Being a first-time mom to a diabetic child is a little bit of the same. I am making new mom mistakes along the way but learning as I go so I don't repeat the same ones twice. However, as you may have guessed from recent posts, dealing with Type 1 diabetes is truly like chasing a rainbow. You can try and do the exact same thing every single day but you never know if you will land on that perfect number. Somedays, when I feel discouraged, I feel like my day would have had better results getting in my car and looking for the end of a rainbow.
Trying to get to that magic number of 90-120 is difficult enough. but throw sports in the mix and you might as well just throw in the towel! Haha! Dealing with the highs from stress and the lows from the physical aspect of the game is hard to navigate and end up with an in-range number.
It is for this reason, many of you know, at times I struggle with sports.
But after kicking a soccer ball with a boy from the neighborhood, Rocco came running in and said he wanted learn how to play soccer. It frustrated him that the boy in the neighborhood was better than he was. In true Rocco fashion, he never once realized it was because the boy was three years older than he is and had been playing for four years! Rocco just has always thought he can grab any sport and just be great at it! I try not to squelch his confidence. There will be plenty of people, later in life, trying to bring him down... Lol!
So, I signed him up!
This morning was our first practice. He looked so cute in his outfit. He looked like he belonged in it!
When he woke up his blood sugar was 187. Perfect for a morning of running around. He had a yogurt and an Eggo waffle. The total amount of insulin his pump recommended seemed high. I was afraid the insulin would hit him before he started to process the food. This could make his blood sugar tank before we got to the practice. Thankfully his pump allows me to do a “dual wave”, which means he gets some of the insulin immediately with the rest gradually kicking in over an hour. So I did that. I felt safe with that.
As soon as we got to the practice, the coach got the kids running around. I was worried that his blood sugar could be low, but it was too soon to check it, since he was still getting the second part of the insulin and was still processing the breakfast. So I waited. I watched him try so hard to learn the moves and listen to the coach. He did so well.
But I could tell that the super intense coach (who had a thick accent) was stressing him out. In true tough love fashion, I silently cheered him on in his stressful moment. Giving your kids tough love is hard. I like that in sports it is important to persevere and barrel through. I want them to struggle a little in their life when they are with me, so when they grow and are away from me, they will know how to process, cope and move on from hardships. So, as much as it was hard to see him stress, I knew it was better for him in the long run. This is one of the hardest things, I believe, parents need to let their kids experience.
What was harder was not knowing where his blood sugar was.
As he played on, I saw him taking deep breaths. This is a sign of fatigue, which to the mom of a diabetic child can mean low blood sugar. Finally I couldn't take it any longer and I was able to take him out of the practice for a moment to check his blood sugar. When I did, the monitor gave me a little "how do you do".
Total shock! Poor guy. In true Rocco fashion, he drank some water really fast and hurried back to the practice. I gave the amount of insulin the pump recommended. Even though he said he felt fine and didn't want to come out of the game, I wondered how he felt. Most times with him, you just don't know. Unless he is really low, he acts normal. And sometimes he may get a little belligerent when his blood sugar hits between 200-250, but other than that, he acts just fine. I felt sorry for him as I watched him persevere through the vagaries of his disease. Just sucking it up for the good of the team! He is so sweet and tries so hard at everything he does; I just wish I could take this away from him. I know I never can but I always wish...
Thankfully, there was only ten minutes left in the practice and when I got him home to check his ketones (high ketones are a potential complication of high blood sugar), they were negative.
I tried to memorize what I fed him and how nervous he was before the game. I always feel if I memorize every aspect of how a high or low blood sugar day went, I can make adjustments and hope to get his blood sugar number in range (90-120) the next time. However, I know I am only fooling myself because how can you really tell what level of nervousness your child's body is processing? But, I will foolishly keep trying to chase the magic number at the end of the rainbow. As I do everyday. Ugh! Poor Rocco.Who needs to learn how to "barrel through" sports? This kid already knows how to barrel through...