This is the fourth interview in the Meet the Parents of Children with Type 1 Diabetes series here on my blog. To find out what it is all about pop to the initial Meet the Parents post.
Where do you live?
Hull, East Yorkshire
When was your child diagnosed and how old were they?
My child was diagnosed last July 2015 and was just 11 years old.
What were their symptoms and how did their diagnosis happen?
He had begun losing weight, but I put this down to puberty and changes as he was due to move to high school. We went on our first holiday abroad to Tenerife as a family with my partner and Leo’s 2 sisters.
The first complaint was on the plane on the way there. He had excessive thirst. A day later he had tummy pains, lethargy but I put this down to the heat. After 5 days in the night he drank 3-4 pints of fluid within a half hour period. I knew something was wrong I knew it was diabetes.
We made our way back to our apartments but Leo slumped in the street. He was taken to hospital by ambulance with a blood sugar of 53 mmol!! Here he spent 6 days getting better.
Did you know anything about Type 1 diabetes before diagnosis?
I knew a small amount due to my nursing background. But nothing compared to what I know now.
Is your child on an insulin pump or MDI? (multiple daily injections)
He is on MDI
What has been the hardest part for you and your child?
Accepting this as a new way of life. The sleepless nights when he is too high or hypo. He doesn’t like being different from his friends. Making people understand what the disease is and that it CAN NOT be prevented!!!
Between diagnosis and today has anything gotten easier?
Yes my knowledge is vast now and I constantly search the internet for updates. It has fitted into our routine although I hate it still!! Understanding how to carb count comes a lot easier now.
If you could say one thing to a parent whose child has just been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes what would you say?
Correct every individual who thinks type 1 is due to a poor diet!! It infuriates me! Or when they say “Is he allowed to eat this?! Yes of course he is!! I struggled and still do, I don’t sleep properly and have been seen by my GP for anxiety and am currently under- going Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. Don’t let your feelings be known to your child. I am hoping that one day there is a cure.
Is there anything you would like my readers to know about type 1 diabetes?
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition which is NOT preventable. It is a chronic condition. Research and educate your child well with the skills they need to manage the condition when they are older.
I always tell my son that Type 1 is not who he is, it is just a part of our lives we have to deal with. Tell me a random fact about your child, that has nothing to do with Type 1 Diabetes?
Leo loves martial arts and his Playstation 4, any games and new technology. He has shown such bravery since diagnosis, and this I am so proud of!!**To comment on this blog you do not need to leave your name, email address or website if you don't wish to. Any information entered will remain private and will not be shared with anyone other than the site owner.