Unlike many of the amazing families of T1 kids that were diagnosed as baby and toddlers, T was diagnosed about three weeks before his 13th Birthday. Many of them don't know what it is like to parent a child without T1. They all have my deep love and respect, I am so grateful that I can still remember what life was like Before Diabetes. (B.D.)
B.D. poker was a game that I taught my kids and never won again, not a little torture device that is used to stab his finger to keep him healthy.
B.D. the only time I ever thought about "BG" (stands for blood glucose) was for the two seconds it took me to change the radio station every time a BeeGee song came on. (Sorry fans it is something about that nasally high pitch voice that drives me bonkers!)
B.D. we took for granted the CraZy freedom of going out for dinner and eating mexican food and ice cream in one night, or going out for pizza and to a movie with popcorn and candy without calculating, weighing and SWAGging the carb counts and insulin dosage and then worrying and checking all night about how it will effect his blood sugar.
B.D. T would run in the house dirty, laughing, exhausted from riding bikes and playing outside with his brother and sister and grab a couple of cookies and a huge glass of milk and swig it down. Without even thinking twice about it. Without worrying about a low blood sugar from the activity and without calculating carbs.
B.D. a pump was a part that went out in our Ford diesel truck that cost us about $1200, I shouldn't have complained, it was cheap compared to T's.
B.D. a "Square" was a shape like a box, and a "dual wave" would have been two waves in a row on the lake or ocean. Not scientific methods of delivering insulin with a pump over an extended period of time to help deal with high fat foods.
B.D. "diabetus" was a word I associated with the grumpy, kinda cool old guy on the Liberty Medical Supply commercial and not the disease that almost claimed our boys life.
B.D. I remember what it was like to let him play or work outside all day long and only worry about a sunburn. And to hug him goodnight every night and only worry about nightmares and migraines, not serious low blood sugars and worse.
T does too. He remembers. He knows "what he is missing." He knows what life was like B.D. There has been grief, sadness, anger, fear. Some days, there still is. Dealing with my own feelings is hard, watching our son deal with his has been harder. There has also been, strength, grace, courage, emotional and spiritual growth, maturity, compassion and LOVE.
Life After Diabetes (A.D.) is a work in progress.
There has been an immediate sense of "prioritization". Life issues are much easier to categorize according to importance.
A.D. There is less sleep and more productive worrying. I use to worry about things I couldn't change or didn't know. I still worry, but my worry helps me stay vigilant and focused.
A.D. We are more aware of what we eat and our health. More appreciative of how incredible our bodies are and how they work.
A.D. We are more aware of time and how fast it is going by. How fast life can change. How to be more grateful and appreciative. More compassionate, less judgmental. More aware and less hurried.
A.D. We have an met an entire amazing network and support system of T1 families and people affected by T1. People I can't imagine my life without now.
A.D. We are closer. Stronger. Life after Diabetes is becoming life with diabetes. And we are LIVING it.