Today's topic for the 3rd annual Diabetes Blog Week is "One Thing Great". The goal is to write about one thing that I or a loved one does great while handling their diabetes care.
Hmmmm, I am a humble person, so this topic stretches me past my comfort zone but hey, it does take a lot of work to handle diabetes, so I guess I will take a moment to celebrate that and not care if I sound braggy.
I would say I am great at having Rocco, my six-year-old diabetic, feel "normal". I obsess over the numbers so he does not have to. I memorize all the carb counts so he can learn to add in school and not in our kitchen. I set my alarm in the middle of the night to check him so he can dream in peace. I create balanced meals so he doesn’t often feel extreme spikes and drops in blood sugar. I embarrass myself in front of other moms with my vigilante behavior before, during and after birthday parties, so he can concentrate on what's in the goody bag instead what's his number. I give him a heavy protein diet for breakfast and lunch on Valentine’s Day so he can have the cupcake later at the Valentine's party. I research everyday for tips and tricks to make him even healthier. I arrange diabetes-focused meetings with teachers, secretaries and principals and I fill in the paperwork for school medical management plans. I find diabetes camps he can attend. I stare at his neck in case it's sweaty and his eyes to see if they look sleepy, looking for signs of low blood sugar or high blood sugar. I do all this while orchestrating a perfect, seemingly "normal" family life. I guess I can say I am proud of myself for that.
As far as the most important person, Rocco, you know the one WITH Type 1 diabetes, he does everything great! But, if I were to pick one thing, I would have to choose the fact that he hardly ever complains. Almost never. I can count on one hand how many times he has actually said something like, " I wish I didn't have diabetes." Or, "I hate changing my port site."
He also keeps his days normal. He stops anytime we ask him to get checked. He doesn’t panic if the number is high or low. He always does what we ask him to do, like eat something, get a port change (these can hurt) or wash his hands 1,000 times a day. Everyone who is around him is amazed at his complete resolve. People who care for him often ask him how to handle certain situations about his care. He is so responsible he routinely helps them through the process. He does this with my family, my husband's parents, teachers, and babysitters. He is a special kid.
It could be that he’ll go through a phase as a super-rebellious adolescent or teenager, in contrast to his great attitude about diabetes as a little kid. But maybe not. Fingers crossed. My father-in-law's endocrinologist says that "if you must be a diabetic, you might as well be a good one." I can say for sure that, so far, Rocco is a good one!
I couldn't live a "normal" life without him and his cheery attitude. He makes life pleasurable and easy for all of us!