“It’s not easy letting go.”
No better phrase to describe my week.
Last week at the Endo I got a lot of praise. They are always overly kind, and as I alluded to before, I am pretty sure it is because I am so pathetic. Anyway…our Endo said something on the lines of this:
(And while you are reading her words...pay particular attention to how she builds me up, so after I am torn down, the aftermath isn't so messy...)
“Meri, you have done a phenomenal job raising diabetics that are dependent on you. You could write a book on how to take care of a young diabetic. But now you are onto something new. Raising a diabetic that is dependent on himself. We’ve been telling you for months, it’s time to let go. He is ready. He doesn’t want to be dependent on you anymore…he needs to do this for himself.”
HUH? (Picture a ton of bricks landing on my head.)
You mean I’m not going to be able to control my boys’ diabetes for the rest of their lives??? You mean I have to shift the responsibility onto them eventually?
What ev’. (Indignant sniff)
But is seems I have no choice. J is 12 now, and has had diabetes for 11 years and 7 months. He will be starting Jr. High next year and he wants to eat from the food court. He wants to be as normal as possible, and apparently, that doesn’t include calling me for carb amounts. (poo)
So as prescribed by our doctor…I have let him fly the coop so to speak.
He counts his own carbs now.
I still ask him, “So how many carbs did you count for that?” And he tells me. For the first couple days, I would correct his amounts if they were wrong. He got tired of this right away. “Mom, I can’t do it on my own if you are helping me!”
So now I zip it. And it is SOOOOOOOOOOOO hard.
Even if he is wrong…I zip it. Now later, after the fact, when he checks his blood sugar and gets a higher number than he expects, I talk to him about it. “Why is this number high? What did you bolus for that sandwich? Maybe next time you should count the bread as 20 each instead of 15. “ And I've become really good at sneaking in carb lessons. I will count carbs out loud within J's earshot...and ask his advice...and pretend I don't know how many carbs something is, and have him look it up for me. :)
He IS really impressing me. But it has added a couple grey hairs. Like yesterday, I bloused the younger boys and DIDN'T EVEN ASK J if he had bloused for his breakfast. I realized this at 8:20am. He was already at school, driven by my wonderful SIL. I called her in a panic. “I didn’t ask J if he bolused for breakfast. Is he with you?” Nope, he was gone. She hunted him down for me though…and guess what…He HAD bolused.
Oh me of little faith.
He is doing surprisingly well. When he is off…it usually is just by a few grams of carb.
It’s been very satisfying for him. On Valentine’s Day, I realized when he got home that he never called me that day about Valentine Party snacks.
“Did you have extra Valentine’s snacks today? “
“Yup, I cupcake, 1 small piece of chocolate and 2 orange slices.”
“You never called me??! Did you bolus?”
“Ya, I guessed 35 carbs.”
Pretty good guess…I think I would’ve gone higher…but I give him props.
“How did it feel giving yourself insulin without having to call me first?”
“Mom, it was really amazing.” He blushed. “It felt really good.”
Bottom line: I’ve been virtually benched.
So I’ll let go. I’ll empower him to control his life. I’ll have to hover at a distance. My new role with J is not out on the “diabetes field” so to speak, but on the sidelines…routing him on…occasionally cat calling advice from the bench.
Oh, I’ll be watching the game…silently scrutinizing every play.
But, He’s got the playbook now.
It’s time for him to shine.