To my Type One Daughter,
(or the one we call Molly)
It’s 2am, I woke again to the sound of my phone screaming an alarm. It’s usual to hear a couple of times a week, and to my shame, I occasionally sleep through it. Although when I do, the guilt mixed with fear can be utterly debilitating.
I’ve forced fed you apple juice, you barely even woke, except to belch after guzzling down 20 grams of fast acting carbs.
Now I wait, for 15 minutes to watch the graph that dominates my screen time on my phone to read a safe number so I can sleep again. When you were first diagnosed, when we didn’t have the technology we have now – I would lie by your side watching your body fight an invisible battle.
Almost a decade we have played this game with your sugar gremlin. 10 years, and you are hands down, winning at life.
I remember the day, when you were diagnosed, when a rush of shame for not spotting the signs crashed over me. I remember fiercely telling you, it wouldn’t change, diabetes wouldn’t stop you from doing anything or being anyone.
It was a promise I didn’t know if I could keep, but my heart was in control that day, and clearly knew the truth.
Almost ten years, and it is normal to know the carbohydrate content of every food. It’s utterly irrational, that I can still eat badly when I know the sugar content and carbs of every aisle in Tesco’s.
It’s normal to ask if you are high in public, and normal to live a life painting by numbers.
Look at you, my child, my girl, my warrior.
From the age of 6 you have placed over thousands of needles into your skin.
I’d say never once complaining; but you are mid teens now – and everything gets a decent moan now and then
Other teen parents bemoan the loss of crockery to a teenagers room, I collect test strips and on occasion needles when I dare to enter the teenage den.
But is it normal.
(And the reason I always wear slippers inside.)
My girl, I don’t tell you enough, how amazing you are. How you took the hand you were dealt and turned it into a royal flush.
I chant “have you bolused”, at every meal, and I know I should preface that with “I think you are amazing, but please sodding bolus.”
It’s 2.07am, we have crept from a 3.2 to a 4.7. I can relax again, and try to sleep.
I only do the night shift, you have the complications of day. Of playing the role of a pancreas whilst living a teenage life.
You are incredible.
Love from the night shift worker,
(I work with Type 1 families to help ease the pain that a diagnosis of a chronic condition can bring; to join my events or courses please email email@example.com with Add Me in the subject title)
If you enjoyed this post, you will LOVE this one: Diabetes: Just imagine for a second.