Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Battle of the "What ifs"

Since Elise was diagnosed, we've met more and more adults within our circle of influence who also have type 1 diabetes. Some were diagnosed as kids, and some later on in life. But the curious and somewhat frightening similarity in almost of of them is their lack of control of the disease and their general attitude of "it's no big deal".

One person (who was type 2, and is now type 1), often forgets to eat. Another doesn't check her BG throughout the day. One guy eats as few carbs with his meal as he can, so he doesn't have to take as much insulin. I was a little horrified when he told me what he typically eats as a meal. There is no way he can be getting proper nutrition. Another person purposefully keeps herself high because she is so fearful of passing out. When I asked her if she was worried about complications, she had no idea of the long-term ramifications of having a high BG all the time.

This was sort of a wake up call for me. I guess I always though most people would approach their care the same way I would; in an anal-retentive, control-freak sort of way. I know I don't have D, but my daughter was 12 months old when she was diagnosed, so that's the next closest thing (and I know, I don't endure the pain of multiple shots and BG test a day, but having to do it to your baby is pain on a whole other level).

And it got me thinking... What if, when Elise is older, she becomes lackadaisical with her care? What if she suffers from diabulimia in her teenage years? What if she forgets eat? What if, as a rebellious young adult, she decides that she enjoys getting drunk? What if she refuses to test herself before driving? What if, what if, what if?

I know as her Mom, I can only do so much. The best that I can do is lovingly show her how to care for herself, all the while instilling in her how important this care is for her life. And hopefully she will have the maturity, pride and courage to do what is right. But the "what ifs" still nag at me, causing me to lay awake at night imagine all sorts of terrible scenarios. I guess it's just my control-freak nature, rearing it's ugly head.


  1. Oh- I am SO with you on this. I often think that people just don't really want to "hear" and take heed to all they have been taught. Others are just plain ignorant and haven't educated themselves enough. I find myself hoping that keeping a good, healthy relationship with Jada plus an active, healthy lifestyle will rub off on her enough that those things will just become an integral part of her life. But, when it comes down to it, when she grows up and moves away from home- it's all up to her. So scary. I feel fortunate with her that she would rather be up and running around than sitting and watching cartoons or movies- she's very active on her own accord, which is a blessing. Hang in there and try not to think too much about those "what ifs"- cause they will get you down!

  2. You're definitely not alone. Since my son's diagnosis, I can no longer sleep without medication due to the "what ifs" I go through mentally...I just can't shut my mind off. I also find myself drifting off during the day, thinking those same thoughts.

  3. I think I finally accepted just a few months ago that my daughter is the exact opposite of my husband and me.

    My husband went to a parenting conference by Tim Kimmel (book, _Grace-Based Parenting_) and came away with the knowledge that fear-based parenting always leads to rebellion.

    There are tricky waters ahead. :(

    Sorry to be such a downer...thankfully even though we have made lots of mistakes, we are in the process of turning it around.


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