The dreaded sleepover; it can be a d-parent's biggest fear. Putting your trust in another parent, let alone one who doesn't know your child as well as you do, can be scary. Terrifying in fact. At the same time, Dylan having as normal a life as possible is critically important to me. I have always made it a rule to never let diabetes get in the way of his doing anything and this has forced me to relinquish a bit of control and trust him to take responsibility for his diabetes when I am not with him.
Sleepovers were one of the last things I allowed. For years, I would permit friends to sleep at our house, but the idea of Dylan staying somewhere else was simply not an option for me. Even his dad's house and grandparents' houses frightened me. Over time, however, as he has become more and more responsible with his own diabetes care, my trust in him has increased accordingly.
His first few sleepovers at friends' houses were with his best friend, who lives a block away from us, and whose parents are very familiar with diabetes and Dylan's care. They know to remind him to test frequently, they know how to treat his lows, and they recognize his low symptoms. And when they're not sure about something, they call or text me. In short, I am comfortable when Dylan is at their house.
Last Friday night, on the other hand, marked the first time I've allowed him to sleepover at the house of a friend whose parents (in this case a single mom) I don't know well. Dylan desperately wanted to stay there, and though every part of my being wanted to say no out of fear, I really had no rational reason for denying him this privilege, so we came up with a plan. Dyl was to text me every few hours with bg readings, especially before eating anything, and if anything was out of the ordinary, we would address it, and bring him home if necessary.
I dropped him off at 4:30pm, with a blood glucose level of 6.2 mmol/l. His pre-dinner text revealed that he was 5.1 mmol/l, and another text before bed showed he was 7.8 mmol/l/. At home, we would bolus for 7.8 mmol/l, if it was at any time other than before bed, as that's a tiny bit high for my liking. But we've always kept a marginally higher "acceptable" range for bg readings immediately before bed because Dylan has had nighttime hypoglycemic seizures in the past, though not in years. His nighttime bg levels have been very steady as of late, and he wakes up if his sugar nears 4.0 mmol/l, so I let him skip the middle of the night test for the sleepover. Yes, I really other parents would think I'm crazy for skipping a 2:00 am check, but with no variation in activity for the day, and bg readings steady for the previous few days, I felt confident that he would be fine. An early morning text showed a bg of 9.0 mmol/l, which he followed with a breakfast bolus for the french toast he was about to eat, and an insulin correction for the 9.0 mmol/l, all on his own. That's my guy; a true rock star when it comes to managing his diabetes.
So am I more comfy with sleepovers now? Not a chance. Yet baby steps are getting us there slowly but surely.