Six years later.
It’s been more than six years since Kelsey was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. We’ve had a pretty good handle on the disease, we thought, for quite a while. Kelsey hit the ground running – she was checking her own blood sugar when she came home from the hospital, she understood how to count carbs and calculate insulin, she started administering her own injections not long after coming home. . .we thought we were ahead of the curve.
What we didn’t realize was the emotional toll this disease takes on a family and what it was doing to Kelsey. Sure, we knew that she struggled with thoughts of “why me” and “it’s not fair”. But we never realized to what extent she was suffering. Her medical team talked to us at her quarterly visits about how she was doing, physically, mentally, and emotionally. And they told us that many families see a therapist to help them deal with the effects of #T1D. I guess we thought we were past all that.
Boy, were we wrong.
Knowing what I know now, and we’re very early in the game, I would recommend every newly diagnosed #T1D patient and their family, see a therapist. In fact, if I were the medical team, I would probably require it. Especially when the patient is a child or adolescent. Expecting a child to fully understand what this disease means, how it changes their life, how it will always affect them, is too much.
The problem is, in my opinion, we get so wrapped up in the mechanics of the disease when we’re first diagnosed – we have to learn how to check blood sugar, how to read meters, how to inject insulin, how to count carbs, how to treat lows, how to treat highs, what to do on sick days, and on and on – that we forget to stop to take care of our emotions, what this disease makes you feel.
It’s easy to do, get wrapped up in the day-to-day business of this disease, because there is so much to learn, so much to do. And it’s never-ending. It truly is overwhelming. But, experience has now taught us something else new, we’ve learned something else about this disease, I know that we’ll never know it all, there’s too much, and we’re not physicians or scientists, but learn from our mistakes and take care of your emotions and make sure you’re taking care of your child’s (or #T1D loved one’s) emotions.
And, most of all, stay strong. Together we can #TurnType1IntoTypeNone #T1DLooksLikeMe #T1D