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The Tornado

Thursday, February 24, 2011

You all know that March comes in like a lion...

So since spring weather is on the horizon ( I hope!), I wanted to share this story with you!

Back in October, we had a very unusual thunderstorm come through our area.  We don't usually have high winds and tornado warnings in October, but that day we did.

We knew it was coming... The sky got dark.  The wind picked up.  It was ominous.

And it was a weekday.  I was at school with the kids.

I've been teaching for 13 years.  In all my years as a teacher AND as a student, I have NEVER had a situation where we had to take cover for REAL.  But that day we did.

A tornado had been sighted.  The sirens went off.  We all went to our safe places and we were "down" for 45 minutes to an hour before we were told it was safe to get up.  I won't go into what that was like with a bunch of scared 5 year olds!  Use your imagination!  (Honestly, they were fantastic!  Very well behaved and handled it with grace and maturity!)

WHY am I telling you this?  WHAT does this have to do with diabetes?

This is why....

When the sirens went off, my class had just entered the lunch room.  Some of them had started eating.  Some of them had not.  Some of them had only taken a bite or two.

They left their food.  And we were in our safe place for an hour.

WHAT IF...  there was a Type 1 child in the class who had been prebolused for lunch but had to leave the food?

WHAT IF... no one noticed?

WHAT IF... no one understood?

I don't have to tell you... that would be BAD NEWS.  Active insulin on board and no food for an hour means a crashing blood sugar and very likely a BAD low.  A LOW low.

That could turn into a life threatening situation very quickly.

As I was helping my kids to the safe place and worrying about their lunches and getting them more to eat (because due to health regulations - the food was thrown away.  Not to fear - they were served again and they were all happy as clams!), the thought hit me like a ton of bricks.

Oh My Lord.

I'd never thought of that.  It wasn't in her 504.  Had never been discussed.

But can you imagine?

So - I share this with you in hopes that it might be a conversation you have with your child's teacher and nurse.  I share this with you because you might want to add something about this into your 504 plan (I did - you can see our 504 plan HERE).  I share this because it might be a good conversation for you to have WITH your child!

Hopefully, none of our kiddos are ever in this situation - for a fire or a tornado or anything else.

But IF they are - I want us to be prepared!



  1. at my school we have had lock downs, which are pretty much the same thing. i've been stuck in a class room for a long amount of time without access to food. i always carry around food in my bag for that reason

  2. There's always another something to add to the heap of somethings and scenarios to consider.

    Man, that would have been a disaster for a T1 kiddo...UGH!

  3. you always have such great knowledge! THANKS for sharing!!!

  4. This is so smart Hallie! Justice doesnt get prebolused in school because only I or dad can administer insulin unless an emergency. But for so many who do and live in these regions....genius!

  5. And in Texas, tornados are definitely something you have to think about.

    Sigh... it's a wonder our heads haven't exploded from all we have to think about.

  6. Never thought of that. I do know that if we ever go into "lock down" the nurse has a procedure to get to the kids. However, I never though of the lunch thing... 30 minutes is too long for Justin.

    hmmm... scary.

  7. Joe always has a bag that has snacks and food etc...but we haven't gone over a plan like tornadoes here thank goodness.

    That is SCARY STUFF Hallie!

  8. Great insight, Hallie!

    We dont live where there are tornado's thank goodness... BUT what else could happen that would delay the kids eating... really the possibilities are pretty abundant. Definitely something to think about!!


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