What is YOUR Spinach…….Help Advise Moms and Dads w/Newly Diagnosed.

Popeye eating spinachGet away.

Recently I wrote that we, as parents, do not know what it is like to have diabetes.  We care for, administer, sleep-walk, and do all sorts of things for our children with diabetes but we do not have it.

So here is the question that can surely help others and I mean can TRULY HELP OTHERS, so please consider hitting reply and adding your advice here.

Those who have been ‘at this’ for any length of time surely get to the point where they can take more.  As Popeye used to say, “That’s all I’s can stand, I can’t  stands no more.”  He of course would reach into his  and take out his spinach and that is how he was able to move forward.

How do you move forward.  What do you do to ‘get away’ from everything.  We DO HAVE that ability.  We may surely think about diabetes all the time, but every now and again we need to just………just…… something to take a break…… get away.

What is that for you?

What would you tell a new mom that she ‘must do’ to keep her sanity?  Sitting in the ‘advice chair’ and speak to someone who has only been at this for a month or two or six—-share what ‘saves you’?

What is your ‘spinach’?

I am a diabetes dad

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9 replies on “What is YOUR Spinach…….Help Advise Moms and Dads w/Newly Diagnosed.”

I think the biggest piece of advice that I would give is to NOT beat yourself up over every number! We are human and this disease is unpredictable and complicated, so give yourself a break, things get easier in time, and you will get more confident in your decisions. Also rely on all the wonderful support we have available to us, they are tons of groups and blogs ( like this one!) That really help you feel like you are not alone in this battle!

Get some sleep! Seriously…..sleep deprivation is the worst part. I am a SAHM so I do night duty with my daughter….if it is a bad night, I go back to sleep after she goes to school. I felt guilty at first, but it has been my saving grace. If both parents work outside the home, take turns, work out some system so you can get sleep! (* I know there are single parents dealing with this….find someone to help you…friend, family member…some one who can watch your child even if only for an hour, so you can regroup and know you have my admiration. This is hard enough to manage with a supportive partner–I cannot imagine doing it alone!)

So true!! I have been doing it alone with two girls and it is so hard! I have found a couple of wonderful parents of my girls friends that I have “trained” on diabetes management and they are more than willing to get up and check the girls when they stay over. Nothing feels better than a solid 8 hours of sleep!

Stop stressing about every number and accept you will never get it perfect.
Don’t feel guilty about fternoon naps. You will need them to carry on
Join CWD for support!

Keep some perspective on it. Diabetes is hard for the whole family. Most of your friends and family will never really understand. BUT we are so lucky to be in a time and place where there are good insulins and incredible technology, and there are so many more improvements on the horizon. And to me, one of the equally critical things is that we do have these online communities where we can come to vent and find answers to our questions and to realize that there are so many families out there going through the same things.
There are real tragedies out there. I would love for my child to have a functioning pancreas again, but it could be so much worse. I try to never lose sight of that.

Totally agree about the afternoon naps! Join cwd and talk to other mums(moms) meet up when you can with other families, just being with people who ‘get it’ is incredibly comforting, their eyes don’t glaze over, you can talk numbers endlessly and the children are suddenly not alone and although they don’t talk d, when it comes to meals and tests the fact someone else is doing tests etc just makes them feel a little better.

All of the above suggestions are great, and ones that a newly diagnosed family should try to do. I would also like to add, take a breather for yourself. Find something you enjoy doing, that will take your mind off D, even if for a few minutes a day. Reading, gardening, etc. These are all good, relaxing things. Personally, during the summer months, I garden to find peace. Even if I kill off my entire garden, just digging in the dirt and playing with seeds is enough to relax me. In the cooler, winter months when I can’t garden, I read (and truthfully, play fb games lol) to take my mind off of things. It gives me something other than D to think about for an hour or so each day, and helps me relax during the high-stress days. Find something you enjoy doing, and do it. Finding “down” time can help you unwind and take your mind off the “real world”, even if for but a few minutes. I find it really helps, and I’m not quite so cranky when I let myself unwind like this.

I found the easiest way for me to get through the early days following d/x was to literally – take it ONE DAY AT A TIME. I had no other choice then, as my then-husband didn’t want to help much (he was better at barking orders at me) and I was a SAHM who never got away. So, I learned to keep my focus on the day before me, and NOT focus on this disease without a cure, because my then-2-year-old daughter needed me to be upbeat. I learned not to project onto the next day, or next week. It worked. And as it is now, 6 years later, I am still doing it one day at a time.

The only other thing I wanted to mention is to remember the siblings! If there are non-D siblings in the house, remember that this is hard on them too. You have to make some special time for them, away from diabetes, as they need attention from you too – it’s not anyone’s fault that the child with diabetes requires constant care – but it’s important to give the sibs one-on-one with you, if you can.

Hi – best advice I ever got when our daughter was fairly new to diabetes was regarding her blood sugars: It’s only a number to tell you what to do – not good, bad or ugly just a point of reference to make a decision on and it can be corrected. So, with that being said, take each b/g check as that only a point of reference to go from and don’t, don’t, don’t beat yourself up over it or it’ll get you!!!!

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