Friday, May 29, 2009

Momma knows best

I can remember all too well the first fight I ever had with one of our CDEs. It was about a month after Elise's dx, and we were fighting blood sugar numbers is the 300-400 range and moderate ketones. She wasn't ill; we were just having a hard time figuring out her insulin dosage.

One morning I was either in or near tears and the educator kept asking me if I was giving Elise water (it helps to flush the ketones out of her system). I had been trying, the problem was Elise would scream at the sight of her sippy cup because I was trying to force water on her at the insistence of the educator. She even thought that I should go out and buy some Crystal Light or sugar-free Kool-Aid. As if my daughter who had never drank anything but breast milk or extremely watered-down apple juice would enjoy such a chemical-laced concoction. As she lectured me on the importance of making sure Elise was drinking, I snapped.

"Look, I 'm not sure if you've ever had any experience with a 12-month old, but if she doesn't want to drink, SHE WON'T DRINK. Since you think it's so easy, please come on over to my house and try it. Hear the screaming? It's not because she's HAPPY!"

I know it was a bit rude, but I was a parent of a newly diagnosed baby, and this woman didn't seem to understand my situation at all. In fact, now that I have a few more months under my belt, it sometimes seems "the experts" are just as clueless as I am sometimes. I think you can chalk it up to the fact that they don't really have much experience with babies who have diabetes.

So I have learned my own little tricks; we own about 10 different sippy cups, I've gone out and bought some fun straws for Elise to sip water from, and I've taught her from very early on to drink from a cup like a big girl because it's one of her favourite ways to drink water. I also have some bottles with the sports top on them because that's another way she loves to drink her water. Another trick I use is to let her suck on some ice, which also helps when she's teething.

I've found that variation works best for Elise, and I learned this through my own trial and error. Because, although the educators and doctors have Elise's interests at heart, they don't live it everyday (unless they have diabetes, or a child with diabetes) like I do. I've learned to trust my gut and my own instincts and use what I've been taught when it works for us.


  1. You are exactly right and I think we have all snapped in the heat of frustration :) The longer you live with Diabetes the more we learn *WE* are right, and they are clueless. Sad, but true.

  2. You are SO right! Our gut and the knowledge we have of our children make us more than competent to care for our kids. I'm thankful for the good education we received after Jada's diagnosis, but I have learned that because we are the ones living day to day with the disease and know her personality, we are the experts when it comes to Jada. That's one reason why I was completely comfortable moving to a place where health care isn't always the best (although I have heard great things about the local dr. who takes on diabetes as his "specialty" even though he's not an endo). I am confident in our ability as her parents to care for her!

  3. Good Job, Mom!

    I was wondering how breastfeeding factors into diabetes...I nursed all 3 of my girls f 2 - 3 years. Addy was dx about 4 weeks after she weaned. If you don't mind, please drop me an e-mail...would love to hear how you counted carbs and breastfed your baby with diabetes :) Thanks!

  4. Oops! Sorry I didn't leave my e-mail address...fuzzy middle of the night diabetes brain, I guess :)

    Thanks for getting back to me...keep up the good work!


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