Yesterday was World Diabetes Day. My youngest’s Type One diagnosis eight years ago has brought so much change. The grueling management of the disease not withstanding, the T1D community and our friends and family have been of such immeasurable support and encouragement. Nevertheless, it is a looming gravitational force in our life around whose orbit from which (until there is a cure) we will never reach escape velocity.
As the parent of a #T1D child, life goals and accomplishments have been reduced in great measure to how the management of the disease is going that particular day. Life is easily reduced to the data being collected and how the management of blood sugar is going. On the one hand, the collection of data can give a false sense of control. On the other hand, the ignoring of data is deadly. To all my friends who suffered with #T1D or have a #T1D child, I didn’t know until I knew. You are, as is my daughter, my heroes.
To watch a young child suffer the onset of the disease, deal with the diagnosis, and try to come to terms with it is painful. The above picture (or below in the player), is one example of how our daughter dealt with her disease. When she began to take ownership of her management, she began to insert her own insulin cannula (which she does every three days). She needed to practice, and she practiced on her favorite stuffed turtle who remains to this day, her nighttime companion…and who still wears the inset. She is one of the bravest people I know. She is my hero.
If it’s helpful, you may listen to me read the sonnet via the player below.
I can’t say that I feel I’ve accomplished
As much as I’d like, or even what you
And I might agree was what I’d promised;
The benchmarks changed, and I have to make due.
The matrix by which I measure success,
That which steals sleep, to which I give my best
Are not often the things others might guess:
A1C, glucose, and blood sugar tests,
(Type one never goes on vacation),
Hypo, DKA, dead in bead syndrome,
Burnout, confusion, inset location,
Basal rate, target, not too high or low.
I hit my number each morn with dawn’s light
When (thank God) again, she made it through night.
© Randall Edwards 2017
photo credit: Randy Edwards 2014