There have been many factors that have contributed to my currant exhausted state, but one of the main ones is that my daughter was diagnosed with Type One Diabetes in February. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Type 1, it is not the same as Type 2. It is an unpreventable and incurable autoimmune disease. Basically my daughter's pancreas no longer produces insulin so her body can not process carbs. Without insulin my daughter would die.
It took me awhile to catch what was going on. My lively, dancer girl started to spend more and more time reading and drawing at the table. I wasn't worried, maybe she was growing up and enjoyed those things more than riding her bike or running outside with her brothers. Then she started having to go to the bath room ALL THE TIME. A new stage? She's only seven and seven year olds try out different things, right? She began sneaking into the bathroom for water late at night and then she started dropping weight. I took her to the doctor. He didn't seem to concerned as there was no family history but he sent us for blood work just to make sure. The results came in and we were sent straight to ER. We spent the rest of the week in the hospital. Her blood sugar was close to 700. The doctors were amazed that she was acting as healthy as she was. Of course I was kicking myself for not realizing what was going on sooner (despite praise from the doctor on how quickly I caught that something was wrong).
My daughter is doing well now. She has gained weight and is on the move all the time. The thing with Type 1 diabetes is that it is sneaky. She will seem fine and then she will be in tears and wanting to lie down. I'll check her blood sugar and it will be scarily low. Other times we will be eating the same healthy diet (every carb counted and mostly low glycemic) and she will just be off, sort of flushed and irritable. So I check her blood sugar and find it only a few numbers from call the doctor high. I've been learning to rely on God in a way so much deeper than I did before. It is scary to put your daughter to bed and not know what her blood sugar will do while she is asleep. Will she drop and I won't know? Will I find her passed out? I can feed her the best I know how, I can document every thing she eats, I can make sure she has snacks at the right times and insulin at the right times and check on her throughout the night, but none of that guarantees anything, so I pray.
I hoover over my daughter. Helicopter mom? Or just a mom who knows how fragile the balance of her daughter's health is?
I stay home more. Recluse? Or just a mom who is trying to balance one thing to many?
My house is never all the way clean. Slob? Lazy? Or a mom that's trying to cook healthy food that her entire family can eat while balancing homeschooling and the rest of life's craziness?
I crave understanding from others so I'm trying to make sure I offer the same thing.
Type 1 is wildly misunderstood. I have to put up with people who think it's because I didn't feed my daughter well or that think I just have to feed her less sugar and she will be fine. That's ok. I can't expect everyone to know. I didn't before all this started. It makes me wonder about all the unseen burdens of those around me, all those who are misunderstood.