Our Life Changing Moment – A Type 1 Diabetes Story
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It’s a news that no parent ever wants to hear, that your baby has a chronic medical condition. My daughter was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes when she was only 15 months-old. Type 1 Diabetes is an autoimmune disease where the person’s pancreas stops producing insulin. For more information about Type 1 Diabetes, please refer to my post about this chronic medical condition.
How Did We Get Here?
When my husband and I received the news, our perfect little world just crumbled. I was in shock and could not believe that our perfect little girl was going to be having this lifelong disease.
Our life changed completely. We have a life before Diabetes and a life after Diabetes. Some people think that Diabetes Type 1 is a condition that can be cured by health remedies or oral medication. The health insurance considers Diabetes (no distinction between Type 1 or 2) as a manageable condition, but Type 1 is very unpredictable. We can do the same thing every day (i.e. give the appropriate amount of insulin, healthy eating habits; very difficult for a toddler), and all our efforts simply do not work. It’s a never-ending battle.
Living with a Chronic Illness
Most people cannot fathom how parents whose kids have this chronic illness manage it daily. Diabetes never takes a break and needs to be managed 24/7/365 days a year. If we give too much insulin, she can go into a coma, and if we do not give her sufficient insulin, she can go into DKA. In the beginning, it was killer to watch my baby being poked and prodded about 16 times a day!! That is a lot for a little 15 month-old baby and the parent! I cried every time she was being poked and prodded.
Where Are We Now?
My husband and I are thankful for all the help that we are getting from her doctors. We currently live in Massachusetts, and so far the medical care that my daughter has received here has been exceptional. There are some horror stories about diabetics not getting proper treatment for their illness and my heart just breaks for them. I am very grateful that my employer’s health insurance fully covers all her medical supplies.
The education and training that we have received from her doctors has been extraordinary. They have taken the time and effort to teach us well, and at times even call us to see how we are doing!
My daughter is a healthy little girl, who doesn’t seem to mind having her insulin pump on her all the time. She is just a typical toddler, with her tantrums, and picky eating habits, and for this I am grateful.
No one ever tells you how hard parenting is when your child has a delicate medical condition. Parenting a child with a medical condition it’s very draining. You just wish that the condition happens to you, and not your child. Every day I want to trade places with her, so she doesn’t suffer the poking and prodding.
The best thing that my husband and I can do is to continue to educate ourselves, and always be aware of new medical devices and medicines to treat her Diabetes. I really do hope that there is a cure and that in the future, no more kids suffer from this disease, and that my daughter is part of this cure.
For more information about Diabetes Type 1, please go the JDRF website.