I try really hard to give my kids ample independence.
We compromise frequently on when I think they should be checking blood sugars and when they think they should be checking blood sugars. I try very hard not to be too needy of a Dmom – in other words I resist the urge to constantly ask “whats your blood sugar” “did you check” “did you dose” “be sure to dose” “please check your blood sugar”. Of course I still ‘ask & tell’ but I assure you not nearly as often as I feel the urge. Sometimes the kids are happy with their freedom, other times they want help, and then there are the times that despite my best attempts at a hands off approach I’m still not hands off enough for my teen.
So here’s a story I want to share.
My daughter would prefer not talk about diabetes to any of the kids at her middle school. She is still trying to figure out who best to be friends with at a new school, tossing in diabetes is both stressful and embarrassing. Thus she went through a few weeks where she simply wasn’t checking her blood sugars unless she felt funky. That wasn’t the original agreement – the deal was 3 blood sugars a day, mid morning, before lunch and before getting on bus to come home. She agreed to that. She didn’t follow through. When I discovered the discrepancies there was an argument. After voices were lowered we worked out a new compromise. By this time my daughter had started on the Dexcom G4 CGM (continuous glucose monitor). The new deal agreed on by both of us was if Dex was within 20 points at breakfast she could avoid the mid-morning check, still check a blood sugar before lunch and if that was within 20 points she could skip the pre-bus check (BTW – her bus ride home is nearly 25 minutes).
She agreed to the new compromise, all was well for another week. Then her sensor came off – that sucked because numbers were spot on but the tape failed. We have not put on a new sensor. Thus she was asked to check BS 3 times a day until we put on a new sensor. For 5 days I have suggested we put on a new sensor. She loves her Dex and misses it but she has been very busy – homework, outings, TV whatever – always I would hear “not this minute, later, I promise”.
So here we are at yesterday. I had packed her a chicken caesar wrap (corn tortilla, caesar dressing, romaine lettuce, roasted chicken). She loved the wrap I sent for lunch and asked for one when she got home. I happily obliged and at the same time showed her how I made it. Before she sat down with her wrap I reminded her to check BS. Ten minutes later I found her making a second wrap, I giggled and simply said well don’t forget to dose for the second one too, glad you enjoy them.
Fast forward a couple of hours – my middle son wanted a haircut. My daughter wanted to ride along so she could get some school supplies from target. My youngest asked if we could get some Five Guys and Fries. All loaded into the van we were off. I had put each of the boys Dbags in my purse. I didn’t ask daughter if she had hers because every time I did ask she replied with “I never leave without it, relax”.
Haircut – check, Five Guys – check for me and boys, daughter wasn’t hungry (she did already eat two wraps) so she just munched on fries. I reminded all kids to dose and headed to Target.
We wandered Target for a bit picking up more than school supplies. Daughter found me to get money for a Starbucks cookie crumble thing. Fine. “be sure to dose”
Lazy evening at home finishing up homework, watching TV and daughter face-timing with friends. Around 9:30 she came down to say goodnight, “goodnight baby – hey check your BS and correct if you need to please”.
Midnight – (well after midnight) after chatting with a new Dmom on FB for sometime I was finally headed off to bed. Checked Sugarboy – sailing smoothly in the upper 80s, checked Middles also smooth sailing in the low 100s. Went to check daughter – searched high and low (not a pun) for her Dbag while her cat mewed at me. It was no where. Damn. Back downstairs to check counters and couches. Nothing. Out to van to see if it was forgot there. Nope. Back upstairs to check her bathroom and bedroom again – NOTHING. WTH? Back downstairs to look again. Surely it wouldn’t be in her backpack – she has consumed food multiple times since returning home. Still I checked. nope – but wait – she didn’t empty her lunch box, darn it I have to do it because I also realized I hadn’t started the dishwasher and her containers will need washing. Low and Behold – her Dbag. Thus – no blood sugar checks had been done since noon when she ate lunch. No pre-bus check, no pre-wrap check, no pre-fry check, no pre-cookie crumble check, no bedtime check and still not wearing Dexcom.
Back upstairs expecting to find some awful number.
Nope – 123. Well crap. I mean great, but crap. The 123 means she managed to dose correctly for all her food but without any blood sugars or a CGM.
The ‘123’ is not the point though.
Things could have gone badly.
While never actually lying to me she left me to believe she was doing what needed to be done – did what I asked and reminded her to do.
Dumb luck doesn’t win prizes.
This morning I mentioned to her how long it took me to find her Dbag at night. She shrugged it off. I didn’t try to make her lie by asking “hey what was your BS last night before bed?” because I don’t have time for those shenanigans. I asked her to please be more diligent and told her there would be no hanging with friends on Friday if she doesn’t do the bare minimum we had agreed to. Luckily she never asked me what her midnight number was even though that’s not the point.
I started this post – crap I don’t know when – sometime last week. It was mostly done just needed to upload a picture and think of some witty ending.
Skip forward (well backward now) to later that day, after school, after homework, after dinner. Her meter was on the counter along with used test strips. I wasn’t being nosey. I just felt like I should check her meter. Her last check was 5:49pm just before dinner – cool. Her check before that – 5:45am – crap. 12 hours AGAIN. No mid morning check, no pre-lunch check, no pre-bus check, no pre-afterschool snack check and no Dexcom. All the rules dismissed despite the soft reminders that very morning.
My quiet questions to her regarding the missing BS checks were not met with humility. Instead I was accused of being too protective, too nosey, too everything.
So how can this turn around? Do I just wait it out for the next 3 years hoping that my very smart, very kind, very responsible daughter will emerge from the chrysalis of teenage years unscathed and ready to fly?
God I hope so.
In the meantime – Dex is back in business.