If you have found this blog, saying Welcome does not really seem appropriate. I know you wish you weren't surfing the internet for diabetes. I felt the same.
A big part of me wishes I were not writing about diabetes, nor did I anticipate to become so opinionated or informed on the subject, but it happened. In 2010, my son was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.
It wasn't really part of the plan… Correction - it was not part of the plan, but it happened. It is not always easy, but I think we are all doing okay, and I hope we continue to do so.
Why the Middle East? I happen to live in Dubai. I don't think that living in the Middle East makes mine or my son's diabetic experience any more unique or challenging than it does elsewhere in the developed world.
I hope you stick around, or read something you like. Feel free to comment and join the conversation, subscribe or follow this blog by liking the Facebook page Diapoint.
Please note: This blog does not give medical advice. I am opinionated, and I share my experiences, but the first rule of diabetes is to follow up with your doctor and/or nurse educator about your care, diagnosis or medication. If you do not have a medical practitioner that is helping you find your way through this crazy world, then do not give up until you find the right one.
Tuesday, April 28, 2015
Of course at first diagnosis we are looking for remedies - why? how? How can I get rid of it?
Later comes acceptance...
Ok, I can't get rid of this, but I am going to manage it and fight it full on.
So often we will come across a web site with a cure, or receive unsolicited advice from a relative, or stranger. The need to share unsolicited advice must be human, but now being at the receiving end of a lot of it I find it frustrating sometimes.
Case in point.
I recently received an email from a very sweet friend. She is lovely, smart, genuine and also a mom. She follows a nutritionist who wrote a rather lengthy article about food allergies in relation to a list of growing conditions seen in children. Everything from autism to sleeping intolerance is in this summary.
The article does site some legitimate research that is going on, but it is nowhere near the depth needed for any of the conditions mentioned.
I know my friend sent this with the best intentions, and I loved that she thought about us enough to reach out. But if I am honest, these articles are a painful reminder at the same time.
When our children are diagnosed - and I am going to be bold here and say when they are diagnosed with anything on that list, I bet just as I did, all those other moms out there wanted answers too. We searched the internet high and low looking for answers, looking for what caused this, looking for where we went wrong, and a possible cure.
What we found were a host of reasons - many of which we exposed our children to. Ate wheat, dairy, potatoes, had fruits... and the list goes on.
What happened next? We felt extremely guilty and blamed ourselves for our child's condition. We did things that had been done for years, and deemed healthy, but yet our outcomes resulted in something less than perfect. We must have caused it.
This is a big demon to deal with, but this is the reality of what we faced. We did not let our child play in the street, but worse. We fed them and nourished them.
This particular article mentions that breastfeeding greatly reduces the risk of Type 1, as well as not eating meat, and no dairy until as late as possible. Well, guess what. I did all that!
I breast fed, I did not eat meat, nor did my child for many years. I personally do not enjoy meat, so I did not eat it before, during or after pregnancy. Dairy was not introduced until around 6 months of age. I even made my own baby food when possible from organic produce or bought organic if I could not make it. Gwenyth Paltrow got a run for her money on that one.
Essentially, I followed the advice of that article, and went the extra organic mile, and my child still ended up with this thing. But yet, I must have caused this somehow.
No, I did not.
My point is. These articles, and sometimes the advice has the best intention as this one did. Despite all those good intentions, it is painful. For me, it takes me back to those days when I really thought I caused this. It makes me question my choices all over again.
My friend is not even implying that at all, but this is how that article and many others like it make me feel. It reminds me of that time desperately searching for answers.
Answers that no one has yet. We hope someday there will be answers, but for the time being we are still not sure.
If you or someone you love has recently been diagnosed with Type 1, stop reading all the advice on the internet. Instead, search for communities of other Type 1s. They will steer you in the right direction and openly share their very real experiences with you.
Friday, April 10, 2015
This disease is often a silent nuisance. Sometimes it is referred to as the “silent killer”. It is no joke and nothing will be managed if we do not get in the ring with it, even if that means questioning a doctor.
Saturday, April 4, 2015
|Zip lining through Sentosa Island, Singapore|
With my son two weeks off from school for Spring Break, we decided to head East to Singapore. My husband and I have both been before, and although it has changed and improved exponentially, we just focussed on some of the major family highlights and spending some much needed quality time together.
During this trip, we went back to Sentosa Island as it had much more to offer than the first time around - including a zip line. This included a nice walk through the manmade bridges and paths to the start.
We arrived, strapped up and signed our life away before ascending several stories up a tower. I’m no expert in distance, but it was high. As we overlooked the jungle as they were clipping us onto the lines, my son confided in me that he was a little scared. I told him I was too. I was a bit surprised because he takes after his father in these adrenaline things.
I then looked over at my husband, veteran New Zealand Canyon Swinger and Sky Diver, like I must be nuts. I was about to hurl myself into the jungles of Sentosa, son first.
Before we knew it, we were released and flying down the line. It was exhilarating, but I held on for dear life. My son, immediately howled with excitement and let go with his arms wide open embracing everything that life had to offer at that moment.
They company that manages the zip line took this picture of us. Although you cannot see our faces, I thought this was quite analogous for how we often manage diabetes in small children. They are really unaware of your fear as you hold on for dear life.
The diabetic child is often oblivious to the risks they face, but yet we hang on behind them as we encourage them to take on the world knowing no different. They ride shot gun as we are in "control" into the uncertain and unknown.
I don’t know when they realize both the real and implied risks that go along with this condition. For us, we introduce things in an age appropriate context as they come. We can only hope that he has healthy relationship with whatever he faces on this crazy ride. Sometimes it may require a fair amount of trust and throwing all caution to the wind to enjoy the ride.