Type 1 Diabetes

HA Charger vs. Type 1 Diabetes

This is the year that every Catholic School sports minded kid waits for: 5th grade,  the year that they can participate in their school sports program. Joey has been anxiously waiting to play basketball as an HA Charger since 4K. He looks great in the uniform, loves going to practice, loves his team and coaches. He wakes up early on game days, as early as 7:00 am, even though his game might not start until 1:45pm. Our record is 5-0 in our league, plus we won our first tournament!

I was so happy when the head coach, a young 27 year old HA Charger Alum, said he would love Joe to help him coach. For a parent of a kid with type 1, sports are a scary thing. We have to pre-plan for every practice, and every game. If Joe wasn’t coaching, I would have to sit at every practice, and that isn’t something that Joey loves. He loves me being around, but doesn’t love why I have to be there.

He is getting pretty independent with his type 1 care, but, I can’t leave him in the charge of coaches that don’t have experience with this disease. It’s not fair to them. I have given them the short version of what to do if he goes low, even if he passes out. Then I put myself in their shoes and think about how in the heck am I going to get that Glucagon shot thingy out and actually use it if he passes out. Hard enough for me, will they remember to roll him onto his side, and make sure to mix it properly before giving him the huge needle shot? NO, can’t do that to anyone.

Our last game was not a good game day because type 1 came in and robbed Joey of his best ability to play basketball. He is a very good player, loves the game, and loves to win. But when his numbers are high, for whatever reason, he doesn’t play very well, because he can’t concentrate. He knew he wan’t having a good game, couldn’t make a basket, or get a rebound. Most don’t understand how a high blood sugar can make or break your ability to play sports, take a test, etc. I’m not using this as an excuse, it’s a fact.

After the game, which was their toughest game to date, he came out of the locker room, came to me, and his eyes welled up with tears, something my kid doesn’t do. He looked at me and said “this is your fault, for not correcting me this morning!” Earlier in the morning his number was 260, knowing that he was going to be playing a strenuous basketball game in an hour, I told him to correct at a lower rate, which means I didn’t give a full correction for his high number. Take that along with adrenaline, and he was to high to play well.

I took 100% of the blame, what else could I do? I hoped it would make him feel better, I don’t know if it did, but it doesn’t matter. Sometimes we have to be the fall guy for this ugly disease. We live and learn with type 1, for the first time my baby looked at me with big tears welling up in his beautiful eyes, and I felt like a failure as a mom. I know I’m not, but I felt so bad for him and wished I could take this disease from him so this never happens again, problem is it will.


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