I always laugh at the contrast between Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. On Father’s Day, dads often look for opportunities to spend time with their families. Mothers, by contrast — or at least many of us — look toward that one day a year that we can have for ourselves. It’s our “day off,” so to speak. That one day a year when someone else takes care of meal planning and entertaining the kids so we can just put our feet up and relax.
And really, we deserve this! In my home, my husband is wonderfully helpful whenever he is around. But it’s like I’m almost constitutionally unable to let him do certain tasks most of the time. So I do look forward to Mother’s Day. I like sleeping in, breakfast in bed, and taking a few hours in the afternoon to just sit in my room and read. Such a luxury!
In order to really make it a fantastic Mother’s Day for me as a mom of a child with type 1 diabetes, there are a few gifts from my family that I’ll always appreciate.
First, I am grateful for a husband who knows how to do all the diabetes-related tasks in our household. Make no mistake, I’m still in charge; I do the supply ordering and the logging and dosage adjustments. But there isn’t any reason that Craig can’t take over those tasks; for logistical reasons it just makes more sense for those to be my jobs. Still, my wish on Mother’s Day is a full takeover of diabetes tasks. It’s awesome that Craig can handle the routine, the testing and carb counting and blood sugar monitoring that make up every day. But he can also handle the odd infusion site failure, insulin pump low battery, or unusual food that Daddy might introduce to the kids’ diet that day. Having Daddy be able to fully take over for me is such a blessing!
Similarly, I like Craig to take over at night every so often. Normally, I’m the one who responds to nighttime alarms. It’s mostly because I seem to be more alert at night, and I can usually handle things quickly, so I do. But Craig has offered and I have taken him up on offers to put the alarms away from me for an evening. A great night’s sleep is a blessing for any mom!
Second, I am thankful for a child that shows me he is grateful for the effort I put in to keeping him safe. James has given me sweet notes before. But even more, I like seeing seeds of growth, evidence that he’s learning the lessons of self-management. I’m grateful for him remembering to test without needing reminders, for communicating how he is feeling, and for being an awesome carb counter himself. More of that on Mother’s Day will always be welcome!
Finally, I’m grateful for my dear friends who remember the sacrifices I make for my child with diabetes on this day of celebration. Thank you to my mother and my circle of friends for your sweet encouragement. Above all, I’m so thankful for their willingness to learn to care for James, so that in an emergency, or just for convenience, I can leave him with friends who are capable of taking care of him.
That sums up my three wishes for the occasion: a spouse who can take over for a day (maybe even a whole night); a child who is continuing to learn the things that I teach him and demonstrates growth and self-sufficiency; and a community that shows that they care, not only through sweet words but a willingness to really learn how to help.
Happy Mother’s Day to me, indeed!
Disclaimer: The experiences and suggestions recounted in these articles are not intended as medical advice, and they are not necessarily the “typical” experiences of families with a child who has type 1 diabetes. These situations are unique to the families depicted. Families should check with their healthcare professionals regarding the treatment of type 1 diabetes and the frequency of blood glucose monitoring. Jen and Kim are real moms of kids with type 1 diabetes and have been compensated for their contributions to this site.