Kim: The Diabetes Seesaw

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I think most parents of children with diabetes can relate to me when I say that managing type 1 is a roller-coaster ride. Sometimes you'll have those magical days and weeks when everything seems to be going beautifully. She's in range after every meal, she stays stable through the night, and you pat yourself on the back for balancing on the "diabetes seesaw" so well. Then just when you think you have it all figured out, something changes and the numbers start going haywire. Back to the drawing board -- it's time to make adjustments once again.

There always seems to be something happening that affects blood sugar levels or insulin needs -- a growth spurt, an illness, a change in exercise habits, emotional stress or who knows what else.

A couple of nights ago, we attended my son's Cub Scout Blue and Gold Dinner. On the menu were lasagna, pasta, salad and, of course, the cakes everyone brought for the cake decorating contest. Even though she was at her target right before dinner, the carb-heavy meal threw her numbers way out of range. Before she went to bed, she was very high and even with consistent checking and corrections, it took us all night to get her back in range.

These kinds of experiences are hard, but in the long run, I think it's actually helping us become closer as a family. We're all learning to be a little bit more flexible, a little more patient, a little less selfish, and a little more sensitive to what our Kaitlyn goes through on those less than perfect "seesaw" days.


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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