Mr. Incredible | Four Years Later

Dash for Halloween a couple months prior to diagnosis

It’s been a relaxing holiday recess. No running around for the normal activities. Just hanging out, playing, enjoying each other’s company and watching movies.

Among the movies we watched was one of my favorites that we hadn’t watched in a while.

Four years to be precise.

Four years ago Caleb was three and was a huge fan of The Incredibles. More specifically, a huge fan of Dash.

As we watched the movie, I realized Caleb was going through his Dash phase at the time he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. It all starting coming back to me.

I remembered being told by the pediatrician that we needed to go home and do nothing other than pack a bag and get to Yale New Haven Hospital as quickly as we could.  I went home, packed the essentials and ran downstairs to my “stash”.  It was after Christmas, but before Caleb’s birthday and I had some things collected for him. I pulled out a few. I remembered presenting him with the storybook featuring The Incredibles in the ER in an attempt to distract him while what seemed like ten people tried to hold him down to place an IV in his arm. I remembered being in his hospital room with him the following day, just the two of us, and giving him The Incredibles LeapPad game in an attempt to cheer him up. It didn’t work all that well.

I remembered how only weeks after being diagnosed Caleb had his fourth birthday party.  The theme was Disney’s Cars, but many of his gifts were Dash related, like…

…the lamp that also holds his medical ID bracelets…

ID Bracelet Holder/Lamp

…and Dash himself.

"I'm the Dash!"

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I remembered not caring how many gifts Caleb got that year when normally I try to be careful not to overdo it and spoil the kids. That year he couldn’t be spoiled enough.

I remembered him wearing the jersey that Grandma and Grandpa had given him for Christmas. He wore it during his hospital stay and also at his birthday party.

Breaking into the toy closet at the hospital.
Wearing his favorite jersey at his 4th birthday party.

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Then I remembered the doll Caleb made. He was given a plain, muslin doll in the hospital to practice giving injections. He made his doll “Dash”.

I remembered how we used to tell him that Dash was so fast at checking his sugar and giving himself injections that you couldn’t even see him do it.  I also remembered Caleb completely not believing us, but playing along nevertheless.
Dash has diabetes too!
Taking care of Dash

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I remembered the picture we took of Caleb days after diagnosis, smiling, getting a shot in his arm, to show his grandparents who had just left for their winter in Florida that he was okay. He was wearing an Incredibles hat.

"I'm okay Grandma and Grandpa."

There are a couple of “classic” pictures of Caleb with signs of Dash in them.  The day he started pumping with his OmniPod

First Pod - April 2007 - Can't tell but those are Dash PJ's

And his wink picture which has been featured in our local JDRF golf fundraiser pamphlet –

Dash PJ's yet again.

It only occurred to me as we were watching The Incredibles the other day, that this movie will forever be associated with Caleb’s diagnosis. There’s no separating the two.

Today is Caleb’s four year diaversary.  During the last couple of weeks he passed the mark in his life where he has now lived with diabetes longer than without it.

We’re not ignoring this day, but we’re not exactly celebrating it either. We talked about it this morning. I asked Caleb if he knew what today is and he replied, “Yeah, it’s the day we go back to school.”  I asked if he knew what else it is. He said, “Oh yeah. It’s the day we went to the hospital – cool.”  I wrote him a special note for his lunch box. He’s bringing his muslin Dash into school to share with his classmates. He gets to pick what we’re eating for dinner. He got some extra hugs and kisses this morning. But for the most part it’s just any other day.

Nothing incredible.

Even though we think Caleb kindof is.

Dash overload - January 2007
 

Caleb - 4 years later, January 3, 2011

 

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35 Replies to “Mr. Incredible | Four Years Later”

  1. I wish Caleb didn’t have diabetes. I wish I didn’t have it either. I find him to be a real inspiration to me, and seeing how you and your family deal with his diabetes and balance it in your daily life somehow heals me, heals some of my childhood memories of my diagnosis and ensuing loneliness. Thank you Lorraine for sharing, great post. INCREDIBLE!!!

  2. Oooh, and I have my Incredibles pic as my FB profile! One of our fave movies too. And now I can think of Caleb whenever we watch it. I’m sure Caleb has very little recollection of ever living without diabetes – life with D is his “normal”. He is a fantastic example to all! Happy Diaversary Caleb!

  3. Funny how moments in our lives get crystallized like that – the jelly aisle at Hannaford in my hometown will forever be the place that I finally “got” how permanent diabetes was. Every time I walk by there, I’m instantly reminded of my diagnosis.

    Caleb is such a champ – Dash couldn’t be a better partner for him!

  4. Just realized that our boys were diagnosed weeks apart. Benny was Dec 4th, 2006 (he was 23 months). His pictures all featured Mickey Mouse – I would have paid $100 to have a Mickey Mouse Clubhouse DVD in the hospital, but the show was too new! Hard to believe it’s been four years – so glad to get to know you here. Best to you all today.

  5. Reading the post and seeing the pictures made me cry. Caleb has touched so many hearts within the last 4 years of his life. Happy Diaversary-

    Be Blessed
    Cherise

  6. Happy diaversary! Caleb is a great kid. He’s a big inspiration for me.
    What did he pick for dinner? What’s his favorite dish? 🙂

  7. Honestly I am a little choked-up Lorraine. I didn’t realize how similar their stories are…Joe’s and Caleb’s. Both at 3, Both within a few months of each other…the rushing home to pack a bag from the pediatrician’s office…the holding them down in the ER to get in the IV . Joe has never seen The Incredibles though. He was into Thomas at the time.

