Oldest daughter has ownership of her T1D. She has for a while. Not surprising as she is the kid that works hard, puts in the effort and looks for positive results. Her pride and joy is her ability to do well and with a great attitude. I would love to say this is from me, but the truth is that she has always been this way. Our running joke is that neither she nor her sister ever cried as babies. They were just always full of sunshine and too busy enjoying the world, then to stop to have a cry. For the most part, that really is true. I am sure there were tears, but in my sweet mommy memory, I really can't think of any major moments.
Back to the weekend adventure... On Saturday, she headed off to a sleepover with her two best friends. For the first time in a while, we slightly adapted our normal game plan of testing before falling asleep and having the hosting parent wake her at 6:00 a.m. for a re-test to testing before falling asleep and setting her own iPhone alarm to wake herself up for a re-test. She also places her phone on LOUD, her CGM set to HIGH and a juice box along with her meter, next to her pillow for easy access.
As a side note, this is part of my teaching T1D strategy; to help her find solutions that she will one day be able to take with her, no matter where she goes.
And it worked fabulously. Oldest daughter sent me a text message at 2:00 a.m. with her bg of 168 mg/dl and again at 6:00 a.m. with another bg of 136 mg/dl. Since she stayed up so late and wanted to keep sleeping until noon - because that is what teenagers do in the real world - I texted her back and had her take a few sips of the juice that she brought from home to make sure that her basal didn't tank from the unusually long late-morning sleep. She went back to bed and I didn't hear from her until 11:30 a.m. when she texted me that she was 119 mg/dl, hungry and ready to eat pancakes. Around 3:00 p.m., we picked her up to bring her home and while she was exhausted, she was also full of stories from their adventures which included a hefty amount of outdoor fun in the snow. Blood sugar was still steady at 149 mg/dl and she was ready to shower, eat and head off to an early bedtime. We high-fived at the success of the adventure and at our new tweaks in the T1D Sleepover Game Plan - in CAPS and BOLD, because that is a thing that I think we should all own!!!!
Then, around 10:30 last night, long after oldest daughter had gone to bed, she woke up feeling disoriented and extremely thirsty. Walking downstairs in a fog, the Naturally Sweet dad asking her if she was alright, she started to cry and said she just felt thirsty. He jumped to grab a meter and check her blood sugar. 453 mg/dl. Exhausted already, she cried even harder, because in her mind, suddenly the hard work of maintaining blood sugar over the week was completely GONE.
Her words through tears were to the point that she knew we had an A1C appointment on Friday and she was devastated that the 453 mg/dl would be on her downloaded blood glucose numbers for the endocrinologist to see. She had been hoping for that proverbially gold star in managing as well as she had. Suddenly, in her high blood sugar induced mind, that was no longer. Instead, she feared a reprimand.
I walked into the room just as the situation was unfolding. Not entirely sure what to say to help, I just reached over and gave her a hug and told her not to worry that I was taking her T1D back. It was now mine to deal with and not hers. I whispered that this happened when I was home and all she was to do was to feel happy about her own self-care and not to worry one second about this one lousy moment. I would handle any discussion with her team and she wasn't responsible.
Then, we took off her old infusion site and replaced it with a new one in a different area. I gave her the rest of the correction insulin, tucked her into bed and murmured that I would make sure the numbers came down overnight. She was so tired that her eyes were already closed but she seemed to relax even more as the weight of T1D care was lifted.
This morning, her numbers are back in range and she seemed rested and more like her sunshine self. Me, on the other hand, still feel a little sad that I can't entirely remove the burden of self-care stress from her shoulders. I wish I had more answers on how to show her that no matter what happens with T1D, sometimes the results are truly out of our control - AND that is alright.
If you have tips, please leave them on our Facebook page or here on the blog under comments. Oldest daughter and I would love to read them.