Sometimes asking for help is hard. Maybe it is pride. Maybe it is a fear of looking weak. Maybe it is not wanting to be vulnerable. Whatever the reason, we are swallowing our pride, overcoming our fear and making ourselves vulnerable by asking for your help.
In 2008 our son Brady was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. In 2014 our daughter Joci was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. On February 14th of 2019 our son Cyrus was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Today Brady is 12, Joci is 16 and Cyrus is 7 years old.
Diabetes is relentless. It requires a high level of diligence that is physically and mentally draining. Multiply that times three and the word “overwhelmed” grossly understates our feelings. We need additional help managing this disease.
Technology has improved the lives of people with diabetes greatly. We are in the process of fighting insurance for technology that would help us manage diabetes better but in a world where technology is touted as the answer for everything, technology isn’t perfect. Batteries die, systems fail, tubes get kinked, alarms fail to sound, water corrodes . . . . . . . but what if there was another option for diabetics? One that could work in tandem with technology.
Turns out, there is . . . . . . .
Diabetic Alert Dogs (DAD) are service dogs specially trained to detect blood sugar fluctuations, most importantly (and most dangerous) low blood sugar. In order to best care for three type 1 diabetic children in our home we began to explore the possibility of a diabetic alert dog. We contacted a few different agencies that train diabetic alert dogs but as soon as we had our first phone call with Lily Grace we knew she was the trainer for us. Lily’s degree in nursing/biology combined with her title of Certified Dog Trainer from the National K9 School for Dog Trainers as well as years of experience gave us the confidence we needed to move forward. In addition, she is not intimidated by the fact that we have three diabetics in our home. She has embraced the challenge of training a dog for our unique situation. lilygraceservicedogs.com
The process of getting a diabetic alert dog will encompass approximately a year until the delivery of the dog to our home. But beyond the extended time frame, and other obvious adjustments to owning a dog, the greatest factor remains the cost. We expect that the purchase of the puppy, completion of training and delivery of the dog will approach a $30,000 price tag. To initiate the project, we have obtained a private loan to deposit and secure our contract with Lily Grace and start the training process. This decision wasn’t made lightly and definitely strains our budget to the max but the benefit is worth it to us. We would be so grateful if you would consider helping us pay down this debt. If you choose to give towards our need please know every dollar received will be paid towards the loan principal, with our family assuming responsibility for any interest.
We have already begun working diligently on funding. The kids are excited about possibly selling pies again as well as fresh produce from our garden. Jim has been working engineering jobs in the evenings and on weekends. We are also applying for grants. We have been blessed by the initial response (verbally and financially) from family and friends. We are humbled by the generosity of those around us and would welcome any financial support. Thank you!
(Stay tuned for more posts with updates and explanations about how a service dog will impact our family)