Friday, May 11, 2012

Diabetes doesn't always win

Diabetes doesn't always win. It doesn't always wind up being in your face, screaming at you, making it's presence known. It isn't always in the forefront making it hard for you to think of anything else.

Sometimes YOU win.

Today, Emma and I won. We owned this day...not diabetes. After lunch it was school carnival day and I was volunteering in the one classroom where the "white elephant sale" was being held. This meant that Emma wouldn't have me walking around the rest of the carnival with her....I was in that one room handling all of the tickets and sales of donated items for the entire time...over 2 hours to be exact. This time frame overlapped Emma's usual afternoon snack time as well. So, this meant that Emma and her friend would be walking around the school...looking after themselves, managing their own tickets, buying what they chose to buy, eating what they chose to eat, and Emma would be in charge of snack time on her own. Lately I have been trying to give her more freedom and independence. I've been trying to loosen the reigns so to speak....and give her more control of her disease....because it is in fact HER disease. So, we came up with a master plan to conquer this day. I would go stand my post in the classroom. I would get an upper grade student to look after my duties when snack time rolled around and I would track Emma down to remind her to check her BG and eat her snack. Can I just share how odd of a feeling it was to wander the halls of her school by myself? There I was scanning the mobs of people...looking for my girl...trying to keep the panic at bay and shove those crazy thoughts and mental images out of my head of her passed out somewhere with no one around to help other than her friend....another 8 year old girl...not trained in diabetes...knows nothing of what to do to help Emma other than bring her to a teacher if she's acting weird or says she feels low. SO, on I walked...peaking in classrooms..searching for her face...the face I know better than my very own. It took 3 classrooms before I finally discovered her and 2 friends making bead necklaces. Ahhhh....I let out the breath that I didn't even realize I had been heart resumed it's normal rhythm. I walked up to her and she very nonchalantly said to me, "Oh hey Mommy! We're making necklaces!"
Well, to make a long story short, she checked her BG, bolused for the snack I gave her, ate it, and went on about her afternoon of fun. I was left standing there...watching her run off with her friends...giggling, hair flying out behind her, and just...being...a...kid. It was perhaps one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen in my life.
At one point during the afternoon, she returned to me at my post with a gigantic chocolate cupcake in her hand, sky blue coloured frosting slathered all over it, and sprinkles covering every last inch. Her friend said to me, "Emma and I wanted cupcakes, and she needs you to tell her how many carbs are in it so she can eat hers now!" I couldn't help but laugh as I heard this little girl using words like "carbs"...a word that she probably wouldn't otherwise have known about at 8 years old...if not for her friend, Emma. I guessed the carbs, Emma bolused, she shoved the yummy looking cupcake in her mouth as she laughed and shouted goodbye to me before running out of the room again. My girl was taking care of herself. She was doing the right things. She didn't just eat the cupcake and worry about insulin and diabetes later. She was doing it. Her friend was showing understanding and compassion. Her friend was treating this little detour in their fun as just another average everyday occurance. It made me smile. She's gonna be ok. She has good friends. She is smart. She is responsible. She's going to be just fine.
After the carnival, Emma went to her other friends birthday party for 3 hours. It was a mobile video game trailer actually...called the Game Asylum. It was AMAZING and the kids really had a blast. They were on this trailer playing XBOX, Playstation, and Wii on these fantastic flat screen TV's on the wall. There was lots of jumping around, dancing, and fun.
This day was filled with a ton of activity, a lot of treats, a load of fun. It was also filled with independence, perfect blood sugars, and proof that my kid is responsible. I got peace of mind that she knows what she is doing and that she has some friends who actually care enough about her to help her out and be there for her.
So, yes.....we won today. We beat diabetes today. It was a sweet victory and I will hold onto this memory forever. When we are struggling with diabetes...because invariably those days will happen from time to time....I will remember this day and know that diabetes doesn't always win....sometimes we do...sometimes we hit it right out of the ballpark...and that is a good feeling.

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