Sunday, September 7, 2014

On and Off Middle School Perspectives

School has officially been *on* for a week.  In that way, it is much like an imaginary switch that one of the kids flipped.  Off for summer and then, suddenly on for fall.  

How on earth does that happen so quickly???

The first week happened with much success and only a few minor mishaps.  Day one and everyone was 'on'.  The typical back-to-school excitement meant excitedly packing ahead of time.  Not one bit of T1d preparation was overlooked by either daughter.  Emergency snack boxes filled, paperwork prepared and kids cleaned and polished; literally, as they had enough nail polish out to decorate all of the fingers and toes at their school.

Days two through four were a bit more 'off".  Youngest daughter forgot her test kit one day, her lunch another and her Dexcom on the last day.  Bravely holding back tears, she sent me text messages with each woe.  As this is kid number two in middle school, I had more 'fixes' in my mom bag of tricks and was able to problem solve easily.  We decided she would use the spare meter, buy a hot lunch and test her BG more often.  Problem(s) solved.

And a huge thank you to oldest daughter for being the first to help mom through these many situations because I am quite sure that when it happened the first time and it surely did, those mom solutions were not so calmly ready to go into action.  

Oldest daughter didn't escape entirely unscathed either.  Over the summer, her teen sleep pattern left her with staying up later than me and sleeping until 11:00 a.m. or when I shouted from the bottom of the stairs.  At her school, the start time requires her to be up at 6:00 a.m. and out the door before 7:00.  Even though the Naturally Sweet dad and I suggested numerous 'GO TO BED NOWisms', she stayed up later than she should have and felt exhausted by 3:00 p.m..  Her blood sugars reflected a bit of the exhaustion too and more than normal low blood sugar corrections to contend with.  As the week went on, sleep came more willingly and thankfully, blood sugars behaved too.

More than anything, several great accomplishments occurred.

First, my girls are now bus riders.  As it so happened, this is the first year that I felt comfortable enough to make the switch and it is also the year where my girls are on two different times/routes.  A week in and both have had great success and feel slightly empowered.  Probably strange to kids who have been riding the bus for years, but this is a taste of a bit more independence for all of us.  

Secondly, oldest daughter discovered that her schedule was NOT allowing for enough time to move between her fourth period, to the locker and back to the cafeteria AND testing her blood sugar soon enough to pre-bolus for lunch.  For the first time without mom's help, she decided to bravely speak up to her fourth hour teacher and suggest testing a bit sooner in class so that she had enough time to eat.  The teacher was more than happy to accommodate and also asked for any other suggestions that oldest daughter might have to help keep the hour running smoothly.  Between us parents, that's another hefty dose of independence for oldest daughter.  She is finding her voice and discovering that speaking up is worthwhile.  Little by little, this is how I know I will one day be able to send her off to the college of her dreams.

Finally, youngest daughter was moved into a new homeroom that allows her to utilize some of her awesome math skills.  I am beyond thrilled because this is a perfect fit for her.  She is also lucky enough to have a teacher that is the aunt of a student with t1d and knows the ins and outs of care.  It is great as I can see how relaxed this has made youngest daughter.  The significance of having someone that is fully trained was not lost on youngest daughter.  She has been beaming since stepping into the classroom.  For the first time in a long time, I listened to her on the diabetes baby monitor as she giggled in her sleep.  Pure joy.

Which leaves me with this; my heart is full because I know my girls are happy and my dear friends, this is the best kind of way to start a new middle school year.

Busy weeks to come and I apologize for not writing more often.  Trying to find my own balance now that school is in session.  It will come, just takes time and figuring out a new routine.  


Marjorie said...

great post.
so happy to hear that school is off to a great start!
Good luck to the girls this year.

Naturally Sweet Sisters said...

So far, so good! I am pretty proud of the kids. They have stepped up to handle more of the daily T1d needs than ever before. Baby steps... teaching independence while avoiding burn-out.