Rylan Carter Long was born on October 20, 2009, healthy and as normal as could be, and all was well until he was two years old. Rylan had been sick, with a poor appetite, lethargic and wanting only to drink fluids. He would wake long enough to have his diaper changed and drink some juice, and then would immediately return to sleep. Rylan’s father Paul recalls, “writing it off as a common sickness.”
However, Paul states that, “a mother’s intuition is never wrong. My wife, Sheila was convinced that there was something more wrong and wanted to take him to the hospital to be checked out.” Sheila took Rylan to a local hospital, and later called Paul to tell him that Rylan had a blood sugar of 450, was diagnosed with diabetes and needed to be transferred to SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital. Rylan was then transferred to SSM Health Cardinal Glennon where he received his initial treatment and where Paul and Sheila received the education they would need to provide the best care for their son at home.
“Since that day we have become first-name friends with most everyone in the diabetes department and endocrinologists at Cardinal Glennon. We couldn’t be happier with the care we’ve received and the friends gained from the staff at Cardinal Glennon,” says Paul. Rylan is now nine years old with an insulin pump and continuous glucose monitor. According to his parents, “He is as normal as any other nine year old in his class and embraces his differences confidently. He enjoys dirt bike racing, hunting, fishing and baseball”.