Original blog location: http://type1today.blogspot.com/2010/11/little-by-little.html
I have a hard time trusting and letting go.
It’s not the first time I’ve admitted this, and even though this is a huge issue for me, am working on it. How, you may possibly wonder? Well, Matt is currently at a sleepover and is going an hour ½ away tomorrow to go paint balling with a group of kids for a 3 hour session.
Sigh. After dropping him off this late afternoon, talking to the completely clueless Mom about possible low blood sugars and Matt’s need to be able to use his glucometer at any time, while staying hopeful since the Dad’s brother has type 1 diabetes, and crying in traffic, drove to the health food store to wander around and ended up buying some Rescue Remedy stress reliever. It’s been around for 70 years and is in 66 countries and is supposed to aid in stressful life situations and relieve emotional exhaustion, so opened it in the car and sprayed twice. The guy behind the counter said it could take a few days to get in the system and reliably work and thought, “great.” Flowery, herbal Xanax – which I already have a prescription for but am so wary of taking too often, that I could use a non-addictive natural remedy.
It was a beautiful sunset on the way home and caught myself smiling. Is it the damn Rescue Remedy? Geez I hope so, because haven’t really smiled all that much this week. Not a good week. And spraying something that looks like breath spray in public is a lot more accepted than popping pills.
So – I question myself as to why the hell would I allow Matt to go somewhere that will keep me up tonight and have me worrying intensely tomorrow during the day? When I ran back in my house to grab something while Matt was extremely excitedly waiting in the car to go to his friends house, and I told Mike and Brianna to pray that Matt lived, I wondered who is the one that needs altering and restriction? Not Matt. Just me. I realize it is me.
I also realized last night when I was unable to rest my head, that in six short years, yes very short years, that he’s going to want to go to a lot more than a sleepover and paintballing. The child will want to go away to college; he will be a grown young man, and during these six short years he will want more and more independence. I refuse to hold him back, but also do not want to make myself sick with worry. So in order to eventually let him leave my home and my safe boundaries for him, I have to let go little by little.
It’s much easier said than done.
The odd thing is – if he were bald from cancer treatments or if he were confined to a wheelchair the world would see his pain, daily struggles, and the precariousness of his health on the outside. But no one sees. No one understands. And no one knows.
Well, what if they won’t? So he brought the JDRF backpack (it explicitly says Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation on it and has a cooling pouch within it for his insulin) and he has the signed release form (did I really, coming from a family where 3 of my 4 parents (steps included) are lawyers, sign a release form saying I will not hold them liable for their own negligence in my son’s injury or possible death???) with my cell phone number on it, and told him to have them call me if they feel the need to harass a 12 year old about bringing a backpack of seemingly normal food into their place of business. Because let me tell you, I just dare them to call me in the state that I am in.
So baby steps for me. I again have to trust that he knows his own body, that he is growing older and wants to do the things his older brother and sister have done without a hovering, quivering mother around every corner. So this means I shut down to a degree. I will talk to the Mom who exclaims when I ask her about breakfast, that, sorry that Matt is so high maintenance but he can’t just have eggs and sausage for breakfast, is there any way he could have toast too – because he needs carbs to have his insulin, and he can’t go too long without his short acting insulin – and she says, “This is so over my head.” Yeah, lady. I feel ya. You are so sweet and so less arrogant than most of the Northern Virginia Mom’s that I meet, and I truly like you, but I am staring at your front hall picture and silent for 10 full seconds not because I like it, but because I am trying not to cry. Does that make any sense to you? Didn’t think so.
So from the health food store after dropping Matt off, where I get the flowery stress relieving mouth spray, walked two doors down to get some Capt Morgan’s. Because, even though I basically stopped drinking almost 16 years ago after I had Brianna, except for special occasions (like seeing Dave Matthews and also getting my soul filled up), realize that the stress that I somehow am not able to get out from under me is so much more harmful than a few drinks.
And when I look out upon this country that we live in, and hear people on TV saying they are planning on repealing the new health care law that is not perfect, but that has given me and millions of other parents some small yet major consolation that their kids, who have previously been dropped from policies and who are discriminated against from obtaining the basic right of health insurance because they have pre-existing conditions – that even for as healthy as some look on the outside – the insurance companies know how sick they are on the inside – I just cry. It is depressing to realize how very, very few people take the time to understand what it means to be the parent of a chronically ill child or to be that child themselves. Chronically ill and life threatened YET if handled perfectly, in perfect situations, can potentially lead whole and full lives – while if something goes wrong, even if it is simply the flu or a stomach virus, can cost insurance companies many, many, many thousands of dollars.
http://www.aflcio.org/corporatewatch/paywatch/ceou/top100.cfm Insurance companies certainly represent with nine figure salaries – for one person – for one year. So in this country, and for apparently the majority of this country’s citizen’s, it’s OK for one person to make 30,000,000 (that’s 30 million) or more a year while their fellow American’s die from lack of insurance coverage or medicinal supplies? This makes no sense to me. I realize that my consultant job offers no benefits, and that if my husband lost his job that pays him less and less every year that we would be 1) in the hurtlocker trying to find a company to cover Matt should these people prevail, and 2) if they prevail we literally do not have the couple thousand extra to pay for his life saving medicine every month.
This exhausts me. So I spray, and have a drink, and try to let go. Little by little. And from one human being on this beautiful earth, to another – this is not easy.