So we have been spending our fair share of time at the beach this summer. There’s just something about sitting on warm sand, the sound of waves swishing a rhythmic lullaby, that makes my heart sing. It’s like my second home, coming from a beach town in Southern Ontario like I do. And my girls are fans as well. They love playing in the sand, finding shells, watching little crabs in tidal pools, playing in the surf... it’s all good.
On our most recent beach excursion we arrived after lunch as low tide was mid-afternoon. All was going well up to this point. As I pulled into my parking spot and began unloading the crazy amount of beach accoutrements that we require, the girls began unbuckling. I came around to assist Jenna out of her seat when she told me that she had caught her infusion site on the seat belt.
“But it’s okay, Mom. I put it back. I don’t need a site change” she said with a slight hint of desperation in her voice as if she was hoping I would agree and let it go.
I took a look at the site and sure enough, it had been ripped out and was no longer infusing sub-cutaneously. I could see that Jenna had re-adhered it to her arm in an attempt to make things right again. But a site change was in order, nevertheless.
I got right down to business. I was grateful that I remembered to pack the diabetes back-up supply bag that usually accompanies us on any trips longer than an hour and farther than a 20 minute drive from home. Otherwise, this would have been the shortest beach trip ever with two sad little girls and one stressed out, guilt-ridden Mommy headed back home again.
Jenna handled the site change like a pro. She does with all site changes now. She will tell me to wait while she “...finds [her] bravery” and a moment later, when she gives me the go-ahead I waste no time and just get the job done. She’s amazing.
So with her new site in place we were ready to get down to some serious beach fun. And a couple hours and a few sand castles later we were ready to pack up and head for home again.
Back at our car I was performing our usual routine of packing up beach stuff and assisting the girls into dry clothes (and attempting in vane to limit the amount of sand we take home with us). I placed a fresh t-shirt over Jenna’s head and was trying to persuade said shirt over her still damp arms when -- OOPS! The shirt got caught up on her new site and pulled it out as well. It seemed to come out with very little provocation, however, and I wondered if, in our haste to hit the beach, I wasn’t careful enough to ensure good adhesion.
Another site change was in order.
So it was a beach day bookended by site changes. And even though she handled two site changes over the span of a little more than two hours like a seasoned pro (which I guess is indeed what my four year old baby girl is at this point) my heart broke a little for her. But I don’t show her that. I face these challenges the way she now does. We just get on with it. It’s a part of life for her. Since she was diagnosed at the age of two it’s the only life she remembers. She knows nothing else.