After the immediate devastation of a Type 1 Diabetes diagnosis for your child, the ebb and flow of the severity of how life changes after diagnosis is difficult to describe.
On one hand, the diagnosis brings a determination you didn’t know you had. A determination to enjoy the fullness life has to offer, a thirst for the faith you may have haphazardly thrown on the back burner, a newfound purpose, and all of these are found at the bottom of the hole you are forced to attempt to crawl out of.
As we approach our three-year mark of Carter’s Type 1 Diagnosis this November, I look back and see that I have been through the many stages of grief many, many times. These days, it’s not really clear what brings the grief stages again. Maybe it’s the after summer blues, maybe it’s watching your son explain what his insulin pump is to those who stare at the beach or the pool, maybe it’s the built up exhaustion, who knows, but I do know that some season’s suck more than others.
Watching your child grow up, carrying this burden is bittersweet. I remember standing in the hospital during diagnosis week, and wishing for the day when Carter was able to understand, when he would then be able to take an active role in his care. That day has arrived, and it’s more heartbreaking than I anticipated.
Watching your child realize they are different from their peers is hard. Birthday parties, getting together with their friends, going to the beach, going to the pool, having to constantly interrupt his fun to do a blood check, or correct puts a damper on his fun.
I don’t think the change is a one time event, I believe after a diagnosis of that magnitude, we are ever-changing, always evolving and taking on what comes next. We are always growing, individually and as a family as it pertains to Carter’s care and management, most often within each moment. No one day is ever the same, and the worries that each day bring are always different, and changing.
The hardest days for me, are the ones where I can sense Carter is tired of it all. On those days, my heart breaks just a fraction more. I would give anything to take this burden from my son. It affects our whole family, as my daughters are left with a shell of a mother most days. Lately, exhaustion takes over and I walk through the day an ill tempered zombie. Always tired, always worrying, always only half present in what is going on as I watch Carter like a hawk.
Will it get better? Until there is a cure, I don’t think so. We have decent days, and have fallen into a routine that works for us, but it isn’t void of immense effort and complications. The frustration and disappointment are too much to bear some days, but we preserver and move on.
My son and daughters, exemplify the forbearance of those who know where this path leads. We’ve traversed this road more than once, and we know that we come out of these trials stronger. All in all, I see how their brothers health worries them, especially Ashleigh.
We fall down. We pick ourselves back up. We cry, we laugh, we are like any family, we just cling a little closer, because we are faced with the threat of possible loss every minute of everyday.