Picture This: My husband and I are sitting in a room at Brenner’s Hospital on the 7th floor, just a month or so after Maddie going on the pump. Our wonderful diabetes doctor, Bobbi Hackman, asks us how it’s going with the pump.
My answer: “I’m drowning in diabetes. I’m frustrated with her blood sugar numbers, they don’t seem to stay in a good place for very long, and I can’t seem to wrap my head around how to do it better.”
My husband’s answer: “It hasn’t been easy, but I think Jennifer and I look at the numbers differently. She looks at what Maddie’s blood sugar is to tell her whether she judged correctly or not, whether she has done everything right. I, on the other hand, just look at the blood sugar number to tell me how we need to proceed from here.”
A light goes off in my head. And our diabetes doctor says, “You do realize you have a Mars and Venus thing going on there. That’s probably why the two of you were put together.” Amen to that!
This was a wonderful revelation for me. As I said in an earlier post, my need to calibrate my own mind as to how the pump works was just this! Maddie’s blood sugar numbers are not judging me as to whether I’ve cared for Maddie in the way I should’ve. Those numbers are just numbers that say where she is at any given moment in the day. And they are data that helps me know what we can do next, NOT whether I’m being a good mom or a bad mom, NOT whether I’m totally stupid at calculating what is needed to manage her diabetes, NOT whether I should just throw in the towel (or throw out the pump!).
In some ways, I needed to realize that I MUST GET OFF THE ROLLER COASTER! I need to see myself as OBSERVING the roller coaster of blood sugar levels, and having an active part in managing those levels. The more I can observe and learn, the better care-giver I’ll be. But if I allow the numbers to determine WHO I AM, I’ll sink. This is Maddie’s body after all! Not mine. It is her little body that endures the effects of the roller coaster and some of it, even SHE cannot manage. We’ll do the best we can, together, with the information we’re given.
To our Diabetes Doctor, the data says this: “It’s the nature of the beast. This is fixable, we can do something about it.” Ahhhh………