    Anyway…I know what you are saying about the anniversary date. Another day…not necessarily a celebration.

    Love to you and Caleb and the family. I think you are all pretty darn INCREDIBLE. Thank you for sharing this with us.

  8. An incredible post about an incredible little guy! Happy Diaversary to Caleb and the entire family! 🙂

    If you ask my parents about my diagnosis my Mom would mention how she searched all around Omaha to find anything with Beauty and the Beast on it to keep me happy and entertained in the hospital. And there are a lot of pictures snapped in the year after diagnosis of me in a Beauty and the Beast dress, shoes, etc…

    The date of diagnosis will always be the day that changed my life. And it may be defined in the same manner for Caleb and your family. But, if we hadn’t had these days in our lives we never would have met. I wouldn’t have pursued pumping or CGM-ing. My NYC trip wouldn’t have been complete. While this disease is nothing to smile about, thinking about these things puts a grin on my face. And I think that’s pretty incredible!

  9. We don’t celebrate the days either. To be honest I am happy I remember the year much less the month or day. It was all a blurr….times two.

    I have to say, I absolutely love his meter picture showing him at 100 with a wink. Just too awesome. It’s cool that he had a character to keep him distracted and made him feel empowered. I love that.

  10. How fast time goes and how quick they grow. Kaylie just past her 2 year diaversary (I like that) and she has been doing great. Caleb is turning into a intelligent young man (from what I read), he has been an inspiration for Kaylie and us.

    It’s amazing how fast they’re forced to grow up and help handle this responsibility. It’s also amazes me how quick they accept it and go on with their lives (usually better than I do).

    Thanks for your posts, they are welcome part of my otherwise boring emails.

  11. Great post. Thanks for sharing. Caleb would enjoy the fact that one of our dogs is named “Dash”.

  12. Great post! Those diagnosis days do stick with you. Gary was diagnosed as type 2 via a very non chalent phone call on a Friday afternoon while we were at work. The next day was our work formal Xmas party and we spent the day at the doctor, lab, and nutritionist before getting ready for the party. I’ll always remember having my hair done up and wearing a red strapless satin dress and sobbing. We were so overwhelmed with information (much of it incorrect) that we couldn’t handle reading or knowing anymore. We’ve all come so far!

  13. Photos of Caleb always, always make me smile.
    Thanks for sharing the story of his diagnosis. Aren’t you glad you took all those pictures??!

  14. I think you are celebrating Caleb 4th diaversary just perfectly. A special note, bringing Dash to school, and picking what is for dinner are all little celebrations.

    Happy Diaverary, Caleb!! You rock! (And so does your Mom!!)

  15. I know that I’m late but I hope that Caleb had a wonderful and incredible day on his 4 year Diaversary.

    What adorable pictures of your little super hero, so sweet!!

  16. Dang it! I’m in tears! Dx stories always get to me. Sweetpea was dx’d just a couple of weeks after turning 3. I can’t look at those birthday pics. We went to the zoo right before dx. It was horrid. I’ll never go to the zoo without thinking of it… And it’s right across the street from Childrens. I remember being in the hospital thinking of all the people at the zoo… Having a normal day, a normal life.

    Happy Diaversary! I think you’re ALL pretty incredible!

  17. WOW! I feel like it was just yesterday our paths crossed for the first time!

    You’re an incredible mom with and incredible family doing an incredible job with D!

    So proud of you and can’t wait to see what healthy, happy things are in store!

  18. WOW! 4 years – Happy D Day.
    Thank you for sharing your journey with us. My journey is so much better knowing you are here with me.
    I love the pictures of Sweet Caleb AKA Mr. Incredible!! 🙂

  19. Lorraine, you have such a brave, smart and funny little guy! I have been reading your blog for the last hour. It’s fantastic!
    I wanted to tell you that after being diagnosed last year, I went on YouTube to look up videos about type 1. I found and watched some of the videos of your son! He is such a trooper. Thank you for sharing his and your experience with diabetes!

  20. Lorraine, this post is awschum. Dash? The coolest character in the Incredibles?! I love that you are a fun enough mom to indulge his passion of this character. These photos are fabulous!

    And, thank you for commenting on my post about the stomach flu. Your story, however, is absofreakinlutely crazy. 6 DAYS????? Nope. Not gonna even go there in my brain. Yikes. Sending major healing prayers your way, girl.

  21. I know I’m a little late, but happy d-versary to Caleb!! What an adorable , brave little boy you have. It makes me wonder if I was at all like that at his age. And hoping so. Wishing (you both) many, many, many more healthy d-versaries to celebrate!!

  22. Thanks for posting today. I really appreciated the comment, Sometimes when you have a child with type one you feel like your the only ones out there, but I know that there are so many wonderful parents out there taking care of their kids and teaching them how to live great lives. I’m so grateful for the the support system that is out there. It looks like your son has been doing well. We have one year down and hopefully a lot more great years to come. Thanks
    Melissa

  23. Tomorrow will be 5 months since I started using the Omnipod and kept your son in mind as I “took a big girl pill” to get the most of my training. To my amazement and delight, my numbers have come down from ranging 225-400 to 70-150 at least half the time. When I do go higher, it’s only by a few points, unless there is something wrong with my pod. Every step of the way, I draw from Caleb’s experiences that you’ve so generously shared. Thank you so much for being this 57 year-old’s role models.

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