Tuesday 20 March 2012

Loosening the Reigns A Little

How do we, as D-parents, let go of the need to be in control of every aspect of our child's diabetes care? Is it even possible? For six and a half years I have attended virtually every medical appointment, A1c test, eye exam, and prescription pickup. I have sat in the IEP meetings, attended the research symposiums, and handled basically all of the day to day diabetes routine. Until this week.

It's no secret that Dylan's dad and I are divorced. We share custody, but Dylan has always resided primarily with me. Over the years he has spent more and more time with his dad, and recently we switched to a 50/50 access schedule, meaning that Dylan spends one week with me, then one week with his dad. But, as mentioned above, I have handled the overwhelming majority of the diabetes care since Dyl's diagnosis and that remains the same today. Until this week.

I have always tried to encourage Dylan to be as independent as he can with his diabetes care so that he can take complete responsibility for it one day. And so far he is well on his way to being able to do that. But planning for his independence far in the future, and actually relinquishing control, are too very different things. Until this week.

This week Dylan is on vacation with his dad and older brother, leaving me completely out of the diabetes loop. It is the first real vacation they've ever had with their dad. Sure, he's taken them on short jaunts here and there, by car, for 3 or 4 days, but they are always within a few hours of home, close to hospitals, and available by cell phone, email, and text. They've never traveled anywhere far away with their dad, especially to an international destination. Until this week.

Last Friday they flew to Jamaica for 11 days. That's 11 days of not knowing how his blood sugar will react to the hot humid weather, increased exercise, or different food. 11 days that I can do nothing but trust another person to look after my baby and keep him safe. For me, putting Dylan's life in the care of another individual, regardless of who it is, is the hardest part of all.

So here I am 4 days into the 11. Full of worry, but staying strong. So far. 7 days until I exhale.


  1. I can't imagine, honestly, what it would be like. I wouldn't be breathing either. Usually these things happen slowly. I'm sure the "slowness" will be back though, and you can wean yourself off of being in control... another day. :)

  2. Not easy, I'm sure. It's hard for me when my son just goes out for a morning away with his dad. But, I suppose it's good that your son gets these chances with his dad, so that his dad can learn to be more and more in tune.