Putting you Child in a Bubble; You Will Get What You Seek.

boy bubble Turning down every chance you’re given.
Takes the risk out of life, but friend
How the hell can you call that livin’?
Out There—from the Broadway Musical, Barnum

I have been thinking a lot about the pathways our children will take.  As I reported the news on Ryan Reed’s huge victory this weekend in Daytona, I could not help but wonder what it was like in his house growing up.  How often do we tell our child ‘no’ on something?  How do you think that played out in the Reed household.

“Hey ma, I’m thinking at traveling at speeds over 200 miles per hour to be the first across a waved checkered flag.  But don’t worry about my diabetes.”

Right? I’m thinking the same thing.

We as parents are always faced with two decisions; yes….and no.  Pretty simple right?  Of course not and any parent will tell you that there are so many decisions that do not come with any ease whatsoever.  We labor over decision after decision.  We labor on the right and the wrong?  We labor until it pains our hearts to allow our kids the platform to grow and expand their horizons.

But do we?   And THAT is the question we must ask ourselves before we answer anything else.  Are WE the ones who hold our kids back for fear of what COULD happen.  And why?  What is the worst that could happen to them.  They fail?  They get hurt?

Why get a driver’s license ever (much less be a professional racecar driver)?  Why Ski?  Why mountain climb?  Why play sports?  The answer of course is simple, because they want to; that’s why.

And that simple answer is the toughest call we make every and singe day.  Robert Kennedy once said; “Some men see things as they are and a why, I dream things that never were, and ask why not?”

You can find a thousand excuses not to do something, but you only need one good reason to do the same thing.   Your kids deserve that thought process.  Think about it.

I am a diabetes dad.

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5 replies on “Putting you Child in a Bubble; You Will Get What You Seek.”

It is a fine balance! It depends on the ability of parents to emotionally support possible failure associated with risk (not discussing fatal here) and the desires of a child. Skill (10,000 hours of race car driving lets say) matched with ambition is a powerful thing. Place this in opposition with behaviour (as opposed to goals) that is risky or neglectful and we are discussing something different. It’s a broad conversation. I also believe some children have greater emotional needs for support than others but this doesn’t make them weak – rather they may end up being better prepared for life with T1D as adults. Protecting a child in a bubble crosses over into an entirely different zone – but that’s an analogy – yes? Thanks for reminding me about Daytona. What a race! So many people living with T1D who are talented! No surprise. Elizabeth

Actually mine is a play on words (or so I meant it 🙂 ). Pitting them in a bubble will keep them just there—-my point is to NOT put them in a bubble. There is no ‘pat’ answer for this and each child is different. If there is an emotional or mitigating circumstance, of course I am not referring to those kids as surely they DO need special care. By many parents ‘helicopter’ (I just learned that word) their kids because they hover over everything they do. I am in no position to judge but I always try to ask people to question what they do and how they do it. For me? Absolutely not……but when a mom writes me and says, “you hit a chord with me today; I need to give my child more space”——well my day is made. No where did I infer that anyone with an emotional need is weak, nor would I ever but I ask the questions to begin dialogue……even if just with ourselves. Thanks for sharing.

It would be so much easier in a bubble. We are working hard to prepare her to care for herself in the future. She needs that option. We let her do those things she wants to do, because we want her to have an attitude of being able to do anything. She loves playing soccer, and we have been working hard to help her balance her blood sugars and play soccer. There are days we do well, and days we don’t, but we keep trying. I showed her the articles about Ryan Reed winning his race. I said, you can do anything you want to with diabetes. You just have to keep preparing.

I have been working on a film since the summer (filming done and in the studio waiting for original music) that shows heroes kids can look up to…..but here is the catch….it is kids just like other kids who just live life to the fullest. THEY ARE TRUE heroes. Your daughter playing soccer just makes my day. Whether she is the leading scorer in the league—or sees 1 or 2 minutes a game…..she is there….she is not just letting it go by her……I LOVE THAT ATTITUDE. Thank you so much for sharing.

My first instinct at diagnosis was definitely getting a bubble for my child but I knew I had to let her live her life fully and happily doing whatever she wanted to do. 4 months later I dropped her off at a sleepover and she did wonderfully (much better than I did, I cried the whole way home). She plays volleyball, acts in school plays, goes to art lessons after school, swims, and does everything her friends do. It has never occurred to her that she can’t do these things. We’ve told her since day 1 that she can do anything, except maybe flying a plane or driving a train 🙂 I think that’s one of the most important things we can teach our T1d kids, even if it terrifies us! Thanks for the great post.

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