What about us?
I know, I run the risk of sounding like a stroppy teen (which I have plenty of experience of).
But what about the parents of the kids with Type 1.
Yes, the kids take top trump, inequivalently – they win, on the got it worse scale.
It is their body, their condition, and ultimately down to them, as they age, to manage and carry diabetes around with them everywhere they go.
This doesn’t downplay the impact on you, the parent.
The best advice my Diabetic nurse, upon diagnosis, gave to me was to grieve…
…for all I thought life would be, for the future I planned for my family with the smell of insulin absent.
It took me 3 months to cry, and when I did, Noah seriously considered building a second Ark.
I’m putting my hand in the air – it is hard as a parent to a Type 1.
We have ALL the fears, we read the google results we know we shouldn’t. We get sucked into the Facebook threads we really shouldn’t read.
Upon diagnosis, most Type 1 parents, including myself, go in search of the worse case scenario – because we know this stuff can happen.
The lesson I learnt quickly, if you look for the bad, you will find it.
Positive news never sells like the negative.
When we were diagnosed, a fellow type1 mum said to me, “life will never be the same, your other children will eat after her, their food will go cold as you sort the carbs. You will never sleep again.”
She really meant well.
She scared the sh*t out of me, and also made me draw a line in the sand.
My kids would only ever eat cold food if it was a sandwich. They would be far more likely to eat burnt food as this sits more comfortably in my cooking skills. Life would never be the same because we were going to grab it by the balls and live every freaking second.
I’ll give her the sleep one, I do the night shift, and often it is disturbed, but last night I got nine hours and I am ON fire!
She however, sleeps like a log, every night – so I’ll take that.
When you sign up to having a family, you sign up to a multitude of risks and fears. If you googled what could happen in your lifetime we may never lead the house.
Living a normal life with Type 1 is more than achievable, making a life normal with Type 1 is the challenge we face as parents.
Everything my daughter has achieved in her short life so far, has broken my heart a little more because she has Type 1.
Just as it is my role in life to teach her right from wrong, to let her make mistakes and to catch her when she falls.
Its also my role to help her live a full, abundant life, with Type 1. To never let it hinder her, or stop her.
In ten years, there is nothing we have not done because she is diabetic. Once a teacher stopped her playing netball as they were not equipped to help her. That experience meant we paved a way so that would NEVER happen again at that school. I still apologise to my daughter for that ever happening.
If you are new on this journey. Be selective of what you read, and draw your line. It has taken almost a decade for me to be incredibly comfortable with our diabetic journey – and even then we have had challenges….
Try being about to board a 8 hour plane with 2.1 ketones and sugars of 23.4 and you can’t find your insurance papers to check you can afford healthcare in America! Not only do I burn food, I also lose important documents at the worse time.
Look for the positive, find the joy, grieve and move on – mindset is so important in this journey.
Be kind to yourself, your child has been dealt a duff card, so have you – and you are really important.
(Type 1 Mum & Coach)
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