Hands down hardest thing a mom has to deal with? Letting go.
And a T1 mom? Forget about it! Letting go is like, mythological or something…what mother can let go and let their child handle D on their own?
I mean really! ((SNORT))
What kind of mother can do this? A stupid one? A crazy one?
Our kids need to be monitored by us ALL THE TIME!
NO LETTING GO! NO LETTING GO! NO LETTING GO! (Seriously, I think I used to chant this in my sleep…)
So how does a mother, who believes “letting go” is akin to throwing your child in a volcano…let her 12 year old diabetic son go to scout camp…alone…for an entire week?
But I did.
I let him go.
And. He. Lives.
The LOGICAL side of me knew he could do it.
-He has had diabetes for 12 years, and he is 12 years and 8 months old.
-He has had several dry runs. Scout camp with his father there 6 of the 8 days last year. Sleep overs, one night on his own each time. Scout camp-outs, 1 night on his own each time. Sixth grade camp, 3 nights on his own.
-All the dry runs acting as tests…all of which he passed with flying colors.
-He changes his own sets now.
-He counts his own carbs now…even when I’m there!
See! Logically…he was ready!
But mothers are not logical people. Mothers are emotional, protective, worst case scenario messes!!!
And our EMOTIONS hold our children back from being, well…self sufficient.
My emotions have held J back for many many years. I had to come to terms with the fact that this is true. Last year our endo told me, “Meri, you are doing a phenomenal job for J, but it’s J’s turn to shine. He can do this…you just have to LET him.”
So slowly this past year I have given him bits of responsibility here and there.
And slowly but surely…he was ready.
As I said good bye to him last week I wanted to run and scream towards the car with my hands waving above my head like a Muppet…begging him to get out, and stay home. But somehow I found the strength to squash down my emotions and let my logical side take over. (I KNOW! I’m like a Jedi master or something!)
I said goodbye and gave him a big hug. I looked him square in the eye and said, “You are going to be awesome this week.” I hugged him again and walked away…pushing away all the fears that were like rabid dogs trying to break down the door of my sanity.
Turns out my awesominity was rewarded in kind…J called me that night FROM HIS TENT! Turns out he got the highest campsite on the hill…and miracle upon miracle he had cell reception. On a mountain. In the wilderness. People! Do you get the enormity of this!
I’ve slept like a baby this week. J has called me to check in almost every night. He is doing PHENOMENAL!
So here I am, looking like a puffer fish because I am so proud, and marveling at how we got to this point in such a small amount of time. J starting Jr. High FREAKED me out at the beginning of the summer…
But now….he is ready. Which is nothing compared to the fact that, “I” am ready.
I never thought I would be here. I thought this place was unreachable. I thought this place was a fairytale…something irresponsible mothers bragged about.
But it exists friends! It exists!
Is he 100% on his own? HELL NO! I’ll be checking his meter…getting texts from school daily at lunch…double checking he boluses for meals…and of course, doing the 1am check for him.
This is all new ground for us. It was not easy getting here. But we are here in Big Foots proverbial lair.
He is ready. I am ready.
Letting go…it exists! It can be done, and you WILL do it someday! And when you start the process, I hope you will remember that the most neurotic, delusional, over protective mom in the blogosphere said it could be done…and I hope that will give you the strength you need to take your first baby steps towards (gulp!) letting go.