Monday, November 5, 2018

What I don't know, hurts them.

I think we can agree that Diabetes is complex. 

Part of that stems from the fact that every person with Diabetes is unique. There are no “cookie-cutter” people with Diabetes.

This has become painfully clear to me as I raise three boys with Type 1 Diabetes.

They are brothers, but they all have their own bodies.

…Their own feelings.

…Their own chemistry.

…Their own ways to take care of their Diabetes.

One size does not fit all, and it’s fallacy of me to think otherwise.

Uniqueness doesn’t only lie in our society's point of view, but also in our genetic make-up.  Sure, some of us can be the similar, but none of us are the same.

Hence, different strokes for different folks.

Especially in the Parent community, we all have different ways of raising our children with Diabetes. We all, individually, do our very best…and we can’t do better than that.

But this last week I’ve found my life in a series of paradoxes that I’ve had a hard time wrapping this swelly mom brain around.

So here I am, in my safe place, trying to make sense of my feelings.

I’ve put two of my boys back on Dexcom Continuous Glucose Monitors. Their numbers are magically sent to my phone, pretty seamlessly, all day and all night.

To put it lightly…I know too much.

Regardless, these numbers are addicting. When the beginning of the year found me sleeping soundly through the night for months with no worries whatsoever, I now have multiple panic attacks daily.

Now that I KNOW what is going on….holy shiz, Batman…my children’s lives are in danger 24/7.

While I was at work last week, my High schoolers took the PSATs. They were both put in pretty rigid testing conditions for the first 5 hours of the day. I was alerted on my phone that my Freshman had a 60 blood sugar with an arrow down. He is a rule follower, so I was sure his phone was in his backpack and he was oblivious to the impending bad low. I called the nurse and asked her to find him and bring him a snack. She happily did so. But for the next hour, his sugars kept dropping until he was in the low 50’s. I was at work. I was beside myself with worry. My hands shook. The anxiety was powerful. My other son was giving me no numbers since school started. I knew he would turn off his phone because any Dexcom alarm during the test would have been the worst kind of happenstance. We've been fixing basals and he's had quite a few almost lows that week.

So there I was, jarred. Alarmed. Genuinely scared…when I thought. “What is going on with you, Meri? A few months ago you were completely oblivious to what was going on and you had no worries."

Seriously. Their blood sugars were not high on my worry list.

Last week, the boys were doing the same thing they were doing months ago. Nothing changed...except…

What I knew.

The numbers.

All. Of. The. Numbers.

It happens every time I put the boys on Dexcoms. All the mom alarm bells go off, and I want to micromanage every flow of numbers flashing on my phone.

Yet…when the numbers aren't there…they find a way to live.  They are ok.

I know that having my eye on things makes things better for them, but it turns me into someone else, and that someone else doesn’t flatter me. It’s not like I rattle easily…but those numbers.

Those arrows.

THEY rattle me.

You know the saying, "What you don't know won't hurt you?"

Well, what I don't know hurts my children. 

I don’t like knowing what I do. I don’t like knowing how the numbers flow, and just how close we are to possible emergent situations every day.

I don’t like harping on my boys. Text after text..


“More insulin?”

“Maybe insulin?”

“Food please. ;)”

“Carb up!”

“Your dropping fast. Eat, pretty please!"<3 o:p="">

I heart and smiley face my brains out to make my texts seem something less than demanding.

Maybe they’ll hate me.

But what is my alternative?

Ignorance. It sure is bliss, people.

The way I can go from one extreme to the other bothers me.

No worries to constant worries.

I feel like my insides are the Tasmanian Devil. One second I’m still and calm, the next I’m flailing around in a fit of turmoil and despair.


I suppose I’ll have to live with both for awhile longer.

I let go a bit and my worries fade as my ignorance grows.

Then I see that the boys need me to jump in again and, of course, I do.

I’ve got them. Always.

Man, teenager years are super hard. The ebbs and flows of emotions are taxing on a mother…both theirs and mine.

I see their amazingness.

They deny it exists.

So until we get a little closer in our thoughts, I’ll Taz my heart out, and let my husband rock me to sleep.

I can’t unsee what I’ve seen.

Dexcom, you are everything.  And I love/hate you so so much.