Monday, September 19, 2011

A Big Realization

We went to Sea World this weekend.  And while it was a great trip, in one quick moment, I got a new perspective on my life.

Usually I strive to keep my posts short and sweet.  You people are so nice to read my posts, I don't want to take up all your time.  But today....there is so much I want to write.  I need to write.  I should warn you up front that this is going to be a downer, but I need to do this for myself.  So...just stop reading if necessary.

What was the moment?  We were eating lunch at Sea World.  Matthew had a hot dog and a handful of fries. I knew the hot dog was about 20 carbs...the fries around 30-35.  This would be easy for Matthew to figure out!

Here was our conversation:

Me:  Okay...how many carbs do you think?  (I was excited....I knew he could do this...easy!)
Matthew:  I don't know?  20?

In that moment, the fog of diabetes faded away and I saw my life so clearly. 

  1. Matthew does't care.  He didn't even try.  He could have figured out those carbs in a flash, but he didn't want to waste one second of brain power on it.  I'm going to write a full post on this later in the week.
  2. And what did I discover about myself?  I realized that I'm an awesome pancreas.  Not perfect--oh I still make a lot of mistakes.  But if I'm doing some major SWAGing, I'm smart enough to check 2 hours later and fix my mistakes.  I've read books on diabetes.  I've become a part of the DOC.  I've connected with lots of D-Moms locally.  I've worked my butt off to learn how to keep Matthew alive and I'm doing a pretty good job.  BUT...I've paid a high price.

So many people have told me that I don't give myself enough credit for managing Matthew's diabetes.  Kevin has said it....friends have said it....this was said at our last doctor's appointment and I found myself in tears.

I wasn't crying because I thought I was doing a bad job.

My tears are because I've learned to be a good pancreas at the expense of everything else in my life.

My body has suffered.  Physically and mentally.  My marriage has suffered.  Our finances.  Friendships.  My relationship with God, while stronger in some ways, is worse in others.  I'm not as involved in school....

Yes, I am a good pancreas, but everything else in my life has suffered.  And I have no idea how to put the pieces of my life back together.

And I don't have time to think about that because there is always work to be done.  Thinking about carbs and ratios and BG numbers and basal settings and supplies and IOB and pod changes and corrections and lows and highs and death (another teen died this weekend from type 1)....

Diabetes is never-ending...all-consuming....

12 comments:

Denise said...

not a downer, just the reality. I am so there with you. I have sacrificed so much to be a good pancreas (and I don't even get great A1cs to show it!!)
((HUGS))

Misty said...

Tracy, you are an awesome pancreas!! It is not an easy job. It takes so much out of us. But know that you are not alone. And one day, Matthew will care because you are teaching him how to care every single day by your example. The reward for all this sacrifice will be apparent that day! And in the mean time, he is just a kid...so I say its ok that he's not there yet! Hugs to you!

Joanne said...

You've written exactly what has been tumbling around in my brain the last week or so. I'm doing pretty good at one thing, but sucking at the rest of my life. The sad thing is, I'm too wrung out and tired to give a damn at this point.

I'm hoping that will change one day. And soon.

Valerie said...

You write long posts anytime you feel like it! I guarantee you we will all read it. (That one wasn't even long, btw). Unfortunately, I know what you mean. I don't have to take care of anyone, but I have to take care of myself and that seems hard enough sometimes! I often feel like my body and mental state are taking a hit while "perfecting" my diabetes management. I often feel like I make sacrifices and don't always get to do what I want because diabetes comes first. Sorry that wasn't super encouraging, but hang in there! Maybe you need a "you" day. :)

Penny said...

Hi hon, this is just the reality NOW, not forever. This is where you are NOW, not forever. This is where Matthew is NOW, not forever. This is just what is, right now. And there is time to pull yourself back together. You will find it and you will do it. I have faith in you.

I think we all join the club of putting ourselves last when we have a T1 kiddo. So, I tell you my friend... same same.

Stephanie said...

Oh, my sweet Tracy. You vent as long as you want, any time you want! Because the reality is, any feeling you are having right now...they are feelings that we ALL have.

And I'll tell you a secret - sometimes in addition to being sucky at everything else in my life, I'm sucky at being a pancreas too. Sometimes I let him graze and "fix" him later because I'm too darn tired to figure it all out at the moment.

I'm sitting here right now, waiting on yet another call back from the nurse - Adam was 57 going into lunch, 107 AFTER lunch (with no insulin) and I'm waiting on the next BG to decide what to do. So, everything I had planned to do today is put on hold for now.

Hang in there. Love you!

Wendy said...

I totally get this, my friend.

Completely.

I've mentioned this before on my blog too...the price we pay...

Don't you worry 1 iota about putting raw emotion out here.

We love you just the way you are. And we understand.

Kelly said...

Thanks for being so honest with this post. I believe too that you are teaching Matthew Life Lessons that one day he and you will be rewarded the benefits of. Thinking of you this day.

Reyna said...

Ah, I feel like you are writing about my life. Yep, the price is high in the beginning. Heck, some of my best buddies live in my computer b/c you guys GET THIS...you understand the workload and the enormity of it all. It is HUGE. Matthew will learn in due time my friend. You keep on...uber-pancreating...and strengthening those areas in your life that have been a bit neglected due to becoming a make-shift pancreas. Love you.

Jules said...

yup i get it. i give my all, and i still fall short, dont have the positve feedback or fan club. things in my life are also suffering. you are NOT alone. HUGS xx.

Meri said...

Moments like this in our life ebb and flow. It won't always be this way, or rather, it won't always FEEL this way. I've been down this road so many times, I know how your heart hurts now, and I'm so sorry! But I have a feeling you are not giving yourself credit for everything else you do an amazing job at in your life. You are wonderful. We all know it. :) Hugs to you!!!

Jess said...

This is not a downer, its a reality. I'm sorry your struggling to get your son to care. But one day he will, because he will realize that caring is what keeps him alive. And your right You are a great pancreas!