Monday, January 27, 2014

Messing up

I did it.  I swore I wasn't that mom.

But I did it anyway.


Oh yeah, Conan.  Yes I did.

My youngest called me at snack time from school last week and said, "You're not going to like this mom.  I'm 404."

And yes he was right.  I did not like that.  Usually I would say, "Ok.  Just correct it and we'll see where you fall at lunch."

Not that day.  Not last week.

Instead I said, "What happened?  What did you do?"

I know what your face just did.  Reading what I said.  You're face did this...

gasp gif photo:  tumblr_lw2niutaKL1qcuab3.gif

Told you I said it.

He sat silent for a minute and then said, "I know!  I don't know what happened."

"Did you bolus for breakfa..."

"Yes." he interrupted.

"Ok. Just correct and we'll see if it takes."

When I hung up I knew what I did.

I could feel it broiling my conscience.

I kept shuddering and shaking my head thinking about what I'd done.

It bugged me all day, until I picked him up from school.  When we had a minute alone in the kitchen I  spoke with him about how awful I felt.  I told him I knew that the number wasn't his fault.  I knew that diabetes throws us numbers like that, if it didn't he would have diabetes in the first place.  I told him I felt awful for making it seem like it was his fault, that even if he didn't bolus for breakfast it would have been ok, because things like that happen sometimes.  No one is perfect, right?

And he hugged me and immediately forgave me.  Even though I'm pretty sure it completely rolled off his back when it happened in the first place.

But I'm glad I said something regardless.

Because I made a mistake.  And I owned up to it.

Even those of us with the best of intentions...those of us who know the harm words have...those of us who fully understand, or TRY to fully understand the mental toll of Diabetes...even we can mess up.

And that's ok, I think.

As long as we're honest about our mistakes.  And sincere.

Kids can smell sincerity a mile away, just as well as they can smell insincerity.

I often wish I were the perfect mom who knew all the perfect things to say to make it all better all the time.  I know such a mom probably doesn't exist, so in the mean time...

I'll keep apologizing.

And hope in the process of raising him I don't completely screw him up.



  1. you are teaching your child the greatest gift - grace. he offers up such sincere acceptance of your apology because he has seen you do it. i believe this is one of the most important things we can teach or children in managing t1d, that sometimes there is no reason, we can't obsess about it - we just treat it and move on, but if we do have a lapsed moment of frustration over the "why" we can later take that deep breath and put that one number in perspective. Meri, I hope you know how much your honesty over all of these little moments means to me. There are times I feel like I am just failing, and failing and failing when it comes to diabetes care...then I read that you have these moments, too. I read about the resiliency of your boys and know that these minor moments will not dictate the future but things turn out great. I appreciate you so much. Thank you.

  2. Your story has a happy ending. You're right-- we're not perfect. But you did the right thing. Rejoice in the happy ending. Leave the guilt on the doormat.

  3. "I often wish I were the perfect mom who knew all the perfect things to say to make it all better all the time. I know such a mom probably doesn't exist, so in the mean time..."

    I'm just curious........when was 'being perfect" defined as never making a mistake? I was either absent that day or missed the memo. I think this whole story exactly defines, to the letter, a perfect mom. Period.

    Just my two cents.

  4. Thank you, Meri. What a beautiful admission. I hope your truth resonates with many many other D moms. Having grown up a child with diabetes, severely impacted by language, I also feel a need to say thank you personally. You apology extends all the way to me somehow. I wonder if my mom thought about the implications of subtle phrase changes. Even if she didn't, I think that if she read this, she would and that means the world to me. Thank you for sharing.

  5. yep...been there, done that, hated myself for it, apologized and tried to move on!

  6. martin freeman gif ftw!

    dude, every parent has done exactly (or a version of) this. every one! (and you're three times more likely to have it happen than me!) it's called being human. all we can do is hope to turn it into a teaching moment to let our kids know we are not perfect, sometimes we say things we don't mean and as long as we acknowledge it we can move on. great lessons for them to learn as they grow and make mistakes as well, ya know?


  7. Thank you for sharing this experience. My son was diagnosed at 17 and I shudder everytime I think of the stupid thing I said after we drove home from the GP/endo trip. I have apologized to him for it but still let the guilt kick me from time to time. Because of his age, I've needed to be on the sideline from the beginning of this T1D journey but I hope he hears me when I tell him how proud I am of him and all his accomplishments including his health management.
    Thanks for reminding me that being human is well, messy most of the time.


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