On Motherhood and Diabetes: Bittersweet

First and foremost, let me say: I’m glad it’s me. I CANNOT IMAGINE trying to manage diabetes for my child…

How do you make them understand what all the pricks are for? How do you make them stand still? And who the hell knows what a 2yr-old (or a 5yr-old or 7yr-old) is going to eat? or has eaten? When I’m struggling to open the can of Spaghettios with the bagels smoking in the toaster amidst hunger cries above the TV and ringing phone, I’m certainly not worrying about how many carbs are coming at them…

And it must hurt. The night seizures, the lows at school, the “big talk” about the consequences… my God, as if we didn’t worry about them enough! With their defenseless little mussed up heads, and their big trusting eyes… My heart and my utmost respect go out to those parents (this means you, Martha! and you, Shannon! and all those at the podsquad, and the JDRF, and Diabetes123, etc., etc.)

But to be brutally honest (when aren’t I?), it’s not always a picnic trying to manage my own diabetes while mothering, either — especially when the Disney videos are blaring, the water is running along with feet stomping REALLY LOUD upstairs, and I’m yelling: “No sitting in the garbage!!” Who the hell knows what I’m going to eat? or have eaten? or have injected, for that matter?

Thankfully, they can also be soooo sweet. They make me “wheat-free cookies” out of playdough, and kiss my “boo-boos” when I test, and (try to) stand back respectfully when I take my “med-sins”… Love goes a long way towards fostering good health.

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9 Responses

  1. Shannon Lewis
    Shannon Lewis April 15, 2005 at 11:52 am | | Reply

    All of what you said is why I pushed so hard for getting the pump. Eating ice cream for dinner to get the requisite number of carbs was becoming too commonplace. Flicking bubbles out of the syringe while my baby and toddler were screaming and Brendon asking for more food when he wasn’t supposed to and making sure he ate at the exact same times everyday even if we were on the road to a place hours away was a pain in the neck to say the least. Now with the pump, he can have a normal lifestyle in the midst of a crazy health problem. My biggest worry is when he’s on his own as an adult and he has some sort of flu and the last thing you want to think about is checking blood sugars and figuring out how the heck to keep your sugars up when you can’t keep anything down. There’s no one to pass the torch to unless you have a very supportive significant other who is willing to take on some of the burden. I give diabetics all the credit in the world for tackling a disease that never gives them a break. Thanks for this article Amy!

  2. Elinor Acterman
    Elinor Acterman April 15, 2005 at 8:56 pm | | Reply

    As a mother, I was very touched by your article. No matter how old your child is or how responsible
    when one becomes a mother worry is a constant right along with love.
    Twas ever thus.

  3. Martha O'Connor
    Martha O'Connor April 15, 2005 at 10:27 pm | | Reply

    Hi Amy,
    Thanks for writing this. You are inspiration to all of us with your optimism, information and drive. Lots of love, Martha

  4. Martha O'Connor
    Martha O'Connor April 15, 2005 at 10:27 pm | | Reply

    Hi Amy,
    Thanks for writing this. You are inspiration to all of us with your optimism, information and drive. Lots of love, Martha

  5. Martha O'Connor
    Martha O'Connor April 15, 2005 at 10:27 pm | | Reply

    Hi Amy,
    Thanks for writing this. You are inspiration to all of us with your optimism, information and drive. Lots of love, Martha

  6. Sandra Miller
    Sandra Miller May 3, 2005 at 10:27 am | | Reply

    Amy,

    Thank you for suggesting I check out this post. Maybe it’s because we’re having a really rough day, but I broke down reading it. You’re right, this is very, very hard. Most days I think we’re doing pretty well, but then it all seems to go out the window when something changes– activity level, stress, illness– and Joseph’s sugars go wild.

    Anyhow, thanks for what you’re doing here. Your positive attitude and willingness to share your knowledge with the rest of us truly is an inspiration.

  7. Margaret
    Margaret September 17, 2006 at 6:14 am | | Reply

    Laura, you’re incredible. thanks for the humor, right about now I needed it.
    Thanks, Margaret

  8. Christi Drew
    Christi Drew July 9, 2010 at 7:11 am | | Reply

    Amy,

    I have been living with diabetes for 28 years and have always felt alone in my struggle, until I actually searched the internet and came across your website, and now im hooked !!!!. Honestly in all my ups and downs I never considered what my mum went through !! she is my hero !!!.

    Thanks
    Christi

  9. dvla
    dvla September 23, 2010 at 7:23 am | | Reply

    Thanks for writing this. “med-sins” I love it.

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