our 5 year old Type 1 Diabetic.
Cannon was diagnosed with Type One Diabetes at 14 months old and has been fighting this disease for over 4 years now. He’s the toughest little super hero I know, and never complains about the finger pokes, pump site changes, middle of the night snacks, or just feeling bad because his sugar is high, or worse... low.
It all started on Monday, June 30, 2014, when I decided to take Cannon to the doctor as he had been drinking more at night, peeing more, becoming very lethargic over the last 3 days and started vomiting the previous night. He had a low grade fever and wouldn’t let me put him down that night. As soon as the doctor’s office opened, Monday morning, I called and got an appointment for 2pm.
As I was blowing drying my hair, I felt the good Lord telling me not to wait, to get Cannon to see his pediatrician faster than that. I called back their office and said I really wanted something sooner. They told me to be there in 20 minutes. When I was getting Cannon dressed to go, looking into his eyes, you could see that the life was being sucked out of him. He just wanted to lay there and be still....which that was not my baby boy at all.
Once we got to the clinic, his pediatrician checked him out and noticed that he had lost some weight. I mentioned about his increased thirst at night. She had already cleared his ears (which he had been prone to ear infections). His doctor decide to draw some lab, and said we will check his sugar too. I’ll never forget the pale, surprised, worried look that his doctor had on her face when she walked back into the room (she is a friend too). My heart sank as I knew something was wrong!
The tears started flowing as she told me that he probably had diabetes and needed to be rushed to Children’s Hospital ER immediately. The tears and emotions of knowing that my little baby boy would have to fight this disease the rest of his life was setting in ... the reality of Cannon battling this disease... but, I never knew the extremes we would face!
Chris and I raced him up to Children’s ER, which is where Chris worked at the time . He had already called and warned them that we were on the way while driving up there. Thank goodness for that! They were ready and took excellent care of Cannon. They moved so fast that we were actually in the ICU with insulin hanging before the first original appt of 2pm. The doctors were praising us for catching it because another 48-72 hours, our sweet baby boy could have been dead.....
Thank you, Jesus for speaking to me so clearly that morning!
As I watched my baby boy laying in the hospital bed being poked every hour to check his blood glucose level, hooked up to an insulin drip, I thought, how in the world can we do this? It’s not fair that he is having to go through this! He’s just a baby!
We spent 32 hours in the ICU and then transferred to the Diabetes floor where we were trained for 2 days on what our new variant of normal life would be caring for our T1D baby. I can remember sitting in the class trying to take it all in and thinking, I just can’t.
I just can’t stick my baby with needles 15-20 times a day! How can this even be fair?! God, please let me trade places with my baby boy! He’s just a baby!
But God knew when he molded Cannon, that he would be okay. His tough, onerey self wouldn’t let Diabetes slow him down. He has never really complained about the shots except the one in his stomach since diagnosis.
Fast forward... Cannon is a 5 year old boy who doesn’t let this terrible disease define him at all. He’s active... plays sports... goes to preschool for half a day... can check his own sugar, and never misses a beat. He really is my superhero.....
But, he needs our help monitoring him 24 hrs a day! While he doesn’t stop for anything, he doesn’t feel his lows very well. He wears the Dexcom sensor, but it can be way off reading sometimes... up to a hundred points off... it’s not uncommon for his Dexcom to alert a low in the 70s, and we perform a fingerstick to find him in the 30s.... which scares us more than we can ever communicate....
He tends to drop low in the middle of the night or during activity, which is scary as too low can cause seizures, coma, or death and too high can also cause organ failure, blindness, brain swelling, and death.
Ever since Cannon was diagnosed, I’ve always wanted the best for him, the things that can help keep my “sugar baby” alive... so we got the Dexcom, a device that reads the equivalent of blood sugar in the interstitial fluid. Unfortunately it’s not very accurate, but it can give you an idea if his blood sugar is going up or down... but, children have died... very recently... depending on this technology, and it’s heartbreaking....
I have been reading on Service Dogs that can detect highs and lows faster than the sensor for several years. After all the research and studying, I have found a trainer that I have absolutely fallen in love with and the way she trains the golden doodles. I truly feel that she can help keep my sweet little sugar baby safe by training a service dog for Cannon.
These service dogs are amazing in their ability to sense highs and lows so much faster than today’s technology. They have saved so many children’s lives. It just so happens that an opportunity has arisen and an opening is available to train a puppy to be Cannon’s Diabetes Service Dog. These specialized dogs are carefully selected as puppies with certain traits from a very young age. Then they are trained specifically for one child... their child.
Diabetes Service Dogs are expensive due to the specific breeds bred for this work, and the intensive training that they receive (very much like Rescue and Law Enforcement Dogs). This is where you, our new & old friends come in...we need your help to raise the money it takes to get a special friend that will watch over him and protect him from dying during the middle of the night. Cannon absolutely loves dogs and I believe that they will become best friends and depend on each other.
I know by adding this new member into our family, a little more peace and comfort will come over us. Cannon will have one more set of eyes (and nose) looking out for him. There hasn’t been a night since diagnosis that I don’t wake up every hour to check and see what his sugar is and if he is still breathing (he still sleeps in the bed next to me)... many early mornings, Chris wakes me up while he’s fixing a low and staying up til Cannon’s blood sugar is safe enough for us to go back to sleep.
This disease never stops and is known as the silent killer, which scares this momma to death!
Please help us on our mission to raise money for a diabetic service dog for Cannon! What little boy doesn’t need a dog... a trained friend... looking out for him and protecting him from low blood sugars that current day technology doesn’t always catch. Another tool to keep Cannon safe is worth all the money in the world... his health and his life is priceless.
But we do need your help, any amount is appreciated! Where there is a will, there is a way and we can do it together....for Cannon!
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- Audrey Eldridge
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Fundraising team: Type One into Type None (3)
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