You’ve Got Mail

Day 6 Health Activists Writers Month Challenge

Today’s Challenge – Write a letter an older you (tell us what age you’re writing to!) What do you want to ask yourself? What lesson do you want to make sure you remember?

I write as a caregiver – as a parent of 3 kids (2 with type 1 diabetes). 

Dear 44-year-old me, (yes this is only 5 years away but it will be a pivotal year for me and for my oldest child with type 1)

Do not be scared. What the hell am I suggesting – of course you’re terrified. Let’s try this again – get up off your shower floor where you have been sitting crying so that your family can’t hear you. Get dressed and maybe choose something blue for diabetes awareness. You got this but more importantly she’s got this.Today your oldest will leave for college. This day is scary and sad and exciting for nearly all parents but yes it is scarier for you. She will be fine. You have supported her well. You have taught her all you can and she is ready. She is smart, she is strong, she is independent and she is a mini you but without the insecurities. She is an advocate for herself and for others. She has never accepted defeat and that wont change when she isn’t under your roof. You knew this day would come and you have put every ounce of yourself into making sure she would be successful, safe and happy. You wont be able to protect her from everything. Boys will break her heart. Girls will still be ugly. She will stay out too late and oversleep. She will procrastinate with her studies and cram for exams. So did you and you turned out just fine. She has all the tools she needs to be successful and safe. She will still bring laundry home and you will do it because you’ve missed her. She might change her hair color, get her ears double pierced, or maybe even a tattoo – you will roll your eyes but secretly wished you had got a tattoo when you were young, skinny and looked good in a bikini. She will call to ask for money and you will babble on about responsibility but in the end you will add money to her account regardless. She will be fine. She will miss you and she will call. When she does don’t ask about diabetes first.

She is braver than you believe, smarter than you think and stronger than she seems.

Let her go – it’s time to share her with the world – she will be fine fantastic.

-Me

PS. Don’t go smothering your boys after she leaves. It will drive them insane.

 

About Christina

Mom of 3 kids, all 3 have Type 1 diabetes - I blog to share stories. I am not a medical professional and my thoughts are my own. Please do not make changes to your medical care plan based on my stories - always consult your medical team. Hope you find something in my ramblings helpful and or amusing. You can find me on twitter @momof3T1s and on my Facebook page Stick With It Sugar. May all your dreams forever be bolus worthy.
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9 Responses to You’ve Got Mail

  1. Elisheva says:

    Kids are often so excited to grow up on get out of the house and to be their own people. I’ve never been a parent, but it’s gotta be hard to watch your kids grow up and fend for themselves. I’ve been living away from my parents for almost ten years (wow, I’m getting old…) and I think my parents and I have a great relationship. We talk about all sorts of things and sometimes (but not in every conversation) they’ll ask how my breathing has been recently. I generally answer them and continue on to a new subject. Usually I’m fine, but if not, I hate worrying them. Tho if my breathing is really crappy and it’s hard for me to carry on a conversation, they can hear it on the phone/Skype… but that doesn’t happen often. They know that I’m responsible and there have been times that I’ve been afraid to sleep alone in my apartment and have made sure friends were looking out for me. The vast majority of the time I’m fine and life goes on. Sometimes when I tell my parents about running or zumba or packing for a trip or whatever, my dad reminds me to pack my inhalers and asks several times to make sure I don’t forget. I’ve been asthmatic since I was in elementary school. I’m 28 years old (as of last week). I can’t imagine life without inhalers. Of course I pack them and use them. But I remind myself that that’s just one of the many ways my parents show me they care about me and love me.

    I really like this post and hope you read it that fateful day five years from now when your daughter goes off to college. All the best.

    • Christina says:

      Thanks Ellisheva. Im sure your parents are very proud of all you have done and will do. Im also sure its hard for them not to ask about your health every phone call. I hope my letter is true 5 years from now – that I have given her all I could to be successful. I hope I remember to not always make it about diabetes.

  2. Lily says:

    Great stuff.

  3. Stacy says:

    I think thats the biggest fear for all of us as D-parents. Letting our children go out into the world where they are no longer in our care. The worry of what if can eat at us, but knowing that we have taught them everything they need to know to be amazing people is what we have to remember.

    • Christina says:

      Not teaching them enough either by my actions or inactions is likely my worst fear. In fact it is what Im still trying to write about for the post that was due on the 9th. I will always want them near me but I can’t wait to watch them shine.

      • Alahnna says:

        I haven’t finished the Day 9 post either! You nailed it, and I feel the same: “Not teaching them enough either by my actions or inactions…” I think there’s so much to say about it, I’m having a hard time writing a post that makes any sense.

        • Christina says:

          I haven’t been on my blog for nearly a week – maybe longer and I haven’t read any for a week. I had to take a step back and focus on family. My sons 11th birthday was last week then his party was over the weekend and that needed my attention ore so than my blog. I finally finished my Caregiver post early today and once Im caught up with other posts I will go back to read all my friends posts. I try not to read them before I post so I don’t lose my creativity while I am stealing theirs. 😉 Can’t wait to catch up with your posts.

  4. Alahnna says:

    Oh my, that’s my future self 5 months from now! Our son graduated from high school 2 years ago and now it’s our daughter’s turn; we only have two kids so she’s our last. She’ll be going to school 2 hours from us, but we’ll still worry.

    If it’s any consolation, when my son was 5 years from high school graduation, I was sad and weepy. But I soon learned, some time during his sophomore year, the primary purpose of teenagers might be to ensure parents are ready for them to begin their own lives.

    But, that could have just been our experience. YMMV!!

    • Christina says:

      lol – I think you are right – the teen years (attitudes) are meant to allow us to let go (toss them out). It is still scary even when I know my kids will be great. It is only 5 years for my daughter and 10 years for my youngest son – the time is going to just disappear. In 10 years I will look back on this day/this post and it will feel like it was just the day before. Crazy. Thanks for the comment. Im sure your daughter will do great.

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