I have walked in your shoes.
For over nine years now, but I still remember the anguish of putting on those shoes, how they felt too tight, how they blistered and bruised my feet, and sent rockets of pain through my body.
And the additional distress, that beside me, my little girl’s toes were cramping in her new walking boots, no matter how much I moisturised those little feet and tried to carry her, her shoes were as tight as mine, if not more so.
I know how it feels to be told in a quiet voice that your child has Type 1 Diabetes.
I know about the Google searches that you shouldn’t do, but you do anyway, and the fear that can cascade through your being.
I know about the endless nights fighting highs, and the terrifying nights of battling lows.
I know how impossible it feels some days trying to juggle work, siblings and friendships when you are running on less sleep than when your child was a newborn.
I know no one really understands the life of a Type 1 parent unless they are a Type 1 parent.
And, I know that trying to share what life is like, can often scare others who walk in a decent pair of comfy trainers (or at least as we can see…)
Nine years on.
My shoes are pretty comfortable, but I had to go through processes, coaching, and some almost crushing times to get where I am today. I’ve educated myself, undertaken courses on how to speak to myself and upskilled myself so my mindset is a million miles away from that dark day many moons ago.
Likewise, my daughter’s shoes slip on her feet as she grabs her “bag” and darts out of the house to live her life. I credit much of this to her, but also thinks I can attribute a fair whack of this to me.
Together, we have some days where those shoes feel pretty tight again, but then they ease off and become battered old slippers once more. We don’t hate them; that is pointless. We simply put them on and keep going.
No-one spoke much about mindset and my mental health when my daughter was diagnosed. The care she received was tremendous and I am always grateful for that; my nurse was also pretty epic as far as I was concerned as well.
I never appreciated what years of broken sleep would do to me, emotionally and physically.
I never thought about how hating a medical condition would eventually exhaust me.
I never realised that having access on my phone to 24/7 blood sugar readings could consume me.
I never thought about living in the past thinking why us, and staring terrified to a future, thinking what next, would mean for me.
I found out eventually,
It was messy, and a place I don’t need to go back to.
For me, now, the moment is enough. It is all I can control to a degree, and I have techniques to help me stay in the moment, not spiral into a future I can’t determine.
No one said I might need support one day, and yet when I reached out for it in a multitude of channels I found it was the best cure.
And now I offer that support forward, as a coach and mentor on life with a child with Type 1 Diabetes.
I wish I had met someone who worked like me years ago.
But I didn’t even know coaching outside of the corporate world was even a thing.
Parents of children with medical conditions need support too. If you want to find a space for you, come say hi in my free Facebook group, which is all about supporting the parents (no pizza bolus or medical advice offered!)
If you want to get regular emails with group courses that will help you fix your mindset more to one that makes your shoes comfier, then please subscribe here and get a free copy of my e-book.
If you want to discuss 121 coaching or have a power hour, simply book in my diary here.
Just know the road does get easier, the shoes a little softer, and recognise that you are simply doing your best!