Andrew Peck is a daddy, a son, a friend, and he is my husband and best friend. If you know Andrew, you know that he is kind, loyal, patient, hard working and gentle. This fundraiser is for him.
Andrew was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes at 12 years old. From that time, he has diligently worked to maintain his health. Checking his blood sugar – a lot. Insulin injections. Working out and playing sports. Eating healthy. Regular visits to an endocrinologist. No matter how dedicated a type 1 diabetic may be to maintaining their health, diabetes just isn’t predictable. It doesn’t always seem to play by the rules.
We don’t often discuss the scary events that have occurred due to Andrew’s diabetes. I don’t often voice my fears. It’s certainly uncomfortable to open those things up in order to receive help from others. But, I can’t expect people to understand our need for help without giving at least a glimpse into the scary side of things.
In in middle school, Andrew went on a trip with his 8th grade class to Washington DC. He loves history. But most of what he got to see was the ICU of their Children’s Hospital. He was sick, with what everyone assumed was a stomach bug. Perhaps it started as that. He was brought back to his hotel room and the teacher checked in on him. The last time his teacher came to make sure he was doing alright is when she found Andrew unconscious on the bathroom floor. He was rushed to the hospital where they explained that he was in ketoacidosis. His mom flew from Missouri to Washington DC to be with him. He doesn’t remember much of those few days. He recalls not knowing what day it was. Losing so much weight that his classmates didn’t recognize him. Part of the ambulance ride. They took great care of him and he was released in time to come home with his class, but what a trip!
Fast forward to our married life. This is perhaps the scariest low blood sugar episode we have experienced together…I woke up to Andrew’s elbows or knees in my back. I’m the bed hog, so this was odd. Annoyed, I moved and went back to sleep. I don’t know how much time passed before I woke up again and rolled over. Andrew was still hogging the bed. I looked at his face. Eyes wide open. Maybe I told him to scoot over. I really don’t remember. But I quickly figured out that something was not right. Andrew was not responding. He wasn’t moving. He wasn’t talking. He couldn’t. At the time, we lived with Andrew’s parents. In my panic I couldn’t get the glucometer to work, so I ran to get them. We checked his blood sugar…LOW. The meter goes as low as 25, at least. We know because that has been one of Andrew’s results before. LOW meant it was lower than that. Too low to give a number. The paramedics came and began an IV with medication to raise his blood sugar. He does not remember any of this. I do. What if I didn’t wake up in time? What if it happens again and I don’t wake up in time? I know the answer to my questions. But I don’t like to think about that answer. Saying it or typing it might be worse.
I wake Andrew up most nights and ask him if his blood sugar is ok. Some nights one of our girls wakes up and I am thankful because it wakes us, and Andrew ends up checking his blood. I pray often about about Andrew’s blood sugar levels.
It’s not fun to type that stuff out. But I hope it gives you a small glimpse into our world and the roller coaster that is diabetes. We are raising funds to help get a diabetic alert dog (DAD) for Andrew. These dogs are trained intensively for a year or more in order to sense the scent change that occurs when a diabetic’s blood sugar is headed in a dangerous direction. The dogs then alert the diabetic to check their blood sugar. They can also seek help and retrieve items needed to treat high and low blood sugar. These service dogs cost $20,000. This cost includes the dog as well as a year or more of intensive training, the dogs care while being trained, and delivery and handler training.
This is about more than getting a dog. This is about doing everything we can do to keep my husband, my best friend, my girls’ daddy safe and healthy. We appreciate any support! Please feel free to ask me questions. We will be working to raise funds in many ways and we hope to be able to pay it forward and help other families receive a diabetic alert dog, too!
To donate to help us raise money for Andrew’s life saving Diabetic Alert Dog, please visit the Canines of Hope Homepage and be sure to type Andrew Peck in the “donation for” box. Canines of Hope will mail out tax receipts before the end of the year.
You can also mail donations to: Canines of Hope, 4911 Schneider Rd., Ann Arbor, Mi 48103 (checks payable to Canines of Hope, Andrew Peck in the memo line)
Thank you so much for your support! We look forward to sharing our journey with you!
The Peck Family