Numbers

Scott-and-ZMy youngest son — for the purposes of this blog I’ll call him Z — is obsessed with numbers.

On Saturday night, he had a ball pressing the numbers on my phone’s calculator app. It kept him entertained for hours. He’d touch the digits and laugh as I recite what he just  pressed. He was hysterical when he tapped, and I said, “parentheses”.

He does love other things that are more appropriate for his age: like waffles, Elmo, hockey, and baked beans. But the whole numbers thing is a strange obsession. While I’m driving, he sits in his car seat in the back and counts to 20 (usually skipping a few numbers), over and over. And over. And… you get the picture

When I test my blood sugar, he likes to look at the digits displayed on my meter.

On Sunday night, I felt my pump vibrate at my hip and glanced at the “LOW PREDICTED” warning. Suddenly, Z demands “Me want see numbah!”. (“Me want” is cute the first twenty times, but then it gets really old, really fast).

My CGM read 92 with a downward arrow, I showed it to him, and he said “Elve”, which is his way of saying twelve. (Every two-digit number, to him, is in the teens – or in this case, pre-teens). He also said a few other digits, which I could only assume were the time.

Given his interest, I decided to show him how I set my temporary basal. I had him read the initial percentage, “un unded” (one hundred) and he watched as I scrolled down to the final setting, “ewo” (zero).

This whole event was, in my mind, meant as a lesson in numbers and nothing else. But seeing him recognize that daddy has these devices and that he responds to the numbers they tell him, is planting a seed for him to develop a real understanding and appreciation for what it takes to live with diabetes.

I’m still hoping he never has to deal with diabetes himself. But if he does, I think he’ll do okay.

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Posted on October 14, 2013, in Diabetes, Personal. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Ah, the little seed in the back of our minds when it comes to our children “Will my kids get Type 1?” I often think of my 6 year old daughter (a numbers kid…like me) in the same way. I know she’d be ok and I’m sure your son would be as well. Of course, statistically speaking, it’s still unlikely they will ever have to find out 🙂

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  2. Not that you necessarily want to enable him, but if you have an iPhone (and probably in other phones) you can turn on Speak Selection under the Accessibility settings and you wouldn’t even have to do any work. Just give him the phone and take a nap! 😛

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  3. You and I both have “number” kids. She’s totally ignoring 14 when she counts and I keep asking: “Did 14 not call you back or something?”
    But she has to see “DEX!” every night before she goes to sleep and to make sure that it’s not red. She knows that’s not good and asks if I’m sick… While I’m glad she recognizes the red and the noises and “Mommy, want juice?”, it still makes me sad.

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  4. So adorable!! I think hearing him read wildly out of range numbers to me would make them feel less icky because I’d have something to smile about.

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