I Know, Mom!

Except she doesn’t know.  I feel like I am failing at being a t1’s mom. I have already started to get complacent and feeling like “I got this.”  I emptied her lunch box this morning to repack it, only to find a wholly uneaten sandwich. “Angelina, did you take insulin for this yesterday?”  “Yes.” “Did you make up carbs for it?”  “No.” “You have to eat what you take insulin for, it’s not an option.”  “Mom, I know!  My blood sugar was fine after, I got a 100!”  “This time. Next time, you might get a coma.”

I know that wasn’t the right thing to say to her, but I don’t think she takes it seriously enough. She’s not scared. I think she needs to be at least a little scared. Not enough to stop living a relatively normal life, but enough that she takes this all more seriously.  I get that she’s a kid, and kids take very little seriously.  They have parents to do that for them.  But this…well, this is something that I’m not always going to be around to remind her so she has to learn to be responsible for it herself.

She’s still having lows from honeymoon.  Twice in the past week she’s been low and I gave her a snack (Smarties, her choice) to bring it up only to find out 15 minutes later when I go to recheck her BG that she didn’t eat the snack.  I haven’t been checking her lunch box as soon as she gets home from school to see what she ate for lunch.  This is my error.  This is where I’ve gotten complacent because she was doing so well at doing what needed to be done.  It seemed like she understood how important it was, and how serious the consequences could be if she didn’t.  She’s so f***ing intelligent that I think I forget sometimes that she’s still only 9 years old.

She and I were arguing this morning (and every morning) and she took her normal stance, like she knows so much better than me about everything.  My husband said something to her that really got to me.  He told her that she gets told she’s smart all the time, but she’s smart for a 4th grader.  She’s still stupid compared to a majority of adults.  Her telling me “I know!” all the time and acting like I know nothing and she knows everything is like an ant saying that to a human.  Because yeah, you’re smart kid, but your mom is a freaking genius compared to you, especially when it comes to this.

Days like these, I feel like I’m failing as a parent.  I’ve spent her whole life praising her for being smart, for letting her have free reign and letting her have a say.  Some day I will be proud of the strong-willed qualities she has because she’s less likely to give in to peer pressure.  She’s less likely to be a follower.  She’s a leader.  She’s outspoken and she has her own opinions.  But we’ve let her develop this ego.  She thinks that she’s invincible, that the rules don’t apply to her, that by being smart she can get away with anything.  I’ve been lulled into a false sense of security that she’s got it figured out, or will have it figured out.  But days like today, I am reminded that more than anything  she’s a kid and she needs us to remind her occasionally that sometimes, the rules do apply to her.  And being smart doesn’t change the way insulin or food effects her blood sugar.


The New Dirty Word – Diabetes (The ER)

Her blood glucose was 570 at the pediatrician’s office so we were sent to the ER.  I pretty much knew at that point that we would be spending a couple of days there.  We checked in right around noon and they checked her BG again – it was at 535.  They also had her pee in another cup.  We waited in the waiting room for what seemed like forever, but in reality it was maybe 30 minutes.  The real waiting started once they got her back into a bed.  They came and got her for a chest X-ray since I had told them about the pediatrician hearing something in her lungs, and since we were there anyway it was good to get checked out.  She was excited to be able to see the picture of the inside of her chest.

There wasn’t anything immediate that needed tending to aside from getting an IV in.  That was kind of a nightmare because they couldn’t get the needle into the vein in her elbow, so they were poking around in there for a few minutes before giving up and going for her hand.  Throughout all of it she was amazingly calm and all the nurses remarked about how well she was doing and how they had some adult patients who could take a lesson from her.  Finally the nurse had a second nurse come over to assist with getting the IV in after the second site wasn’t cooperating and her vein kept moving around.  They finally got it in and everything hooked up and started her on a normal saline drip to get her hydrated and flush out some of the sugar and ketones that were floating around in there.

From there we mostly just waited.  The ER doctor did eventually come in and confirm that it was, in fact, diabetes and that she also had pneumonia (so glad we got those x-rays).  They started her on an insulin infusion shortly after.   A little while later (pardon my timeline, the entire hospital experience is just a time blur) we were greeted with a teddy bear named Rufus who came accompanied with a blue JDRF backpack full of goodies for kids with diabetes.  Really, Rufus was the goody and the rest of the stuff was educational materials and a brand new Accu-Chek glucose meter and our favorite invention – the fastclix lancing device.  Well, a favorite as far as lancing devices go.  The backpack was brought to us by the Diabetes Nurse Educator who wanted to introduce herself and make sure Angelina was okay and to let us know that she would be spending a few hours with us the next day to get us educated on managing Angelina’s diabetes care.

After that we just did some more waiting.  We were told around 4pm (maybe?) that they would be moving her to the Pediatric ICU eventually.  My husband was at work through all of this and we had been texting back and forth.  He was finally able to get out of work “early” at 5pm (after working since 6am) and headed up to meet us.  Angelina was so excited to see her dad, I think mostly just because she had been stuck in a little curtained room with me for the past 5 1/2 hours.   Shortly after her arrived they FINALLY came to move us up to her room in the PICU.

To be continued…