I mentioned in a previous post that there were diabetes-related reasons for this move. One thing I have learned in life, thanks to diabetes (a little New Year’s optimism is never a bad thing), is that we all need people. None of us can thrive on our own or get along without loving support and help from friends and family.
Diabetes is a tricky one. If you don’t reach out for help now and then and nurture a support network, burn-out and despair can ensue.
I’m burnt out. And despair? I’ve felt it.
My husband and I have been sleep deprived and burning the candle at both ends for almost three years now. Jenna was only just two when she was diagnosed - not too long after the midnight feeds and wee hour diaper changes were a thing of the past. Given this scenario, you can imagine how many times we have had a night out, just the two of us.
I have enjoyed living on Canada’s west coast these past fifteen years, and have truly fallen in love with the mountains, trees and ocean. There isn’t a lot I can complain about living in this nature-lover’s paradise. If you’ve only ever seen pictures, I can assure you, they don’t do it any justice at all. This incredible land scape is a part of me now. It always will be. I have shed more than a few tears in recent days in anticipation of departing. But as sad as I am to be leaving, I am even more excited to be moving closer to my sister and her family. I look forward to my children having their cousins close by to play with, bond with, grow up with. And I am so very happy to be able to see my sister more than once every two years.
As for Jenna’s diabetes management, my sister is eager to learn. She wants to know the ins and outs of pumping insulin. And I am ready to teach. Jenna is at an age where she can verbalize how she is feeling. She does her own checks often and is learning her numbers, as a result. (Another “glass-half-full” mention about diabetes: I believe Jenna has added confidence concerning math and numbers from living the past three years immersed in calculations, ratios and solving for x). Jenna is burgeoning on an age of being slightly more independent with her diabetes management.
I have seen the sun set on my nursing career - a consequence of choosing to be at home with my girls in light of Jenna’s diagnosis. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as proud as I am of that accomplishment. But I have other interests I wish to pursue. Nursing was rewarding but it had it’s dark side. It was an easy decision to make, really. I couldn’t wrap my head around going to work as a nurse, caring for others, while a daycare worker cared for my two year old child with diabetes. Quite frankly, it scared the shit out of me, the very thought of it. Furthermore, who could be more qualified to care for Jenna but her mom who also happens be a registered nurse? I know some people have no choice but to work and my heart goes out to you. But, since we had that option open to us, we chose to take it.
Jenna is almost school-aged now. She will be attending junior kindergarten in the new year (I’m likely going to need some advice on how to handle the whole school issue from all you experienced D-parents out there in the weeks ahead) and her big sister will be enrolled in grade two full time. I will still need to be available for checks and boluses while she is in school, but in anticipation of the little bit of free time I might have, I’ve started to ponder some professional possibilities. Nothing is certain, however, so I’m going to leave it at that. But 2011 should be an exciting year, full of possibilities.
And of course, a very big and important part of my support network is the diabetes online community. The comfort I feel knowing help, advise or just an ear to vent is a few clicks away is immense. I’m forever grateful for all of you. Thank you.
A very Happy New Year to us all. May 2011 be a year full of promise, tolerance, love, kindness and understanding ...and a monumental advancement or two in the search for a cure would be nice as well (nod to all you beautiful scientists out there).
...and now I’m going to ring in the New Year with some dear friends I likely won’t see again for some time. Be well and safe, everyone.