“It’s no big deal, they can control it so well nowadays, fifty years ago she may have died…”
A well meaning chap in the cafe said this to us today after watching my daughter who has Type 1 Diabetes inject her tummy. I was split in two, part of me wanted to hug the man for not treating my daughter differently, for showing an interest, for not looking at the chocolate muffin on her plate and telling me she shouldn’t eat it.
But on the flip side I wanted to stomp my feet and cry, ‘ but it is a big deal, it is always, it is life changing, it is madness at times.’
Mum always said I should have gone to drama school…
The over sensitive emotional me was out in full force owing to a hypo at 2am which robbed us all of sleep.
The question of how big a deal is Twin Girl’s diabetes rolls around in my head daily. Physically she is fine, emotionally I find her moods tie in with her sugar levels and that can be hard to parent; and some days parenting can be hard enough. It won’t kill her, with good diabetic control she won’t lose her sight or a limb. If she eats well she will live well.
So it’s not a big deal, right?
She will need a doctors note before she can drive, she will need to renew her license every three years. When she becomes a alcohol drinking teen she will need to wear a medical bracelet to help let people know when she is hypo not legless. She may rebel in her teens and want to lose weight, she may quickly work out that if she doesn’t take insulin she can eat the entire of Tesco’s and still lose weight.
She can’t be left at a swimming class, a dance lesson, or her gymnastics club because her teachers aren’t trained to ‘care’.
So it is a big deal, right?
I don’t have any answers, I think if truth be told some days diabetes is like a bit of forgotten fruit at the back of the fridge. It just sits there quietly causing no harm to anyone. Other days it starts to rot and the odour demands my attention and we have to deal with it.
It makes itself a big deal.
Since Twin girls diagnoses I have read stories of kids who starve their body of insulin in order to achieve a svelte body. I have heard tales of teens rebelling and smoking and drinking to excess and falling into hospital owing to lack of diabetic control.
Before twin girls diabetes I read stories of kids starving themselves of food in order to achieve a svelte body and I knew of teens rebelling and smoking and drinking and ending up in hospital through lack of control.
Diabetes is a pretty big thing, but so is parenting. I think seeing the good in everything helps your head deal with the worry.
I read a book recently where a girl who had diabetes commented…
“I find it a hassle updating my licence every three years, but on the plus side – got to update the terrible photo for free!”
There is a lot to be said for always looking on the bright side.