When you’re first diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes, the thing that sounds hard is the shots -- all those needles. There’s the checking your sugar multiple times a day, not to mention dosing for each meal and snack and taking that shot for your daily long-acting insulin. You count the number of pokes you’ll need and it feels overwhelming and painful.
There’s no room at the ER; It’s one of those high-volume moments, so we’re sitting on a gurney in the bustling hallway. The doctor is talking in a calm voice, despite the swirling hubbub.
“The good news,” she tells my nine-year-old son, as though about to pronounce the victory of a beloved team in the World Series, “is that you will be able to live a totally normal life. Your mother is smart and educated, “ she nods at me and I fleetingly wonder how she can know such a thing. “She will help you. You’ll be able to do anything you want.”
You know who they are: It’s your great uncle, who has the audacity to ask you what your last A1C is. It’s your spouse who gives you that sideways look when you get up to help yourself to another serving of dessert. It’s your mom who calls right in the middle of finals to see if you’ve been checking your sugar regularly since she’s noticed that you haven’t picked up a prescription refill on test strips in a while.
Dinner is done, piles of dishes flanking the sink. The kids have been good about cleaning up for the last few nights, so I release them -- a vacation treat. They head down to the beach, the three of them piling in the car together, my oldest at the wheel, my youngest asking to take her bike so her brothers can help her practice.