Wednesday, July 21, 2010

What they don't see

One of my favourite (she said, sarcastically) responses from people when they find out Elise has Type 1 Diabetes is, "but she looks so healthy!"

(Followed closely by, "but she'll grow out of it, right?)

Honestly, I really don't know how to answer when people say say that. Yes, she looks healthy, but there is so much that they don't see lurking beneath the surface.

What they don't see is how hard we work as parents to make sure our kids stay that way.

They will never understand the burden that we carry.

They don't see the 3 am BG tests. Followed by the 4 am, the 5 am... etc.

They don't hear our kids say, "I don't like shots!" Or, "You're hurting me Momma!"

They don't understand how the fear of our children's future gnaws at us.

They haven't heard our whispered prayers, night after night, for a cure from this awful disease.

They've never felt the pain of trying to decide which is worse; telling your child they can't have a particular food because their BG is too high at the moment, or letting them have the food anyway and getting a BG in the 400s a few hours later.

They cannot know the exhaustion of doing battle day after day, sometimes on only 2 hours sleep.

They don't know the frustration of dealing with insurance companies, and the sadness that comes along with realizing that you can't afford a device that would help you.

They never see our tears when it all becomes too overwhelming.

They don't know how scary something as common as the flu can be.

And they'll never know exactly how strong, and brave, and wonderful, and amazing you have to be as the parent of a T1 kiddo. To all the D-Moms and Dads out there who are feeling mired down by this disease lately, just remember how incredible you really are. And though people may not "get it", the rest of us do.

As Elise likes to say, "yeah, you're AMAZING!"


  1. I was feeling down today too. People don't really get it, even if they think they do. It is those things that they do not see..... great post title. You wrote my thoughts EXACTLY.
    Perhaps it appears simple to them, giving a shot, taking blood glucose.. But we know the truth, we live it everyday and night, with no time off. It's always on our mind.
    We need to love ourselves and know we do the very best we can... The world may not see all we do, but we all know....
    Love to all......

  2. Awesome blog! I'm sharing it on FB if you don't mind. I can't tell you how many times I have thought those same things. I look at my daughter and on the outside she looks healthy but what people don't realize is she could be 24 hrs away from the unthinkable at any time. Keep up the great work!

  3. WOW!!! Your blogs and page are just so incredible and inspiring!! After I read some of your blogs, I felt like I wasn't the only one in the boat, so to speak. Sometimes we all feel like we are paddling alone up a hill. Thank you SO much for making my day just by reading your posts! Keep up the great work and come see me on MY blog too! You might find it interesting!


  4. I heart you Joanne. Spoke to my heart and I needed it today. Same.


  5. wow Joanne what a powerful post . god you so it the nail on the head .

  6. Thanks, Jo. I've been having a really hard time with it all lately. It helps to know I'm not alone!

  7. ABSO-STINKIN-LUTELY TRUE...ALL OF IT. Words cannot even begin to do all of us justice...the day-in and out is overwhelming at times.

    Thank You Joanne. LOVE YA!

  8. WHY is EVERYTHING making me cry lately?? Great post Joanne(once again.

    Elise is right... you are AMAZING.

  9. As always Joanne, you are so right on with this post!

    Just the other day, someone found out Matthew had diabetes as said "but he looks so healthy."

    I paused for a moment and finally, just decided to say nothing.

    Your post says it all.....

  10. Love this post. And I cried too. Definitely been in a down D mood lately.

    Thanks for this great post!

  11. It IS an invisable disease. How do you explain to a person the heartache? It is impossible unless you live it. That is why your post has touched so many, because we get it 100%. Love you!

  12. Thanks Joanne - I needed to hear that!

  13. This was just lovely. Something many of us needed to hear. Thanks for writing it out for us.

  14. I don't think I could have said it better...

    I just went to a birthday party today and as I am giving my girls their insulin one of the parents asked me "so, they just can't have sugar right?".

    If only it were that easy.

  15. I hate when people ask me how Grace is doing. How am I supposed to answer that? What struck me the most was the pain of denying a snack now or dealing with 400 later. That seems to be every day here lately.

    I get it. And everyone who reads your blog gets it too. We're here.

  16. Big, big hugs, Joanne! Life as a diabetic and as the parent of a diabetic can be rough sometimes, but there are some perks to it too. The obstacles we face and the rough times we go through make the sweet moments all that much sweeter and help make us wise enough to not overlook the beautiful little moments that shine so brightly in our lives. Those who don't understand how difficult life can be (and who make those stupid comments) don't understand all that either!

    By the way, I love the pic of Elise! She's such a beauty!


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