Rasing Teens with Diabetes: A Survival Guide for Parents – A Book Review

ImageA few weeks ago I wrote a post about watching Author Moira McCarthy on Tu-Diabetes during a video chat.  In this post I talked about how I cried while watching this video chat.  It was the first time in a year and a half that I felt at ease about caring for my son with Type 1 Diabetes.  I felt at ease and understood by a fellow mom who has been in the trenches before. 

This mom talking to me understood the anxiety that I felt when my son would lie to me about taking his blood glucose or even taking his insulin.  She also reassured me that this was normal!

I have been reading this book and if you were to see the book it is already dog eared and written in and pages wrinkled.  To me this is the sign of a really awesome book!  This means I have gotten a lot out of this book. 

Moira has written a book that is easy to read and very entertaining.  Moira shares in each chapter stories from her own life and trials with her family as they walked through Type 1 Diabetes with her daughter Lauren.  This book offers practical wisdom on how to communicate with your teenager with diabetes and also with your other children that do not have diabetes.  She even covers the topics that we tend to shy away from such as driving, drinking and…..Sex. 

The advice that Moira gives is given in a way that is light, funny and thoughtful.  Throughout the book you will find vignettes that feature thoughts by her daughter Lauren, other experts in the field and other parents and their experiences.  Even if you do not have the time to read a whole chapter these additions make it easy to find an answer you have been looking for.

Let me tell you that I feel strongly that this should be the “bible” for parents of teens with diabetes and it should be handed to you in a blue velvet covered box that says take this daily with insulin and blood checks!!! 

To learn more about Moira and her book tune in to Conversations In Care to hear her interview.

Moira McCarthy is an acclaimed writer, author and public speaker.  She was recently recognized as the JDRF International Volunteer of the Year.  Her books include the top-selling Everything Parents Guide to Juvenile Diabetes.

 

 

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Middle Finger

This has been a really tough year one that has tested not only my patience but my strength.  Brandon has struggled with accepting diabetes and he has spent many months angry.  Frankly, I have spent many months angry.  Diabetes stole from me this super funny kid that laughed and joked and left me with this kid that slammed doors, and cursed and broke plates.

During this time there were days that Brandon refused to test his blood sugar and take his insulin.  His therapist suggested some extreme forms of getting him to be compliant.  Things I was not ready to do and struggled with.  I wrestled with the ideas she gave me and the kid that I know.  A sweet boy that is uber funny.  When spoken to gently can be reasoned with.  One that I knew was trying in his own way to come to terms with what life just dealt him.

I on the other hand was dealing with increasing anxiety of making sure that my son would not die.  That he would not damage his body with the highs.  This anxiety took over.  This anxiety made me angry when he would not take his insulin because I was scared that he would die, that he would cause damage because of the highs.

It took time and patience, it still takes time and patience.  And by the expectations of his therapists he may not be making the progress that they would like him to make, but he is making progress.  What makes me believe that he is making progress other than the lowering of numbers?  Let me tell you.

About two weeks ago I went into his room to wake him up for school and take his blood sugar.  This is a task that I need to be throughly prepared for.  I learned quickly not to sit by his legs during this new morning ritual.  He rolled over and stuck his hand from underneath his blanket.  “Hey bub, what finger do you want me to prick.”  Remember he is still under the blanket except for his hand, facing the opposite direction.  He slowly pulled back four fingers to revel his middle finger.  There it was, his humor.  It’s back. Giving Diabetes the middle finger was absolutely priceless to me.

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