Today, those of us following D-Blog Week are encouraged to tell you what we think you should know about diabetes. That’s a loaded question.
Like so many others are saying in their posts today, I want you to know that living with diabetes is HARD. We do it. We make sacrifices of convenience, money and sleep. We have no choice. The simple truth is that if we do not, our child will not survive.
I want you to know that while Type 1 diabetes does come with set formulas and a specific format that needs to be followed, there is no moment of arrival. This is a disease of constant flux. Sometimes when you follow all the rules, you get good results. Sometimes when you follow all the rules, you get crazy results. You can follow the rules and have days or weeks of stable numbers, and you can follow the rules and see very little rhyme or reason. Type 1 is not a disease where, if you test and take insulin, things are fine. That makes things livable, but the one constant about diabetes is that it will change. Like Mad-Eye Moody, the battle cry for us is “Constant vigilance!”
I want you to know that while modern medicine has made it so those with T1 can live long healthy lives, diabetes could steal my sweet boy away in a moment. One mistake in calculating an insulin dose, one time too many of saying “I know you feel low, I’ll check you in a minute”…it can be deadly.
While I don’t wish that you would experience this, I want you to know that I test Ethan while he is sleeping and think, “What if he doesn’t wake up in the morning? What if I found him just like this? Would I be hysterical? Would I scream? How would I tell his sisters, and even more horrifying, what if one of them found him instead of me?” Perhaps you think such thoughts are extreme exaggerations of a mother who worries too much. They are not. They are a reality.
I also wish you could see the quiet moments of diabetes. The sweet, tender moments. The quiet moments of a quick kiss and a whispered, “It’s ok – you’re up in a safe range now – go back to sleep.” The moments when we celebrate small victories and say, “I’m proud of you for how you’re handling all of this.”
We press on.