Diabetes, Disney and Hand Dryers

Diabetes, Disney and Hand Dryers
travel series part 1

I was talking to a member and she suggested that I might be nice to write some travel stories. I certainly have a more than a few, so over the next few days I will tell the stories, as I remember them. I bet other onlookers have different impressions, but of course mine are correct. LOL

So where to start? I decided I would start from the beginning. Well the beginning of being diabetic anyway. It is an odd story. It actually started several years before it happened. You see, when I heard that Disney was building a big new park in Florida, I wanted to go. I followed the construction and read about some of the options they might have placed in the park. I read of the underground tunnels so the service function could move freely even during the peak hours. I read about the hall of presidents and was enthralled by the animation. I heard of tomorrow land and the amazing attractions at the Kodak Theater and I so wanted to go.

As time went on, my father overcame his natural reluctance to travel anywhere south of Indiana. My family’s summer vacation included going to Holland MI, or fishing in Minnesota and visiting the locks at Sault Ste. Marie. Of course my dad tossed in the WI dells, or an occasional venture into the depths of Ohio. These were distinctly northern vacations. Disney world seemed out of the question.

I think it had to be the fact that I would soon graduate from High School that caused my dad to agree to go south. He was reluctant (our one ventured into KY ended with a broken car and burnt up engine) since going south was not his typical direction. But for whatever reasons my mom and dad decided to go to Disney World. I was 16 and would turn 17 a few days after the return from vacation. I figured of course I would be in FL so I would never see anyone I knew so being 16 in FL with parents would be fine. I mean I would never see these people again, so if I wanted to enjoy “it’s a small world” I could do it.

Two months before we left I took a day off school as I done every year for 9 years to have a glucose tolerance test. As they all had before this none were negative, no Diabetes here. I figured it would be my last or I might have one more my senior year. Man I hated that test. But a clean Diabetic bill of health was comforting. So as we started out for FL I had few concerns. In TN or at about 2/3 of the first day I started not feeling the best. I figured it was a bad bunch of Howard Johnson clams I had in southern IN. I knew that if these are fried incorrectly those bad boys packed a punch.(Yuck)

I was a new driver and I surrendered the wheel just south of Indianapolis and crawled in the back seat and went to sleep. Oh and of course I popped a tab because I was thirsty. In Atlanta we stropped and I almost ran to the men’s room. Upon departure I bought another large drink. By the time we rolled into Kissimmee FL, I was drinking a lot and peeing even more. If it was noticed by anyone I was unaware. That evening I sat out the customary pool visit.

The next morning was the first day of Disney World. I witnessed some of the opening parade, as I was off in the men’s room enjoying the hand dryers. Main Street was fantastic. They had drink places in almost every block. Tomorrow land had both a nice men’s room and some cool drink stands. Frontier land had and awesome boat and three men’s rooms but only two drink stands. It was Adventure land that gave me cool memories. They had a drink stand located immediately at the front of the area. I could say I had visited Adventure Land buy a wonderfully cold soft drink just by entering.

It was at the Hall of the Presidents that everything went south. I had to leave the line 4 times to pee. My mother noticed and quiet conversations started about my general lack of fun here in the one place I always wanted to go too. After sleeping through the animation I ran out of the attraction and dashed for the concession stand. The next pee break I was handed a clinstick and told how to use it. I reported the result 4+. My mom was concerned. From then on every men’s room visit was accompanied by a clinistick and the demand for results. At least I was consistent, all 4+ no exceptions.

The next day was a repeat of the first, except for two things. At the drink stand in adventure land the operator told Mickey I was his best customer that week and as such Mickey acting though his handler made sure I got a drink on the house. Imagine the thrill of Mickey putting your needed drink on Walt’s Tab. The second thing was the Luau. This was my dad’s one reason he agreed to come to FL. I was sick so I didn’t eat, and I spent much of the evening in the men’s room throwing up. My dad was angry, my mom concerned, and me sick. My dad declared that we needed to leave, and as soon as possible. That night my mom told me we were leaving FL 4 days early. She explained to me what all this meant. I was not comforted. That night I peed 6 times in the night and drank 4 tabs each time my mother was concerned.

The next day we packed up and started for home. I was half asleep in the back seat as I heard my parents talking and it was not good. In Georgia my mother broke her first rule of travel ‘do not call anybody’ in those days the bill was over the top so she only called with codes. Like my grandparents if she called seeking herself that meant we were doing well and they would refuse the call. If she asked for my grandfather it meant trouble had come but we were ok and if she called for my grandma she was to pick up and my mom would explain her situation. This time she asked for my grandma. Then she made the call to the doctor. She arranged a blood sugar and an appointment to see the doctor.

In two days I was in the hospital. My blood sugar was close to 700 I cannot remember an exact number but it was over 690. On day 2 I started to feel better and that was when mom and dad asked about my diabetes education. On day 3 I went to class and got an orange and syringe to practice with. I ate the orange and threw away the syringe. On day 4 I got a syringe and an orange to practice with. I ate the orange. On day 5 I gave myself my first injection and no orange. I told he nurse there was some mistake since I had never practiced giving injections. She said she personally ahd see me eat the orange so I needed to get with it.

On day 6 I was released from the hospital, It was my 17th birthday and the day I count as my diabirthday. Though I actually had my diabirthday in Disney world, I prefer to remember my 17th birthday. I do know one thing. Contrary to the advertising Disney World is not always the best place on earth. I do know this for certain, the drink stand in adventure land is a great place, and Disney has some awesome hand dryers. Wow if I could get me a few of those. Now that would be awesome.

I have actually gone to Disney three times since that week. Unfortunately, I have never gotten over my first visit. For me it was a thing to remember.

Tomorrow I will be writing about CA, Earthquakes, and no dinner.