briley had to test, we would stop for one morning break, a lunch, and an afternoon break throughout the day.  Since we had been skiing since we were about 3 years old, it became a routine.  It was never a break for Briley, it was just what we did (and most of the time I think it became more of a break for me and my clam chowder with no clams).  I don’t think I ever remember looking at her any different than anyone in the family, which brings me back to Glucose Tabs.  Now that I am older, I know that they are used in the event that a diabetic’s sugar is low (under 100 somewhere).  Back then, it was Briley getting candy.  I knew that it was because she needed it, but from time to time she would sneak me one  so that I didn’t feel left out.  Oh yes, that was us being rebellious ten & twelve year olds.  I guess my point is that everything became sort of normal.  I used to help her get all of her supplies out when she was ready to test.  We would hope that it would be around 100 and even take guesses to see who could get closest.  When it was time for her insulin, I would watch patiently so that we could go on our merry way and find something fun to do. As I got older, I even asked questions about how much she needed and why.  It was never something that bothered me though.  She was always just my big cousin.  I know that to Briley, it is obviously a large part of her life, but I think that our family made it as normal as we could, or at least we tried.  Now Briley has a pump, but there are still morning breaks, lunches, and afternoon breaks even though they are  no longer necessary.  When I see Glucose Tabs in Wal-Mart, I do not think of my sick older cousin, but instead the sweet taste that I got as a treat when our parents weren’t looking.  When Briley asked me to write something for her blog, I think I had so much trouble coming up with something because it was never something that interfered with our relationship or the time we spent together.  She is not my older cousin with diabetes, and I rarely would ever describe her as such.  She is just my cousin, and I love her, diabetes or not.

Did I mention I started crying when I read this?

One Comment leave one →
  1. February 4, 2011 6:04 PM

    mm i teared up a little 😦 i miss you both.

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