Evan and I have a December anniversary, so most of the time due to the craziness of the holidays, we do something rather simple to celebrate. Last year, we thought we would do something special for our tenth anniversary. We had never left Kaitlyn for more than 24 hours since her diagnosis, but my mom was kind enough to take the kids so we could go to San Diego and spend some time together.
Aside from lining up people to help pick up kids from school and activities, my biggest task was getting my mom ready to take care of Kaitlyn for a whole weekend. Mom watches her all the time and was comfortable testing her and dosing her for meals, but she hadn't done the nighttime routine at that point. I spent a few days beforehand reviewing how to do the nighttime checks and also how to handle everything in case of an emergency. I packed quick snacks and food that I knew Kaitlyn would eat with all the carb info handy, so my mom could dose snacks in a hurry. So, with school bags and lunches ready, spelling words learned, clothes and toothbrushes packed, medical releases signed and diabetes supplies organized, we gave the kids hugs and kisses and wished my mom luck.
As we drove out of town, I got a bit of a panicky feeling wondering if we had done the right thing. I was worried about overburdening my mom and I was a little bit worried about how Kaitlyn would do without me. My husband assured me that everything would be fine and that this was a really healthy thing for all of us -- couples need quality time together! We discussed that Kaitlyn should grow up feeling like she can have all the same experiences that every other kid can have. Part of that I realized is that Evan and I have to try to be "normal" parents as well.
By the way, we had the best time! It was one of the first times since Kaitlyn's diagnosis that we were able to sleep a whole night without getting up to check blood sugar. I was a little worried, but I knew the kids were in good hands. Guess what? We got home and everyone was fine! Mom was a little tired, of course, but was it all worth it? Definitely yes!
About the author: My name is Kim. My daughter Kaitlyn (the third of our five children) was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes just a few years after my nephew James was diagnosed with the same disease. I'm excited to pair up with my sister-in-law, Jen, to share our story with you!
Disclaimer: The experiences and suggestions recounted in these articles are not intended as medical advice, and they are not necessarily the "typical" experiences of families with a child who has type 1 diabetes. These situations are unique to the families depicted. Families should check with their healthcare professionals regarding the treatment of type 1 diabetes and the frequency of blood glucose monitoring. Jen and Kim are real moms of kids with type 1 diabetes and have been compensated for their contributions to this site.
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